Archive for November, 2009

Maggie + David: 09.19.09

Monday, November 30th, 2009

The Story (of the PIRATE wedding!)

Weidner Willis Wedding-62

Maggie was a fan of David’s work before she fell in love with David himself – she will be the first to admit that she was a ‘fan girl.’  David writes an online comic strip and Maggie started reading it when she was still living in California.  They met in person and the rest is history: they had their first official date on a September 19, Maggie moved across the country to Columbus, David proposed to Maggie on September 19, 2008 and they were married on September 19, 2009.  Why is September 19 such an important date to note for this couple?  Because it is International Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Maggie worked for Pixar when she lived in Cali and David is obviously a pretty creative guy as well.  When Maggie and I first met and she showed me all the different details for their Pirate themed wedding, I was blown away.  So much thought went into every single detail and nuance that I was thrilled to be involved.  I am not usually a theme wedding person but this one promised to be a ton of fun and it certainly was!

The guests got their first inkling that Maggie and David were not doing a traditional wedding from the invitations – Maggie created scrolls written in pirate-ease, burned the edges and spritzed them with olive oil to resemble old documents – seriously time consuming and the result was pretty darn cool!  These were mailed to the guests in bottles and asked the guests to “Arrrr”SVP.  A great way to clue in guests to the theme of the wedding.

Maggie and David had their first glimpse at the Statehouse before the wedding.  The bride’s gown was white with gold accents and she wore a tri-corner hat while her girls wore black corsets and burgundy skirts.  The groom wore a waist coat, tri-corner hat and sword as did his groomsmen.  Yes, the groom and all his guys wore real swords!  Shockingly the state troopers at the Statehouse never even questioned the swords even when the bridal party was walking around inside – the only time they got upset with the bridal party was when they climbed on top of the canons at the corners of the Statehouse for pictures.  Guess they weren’t worried about 5 pirates taking over state government.

The ceremony was held on the Santa Maria – a working 15th century ship docked at Batelle Park in downtown Columbus.  Being that the wedding was held on Talk like a Pirate Day, there was a pirate troop that took over the ship for the weekend.  While most of them went off to plunder the city (okay, they really just headed to R bar to drink) several of them joined us for the wedding – one actually objected to the union but was quickly dispensed with (shot) and dragged away by the others.  The wedding itself was performed mainly in pirate speak by the bride’s uncle and the union was capped off by actual canon fire from the pirate troop as well.  David created the ceremony program in comic strip style introducing each of the bridal party members.  It was incredibly unique and really cool – how many programs have you seen that were hand drawn by the groom?

From the Santa Maria, the wedding moved to The Claddaugh in Powell.  This particular location has a room with stone walls, wrought iron chandeliers and stained glass windows – it really gives off a gothic vibe and fit the pirate theme perfectly!  The staff of the Claddaugh even dressed up in pirate garb as did almost all the wedding guests!  The tables were dressed with simple arrangements of treasure chests and pewter goblets along with lanterns and rum barrels.  Maggie and David’s ‘Captain’s Table’ was dressed with a ship’s wheel with garlands underneath a pirate flag.  The TVs in the area all had old black and white pirate movies playing on them to help set the mood.  Maggie and David were led into the reception by a bagpiper who actually just happened to be hanging out in the bar area of the restaurant – excellent timing!

One of my favorite parts of the wedding was the Maid of Honor’s toast – she said that she loved David because he made Maggie smile quite often and as anyone who knows her knows, her smile is one of the greatest things in the world.  I think that face is quite evident from the pictures.  The couple and their guests danced the night away (to non-pirate music) and a jolly time was had by all.

It was a truly unique wedding and one that I had a lot of fun being part of – thanks to Maggie and David for allowing me to be part of their fleet for the day!

The Elements
Planner:  Emilie Duncan Event Planning
Photographer: Fenstermacher Photography
Florist: Manor House Flowers
Ceremony Site: The Santa Maria
Reception Site: The Claddaugh
Cake: Alice’s Piece of Cake
Reception Music: Team DJ

The Pictures
Click here to see lots of pirate pictures!

