Top 5: Don’t Forget the Things You’ll Forget!

Sounds kind of like a Dr. Seuss book title, doesn’t it? He always had the best advice for us while growing up and now we need some advice as adults! Especially now, as we start planning that big day that’ll forever change your life (no pressure). As you start planning your day, you’ll know to hit the big must-do’s: dress, venue, guest list, food, cake, and many more. But, there are so many things leading up to the day, during the day, and even after the day that so many brides push back into their mind. It’s time to bring those details forward so you can truly enjoy this time- forgetfulness free!

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1. Who’s taking everything after the night’s over?

Let’s be honest, what are you going to do with eight huge floral arrangements? Who’s bringing all your gifts home for you or placing them in your hotel room? What about all the decorations? Who’s taking them down and where are they going? These are all questions you need to ask yourself and get answers to before your day! If you have a planner (get a planner), they can handle a few of these things for you so you’re not worrying about it. If not, talk to some friends and family members. See who can take some decorations temporarily at the end of the night or see who wants to take home a beautiful centerpiece that you’re not going to want. Make sure you have plans for all these things so at 1:00am you’re not chasing people down for a car to throw this important stuff in!

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2. Last minute payments and documents

Seems like all you’ve been doing is throwing money around, right? However, some vendors do require last payments due at the wedding. Write a check out for each vendor and place each one separately in a clearly labeled envelope. This way, you (or your parents) aren’t writing any last minute checks while trying to get ready. Also, make sure you have your wedding certificate done and ready for your officiant right when they arrive. If you don’t have it, it won’t be good!

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3. Confirming your vendors

Do you have a wedding planner? Great! If your planner is good, you can completely skip this advice and move onto the next since they should have this covered. If not, you should dedicate some time a week before your day to contacting vendors to confirm arrival and arrival times. This will completely eliminate the stress of wondering where your vendor may be and if they could have forgotten about your day. Make sure you get a verbal or written confirmation from the person or company themselves that they’re coming and at what time. Don’t just trust your friend’s sister that her brother who’s your photographer is coming. Talk to him yourself!

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4. The very small things
You remembered the guestbook for everyone to sign but did you recall buying pens for everyone to sign it with? You remembered to order your cake, but do you have a cake knife (especially important if your caterer isn’t told they have to cut the cake ahead of time.)? You remember to get the open bar, but do you have toasting flutes for your all your toasts? These are the small things that are easy to forget but so important for the smoothness of your wedding day. Small things, big impact.

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5. Say “Thanks!”

This one word goes a very, very long way but means the most to your guests. Thanking your friends and family who have taken time out of their lives to come celebrate your marriage is a huge thing, so pass it out! Vendors who, yes, you hired, but are doing a good job deserve a few thank you’s as well! It never hurts to show appreciation to everyone who is attending and working hard to make your day the best it can be. Just one word, remember to say it! People will remember, I promise!

6. Honorable Mention: Your Vendors!

Your vendors have come together to make your day as perfect as possible. You did hours of searching and meeting with them to find just the perfect planner, photographer, and DJ, it’s only fair to treat them right! Make sure they’re fed during your day, most of them are there for 8 hours or more and if you’re hungry, so are they. Vendor tables are ideal, but if the venue just doesn’t allow it, make sure there is somewhere else they can eat. Tips are always appreciated but not needed and make sure to give them reviews online! Wedding Wire, Yelp, and Google all are used to look up vendors and great reviews go a long way. Take a few minutes once you’re back from your honeymoon and give them a review- it’s the biggest and best thank you they can receive!

Wordless Wednesday: The Smaller Details

The smaller things of a wedding can be forgotten so easily. With so many options for everything big, how is a bride supposed to remember the small? However, the smallest of details can be the biggest of things that your guests talk about. It can even become the thing that pulls everything together! So today, for our Wordless Wednesday, we are featuring all the small details that can be the feature of your wedding, or worse, forgotten!

Signature Drink

Ceremony Sign

Ceremony Sign

Bride & Groom Seat Sign

Bride & Groom Seat Sign

Directions to Wedding

Directions to Wedding

Escort Cards/Favor

Escort Cards/Favor

Guestbook

Guestbook

Lighting

Lighting

Cocktail Napkins

Cocktail Napkins

Dinner Menu

Dinner Menu

Cake Stand

Cake Stand

Grand Exit

Grand Exit

Ceremony Exit

Ceremony Exit

6 PROS & CONS OF A DESTINATION WEDDING

Recently, destination weddings have gained more popularity than ever! Most couples choosing to have a destination wedding are seen as naturally adventurous, and of course, lovers of travel! Before making any decisions though, a couple should do their research, and see if this type of wedding is for them. Here are a few Pros & Cons that could help to get you thinking if a destination wedding truly is for you!

