So everyone knows you are engaged and they are ALL waiting for their invite to your wedding...is panic setting in yet? There are a few things that you need to consider before calling the printer and calligrapher.
For every guest you invite there is a price to consider. Nothing in this world is free and that holds more and more true when it comes to weddings. Each person represents:
The location you chose for the ceremony and the reception may also determine your guest count. In Charleston, you can find plenty of options that will lend themselves well for any size group. The question is...is it the right venue for you. While many will hold groups of 100+, there are some that may hold 30. You need to review the capacity of your venue with both the building coordination and your planner. Make certain that you also discuss the style of dinner you are considering. Sit down plated, buffet, food stations...all of these things require tables, chairs, and service staff which also takes up a foot print in the venue.
CREATE A LIST
We have all heard of creating an A/B list while making your guest list. Although the goal is to invite everyone to celebrate, the reality is that it isn't always possible. I encourage my brides to create an A/B/C (sometimes) list. When asked how I know which person to put in each category...this is how I respond.
"My A list are those that I can't live without...there is no hesitation...they have to be there."
Typically the A list are immediate family members and the closest of friends. No matter what the budget is, they would and always would be at the top of your list.
"My B list are those that I am close with an would be upset if they couldn't attend. They are the ones that I connect with throughout the year and are going to want to celebrate this wedding because they know we all have been anticipating it for some time."
For the B list, these would be close family members and friends that you socialize with. They can also be coworkers or associates that you have befriended. (they are more than just an acquaintence.
"My C list are those that I may wave to on a daily basis but I don't necessarily call when I am bored."
I say this because I think of a neighbor that I see each day but then again we don't necessarily call each other friends. Would it seem reasonable to invite them...yes....but is it necessary....no.
Your wedding day should be full of friends and family that will love, support, and be there for you after the wedding day. Don't worry about quantity...surround yourself with quality.
I am writing this today from the salon chair while I wait for my stylist to mix the solution that will soon hide the...well you know what she is going to hide.
As she walked away I said to her "I trust you."
She knows me. My personal style. Yet when I walk out of here, it may be 6 weeks until I sit in her chair again.
It takes a lot for me to use those words. Think about it. You trust someone with your kids, your livelihood, to ensure your safety on the roads, etc AND then you get engaged....
Of course you know the person that you are marrying and trust him with your heart and future but you now have to trust complete strangers with creating a day you have been anticipating for some time.
I tell my brides all of the time that you have to be comfortable with your decisions. You want to find someone that listens to you, is available to discuss your concerns, and is confident enough to offer solutions that work specifically for you.
This is a relationship that you are building!
Your planner, stylist, photographer, florist, DJ, limo company, caterer...they are all new to you. Make certain that you read reviews, schedule face time, ask questions, and choose professionals.
Your heart led you to the one you will marry and will also lead you to the right vendors.
As for my hair today, I leave the salon with a smile on my face and extremely excited that I again made the right choice.
The wedding reception is a party centered on the commitment made between the bride and groom. By keeping guests relaxed and focused on this simple fact, a fun time will be had by all.
Despite the fact that the recent economic recession saw a downtrend in the wedding planning industry, it remains a multi-billion dollar business in the United States alone ($47.5 billion to be precise). And little wonder: with the seemingly endless stream of details involved, planning a wedding can be an overwhelming experience.
However, whether you are planning for a large or intimate wedding, in the middle of deciding about flowers and ice sculptures, it is best to remember that your wedding day should be about celebrating love and the beginning of a life together. Otherwise, it’s just another party.
Keep it Personal
In particular, the seating arrangement can be a cause of undue stress for the bride and groom. Seating Aunt Lydia next to Cousin Hank, who ran over her prize petunias in a summer long forgotten (except by Aunt Lydia), can be a recipe for disaster. However, random seating can be equally disastrous, with people shuffling around looking for open seats or accidentally taking someone else’s table.
One method of smoothing over potentially awkward or difficult moments among seating partners during the wedding reception is to give them something fun to do. Plan a table activity that will remind them that this day is about two people in love beginning their life together and not about a past best forgotten or at least set aside for the day.
