Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Ten Money Saving Tips For Your Wedding

1. Use free media and the internet
You can borrow wedding/bridal books and magazines from friends, work colleagues and public libraries. Check for local wedding suppliers on the web, where you will be able to find details on the larger and smaller specialist wedding companies in your local area.
Visit free-to-enter wedding fairs, as the prospective customer why should you be expected to pay an admission fee to view their stands? Ask lots of questions and obtain quotes without making any firm commitments at the time, giving you a chance later to review all of the offerings and make your choices without any sales pressure - you'll be amazed at the price variations for supplying identical services.
Bear in mind that the larger wedding fairs will be charging high fees to the wedding suppliers who attend. This will have two consequences for YOU, firstly, it will exclude many of the smaller, but equally good quality, local wedding suppliers who cannot justify the wedding fair expenditure and secondly, you have to ask who is ultimately paying for these high exhibition fees? YOU ARE!...and then many of these larger wedding fair operators have the cheek to expect you to pay an entry fee as well!
2. Use Online Auctions and e-Bay
Many of the items that you need for your wedding are available on e-Bay at a fraction of the price charged by many wedding vendors. Cake toppers, favors, balloons, new and used-once wedding dresses along with a host of other useful items that can save you a lot of money. Do your shopping well ahead of the wedding date to allow plenty of postal time. Check for the established and trusted sellers by checking the number of items they have sold previously and their feedback rating and you can't go far wrong.
3. Food and Drinks For Your Wedding Reception
Ask your caterer for advice and be honest with them about your wish to save money. Discuss with the caterer the options that are available to you, maybe considering a hot buffet if that is cheaper than a formal seated three course meal. Enquire about providing your own drinks for your guests, or providing your own wine to accompany the meal.
You should carefully consider the bar arrangements as this can have a considerable cost. If you intend to provide a free bar, then ask about restricting this to only wine and beer, which will be cheaper. You may also wish to consider having the (free) bar open for a restricted period of time, an hour for example - or dispense with the free bar completely if you are supplying the wine for the meal and wedding toasts, etc.
4. Reduce The Wedding Guest List
Each name on your guest list is an increase in the cost of your wedding. It's not just the catering cost that will increase, but also the table decoration, favors, rentals you may need and even the size of the room you need to hire. Avoid being lavish with issuing wedding invitations, don't be pressured to invite all of your work colleagues and be selective over who's children you invite - each child will probably cost you just as much as an adult on the wedding day.
Remove anyone from your guest list that you haven't had contact with in the past few years and don't bow to pressure to invite distant relatives. When you invite friends and relatives who are single, resist the temptation to include "and guest" on their invitation, they are attending your wedding, not out on a date paid for by you.

Friday, 23 December 2011

Wedding Invitations and Wedding Stationery Guide

Your wedding invitations are the first impression that your guest will have of your forthcoming wedding and the overall style of the celebration. So when the day comes to announce your wedding to all your friends and family, you will want to make sure it is with impact and style.
From the save the date card or wedding invitation to the wedding breakfast stationery and thank you cards, your wedding stationery sets the scene and tone for your wedding day and stamps your style on the wedding that will leave a lasting impression on all your guests.
Unless you are in a lucky position not to have to consider costs, probably the first decision to make before you start to consider your wedding stationery requirements is to establish your budget. If you are having a large wedding, the cost of wedding stationery can soon mount up. The idea of bespoke wedding invitations may appeal to you but if you are have 200 guests you need to know that you can afford the costs of a bespoke designer! Similarly, you may like the idea of hand crafting your own wedding stationery for that personal touch but be sure that you are up to the challenge of sticking, gluing or printing dozens of invitations when you have dresses to buy, photographers to interview, cakes to choose.

Friday, 16 December 2011

How to Choose a Wedding Videographer?