No need for decorations! The backdrop says it all!

No need for decorations! The backdrop says it all!

First, the PROS:

Pro: Intimate

It truly is up to the couple to evaluate who they would like to be in attendance. Most destination weddings will have 2 to 50 guests in attendance, and with a smaller guest list the couple is able to truly enjoy their big day with the people that matter most. Another plus to having an intimate wedding is eliminating the possibility of disappointment due to not having to invite those who lets just say, aren’t a priority to have in attendance (yet, you still would feel obligated to invite them to your wedding at home).

Pro: Less Stress Levels (believe it or not)

Many resorts that are becoming popular for destination weddings and are now offering wedding packages! These wedding packages include just about everything a couple would need on their big day: officiant, photographer, flowers, videographer, hair & makeup artist, decorations (minimal but, let’s be honest – you have a gorgeous backdrop), and even the benefit and convenience of a wedding planner! The resorts also offer great discounts for your visiting guests. The great part of having these wedding packages is that it is all-inclusive and you won’t have to stress about all the little details while being 1000 miles away!

Pro: Relaxation for All & Quality Time

Having a destination wedding means you are giving your guests the opportunity to have a mini-vacation. Guests typically stay an average of 3-4 days. Since, your guests are spending quite a bit of money to travel they might as well get the most of it. You and your guests may want to partake on activities that are offered both on and off the resort before and after the wedding! If all relatives have not yet had the chance to meet, this could be their chance to get to know each other better, and spend some good quality time together!

Now, the CONS: 

01 Con: Cost Concerns for Guests

A couple should realize that for a destination wedding, guests will be spending to attend compared to a traditional wedding because of the travel & hotel expenses. To some guests, the cost could be an issue and the main reason they may not be able to attend. This could mean that some of the people who matter most to the couple may not be by their side. If you are planning a destination wedding, it would be ideal to talk to those individuals who you would like to see present at your wedding, and see if they would be able to attend. Also, a couple should make sure to give guests more than enough time – 9-12 months at the least – to make the proper accommodations and save on expenses!

02 Con: Making it Count

Prior to choosing the destination for your wedding make sure to do your research! It is recommended that you research and list (which will help ultimately in choosing the location) the countries that will allow you to legally bind a marriage ceremony. Also, make sure you are well aware of any other requirements that country may need in order to get married. After all, you want it to be legally recognized, both there and at home!

03 Con: Learning to Trust

For most couples planning a destination wedding, it is likely that they have never visited that location. Glancing through online photos may help quite a lot in deciding where to wed. However, photographs could be deceiving at times, and it the last thing you want is to take that chance of booking everything and then being disappointed by the result. Depending on a couple’s budget, it may be ideal to include a trip to their destination prior to the wedding. This trip would give reassurance to the couple of making the right choice for their location! If this is not possible, another option could be speaking to other persons who have visited – or even better – couples who have wed there. Online reviews are also a great resource! Being thousands of miles away from your wedding site may cause anxiety for those individuals who like to be in control. The couple could definitely take part in the planning process effectively with the use of technology. If you have a destination wedding planner it may be beneficial to have skype sessions every once in a while, to make sure the planning is going smoothly and for your personal reassurance! Remember, choose a wedding planner that you feel you can trust, so that you’ll actually trust her!

 

We hope that this can help you in your decision to have a destination wedding and making your nuptials truly memorable!

Wordless Wednesday: Destination Weddings

For those of us living in the Sunshine State, we sometimes become accustomed to the beauty of our Florida paradise and have little desire to go beyond. It’s only natural that couples (especially the bride) want their wedding to be magical, everlasting and of course, unique! For those who love traveling, or simply want to get away, a destination wedding could be for you! Below are a few great places in other parts of the country and around the world and that will make you desire for a memorable, destination bound big day!