Finally – no more blog silence!

Sunday, November 22nd, 2009

Sorry for the last week of silence here on the blog!  My web host decided to migrate servers and blocked everyone from making any changes on their sites.  It took about a whole week and it drove me crazy!

I have some fun posts coming up including recap and pictures from Maggie and David’s pirate wedding plus recaps from Aimee and Ryan’s and Jennifer and Kurt’s weddings and some holiday related posts as well.  Thanks for your patience and watch for new posts from me this week!

Things your Planner wishes you knew!

Friday, November 6th, 2009

Here it is – the last post in the series.  Not to say that I won’t revisit the topic in the future with other types of vendors like bridal shops or rental companies, but for now here is our last installment – Things your Planner wishes you knew:

Small disclaimer – Please be aware that these points are not all from me! I got input for this post from other planners in Columbus as well as literally all over the country and globe.  In fact, I don’t necessarily agree 100% with all of them but I thought it was worthwhile to share them.

*Please be aware that when we meet for the first time, we are interviewing you as much as you are interviewing us.  If you tell me that you are meeting with 10 other planners or we may have to hire extra staff just to deal with your ‘difficult’ mother or you sometimes have emotional problems, I am probably not going to take you on as a client.  Yes, planners can and will decline to work with certain people.  And yes, someone once told me that they like to yell at people and have emotional problems that they tend to take out on ‘the help.’  Needless to say, I declined the chance to work with her.

*There is a planner out there for every bride but not every planner is going to be a good fit for you – look around and find one who fits you.  We aren’t going to be insulted if you decide to work with someone else, there is a good chance we didn’t feel the connection either.  If I am not your planner, that is perfectly fine just please let me know you have decided to go a different direction.

*Someone who just planned their own wedding and now thinks it would be SO MUCH FUN to plan someone else’s is not a professional wedding planner.  They have absolutely no idea how to plan a wedding for someone else and no sense of what actually goes into running a wedding day.  Think about it – if they have only ever planned their own wedding, how do they know what goes on behind the scenes?  The last time they were invovled in a wedding, they were the bride!

*In the same vein, Craigslist or the Knot chat boards are not good sources to find someone to plan and/or manage your wedding day.  You spent a lot of money on this day and now you are going to trust that to someone who has no experience?   We all started somewhere but the ones who are serious will work to get educated and get hands on experience under another planner or in a related field.   If you want to risk the thousands and thousands of dollars that you just spent on someone who has decided to play at wedding planner, go right ahead but don’t say I didn’t warn you.

*I cannot and will not just show up on the rehearsal day without meeting with you and going over all the details of your event as well as contacting your vendors myself – no professional planner would do that.  It is akin to a doctor doing surgery without seeing the chart first or a lawyer trying a case without a case file.  It does not matter how organized you are or how on top of things – it is a recipe for disaster.  Anyone who tells you that they will show up on the wedding day without doing any kind of pre meeting is an unprofessional HACK.  End of story.

*My price is my price – you’re paying for my experience, creativity, my network and connections and my ability to craft a unique event. I charge exactly what I am worth and I am worth every penny.  Sure, you can get a day-of coordinator for a third of what I charge but you get what you pay for.

*Please be honest with us about your budget so we can be honest with you about your options.  We need to be able to tell you whether what you want is realistic with your budget.  Your expectations need to match your reality.  Tell us what you have to spend and we will help you spend it wisely.  Even if you don’t have an exact number, you have some idea – give us at least a realistic starting point.

*Your wedding planner isn’t going to judge you if you have a small budget.  In fact, most wedding planners offer hourly consultations for those who might not be able to fit full service planning in their budget.  You can generally use those hours for help with budgeting to assistance creating a realistic timeline to vendor recommendations – all things that even – especially – the smallest budget will greatly benefit from.