Whenever possible, choose narrow rectangular tables over large round ones. A big round table discourages conversation with people on the opposite end. Seated along a narrow rectangular table however, your guests can talk to people on either side of them, the person in front of them, as well as the people on either side of this person. Be sure to seat your guests in comfortable, attractive seating like padded chiavari or banquet chairs. A wedding reception can last for three or four hours; that’s a long time to be fidgeting in an uncomfortable position.
A wedding reception is a special celebration. Keep it festive, keep it centered on the bride and groom, and keep your guests relaxed. There is no better way to end a long day and begin a new life together.
About the Author:
Beth is an Atlanta based writer who enjoys covering topics like event planning, home improvement, and pet care. She writes on behalf of Classroom Essentials Online, a family owned and operated business that offers a wide range of beautiful chiavari chairs for sale.
At the end of a beautiful Lowndes Grove wedding, the bride came to me and said that she didn't want any of the centerpieces. "Take it all - I don't want to deal with it." Scanning the room all I could think of, "Is my car big enough to handle all of this?"
The next morning, I unpacked my car and my living room was full of mason jars. They were everywhere! Close to 30 cases and I had no plans of doing any canning...I don't know how but maybe I should learn.
I began doing calculations and approximately $450 + time + transport of mason jars were crowding my living room. That is quite a bit to throw away for just one night.
Most brides dispose of their centerpieces or pack their items in a box that goes into storage after the celebration. Vases, arbors, bows, card boxes, even dresses... you name it and it is either going to a landfill or into someones garage or closet.
So after a glass of wine or two, I created the Facebook Group: Charleston Weddings Recycled. It is a place where brides can buy, sell, swap, trade with other brides their gently used ceremony and reception items. Its a great place to find a deal!
The group is growing quickly and all you have to do is find us on Facebook. The more brides the merrier!!!
Choosing your wedding venue is extremely difficult especially when there are SO MANY wonderful venues in the Charleston locale.
One of my favorite locations is the South Carolina Aquarium located at 100 Aquarium Wharf. It could be because I spent 3.5 years as their Special Events Sales Manager but I really believe its because it is UNIQUE. A favorite saying while showing this venue was "less is more when it comes to decor" because the venue itself has so much life.
The Carolina Seas, a main focal point in the Great Hall, lends itself beautifully as the backdrop for wedding cakes, sweet heart tables, and food stations. The Great Ocean Tank room has been used for many wedding ceremonies and dancing. The deep ocean view of the Great Ocean tank (pictured above) is wonderful for food displays and stealing kisses. The Riverside Terrace overlooking the Charleston Harbor and the Yorktown is fantastic for an outdoor ceremony or even a cocktail hour.
Not only do your guests get to enjoy your wedding and reception, they also have the opportunity to view the many exhibits of the South Carolina Aquarium. This is added entertainment that you can't get at any other location.
Events are scheduled to begin at 7pm and run til 11pm. Their current pricing structure is as follows:
A $500 refundable damage deposit is also required.
It truly is a magnificent venue that you and your guests will never forget.
Interested in seeing the space? Let me know.
If there is one thing that makes my head hurt, it would be researching insurance. There is insurance for everything and I mean everything!
Adam Lambert insured his voice for $48M, Jennifer Love Hewitt's smile is insured for $10M, even Heidi Klum's legs are insured for over a $1M each.
Yes, we are making our way down the checklist and insuring your ring is something that should be on everyone's "to do" list. Better yet, you could put it on your honey's "honey do" list. This doesn't mean that your insurance agent has to be the first person you tell but he/she does need to be informed.
There are a few steps that you need to take to cover this investment:
Since you are going to have your ring for - a lifetime, you will want to have your ring appraised throughout the years. This would be for inflation purposes, you want to be sure that if something happened to your ring years down the road, that you are given a ring at its current value.
Hope this helped - time for me to go update some paperwork...where did that ring go?
After the "I Dos," it is usually the wedding officiant or the planner that says - "let's go make this legal." There's a reason for that, because it is just a big party without it. Just kidding...but not really. What we are referring to is the signing of the marriage license.
In order to get married in SC, you must have a SC marriage license. Makes sense. But to get the license, you must apply for it together at the Court House. Remember to bring proper documentation - a valid driver's license, a passport, your original birth certificate, etc.