Bal Harbour, Maine

Bal Harbour, Maine

Park Guell, Barcelona

Park Guell, Barcelona

Coastline of Brazil

Coastline of Brazil

Caribbean

Caribbean

Disney Dream Cruise Ship

Disney Dream Cruise Ship

Florida Keys

Florida Keys

Nayarit, Mexico

Nayarit, Mexico

London, United KIngdom

London, United Kingdom

Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas, Nevada

Indianapolis Arts Garden

Indianapolis Arts Garden

Honolulu, Hawaii

Honolulu, Hawaii

New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans, Louisiana

Niagara Falls, New York

Niagara Falls, New York

Paris, France

Paris, France

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Rocky Mountains, Colorado

Rocky Mountains, Colorado

Toronto, Canada

Toronto, Canada

Sonoma, California

Sonoma, California

Rome Italy

Rome, Italy

Santorini GReece

Santorini, Greece

 

 

Why We Love What We Do and 5 Ways It Makes a Difference

Many times brides know they want and need a wedding planner, but have a hard time explaining the reasons why to their fiancé, parents or others who are unaware of exactly what we do as planners and how it makes a real difference in the wedding planning experience and most importantly, the wedding day itself!

BELOW ARE OUR TOP 5 REASONS:

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Photo by Brentwood Photography

1. Budget:

Let’s face it – weddings are expensive. And because of this, many people may believe that wedding planning services are not affordable, and just “an unecessary added expense.” Quite the contrary! As planners, we’re not just experienced in making events come together beautifully; we also make sure you are paired with the best vendors for your budget and needs. Not only are we helping you make affordable decisions, we’re making sure that we do the math to the last nickel and dime, so that you can get the best bang for you buck. We’ve saved our couples from hundreds to thousands of dollars and continue to build on that experience. As if that’s not enough, many of our amazing vendors offer our couples considerate discounts, offers and incentives – so the investment you’re making in your planning services is truly going right back in your pocket.

2. Guidance:

I’m sure by now you know that there is quite the information overload within wedding planning. There’s just so much to know and be aware of, and things you haven’t even thought through yet (like what is reasonable to spend on certain items, who will be doing readings during your ceremony, and what song will be playing during your cake cutting). But we’re here for that! And not only do we guide you through all the little (and big!) details, we also guide your vendors leading up to the wedding, as well as on the big day. We consider ourselves financial advisors, educators, counselors, negotiators, designers and coordinators all wrapped up in one!

3. Stress:

The last thing any bride should be during some of the most exciting moments of her life, is stressed. There’s absolutely no way you can soak it all in if your stress levels are at an all time high. For many, this stress just comes from the amount of information and detail involved (refer to number 2 above) in making all these decisions that ultimately come together to make your wedding day. Even when you have family and friends to help, they may get just as overwhelmed and not quite know how to handle unforseen situations. Here, we always discuss a plan B far in advance and make sure that you’re covered when it comes to everything from vendor contracts to your venue’s policies and even the option of wedding insurance. Plus, we’ll always provide you with our best expert advice and make sure to keep you on track within your custom wedding planning timeline and to-do’s. We send you reminders when needed and provide you with unlimited communication.

4. Time:

Because we know you have a life to be had, loved ones to care for, a job to work and sometimes even school to study for, we’re aware that your time is very limited and therefore you may feel that any free time you currently do have is being fully overtaken by your wedding planning. Our job is to make sure that we help you use your time effectively so that you can have some of that free time still available. As our client, we will never call you and interrupt your day without scheduling a time that works for you first, and we are available via email so that you can communicate with us on your time and refer back to these discussions whenever you need to. If you’re taking time off of work to attend vendor meetings, we do our best to make that time as productive as possible so that we can minimize the effect that your wedding planning may have on your schedule.

5. Memories:

Our favorite reason, and the main reason we do what we do! This is the time for you and your loved ones to make memories! You would never believe how many times we hear other newlyweds say how much they regret not hiring a wedding planner. And it’s because they ended up feeling like their wedding day (and all the planning leading up to it) was a chore for them. Not here! We make sure that you’ll be a guest at your own wedding, while we work it. Your wedding day is undeniably one of the most important days of your life, and we are here to make sure that you spend it having fun, enjoying your loved ones and truly immersing yourself in those unforgettable moments!

So there you have it! We may be a little biased, but we are huge advocates of having a wedding planner, and have major love for all of our fellow planners throughout the country and the world for doing the hard but SO very much rewarding work that is our job – making wedding days and celebrations the most memorable they can be!

Oh So Classy Events welcomes Briana Bialk!

I am SO excited to formally introduce y’all to Oh So Classy’s newest addition, our coordinator Briana Bialk!

Oh So Classy Events Coordinator - Briana Bialk

Briana Bilak, Oh So Classy Events (photo by Ailyn La Torre photography)

Briana joined us in early July and has been a blessing to have on the team! I could not have imagined better qualities than those found within her – she’s determined, organized, ridiculously quick on her feet and super passionate about weddings and working hard for our clients and their special days.