*It’s going to cost what it’s going cost. If you have a 400 person guest list and want a 4 course sit down dinner with a top shelf open bar, you cannot do it for $5000.  I don’t care that your cousin says she did hers for $5000 – she is a big old liar.

*Please trust us.  We know what we’re doing. If we suggest something for you, it’s because we know it’s a good idea for you. I absolutely hate it when I suggest something to a client, they balk at it and go out to do their own research and three months down the road they come back and do exactly what I suggested in the first place. Let us do our job, that’s why you hired us!

*Please trust your vendors.  Micromanaging them and breathing down their necks to make sure they’re doing what they’re supposed to won’t make them do their jobs better.  In fact, the more you trust your vendors, the more they are going to bend over backwards and go above and beyond to help make your wedding day spectacular.

*You know how teachers aren’t supposed to have favorite students?  But they always do?  Same thing with wedding planners and other wedding vendors.  We have favorites and will do just about anything for them.   This is not to say that we still won’t do an outstanding job for those who aren’t necessarily our favorites but I am always more willing to bend over backwards when I know it is being appreciated and valued.

*No matter how talented and professional you feel your chosen vendors are, please keep me in the loop on the details you’ve arranged.  Even if we’re just the day of coordinator, we need to know every single detail you have arranged.  If we don’t, how can we ensure that things go exactly as you planned them?

*Just because you are paying us doesn’t mean you are excused from basic courtesy.  It is extremely rude to not return your planner’s calls for three days, and then think when you are ready at 10:30pm on a Friday night to discuss the matter that we should drop everything.  I work WITH you, I am not your indentured servant.

*Bridezillas is staged and edited for TV.  Yell at me and act the fool like those spoiled little children and I will walk out the door.  And the contract that you signed says I can do just that if you behave that way.  Again, wedding planner, not servant.

*Vendor’s fees are not their salary. I had a bride say “well, with the cost of the band, even split among them, they are walking away with great pay at the end of the night.”  I think people who receive a paycheck from a corporate entity don’t see/know how much was taken out of the total before that check was cut to them.

*On your wedding day, don’t watch the clock and be a slave to time! Just because the schedule says to cut the cake at 6:00 doesn’t mean that we’re running late because it’s 6:01 and everyone is still enjoying dinner and socializing.  Weddings have a life and flow of their own and your vendors will make sure we are on the right schedule even if it isn’t quite the original schedule.

*Things may go wrong on the wedding day but I will do everything in my power to fix them – just relax, enjoy the day and remember, as long as the day ends with you being married, it will be perfect!

Thanks to all my planner friends who contributed!

I hope you enjoyed the series and learned some things along the way.  As a side note, any vendors who feel that I missed anything, please send me an email and I will do an update post down the road.

Things your Stationer wishes you knew

Thursday, November 5th, 2009

We are almost at the end of the series – just two left.  Today I give you things your Stationer wishes you knew:

*Please don’t hire someone who claims to create ‘custom stationary.’  When referring to paper goods, stationery is spelled with an ‘e’ not an ‘a.’  Your stationer is going to be dealing with a ton of details – if they can’t even get the most basic information regarding their own company correct…can you really trust them with your details?

*Custom invitation design is a very detailed and unique process and often I feel clients do not understand why the cost is more significant than ordering from an album.  It always surprises me when people who are willing to spend $4.25 on a generic greeting card from Hallmark balk at the price of a 4 piece wedding invitation set that has been custom designed exclusively for them.  After all, which is more important – the card you sent to your brother for his birthday or your wedding invitation?!

*Regarding those giant albums that many brides order from – those manufacturers are literally printing thousands of invitations at once, which is why they can offer lower prices.  I am only creating and printing the amount you have requested.  That is actually a huge benefit to working with a custom designer – we generally don’t make you order in multiples of 25 – need 57 invitations?  You can order 57 invitations.  Not so with the big guys.  You also won’t have to worry that your guests just got exactly the same invitation from another bride the month before – that is what custom is all about.