How to Choose a Wedding Videographer? Why bother reading an article on How to Choose a Wedding Videographer? After all, you just look at his (or her) footage and size up their personality, fees and plans, then make your choice, right? Right. And that's how the majority of weddings get ruined - or at least have the "Fun Meter" turned way, way down! That's right, four out of five weddings are ruined by the wedding Videographer. So, if you don't want your wedding Videographer ruining your wedding, read on..
Wedding Videographer Styles of Operation There is a time for posed, formal videofooatge - at your photo session. Often there are two photo sessions, one held before the ceremony, with guys and gals kept separate, and one held after the ceremony. In my opinion, a wedding Videographer should be told that this is the only chance to get posed footage and that he must be good enough to capture all other footage as though he were a professional event Videographer - oh wait, he IS (supposed to be) a professional event Videographer. Event Videographers and photographers are supposed to be able to unobtrusively record an event without interrupting it to stage and pose for footage, etc.
Puppeteers Unfortunately, most brides are unaware of this little fact. After all, she only has to choose a wedding Videographer once in her life (hopefully). So what happens when she hires a wedding Videographer who cannot shoot like an event Videographer? One who thinks he must be in charge of everything and that every shot must be posed in order to get a smooth and easy montage. I'm glad you asked, because now we're getting to the whole purpose of this article. These guys act like puppeteers with you and your groom as the puppets. You are never left alone to enjoy your day. There will be no casual footage of you and your groom, friends and family having a great time, partly because all footage will be staged and partly because the wedding Videographers will make it difficult for people to have a great time.
It begins while the bride and bridesmaids are getting ready. Some Videographers will come into the room and stay out of the way and quietly get some casual shots, then ask for a few posed shots, then leave. Those are the pros. Unfortunately, most are not pros and will hover over the bride and bridesmaids, constantly harassing them for posed shots, so that the bride and her friends can hardly find any time to chat freely and enjoy the moment.
The Wedding Ceremony During the ceremony, a time that should have reverence, a time that should belong to you and your groom, I see these wedding Videographers continually turning their video lights on and off and walking back and forth in front of guests. They seem to be doing a much better job of distracting your guests than of getting good shots. A professional wedding / event Videographer should be able to cover this from a tripod further back in the room, using a telephoto lens and without lights. He should not be moving about and distracting people. The purpose and focus of a wedding ceremony should be you, your groom and your guests - not a wedding Videographer (and not a wedding photographer either).

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Summer Wedding Ideas

Summer weddings are always more preferred because of the versatility in wedding themes and ideas during this time of the year. With the abundance of nature blooming in the surrounding area, a pleasant summer wedding is easier to put together. Not to mention, the beautiful warm outdoor weather is always conducive to a celebration and outdoor ceremonies.
The most popular theme for a summer wedding is a beach themed wedding. For a beach themed wedding choose a public or private beach for your wedding. Set the beach wedding theme from the very beginning. Let the beach wedding theme reflect on your invitations and stationary by adding sea side elements and decorations to them. You will save on the wedding decorations for a beach themed wedding as the beach itself will set the scene. Add subtle touches to your tables and centerpieces with seashells.
For your menu, definitely seafood in your menu and there are some fabulous wedding bake designs with a beach theme. Select a cake topper that reflects seaside elements to tie it all together. To top it all off make sure to give out wedding favors with a beach theme such as a sea shell gel candle. The most fun part of a beach wedding affair is picking out wedding favors. There is an abundance of beach wedding favors to select from. For a formal beach wedding give sand and seashell tea lights and use personalized Adirondack chair tea light and place card holders to guide your guests to their table at your beach wedding reception.