There is also a $70 CASH filing fee that is to be paid at the time of applying. A blood test is not required in SC but you do have to wait 24 hours after filing the application.
The 24 hour waiting period is very important to remember because many couples come to Charleston thinking they can just pick up the license on the same day. Every State is different so knowing this could save you a ton of frustration. I always encourage couples to apply for the license at least a month or two in advance. If you are a destination bride, plan on both you and your fiancé arriving on Thursday if your wedding is scheduled for Saturday. The Court House is NOT open on the weekends.
Once the 24 hours has passed, you are free to pick up the marriage license at the Court House and only one of you has to be present. While there, take a moment to review and make any changes/revisions necessary. They should be able to accommodate any requests.
On the day of the wedding, make certain to bring all three copies to the ceremony. Your wedding officiant will guide you through the signing process and make certain that all copies get to where they need to be.
Now go and enjoy the reception!
For complete information of applying for your SC Marriage
During a wedding, many couples like to include a unity ceremony as part of the program. The unity candle and the blending of sand have been extremely popular throughout the years. Many couples are very familiar with these options so they always ask: "Is there something unique and different to do instead?"
A few years ago, I was introduced to the Unity Cross and thought it was one of the most beautiful additions to a wedding ceremony that I had ever seen. Not only is the cross elegant and an actual work of art, but its the explanation and interaction of the bride and groom during this time that is memorable.
Take a moment and review the video to see if the Unity Cross is what you would like to include in your wedding ceremony.
The elegance of a Charleston event doesn’t end once the festivities are over. Historic Charleston is home to some of the finest accommodations that Southern hospitality has to offer. Of all Charleston’s historic inns, The Governor’s House Inn offers by far the most romantic grandeur. A bed & breakfast with a history almost as interesting as its location, the Governor’s House was named the most glamorous of Charleston’s inns by one travel magazine, and it’s easy to see why.
The Governor’s House Inn was built in 1760, and served as the residence of Edward Rutledge from 1776 until his death. Mr. Rutledge served in both the First and Second Continental Congresses, and was the youngest signer of the Declaration of Independence. His integral role in the formation of our country led his home to be named a National Historical Landmark by the U.S. Department of the Interior. Though Mr. Rutledge only served as governor for two years, 1798 until his death, it is from him that the inn got its name. The Governor’s House Inn now pays tribute to this founding father with a portrait hanging in the foyer beside a copy of the Declaration of Independence.
Aside from its fascinating history, the Governor’s House Inn boasts a variety of beautifully decorated rooms and suites. The gourmet breakfast includes traditional southern favorites on a rotating menu including homemade quiche, sausage cheese bake, and banana French toast strata with amaretto sauce. Taking Southern hospitality seriously, the inn also offers afternoon tea, evening sherry, and wine and cheese.
The Governor’s House is also located conveniently near many of Charleston’s finest attractions. Just a short walk from the legendary Battery, Old Market, and Spoleto Venues, the Governor’s House is a perfect spot no matter what your business in Charleston. A short drive will also take you to four of South Carolina’s most beautiful beaches- Folly Beach, Isle of Palms, Kiawah Island, and Sullivan’s Island.
The rich history of the Governor’s House Inn combined with its tradition of hospitality make a stay here unforgettably Southern. The glamour and sophistication of the house itself is echoed in magnificent drawing rooms, boudoir staterooms, and expansive verandah porches, calling to mind images of a genteel lifestyle native only to beautiful Charleston.
Romance is what comes to mind when a bride desires peonies in her bridal bouquet and decor. The soft pink, ivory, and white full blooms are absolutely stunning. Brides have been extremely busy pinning away on Pinterest and there are hundreds of boards dedicated to this gorgeous fragrant bloom.
According to greek myth, the peony is named after Paeon (also called Paean), a mortal pupil of Asclepius, the Greek god of medicine and healing. So the story goes, the teacher became jealous of his student and Zeus turned Paeon into a peony to save him. Not certain how Zeus "poofed" him into a flower but the plant does have biological activities that include antioxidant, anti tumor, and much more.
Although an interesting fact, it wouldn't be why a bride would necessarily want it in their bouquet but maybe this would:
It is regarded as an omen of good fortune and a happy marriage.