Briana recently became a Florida resident after her move from the windy city of Chicago to beautiful Tampa. Her past event planning experience includes her University’s event board, mud runs, urban scavenger hunts and much more. Her passion for weddings and creating memorable events for people is what led her to Oh So Classy. In her spare time, Briana frequents her social media blogs, loves to bake, and enjoys visiting new places from around the area to around the nation. She would love to make your day as special as it can be!

You may have seen a few of her (awesome!) posts here and there, but there is lots more to come from her as she continues to grow with our OSC family.

Bri, I’m so thrilled to have you on this little team of ours and look forward to kicking butt together this Fall season and for many more to come!

xoxoxo ~ Sasha

To learn more about Briana and Oh So Classy Events, please visit our website.

5 Ways to Keep Your Guests Entertained on Your BIG Day

While most of the wedding planning focuses on perfecting the bride’s day down to the last detail, brides are paying more attention to insuring that their guests are not only witness to a beautiful union, but also entertained.  Oftentimes, receptions held in one grand room provide little escape for people who don’t love eardrum-busting top hits.  Or a huge back up happens at the guest book.  To keep your guests entertained and surprised, try the 5 following tips!

5waystokeepentertained

1.  Make the Guest Book Interactive –  The typical album of images or lined paper guest books are a fantastic way for relatives to write well wishes to the newlyweds.  However, each person does not always get to put their own personal touch on their wishes.  In order to capture your guests’ truest form, make the guest book interactive!  Surprise guests by having them put on their creativity hats and pose for polaroids that create a unique piece of reception decor.  Or have guests write their favorite memory of the couple and pin it to a burlap pinboard.  Your guests will have a ball reading all the details of your relationships! It’s also a great way for guests to get to know one another.

2. Keep the Kids Occupied – To invite the kids or not to invite the kids?  There is no right answer, but if you do choose to invite children, their parents will most likely be concerned about keeping them occupied while the bridal party is speaking or during a tear-jerking Father-Daughter dance.  Ease their minds by providing an activity basket for all your younger guests including coloring books and word searches.

3.  Hire the Professionals – Couples are constantly upping the ante so to speak.  If entertainment is a big concern for you, outsource it.  Consider showcasing some local entertainers such as salsa dancers who can really get the dance floor going.  In the Tampa area, cigar rollers are a big hit.  It is also a nice way to keep the gentlemen entertained when the ladies are dancing to Whitney Houston songs.

4.  Challenge Your Guests –  Particularly perfect for competitive couples, incorporating some challenges into the reception is a effective ice breaker for guests.  If your venue has an outdoor area which you can take advantage of, create an Olympics of lawn games with bocce, horseshoes, croquet, etc.  When this isn’t an option, including an adult version of I-Spy at each place setting can get the competitive juices flowing.

5. Let Them Eat….. A Lot! – Foodie couples can showcase their favorite cuisine in mass at their wedding.  Candy bars that are cohesive with your color palette are an elegant way to instantly insert some late night sweets.  Maybe you know for certain that the dance floor will be packed and your friends will need a late night snack?  Bring in a food truck for late night fried foods to counteract some of those signature cocktails before sending your guests home.

Regardless of how you opt to entertain your guests, keep in mind that your wedding should reflect you and your partner.  Be creative, and have fun planning!  It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to create an event that uniquely showcases your relationship.

 

Wordless Wednesday: Guestbooks + Guest Activites

It seems that the days of a traditional guest book and music as your wedding entertainment are long past.  Nowadays, couples are looking to entertain all their guests, not just the ones that like to cut a rug and write well wishes.  That may mean photobooths, creating images from fingerprints, or signing your name over your hometown on a globe.  Below you will find a few options for guest entertainment whether you are a quirky, traditional, jet-setting, romantic, or game loving couple.

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b0decf10a0a5df5f4b4922ec1effc295

eb0de1846fa0a5001106f738b2840b0f

90f824a83a68dde34a5073b73abb5f2b

2efd3a16a470e960b6db0aa47f42b9ed

4d73da25ad4f2ee158c7678a31e22c48

adf0c381b63bea48318075b553e2f28c

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e217d1de3e7f03ca041ad8b8f686f7f7

92e81fda621955b444ffc9a9e8854b3b

accf619cde7e4bbc1e58fdb4aab105eb

c565828934fc4f2e282922185b8181ea

81f36f191b5b802035a3e363ab3438dc

1deb5d1873a17d968f95df719860bfe0

ff4f1d2edac79e05cd0b415e17e8adac

c2d5547adbee28e3acd3d1d3fc66306a

a140633ce4536cdf00cb0a4fc165bda8

070c5a6bc128fda106ac0186ba3d2a38