*As with virtually every other vendor you will be working with, I will need to know up front how much you have to spend. Please be honest with me so I can be honest with you.  I will do all in my power to create exactly what you want. If, however, your dream is to have your invitations letter pressed into two-by-four in multiple colors, please be prepared to spend some bucks. I often compare it to building a custom home — of course we can import the rare marble floors from the quarry in the Italian countryside, but are you prepared to pay for it? Just because it can be done doesn’t mean that it will fit in your budget.

*While I can give you a general idea or range of how much my work will run, I cannot spit out figures immediately.  Please don’t get frustrated with me when I can’t tell you what invitations or a program or escort cards will cost off the top of my head – I don’t know if you want a single panel card or a 12 page booklet, if you want it on a specialty paper or embellished in some way.  The options are literally limitless.   Once I have an idea of what you would like to see, I can give you an idea of how much it will cost.

*Please use words other than “nice and elegant” to describe the type of design you are looking for.  If you can’t think of any other words, try describing specific elements from home decor, fashion, jewelry and other things that you like.  Those will give us an idea of your style which we will translate into your invitation.  Also, please bring along any color swatches, any styles or ideas you have seen that you love along with the quantity needed and your budget.  All those things will make the meeting so much easier and get you to an invitation you love that much more directly.

*Please do not wait until two months before your wedding to order custom invitations and then expect to have your order rushed at no extra cost.  If you want to have custom invitations created, please research and book your designer at least 5-6 months before your wedding.  It will cut down on an incredible amount of stress for you and ensure that you get exactly what you want.

*Designers are not perfect and clients need to understand how important it is to proofread every single detail of their wedding invitation before they officially sign off to go to press.  The stationer will not be held responsible if you have not taken the time to double check all the details for errors and have given them written consent to move forward with printing.  It can cost the client a significant amount money to have them reprinted.  Make sure to have at least two other people proofread for you – more is better than less.

*I always recommend ordering anywhere from 10-20 extra invitations to account for last minute additions in your guest list. Many brides will claim this won’t happen, but I swear that roughly 99% run into this problem. It’s ridiculously expensive to have the printer print out the 5 extras you need after the fact, so please listen to your designer. Extras are a necessity – order them up front or pay upwards of double or triple for them later.

*Along this same line, understand that printing is a front-end loaded cost. You are paying for the set-up, plates, inks and/or dies created for your project. Paper is cheap comparatively speaking. Which again is why printing those 5 extras can be so pricey.

*As a designer, there are so many things that go on behind the scenes to create your stationery. You’re not just paying for paper and printing. Here is a rundown of what I typically go through with each client:
-Initial meetings typically run 1.5 to 2 hours.
-Once I have an idea of what you’re looking for, I will spend anywhere from 2 to 5 hours researching. I have dozens of vendors for paper, printing, ribbon, envelopes, etc. Who makes this envelope in this specific color? Where can I get the perfect satin ribbon to match your bridesmaids dress? All of this goes into the initial research phase.
-Once I have the materials selected, I will draw up an estimate which can take several more hours depending on the amount of items we’ll be creating.
-In addition to the researching (which mainly entails web searches and phone calls) I may also create a mock up to determine the perfect size and shape. Bam, a few more hours. And that’s just the beginning. Don’t forget the late night emails I field when you’ve decided to switch the color palate or have a minor freak out about how we should describe the condiments you’ll be listing on the menu. (This has really happened, folks!)
-I will also likely meet with you several more times to go over the design, layout, etc. Throw in an occasional trip to the printer to ensure the ink colors are matching my spec sheet and to make sure the invites are printed and cut straight. Finally, I still have to assemble and deliver the final product to you.

Now hopefully you can begin to understand why I charge more than the giant album companies.  There is true value in what we as custom stationers/designers do and the value in what you’re paying for.

