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Wedding Planning Q and A

Wedding Planning Q and A

Wedding Planning Q and A

Jenn Hallak, owner and editor of The Overwhelmed Bride, began coordinating weddings six years ago and immediately fell in love with the industry. From coordinating, to opening new wedding properties, to her position as Catering Director, consulting for wedding venues, and finally marrying her prince charming in June of 2013, this woman has experienced every angle of the industry.

We have asked her to help answer some wedding planning questions directly asked from brides themselves.

Q: How do you keep a buffet style meal for a 150 people served in an hour?

A: You will have no problem getting 150 guests served within an hour and will have plenty of time for seconds. I’ve seen double and even triple the guests go through a buffet line within an hour so you are good to go! A couple of recommendations that may help:

  1. Have your DJ or MC dismiss tables. Generally you will start with the wedding party and family first but the order is completely up to what you and your fiancé choose! This helps the buffet line to run smoothly and ensures guests aren’t standing in line for their food…no one wants to do that!
  2. Instead of one large buffet table, set up buffet stations or a two-sided buffet! You can have the salads at one station, sides at another, and meats at a third station, for example. This allows guests to walk freely throughout the reception and allows more guests to be getting their food all at once!

Regardless of whether you decide to split it up or keep one long buffet line, your caterer will help ensure all guests are fed and full.

Wedding Planning Q and A

Q: What do you do when you don’t want children at your wedding and the MOG won’t listen/doesn’t care and insists on the nieces and nephew being there?

A: First of all, if she is helping to pay for the wedding then you may not be able to do anything about this. I know that this is always a tough one when the parents are paying but at some point, you may have to give in in some instances if she is paying for the wedding.

If not, then here is what I would tell her:

Kids cost money too! Yes, they need to be fed, they need a chair, a table to sit at, a favor, etc. and all of that definitely adds up to far more than just the kids meal cost. I would explain to her that the two of you have decided against all children in order to make everything work within your budget.

This is generally the top reason for not inviting kids. However, if there is another reason you have for not inviting them, then I would just explain that to her! You and your fiancé should sit down with her and clearly explain why you have decided against having kids at the wedding and she should respect that because it is YOUR wedding day!

With Love,

Jenn Hallak

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Budget Friendly Thrift Finds for Your Wedding

Budget Friendly Thrift Finds for Your Wedding

Budget Friendly Thrift Finds for Your Wedding

There are about a million and one pieces to a wedding. Between the necessities, such as chairs, and the gifts for the wedding party it can seem like an endless list of items you need to work into a budget.

Recently, many brides have been turning to thrift stores in an attempt to dress their wedding in a unique fashion while pinching a few pennies. These are a few of my favorite things I’ve found for my budget friendly wedding that could help you in your search.

Lauren Louise Photography vintage dress

The Dress

Before you look at me with those crazy eyes, just trust me. Over the past 6 months I have found a total of 3 perfectly perfect vintage and handmade wedding dresses, all under $130. I am lucky enough to fit into my Grandma’s dress from the 1950s, but that did not stop me from buying three other potential dresses- because that’s just what happens when you have a pretty sparkly thing on your finger.

Don’t be afraid to thumb through the wedding dresses hanging in your local thrift, vintage, and consignment shops. I found the most beautiful 1950s designer wedding dress stuffed in a plastic bag in the back of a thrift store for $40.

Keep in mind, finding a size or two larger is always better than it being too small. A seamstress will work his/her magic and create a custom fit just for you.


Vintage Cake Stand

Cake Stand

Every time I see a cake stand in a thrift store I feel an impulse to purchase. Your cake is about as important as your dress, and it

certainly deserves a gorgeous cake stand to stand upon.

Cake stands are even great to stack on top of one another, creating a multi-level dessert bar. Plus, every new home will need at least one to proudly display homemade treats.


Vintage VeilThe Veil

As beautiful as they are, I’m not entirely sure why veils cost $100 on a good day when you happen to hit up a trunk show or bridal sale.

I recently found a gorgeous long veil with lace details running along the edges for $10. Which means if it happens to fly off your head as you are walking down the aisle and it is only worn for 10 pictures, you won’t feel so bad about it.

