Posts Tagged ‘weddings’

Remarkable Reception Style

Silver_NapkinDo you remember the last event or wedding reception you attended? What do you recall: The food? The entertainment? The “look” of the room? Just close your eyes and reflect for a moment; try to think of the things that were most memorable and pleasing.

Aha! I bet the pleasing part makes it a bit harder. No doubt that more than a few of you thought about the wedding with the DJ who thought he was Elvis, or the event with the cash bar (surprise!) -and you forgot your wallet.

The more events I do, the more I remember only what is remarkable. Remarkable can be fun, outstanding, unexpected and impressive. Remarkable can also be uncomfortable, annoying, disappointing and catastrophic. As your wedding and event planner, my goal is to make your event memorable for all the right reasons.

In terms of decor, remarkable doesn’t necessarily translate into expensive. Details that are well thought out can be seamlessly incorporated into event decor and the table top design thereby creating a look that is remarkable in a visual and textural sense. (If you’re wondering what I mean about ‘well thought out details” try to imagine a table top with so many tchotchkes – bells, cameras, scrolls, bags of chocolate kisses, etc. – it looks like the favor catalog threw up; and, yes, for some bizarre reason people still do this.)
holiday_tablesetting

Decor and design are most remarkable when they draw you in, and you experience the vibe as it was intended to be: exciting, chic and sexy, warm and inviting, modern, etc. The best designs are not limited to what can be seen; incorporating smells, tastes, physical contact, sights and sounds into the design actually creates a more memorable experience. In other words, the five senses overlap and influence each other, and combined they create the overall impression, which in turn becomes your memory of the experience.

This is why we ask our clients to describe their vision of the event. Even if they insist that they have no idea about what they want, they truly do… We ask them to imagine what it looks like – including colors and lighting, what time of day it is, how many people are present, how the space feels (intimate, modern, elegant, indoors or outdoors, etc.) and then we begin to design an event based on their  preferences and our interpretation of their style.

I must admit, sometimes the finer details do not become crystal clear until the very end.  It really is an organic process.  And it’s a challenge we face with every event: How do you know how far to go? Sometimes less is more, sometimes more is more.

In keeping with this topic, I thought you’d enjoy this short video featuring friend and colleague Rashida Erskine of BBJ Linen’s Orlando office. She offers some insightful recommendations and helpful tips for using linens to pull the look of your reception together with remarkable style.

{Our apologies; this video link has expired}

Please contact the BBJ Linen’s Orlando Office if you would like to meet with them. Ph. 407-857-6566   Or, feel free to contact us if we can be of assistance with fine-tuning your wedding or event design.  Call 877.55FLAIR or email Elisa: elisacsep {at} aflairforaffairs.com

© 2009 E. Delgardio All Rights Reserved

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Things to Consider When Hiring a Wedding Planner

Earlier today I came across this quote on the BrideTide Blog:

“You don’t hire a wedding planner for what they do, you hire them for what they know. Most brides only plan one wedding their entire lives while a wedding planner has the experience and understanding of coordinating numerous celebrations for each diverse individual client. Relying on a professional wedding planner to refine the details of the biggest day of your life is not only practical, it’s an intelligent way of minimizing the opportunities for ineffectively handling any unforeseen situations that may arise.”   Rudy, Founder of BrideTide

It’s difficult for wedding planners to make statements like this without sounding like we’re “tooting our own horn”.  But I felt that Rudy’s point was presented well, and I am very pleased to share it.  Additionally, I feel that it’s hugely beneficial for brides and grooms to hear someone else’s perspective.

photo by Kevin Keelan

photo by Kevin Keelan

The experience and expertise that we bring to the table can be priceless throughout the planning process as well as on the wedding day.  I know that we have ‘saved the day’ many times and in many different ways. Sometimes it seems that clients see the value of our services most clearly on the day of the event.   Our finely tuned organizational skills, natural ability to multitask and intuitive improvisation allows us to direct the event as if we are conducting an orchestra.  After the event, we always receive glowing compliments about how well everything turned out.  Recently at one of our weddings, we were quite surprised when the Minister led off the dinner prayer by saying “Let us all thank the Wedding Planner for putting together this beautiful event”.

But, I must add that what we ‘do’ is equally valuable. I think a simple clarification to Rudy’s message can be made to say that the bride & groom should have realistic expectations and/or a mutual understanding of what their chosen planner will do for them (as per their service agreement, which can vary widely). Truth be told, there’s a lot we can do and amazing magic we can work – only we don’t have a magic wand, so we need to charge accordingly.

For more insight into the benefits of hiring a wedding planner, be sure to read “Do you REALLY Need a Wedding Planner”

© 2009 E. Delgardio All Rights Reserved

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“Twedding Tweetiquette”

Just for fun…

Because I am a Twitter fanatic, I had to share this gem of an article!