Thank you to all my stationer friends who contributed!  Much appreciated!  Tomorrow we are going to wrap up this series with the one closest to my heart: Things your Planner wishes you knew!  I have gotten input on this from planners literally around the country – cannot wait to share with you what we wish you knew!!!

Things your Florist wishes you knew

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

Today we’re talking about the Things that your Florist wishes you knew:

*Please be honest with us about the budget.  Just because you tell me that your budget is $X does not mean that I am automatically going to try and get you to spend the whole thing plus more.  Florists, unlike many other vendors, typically do not have a set package–everything is custom down to the number of stems in each arrangement to the rhinestone accents on the wrap around the stems.  Therefore, brides need to understand that their florist can pretty much make a bouquet to fit any budget, it’s just a matter of the style of design and the kind of flowers.  It’s almost easier if the bride were to tell me, “I want to spend $150 on my bouquet and it must have some callas in it” because, I can do that!  But then it’s the florist’s job to demonstrate size and so forth to make certain she will be happy.

*Bring as much information to me as you can for our first meeting – swatches and pictures of your gown and the bridesmaid’s gowns, pictures you love, pictures you hate, your colors and whatever else you can think of.  I want to see it all because it will give me an idea of what you really like – not just what you think you like.

*Before we meet, please sit down and make a list of all the people who will be getting personal flowers – grandparents, parents, bridesmaids, groomsmen, readers, soloists, etc.  This will help you get an accurate quote since all those flowers will be accounted for – even a few extra corsages can really add up on a tight budget.

*Please don’t take my design proposal to another florist and ask them if they can do it for less.

*Changes are fine – up to a point.  If we meet a year before your wedding, I actually expect that some things (sometimes everything) are going to change from our first meeting.  That is fine but just be aware that if you change flowers, the pricing may change.  I can make changes up to 2-3 weeks before the wedding but once we have that final meeting, I am going to order your flowers and the design is final.

*Obvious statement here: flowers are perishable.  Be gentle with them.  If you take your bouquet of hydrangeas out of the vase of water I provide you and leave it out for hours on a hot July Saturday afternoon, it’s going to wilt!  Don’t be angry with me when it starts looking bad and don’t say I didn’t warn you.  If you leave corsages and boutonnieres in the bags out of refrigeration for hours they are going to wilt–or at least blow open (roses especially) due to the heat.  Leaving wearables in the bags yet out of refrigeration is like putting your flowers in an incubator–it’s sweltering in there!  The reason for the bag is to create humidity (flowers like it humid) while in the cooler.

*Flowers are a product of Mother Nature and are grown (mostly) outside.  There may be a dark spot on a red rose–it’s natural!  Now if the whole rose is dark and ugly, well, that’s different.  Silk flowers today are being made more imperfect to look real, so it surprises me how people think they need to be flawless.  They are far from it, but that is part of their beauty!

*The conditions in the US are not right for growing many flowers.  Most flowers come from South America, where the climate is right year round for flower production.  When you are paying for a flower, the bulk of the cost is really shipping and handling.  It costs more to ship the bloom in from Holland or South America than the actual flower itself.  If you do purchase flowers grown in the US, most are sub-par as compared to our international counterparts.  Domestic roses last a fraction of the time and are smaller than those from Ecuador.  Weather has everything to do with it.

*A home based florist can charge a fraction of what a brick and mortar shop does because they don’t have rent, utilities, etc.  They also, usually, do not have the proper storage (coolers made just for flower storage so they are high humidity and controlled temperature).  Many home based florists do a fine job but just be certain if you select a florist that works from home that they have the resources they need to do the job correctly.

*The biggest variance in cost from florist to florist is labor – you will be paying for a designer’s experience, reputation and schooling.  It’s the same reason you pick the best board-certified surgeon for your heart surgery, why should choosing your florist (or any vendor, for that matter) be any different?  Those with the best reputations charge for that.  Those with lots of experience, those who have been through lots of trainings and know how to do cool things for their clients charge for that.  It’s creativity.  Not everyone is born able to design flowers.  There is an element of skill to it as with any design based discipline.