Thank You Gifts


This might be my absolute favorite thing to purchase during our thrifting adventures. Here you have an opportunity to find something completely unique and personal. During one of our trips to our favorite outdoor antique fair we purchased a pair of candle holding squirrels for my mom and a 1930s Maine license plate for my stepdad (he might love the great state of ME more than he loves me). There’s just no way I could have found those gems at the mall. I think my mom about cried when she saw the squirrels, and understandably so.

I hope this blog post helps in your quest for budget friendly thrift finds for your wedding!

Jenny of Jenny Does Weddings is a blogger, wedding planner, and stylist who can be found spending her weekdays blogging and her weekends’ thrifting.

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Wedding Planning Questions Answered

Wedding Planning Questions Answered

Wedding Planning Questions Answered

Q: We don’t want a bartender, how do we display/chill the wine for 20 tables without breaking the bank, or how do we set up a drink station for the wine?

A: Generally when I have a couple who doesn’t want a bartender, we just put bottles of wine on each table, with the whites already chilled. For a table of 8-10 guests, I would generally put one red and one white wine on each table and guests can serve themselves a glass of whatever they would like! And it is far more convenient than getting up to go to a bar or waiting in line for their drink!

I would recommend having some extras as well, and having your servers replace empty bottles once they are finished. Or if you don’t want your guests drinking too much, two bottles at each table will definitely do the trick! The white wine always seems to stay chilled just fine but if you are worried, you can always provide individual ice buckets at each table for the whites. Personally, I think you’re fine without them though.

Q: How do you involve family out of town in the wedding planning process?

A: There are many ways you can involve your family in the planning who are from out of town! If you want the experience to be personal, such as trying on dresses, FaceTime or Skype always does the trick.

Or if they want to be more involved, you can ask for help in researching and getting quotes from vendors for you to then narrow down, collecting or addressing your invitations, or the best way to get everyone involved is to start group Pinterest boards so that everyone you want involved, can look around and pin their favorite inspiration and ideas to your wedding planning boards!

Wedding Planning Questions Answered


Q: How can I make my theme flow at the wedding?

A: When it comes to making your theme flow on your wedding day, simple is always better! Don’t try to over complicate everything but rather, focus on the aspects of the wedding that will work best with your theme. Whether you have a very specific theme or just a color scheme for your wedding day, items such as favors, the wedding décor, and your personal accessories are wonderful ways to tie in your theme without overdoing it! The simple and subtle accents that incorporate your theme or colors are what make your wedding so beautiful and unique!

Check out great wedding planning advice and much more from Jenn at The Overwhelmed Bride and look forward to more expert advice and planning tips in future editions of The Bride Box. Check by often to read more wedding planning questions answered by Jenn.

What are your wedding planning questions? We will get them answered in our next blog post!

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The 4 People You Should Hire for Your Wedding

The 4 People You Should Hire for Your Wedding

The 4 People You Should Hire for Your Wedding

Close your eyes and imagine your wedding day. Are you stressed out of your mind while guests stand in an empty warehouse that smells oddly like new paint and only has the echoes of footsteps and awkward conversation to fill the air? I would guess not. You’re likely imagining the opposite. You are sipping on a glass of rosé feeling like a pampered princess while your hair and makeup artists flurry around you, meanwhile guests begin to casually mingle in a charming warehouse space styled to perfection, with an alter area draped in ferns and peonies, while a band plays your favorite songs and the scent of your 5-star meal begins to linger by the caterer’s station. Which is exactly why the following are the 4 people you should hire for your wedding: a wedding planner, wedding stylist, entertainment, and a caterer.

1. Wedding Planner

The 4 People You Should Hire for Your Wedding

Take it from me. I’ve been working in events since high school and even I will be hiring a wedding planner. You may be the most organized person and have negotiation skills that land you a venue for half the price during peak season, but when it comes to the hours before you walk down the aisle to do this marriage thing, the last worry you will want to deal with is finding an extra chair for Grandma Suzy because the hotel miscounted while you were getting your nails done. Find a wedding planner you are comfortable with and who understands your vision. You can hire someone for the entire planning process, or hire a day-of planner who will manage the details for the week leading up to the day. Let the wedding planner sweat over the details while you sweat on the dance floor.

