Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Knot magazine - Michigan edition

Yeah!! I was just at the store and found the newest copy of the Knot Magazine the Michigan edition, it's the Fall/Winter 2008 issue...isn't it only June?

Anyways, I was so excited to flip through it and see a couple of Real Weddings from here in Grand Rapids. A few local vendor's work was listed such as Gail VanderLaan Floral, Dusty Brown Photography, Ben Harrison Photography, Noel Restaurant, and more.

These pictures are from one of the featured weddings, photography by Kelly Sweet Photography, the floral arrangements are from Gail VanderLaan Floral, the ceremony was at the Kuyper College Vos Chapel and the cake was from Noel Restaurant.

I love to see local vendors getting advertised in bigger publications! Great work guys!

Cutting the Guest List

Having a hard time cutting back your guest list? Does your fiance want to invite everyone he has ever met? When couples are trying to stick to a hard budget cutting back the guest list can mean a huge savings. The difference between 100 and 125 guests doesn't sound like a lot but that is 25 more meals, 3-4 more tables and centerpieces, more favors, more invitations, programs and menus. Sounds a little different when you put it that way, doesn't it? Here are a few tips on making the tough decision of who to leave off the final list:

1. Make a preliminary guest list as early as you can. This will help narrow down venues that can accommodate your wedding.

2. Before you ask your future in-laws to submit a list, give them parameters upfront to avoid confusion later. Break the guest list down into percentages, say you and your fiance have 50%, your parents get 25% and his parents get 25%. This can be adjusted with family sizes, if you have a very large family and he has a small family as well.

3. Remember the people that mean the most to you, as much as you will want to talk with everyone you may not be able too. Trying to give everyone equal face time with you will take away time from the people you most want to celebrate with.

4. Because an acquaintance invited you to their wedding 5 years ago and that was the last time you have spoken with them, you don't have to "repay" them but inviting them to yours. There is no rule saying you have to use your wedding as a source to return favors.

5. You don't have to invite all of your co-workers, but be careful with this one, if you are constantly talking about your wedding in front of them you may hurt a lot of feelings when they don't receive the invitation. Be cautious about talking about your wedding plans in front of people you aren't inviting. The size and intimacy of where you work can affect this as well.

6. You should not feel compelled to add "and guest" to invitations sent to unmarried friends, especially is they have only been dating someone for a week. This also helps your friends who are single and are stressing about having to find a date just for your wedding.

7. Having an adults only wedding or limiting the guests to no children 12 and under will help cut back a lot too. Be careful when adding "and family" to an invite...some people may read this as everyone they are related to not just those in their immediate family. Specifically spell out who is invited on the envelope.

8. When going through your over sized guest list ask yourself this question "will I still know this person 2-5 years from now?" if not, then cut them from the list.

9. If you have a lot of out-of-town guests on the list, send out Save-the-Dates to get a feeler for who will be willing to make the trip and who will not.

10. If you are still having a dilemma on cutting back, make an A and a B list. Send out the invitations for the A list 8 weeks before the wedding, this will give you time to receive back any regrets and still give you time to replace those with guests from the B list. And no one will ever know which list they were on.

Don't forget this is YOUR wedding day, no one elses, you may feel pressure from people to invite guests that you don't plan on, you don't have to give in to that pressure. Taking care of the guest list early on will help relieve a lot of stress and help the rest of the planning to go much smoother.

Good Luck!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

For the Love of ~ Organizing

Okay, I'm already self-aware that I'm a dork. I love to organize! Anything and everything. If you currently could see my office you wouldn't question that statement! But, that's exactly my point, right now my office is a mess because I'm making the invitations to my upcoming 30th birthday party (I'm so old!). My husband was thrilled when I said I wanted to plan it and I was just as thrilled that he didn't care...I wanted to organize every detail myself. Does that make me a little controlling or just good at my job? I prefer to think the second, but pretty sure it's a little of both.

I used to love playing in my dad's office when I was little, all the file cabinets and drawers, everything had it's place. I thought I wanted to be a teacher...but then I realized it was only because of all the office supplies they have. I LOVE office supplies!!! My favorite place in the office I used to work at was the supply room, stacks and stacks of Post-its what could be better!!! Who doesn't love sticky notes?!

I love to help couples organize all the details for their big day. Making lists of contacts, decor, vendors and especially time lines (using office supplies along the way, of course). My favorite part of my job is the final result, when all the details fall into place and witnessing the look on the bride's face when she can finally see her dream in reality.