Thank you so much to my florist friends who contributed.  Tomorrow we’ll learn all the Things that your Stationer/Graphic Designer wishes you knew – I got a LOT of input on this one so stay tuned!

Things your DJ wishes you knew

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009

So far, so good!  Here are some things that your DJ wishes you knew:

*Just because you have a friend or a friend of a friend is a DJ doesn’t mean he’s a good DJ…or a professional one.  Do your homework, don’t rely on a groomsmen to pull of the entertainment for the most important day of your life.  There is WAY more than equipment that goes into being a good DJ and MC.

*Craigslist is NOT a good source for a quality DJ product.  To prove this fact, visit weddingwire.com and look up a few of those Craiglist DJs – are they listed?  Do they have any reviews?  Or take a look at who won theknot.com’s ‘best of’ awards for the last few years.  Craigslist DJ posters are generally rookies at best.  It’s not worth the risk.

*The iPod wedding has been in the news lately, unfortunately.  There are a couple of reasons why having the iPod be your DJ may not be the best idea.  You will likely spend hours programming it and timing out exactly which songs will play when but what if you go off schedule?  What if dinner takes longer than expected or the service is amazing and dinner is really fast?  A DJ will make certain that the music matches what you are doing – i.e. no ‘You Shook me All Night Long” during dad’s toast – an iPod won’t.  You can spend hours programming it, making sure you love the songs but what if no one else does?  A DJ will read the crowd and help keep the dance floor packed – an iPod won’t.   Even if you have someone ‘running’ the iPod and playing MC, there will likely be gaps between songs as the next one loads and any long intros to songs will be out there (dead air at a wedding is never a good thing).  And if the iPod breaks?  You are likely out of luck.  Professional DJs bring backup equipment to every wedding.

*Just because you only see us behind our console for 4-6 hours working, doesn’t mean we don’t work a 8-10 hour day to fulfill your event requirements.  Load in, set up, tear down, load out all make for a LONG evening.  That doesn’t include all the time we spend before the event making sure we have all the special requests and songs that you want for your wedding day.

*Please be aware that just because you order us DJ’s/Band members the same meal as your guests, it doesn’t mean your caterer is going to give it to us.  Sometimes even if you pay for the same meal we will get the dreaded turkey club and chips.  Chalk it up to a mistake or even a scam, just be sure you double check with your caterer what they will be serving and tell your vendors so they know what to expect – that way you are all getting what was paid for.

*The success of a dance floor is not 100% the responsibility of the entertainment.  A lot of what keeps a dance floor dull all night is the family and friends the bride and groom invite.  No party likes a stick-in the mud or downers.  When the families blend well together, the dance floor will stay full.  Also, the party will follow the bride and groom – want a packed dance floor?  Get out there yourself!

*Every bride and groom has their favorite songs but those songs may not always be best for a wedding.  Just because you like them doesn’t mean the other 200 people in attendance will want to dance to it as well.  Let the DJ or band you hire help steer you to a good mix of music.  Please don’t be offended by our advice – we’ve seen what works and what doesn’t over the years.

*If you see us with a glass with a straw in, please don’t assume that we are having a cocktail!  Don’t give us the stink eye for drinking pop.  I know some DJs who only drink bottled water to avoid looking like they are drinking alcohol – I happen to like Diet Coke.

*DJ’s/Band Leaders are also the go to MC for any special event.  As with the rest of your vendors, it is best to request that we be fed our meals right after the head table.  This way when your ready to go on to the next formailty, we are ready too.  Serve the vendors before a majority of your guests…not 20 minutes after everyone else is done with their meal.

*The dirty version of any song is not appropriate for ANY wedding.  Save those requests for the fraternity parties, I am not going to play Stanky Leg at your wedding.