2. Wedding Stylist

Vis Photography featured on Wedding Chicks

A wedding stylist will communicate with you, the florist and the rental company while searching for the perfect props to ensure a cohesive look is maintained throughout the entire event. To take an example from one of my favorite shows of all time, Ace of Cakes, think of your wedding planner as the one who bakes the cakes, while the stylist is the person who comes in and works their magic with fondant and icing to create the detailed cake rendition of Hogwarts. The stylist will work to decorate your space and photographs with all of those perfect details. A great way to do a trial run is to ask your stylist to style your engagement session.

3. Entertainment

Ryan Polei

Whether it is a DJ, the band that frequents a local pub, or a cirque du soleil troupe, invest in entertainment. The best events have a form of entertainment to keep guests lingering longer while taking the pressure to be everyone’s source of entertainment off you.

4. Caterer

Jessica Charles PhotographyYes, you may have thrown amazing parties in the past and made all of the food from scratch leaving your guests raving about each bite. However, a wedding is different than your typical dinner party. Hire a caterer who has similar tastes to your own culinary style. You’ll still feel connected to the experience, even if you weren’t the one rolling each cannoli. Many certified caterers also handle the serving staff, bartender, as well as a liquor license.

At times a wedding can seem like a giant puzzle. Think of these 4 hires as the corners of your puzzle, holding everything together and helping the other hundred pieces to fall into place along the way.

Jenny of Jenny Does Weddings is a blogger, wedding planner, and stylist who can be found spending her weekdays blogging and her weekends’ thrifting.

Who are the 4 people you would hire for your wedding day?

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The Best First Dance Songs of 2014

The Best First Dance Songs of 2014

These are the top 20 songs we think are the best first dance songs of 2014. What will you be dancing to on your wedding day?

The Best First Dance Songs of 2014

1. All of Me by John Legend

2. Somebody Loves You by Betty Who

3. Make You Feel My Love by Adele

4. Falling in Love at a Coffee Shop by Landon Pigg

5. A Thousand Years by Christina Perri

6. You and Me by Lifehouse

7. Wonderful Tonight by Eric Clapton

8. Marry Me by Train

9. God Gave Me You by Blake Shelton

10. Wanted by Hunter Hayes

11. Hold On, We’re Going Home by Drake featuring Majid Jordan

12. I Knew I Loved You by Savage Garden

13. Chasing Cards by Snow Patrol

14. I’ll Be by Edwin McCain

15. I Won’t Give Up by Jason Mraz

16. I Choose You by Sara Bareilles

17. Let’s Be Still by The Head and the Heart

18. I Will Always Love You by Whitney Houston

19. Endless Love by Diana Ross and Lionel Richie

20. Back at One by Brian McKnight

Get other great ideas for love songs to dance to on your wedding day on the Billboard website.


The Bride Box Team

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Wedding Ready Skin for Every Bride


Wedding Ready Skin for Every Bride

As a bride-to-be and skincare specialist I totally get it- flawless skin is an absolute MUST on the big day. That’s why I’ve created a timeline for all you future Mrs. (fill-in-the-blank)s! I did some research and found out around 40% of couples say their “I dos” after 13-18 months of engagement, so I’m basing this timeline on a year. However, great skin is certainly obtainable for shorter engagements too!

Wedding Ready Skin for Every BrideONE YEAR:

Begin a monthly facial routine (if you don’t already have one). Choosing the right skincare professional is key to getting your skin in tip-top condition; make sure she/he really listens to your concerns and goals before committing completely. A good home-care routine is also necessary:
Results = 70% homecare + 30% professional treatment
Ask your esthetician what she/he reccomends you use at home for your specific skin concerns.


Really buckle down on a cleaner diet. Your skin is your largest detoxifying organ in your body, which means everything you put in it comes back out. Eek! This is also a good time to cut back on the alcohol and coffee consumption, neither of which are good for the skin.


Have your eyebrows shaped perfectly, by a PROFESSIONAL. Not to knock any nail salons, mall kiosks, or do-it-yourselfers, but be certain your brow pro really knows what they’re doing. Your eyebrows frame your entire face and can compliment or take away from certain features (depending on how well they’re done).


Have your makeup artist booked and do a trial run. Trial runs prevent any mishaps or boo-boos from happening on the big day, plus you get an entire day to look _extra_ gorgeous for no reason! Date night? I think so! Win-win!