Tweet My Wedding? The Dos and Don’ts of “Twedding Tweetiquette” by Juliette Powell, Huffington Post:


Of the six weddings I was invited to this summer, four weren’t just weddings. They turned out to be what I have begun to think of as “the twedding.”

You know you’re at a “twedding” when:

1. Your wedding invitations were sent via the micro-blogging site Twitter.com.
2. All aspects of your big day have been vetted by your twitter followers who suggest everything from wedding guests to wedding vendors.
3. Members of the wedding party take “candid” photographs and videos of the ceremony and upload them directly to twitpic and twitvid for community commenting.
4. Your wedding becomes a trending topic on Twitter.
5. The groom tweets “I’m married” before kissing the bride. 

Read the full article “Tweet My Wedding? The Dos and Don’ts of Twedding Tweetiquette”  by Juliette Powell of the Huffington Post ….

24

08 2009

Still Hot! {Tips for a Sensational Send-off with Sparklers!}


We seem to get an incredible number of requests for sparkler exits! And why not? – it’s an awesome and affordable photo op! However, there’s often more to coordinating a sparkler exit than meets the eye! While sparklers are generally safe when used as intended, they still require careful handling. So, I’ve prepared some simple tips to help you plan a safe and sensational send off!

Tip #1 – Purchase the right sparklers:

Ideally, you should be looking for the metal rod type in a length that’s either 14″ or 20″ long. Shorter sparklers (8″ or 10″) will burn out too quickly for most staged exits, unless it’s for an intimate group.

Morning Glories are attached to wooden rods (sticks) and have 3 distinct burning phases – usually a red flame for about 20 seconds, then a crackle/snapping phase for 20 seconds, and finishing off with 20 seconds of a green/white flame. Since Morning Glories tend to drop small glowing particles (think of burning tissue paper) they must be used with extreme caution. It’s truly frightening to think of these fiery particles landing on skin, hair or clothing during a staged exit, so I avoid them at all costs.

Tip #2 – Displaying and Discarding Sparklers:

One of the best ways to display sparklers is to fill a pretty painted pail or metal urn with white sand and insert the sparkler rods into the sand. This way, the sparklers will stand upright, and the sand base will provide the weight needed to prevent the display from tipping. Since the receptacle can get quite heavy once the sand and sparklers are added, it’s best to assemble this nearby to the area where the exit will take place, if at all possible.

On one or two occasions, I’ve seen sparklers placed on the guest tables or at each place setting (like a favor might be placed) but in those cases, they were also shorter than the recommended length, and in my opinion not a very attractive addition to the decor.

It’s important to remember that following the sparkler exit, the rods will be hot and need to be collected with care. The sand filled urn or pail is an ideal receptacle; guests can just place the burned end of the sparkler rods into the sand where they can properly cool down before being placed into the trash. Other things that work well are metal trays, a baker’s sheet cake pan, and heavy duty foil pans; ideally, receptacles should be placed nearby to both the left and right sides of the exit line up.

Tip #3 – How to Use Properly & Safely:

I always carefully consider the number of people to be involved, as well as the size and layout of the space. Naturally, we look for an outdoor location such as a wide walkway, a courtyard or driveway, for these options seem to work best. Before the Bride & Groom exit, we organize the line up of guests so that they are shoulder to shoulder and can hold their sparkler out and away from themselves. This is much safer than a staggered line where guests must reach around each other.

Secondly, we have our staff or a few designated helpers assist with the lighting. We start at the point where the Bride and Groom will begin walking and work our way towards the furthest point. We use butane lighters or sterno fuel (cans) to get the sparklers started – the constant flame is the key! We proceed at intervals – every 5 or 6 people – because a lit sparkler can also light other sparklers; this is an organized approach which speeds the process. A few strategically placed tiki torches also work nicely. Remind guests to take turns lighting their sparklers; it’s unsafe to light multiple sparklers simultaneously.

It’s important to maintain a safe distance from the newly wed couple as they make their way through the line up. Even though the sparklers are relatively harmless, it’s better not to take chances; I avoid creating an ‘arch’ to prevent sparks from falling onto the couple. Likewise, if children are involved, they must be closely supervised; a parent may even want to give their attention to the child’s safety and protection rather than holding a sparkler.

In my experience, if there are more than 100 or so guests participating in the send-off, it becomes more difficult to get the timing of the lighting and exit just right. Whenever this is the case, I suggest that the wedding party send off the Bride and Groom as the other guests watch – this cuts the number of participants down significantly! It’s also an excellent way to control costs.

Skylighter is an excellent online resource for sparklers and realted pyrotechnic products, and they have posted some wonderful pointers and valuable infomation on their website page for Wedding Sparklers .

Photo Credits: Art Faulkner, Elegant Imagery, Misty Miotto

© 2009 E. Delgardio All Rights Reserved

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