*Try to relax!  You hired a professional, now let us do the work.  Micro-managing your DJ never works out for the best.  Let the DJ you hire run the event – let him/her do their thing.  Hand picking every song from start to finish NEVER creates a fun, lively atmostphere.  The event becomes too RIGID.  DJ’s are good with flexibilty.  Just let the night happen and have some fun!

Thanks to my DJ friends who contributed – I appreciate it!  Tomorrow we will be talking to Florists about things they wish you knew!

Things your Videographer wishes you knew

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

Happy Monday!  Hope you have plenty of treats from Halloween and are ready to read all about Things Your videographer wishes you knew!

*Videography is quickly shedding the stereotypes of the past.  Modern wedding videography is not cheesy or melodramatic, but cinematic, well crafted, and a work of art.  It is well worth the investment!

*Photography is an amazing medium but it won’t capture the words of your vows or what your father said when he was giving his toast or how Grandma sounded when she laughed.  Photo and video work together to create the complete spectrum of memories from your wedding day.

*Having your Uncle Phil play videographer for the day is generally not a good idea.  In the same vein, Craigslist is not a good source for a quality, talented videographer.  Do you really want someone responsible for capturing your once in a lifetime memories that has only shot their kids playing in the park?  Hire a true professional – it makes all the difference in whether your video is something you watch over the years or something that is stored in a box in the basement.  You really do get what you pay for.

*Please hire a company that truly specializes in videography.  There are a lot of companies now who ‘specialize’ in DJ services, video and photo services as well as dabble in wedding planning.  Ever hear the saying “Jack of all trade, master of none?”  That is what these people are!  Hire someone who is actually a specialist and not a dabbler – they will be amazing at what they do and not just mediocre at 2 or 3 other things as well.

*Please be aware that there is some rivalry between videographers and photographers.  There are certain companies that just don’t play nicely in the sandbox.  If you think about it, both of us are going for the same shots and trying to capture the same day and if you have one person who is always getting in the other’s way, it can get ugly.  Your planner will likely know which companies work well together and which don’t but it doesn’t hurt to ask your videographer who they like to shoot with especially if you haven’t booked your photographer yet.  You want us to get along, trust me.

*You know those amazing demos that made you want to cry, laugh and ultimately are why you hired us?  We got those shots because the bride and groom scheduled enough time with us either before the ceremony or between the ceremony and reception.  Please ask us what for input when you are working on your timeline.  It will really make a difference in the final product if we have plenty of time for our shoot.

*Receiving Lines are one of the biggest time wasters on a wedding day – especially if you have a big guest list!   You can easily use up 30-40 minutes of your prime photo/video time after the Ceremony by having a receiving line.   Skip it and mingle around table to table at the Reception to greet everyone.  As an added bonus, your interactions with your guests will be so much more meaningful.

*It was covered in the Things your Photographer wishes you knew but it bears repeating: Contrary to what your venue might tell you, vendors do not prefer a cold salami sandwich with a bag of chips after working for 12 hours.  Videographers are responsible for crafting how you will remember your big day.  It’s hard to stay positive and focused when you are handed a cup that contains about two bites worth of dry macaroni salad.  If at all possible we prefer to be in the main room, seated with other vendors, and fed around the time that the Bridal Party is fed.  That way we can finish up quickly and be ready to go when the traditional events start back up.

*Enjoy your day!  There are so many things that have the potential to ruin your day but remember the memory of those things will fade but the lack of a smile on your face will be recorded from every angle!  Let the small things go and just focus on the purpose of the day and what the end result will be: Mr. & Mrs.

*On average a wedding video takes between thirty and forty hours to edit, while photography takes between fifteen and twenty hours to complete per wedding.  Photographers can use standard PCs to edit their images, while videographers need fast workstations with large storage solutions if they need to store more than several events at a time.  All this means that we might take a little longer to deliver the final product than your photographer but please know that the finished product will be well worth it!

Thanks to all my videographer friends who contributed!  Tomorrow, we’ll hear from DJs about what they wish you knew!