If you’ve been on any sort of deep exfoliation series (i.e. chemical peels, lasers), it’s best to end it now so your skin has plenty of time to recover and replenish.


If you’re planning on having a spray tan for your wedding day, try one now. You’ll want to be completely comfortable with your spray tan tech and the color you choose plenty of time before. If you’re a spray tan newbie, get all the aftercare info you need to maintain your color.


Schedule your last facial before the wedding. A couple of weeks ensures that any strange and unpredictable reactions won’t forever haunt you in your wedding pictures. Although a chance of this happening is highly unusual (especially if you’ve been following a professional’s advice and have already received prior treatments), we just want to be on the safe side. Also, if you book your treatment any closer to the wedding you’ll be too distracted to enjoy the relaxation benefits of your service!


Have any needed facial hair removal done NOW! Red brow areas & upper lips are NOT cute with a wedding dress, I promise.


If you bikini wax or sugar, have it done now so you’re honeymoon-ready! Some skincare pros offer “blemish treatments” where they use high frequency to “zap” any pesky breakouts. If your trusted professional does this service, take advantage of that now as well!


Get your wedding spray tan, and purchase any recommended maintenance products if you want to stay bronzed for the honeymoon vaca. Most spray tan solutions take 24 hours to completely develop (no showering before then), so give yourself plenty of time before rehearsal dinner and other pre-wedding events.

Wedding MakeupDAY OF:

Don’t stress! Someone wise once told me to plan on two things for your big day:

1. Expect at least one thing to go wrong. I hate to be the one to break it to ya, but sometimes the flower girl leaves her shoes at home, the cake doesn’t make it all in one piece, and the DJ is running a hour late. It’s YOUR big day- everyone will wait, and everything will all turn out exactly as it’s supposed to. Keep your focus on why you’re they’re in the first place: your marriage.

2. Have a designated buffer. This person may be your maid-of-honor, mother, or third cousin twice removed, but as long as they’re there to deal with any “situations” it makes your special day less stressful and more enjoyable for you!

Some extra tips for you shotgun wedding brides:

Have at least one professional facial, no closer than two weeks before your wedding. The exfoliation will give you the perfect bridal glow!
Start eating clean and upping water intake ASAP! Nothing makes you look more beautiful than healthy skin!

Just my two cents:

  • Even if you’re not a regular lip waxer, take into consideration outdoor weddings can make the blondest hairs appear dark (especially if you wear any makeup bronzers). You don’t want to realize that when you’re looking at wedding pictures a month later- take extra precautions now.
  • Drink plenty of water! Hydration is key to healthy, glowing skin!


Guest Blogger:

Paige Brewster
Skincare Specialist
Clarity Skin Solutions
“Like” my page at: PaigeBrewsterSkinTherapy

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10 Tips and Tricks to Save Big on your Wedding Day!

10 Tips and Tricks to Save Big on your Wedding Day!

1. Slow down. We know you are filled with excitement the second you have that shiny diamond on your finger. Your heart is racing with the need to plan, plan, plan. You start pinning thousands of glamorous ideas on Pinterest, making purchases on Etsy, even (prematurely) throwing ideas out to every one of your besties about the perfect Bachelorette Weekend and Bridal Shower ideas. Take your time and make your choices carefully. If you make decisions or purchases out of eagerness, you’re likely to waste money on items that don’t end up belonging on your big day.

10 Tips and Tricks to Save Big on your Wedding Day!2. DIY DETAILS. Give yourself lots of time for planning and projects that you can do your self or with your girlfriends over martini’s and a movie. DIY’s cost much less money & make you feel more connected to the details of your day. Another cost saving tip? Remember that details are an extra. If you don’t have them in the budget don’t worry, no one will think something is missing.

3. Utilize The Key Three. This will help you know where you and your fiancé deserve to splurge and where you can save for the honeymoon. Focus on areas that make your heart skip a beat, and you’ll feel OK about skimping on the rest.

4. Bring in your own booze & hire a couple bartenders. While this isn’t possible for every venue, buying liquor, beer, and wine in bulk and hiring a bartender will dramatically cut your costs since venues make a profit on the alcohol your guests consume. Remember to buy enough! Running out of alcohol is a definite way to upset guests and end the party early into the night. RealSimple has a very helpful Wedding Wine and Liquor Calculator to help you with your shopping list.