Friday, 9 December 2011

How to Become a Successful Wedding Planner With Inexpensive Weddings

Can you make a living planning weddings? Yes. As a self-employed professional, you can either charge a set fee for the wedding or a percentage of the total cost. Your income can be uncertain when you first start planning these extravaganzas, but as your reputation spreads and you gain more experience, your income can increase dramatically.
Of course, you will make more income on an elaborate, huge wedding, but several smaller and simple weddings will be less stressful when you are starting out and, when the separate income is added together, you will probably make the same amount of money.
Some agencies who track salaries report yearly incomes in the $50,000 range for wedding planners. One such agency, PayScale, currently reports these average hourly rates for the profession:
* California $28.00
* Georgia $27.50
* Massachusetts $20.64
* New York $15.00
* Louisiana $14.00
* Pennsylvania $10.23
* Texas $9.00
As with any self-employment, your success depends entirely on your creativity, reliability and marketing skills. There are online courses you can take to teach you the skills you need to plan the perfect wedding for your clients. Some of those courses will lead to certification as a Wedding Planner, which will give you more credibility with your clients and improve your professional standing with your colleagues.
Getting Started
What a professional Wedding Planner actually does is take on the details and responsibility of the event, relieving the bride and groom and their families, from the stresses involved. In turn, this allows them to enjoy the preliminary wedding events, like bridal showers and picking a honeymoon location.
There are lots of details you, as a Wedding Planner, need to know to keep things running smoothly and within the budget available. You will have to have a set of resources you can tap into to get the best service at the best prices, like reserving the church or chapel, catering the reception, ordering flowers, getting the wedding dress designed and ordered, selecting invitations and announcements, booking the music and hiring a professional photographer, among many other tasks.
It would probably be very good advice to start your career on small and somewhat inexpensive weddings. Giant extravaganzas can be very complex and time consuming to the most experienced Wedding Planner and you would be well-advised to start smaller and work up.
Some of the following tips should help you get started on planning a smaller wedding that will save money on several of the more expensive features of normal weddings. The bride's father will love you for it.
The Wedding Gown
* The wedding gown can be expensive enough to break any budget. You can offer your client several options that are affordable and will still make the bride look like an angel as she floats down the aisle.
Renting a gown is becoming more popular every day. Think about it. The bride is going to wear it once and it was probably worn once before she rented it. It also avoids the storage problem for 20 years if the bride will not be saving it for her firstborn child to wear at her own wedding.
* If a member of the bride's family is a good seamstress, suggest that she ask the family member to make the dress. Providing all the material and even paying the family member for the service will more than likely be less expensive than buying one from a bridal store.
* Another way would be for the bride to wear her mother's wedding gown, if she saved it. You might want to check it carefully for any deterioration before the bride commits to wearing it. The mother is probably from a generation that thought saving her wedding gown was an obligation of the marriage and believed for several decades that her daughter would wear it at her own wedding.
The Reception
Another budget-buster is the reception, but some planning with a true reality check can reduce your client's expenditures here.
* Think smaller. Talk to your clients about how they can downsize the guest list. When the excitement of the coming event takes over, your clients and their parents will many times have a very long list of people to invite to the wedding and the reception after.
Many of the parents' visions of the reception can resemble an extravaganza with hundreds of guests, munching caviar and drinking champagne all night long in a huge ballroom. If their budget will not cover the considerable expenses involved in their dream reception, your skills as the Wedding Planner will be well served here.
To start with, keeping the guest list small and only inviting close family and friends will save money and still provide the dream celebration your clients want. If your client hasn't had a close relationship with college friends or neighbors from four moves back, don't put them on the list.
Instead of renting the largest hall or club banquet room in your town for the reception, you have a couple of inexpensive options that might appeal to your clients:
* Check out restaurants in the area. Some have banquet rooms that they will either rent out or provide free if you use their services for the sit-down meal or the buffet.
* Consider suggesting that your clients hold the reception at their home. The party does not have to include a full meal. Catered hors d'oeuvres and a champagne fountain will set the festive mood your clients want.
* Weddings held in gardens or other natural settings are very popular and beautiful. There's minimal decoration needed and the only expense might be for the minister, rabbi or Justice of the Peace.
* Not having a full bar will save a lot of money, regardless of where the reception is held. The champagne fountain mentioned above can also be combined with beer or wine if the clients want to provide additional libations for their guests.
The Photography
The formal wedding service requires a professional photographer who will create a beautiful album to record the special day and preserve the memories to relive as they wish. If you create a relationship with several photographers as you build your career, you will know which one to hire for your client's purposes.
The rest of the celebration can be recorded by all their friends and relatives with a digital camera in their pockets. Some clients put disposable cameras on tables for anyone to use. Have a decorated basket nearby and visible to give your guests a place to leave the cameras when they go home.