5. Ditch the reception hall & party in a grassy field, barnyard, or historic home. Hotels are expensive & don’t always provide the ambiance that your reception is calling for. Do some shopping around and find a unique venue that will be memorable for your guests and your partner. A great idea is to get married somewhere you can go back and visit as often as you want, enjoy the afternoon & reminisce about the day you became a family.

6. Hire a Wedding Planner. If you’re planning an elaborate wedding weekend, a planner may actually help you save money by negotiating costs and getting in the biz deals for that you wouldn’t be qualified for on your own.

7. Be Ruthless with your Guestlist. Newly engaged couples have the constant problem of acquaintances and old friends suddenly “popping up” in their lives in an effort to be invited to their wedding. A good motto to follow for all of your wedding guests: If you won’t miss them, don’t invite them. After all, typical per person is at least $50. If you don’t want to spend $50-$200 on them don’t. This night is about you and yours.

8. Friday I’m in Love. Weddings on Friday’s or Sunday’s are up to 30% less than Saturday Evening weddings. That’s not just in the cost of the venue either; entertainment, catering, photography, rental services may all be less expensive on nights that they don’t sell out on their own. Embrace the off-season.

9. Look for an All-Inclusive Package. Choosing a venue that comes with loads of extras means significant savings. Many All-Inclusives come with Entertainment, Photography, Wedding Coordinators, Ceremony & Reception, Florals and much more. An All-Inclusive may equate to saving thousands off of your wedding budget.

10. Borrow Something. You all know the saying, “Something old, something new. Something borrowed, something blue.” Something borrowed means something you haven’t spent money on.

We hope you find these 10 tips and tricks to save big on your wedding day useful! What would you add to this list?

Click here to get more wedding budget tips.

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The Key Three: How to Save Big & Know Where to Splurge on Your Wedding Day

Wedding Tree

The Key Three: How to Save Big & Know Where to Splurge on Your Wedding Day

When you become engaged you are suddenly enamored with a to do list a mile high & dreams of a wedding that you probably can’t afford. You begin to think of all the guests, details, gifts, drinks, pictures, entertainment, favors, THE dress, and so much more… It’s easy to become completely overwhelmed and think that it will be impossible to have the wedding of your dreams. Well, it’s much more possible than you think.

Discuss the three most important items to splurge on between you and your partner. I like to call these The Key Three.

The Key Three: How to save big & know where to splurge on your wedding dayOnly splurge on these items and save on the rest. This is the first question I ask any couple when they begin planning for their wedding. Most couples go way over budget & figuring out what your priorities are from the beginning can help you stay in check.

When I married my husband the key three for us was photography, location, and music.

We knew that pictures and video would be all that we kept from our wedding day so we wanted the best photographer & videographer we could find. One thing you will be told over and over by anyone trying to give you advice is to be “in the moment” because “it will be over way too fast.” This is the truest and most important reason to have tons of amazing pictures and video on your wedding day. When it’s all said and done pictures are the way to preserve that special day. Your wedding day will be such a blur & pictures help keep the memories in focus.

The Key Three: How to save big & know where to splurge on your wedding dayLocation was important to us because that is what sets the mood and makes the memory. We were married beneath a beautiful Kapok tree that grew next to the intracoastal waterway in South Florida. Our romantic spot definitely set the mood & we spent less in decor because the natural beauty of our ceremony spot was all we needed. Think outdoor spaces: a beach, under a tree, a field with mountains in the background or beside a lake. Every state has natural beauty – what special spot do you have as a couple?

Wedding entertainment

Finally, music was important to us because that is what lifts the mood from romance to dance and turns your nuptials into the party of the year! Our DJ was also our emcee, and he literally dragged wedding guests on to the floor and danced with them! He was a riot & kept the party going until the lights forcibly came on!

Your key three may be completely different like: food, drinks, THE dress, wedding decor, flowers, etc.

Whatever your key three are it’s important to decide with your partner and agree as a couple where you can afford to splurge & where you can save.

Chris Joriann Photography:

Many Cheers & Happily Ever Afters,

Katie Myers
The Bride Box Creator & Co-Founder

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The Best Tools for Wedding Planning from Credit Card Insider


The Best Tools for Wedding Planning from Credit Card Insider

The Bride Box has teamed up with Credit Card Insider to help you save & stay in budget for your wedding day! We’ve found these tools very useful for all of you brides-to-be wedding planners.

The Best Tools for Wedding Planning from Credit Card Insider

Click the image below for a very useful calculator tool based on the budget allocation in the infographic to help you stay in budget. Remember, the calculator is not the exact amount you should spend based on your buget, it’s a guide.

Wedding Budget Calculator from Credit Card Insider

For example:
If your budget is $30,000 but you find the dress of your dreams for $800 then you have room to go a little over budget in another category. It shouldn’t be to goal to hit your budget, if you do, you will probably exceed with surprise costs along the way. If you’re under budget, enjoy the extra cash you have saved for your honeymoon. That romantic helicopter sunset tour will thank you later!

We hope you find these tools helpful in your wedding planning venture. Happy planning!

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Wedding Planning Checklist

Rhinestone Shoe Stickers

Wedding Planning Checklist:


i do shoe stickers

Nine Months and More Before The Wedding

Begin with putting together a wedding folder
Go through bridal, lifestyle, fashion, gardening, design magazines, etc. as well as books and Pinterest for inspiration.

Determine a budget
Figure out how much you are able to spend, based on contributions from your family and your own.

Choose who you would like in your wedding party
As soon as you’re engaged, you should think about who you would want to help you tie the knot.

Start figuring out the guest list
Start a spreadsheet that you will use throughout your planning process, with fields for name, contact info, RSVPs, gifts, and any other important information. Unfortunately the easiest way to cut down on costs is to reduce your guest list.

Hire a wedding planner if it is in the budget
Ask around because you never know who has a connection to a great planner.

Pick a wedding date and your venue(s)
Decide on if you would like a destination wedding or local, as well as if you want the ceremony and reception at the same venue, etc.

Research officiants, photographers, bands, florists, and caterers
Contact your top choices and set up meetings.

If you would like, throw an engagement party
Keep in mind that the people you invite should also be on your wedding guest list.

Eight Months Before

Hire the photographer and the videographer
Be sure that the people you hire have good referrals and you know the timeframe as to when you will receive the video and photos of your wedding.

Time to book the entertainment
Whether you choose to have a band, orchestra, or DJ always ask to see a video of their work and/or check them out at a live event before you choose to hire them.

Meet caterers and have a food tasting
This is the favorite part of wedding planning for most couples! Typical wedding venues offer their own catering service, but if not begin looking for one now and hire the service you like best this month or early the next.

Purchase the wedding gown of your dreams
You’ll need to schedule time for at least three fittings after your dress comes in.

Reserve a block of hotel rooms for your guests
It’s smart to go ahead and choose three hotels at different price points close to or at the actual reception venue.

Register for your wedding
Sign up at your favorite retailers or online. Try to choose places with many different price points. For example, Bed Bath & Beyond, Macy’s and Williams-Sonoma.

Create a personalized wedding website
Create a personal wedding page for free at a popular website such as Display information such as the date of the wedding, travel information, and accommodations. Then make sure to send the link to all invitees.

Seven to Six Months Before

Purchase invitations (save the date and wedding)
Try to go with a particular theme if you’d like. For example, starfish invitations for a beach wedding. Send your Save the Date invitations during this month.

Begin planning your honeymoon
Get a passport or make sure it’s up to date if going out of the country.

Choose the bridesmaid dresses
Ensure at least six months for the dresses to be ordered and sized.

Meet with your wedding officiant
Go through the ceremony details and documents you need to have with

Book a florist
Florists are capable of serving multiple clients on one given day, which is why you can wait a little longer to hire one. Plus, you should have a distinct idea of your wedding color scheme.

Arrange transportation for you and your guests
Consider limos, minibuses, trolleys, and town cars depending on your location.

Start making a day-of timeline
Start mapping out a schedule of your wedding day and put in each component (wedding toasts, the first dance).

Five to Four Months Before

Book the rehearsal dinner venue
Negotiate the cost and go over the menu.

Select and order the cake
Some bakers require a long lead time. Do a handful of cake tastings before committing to any one baker. This should be another fun wedding planning task!

Send your final guest list to the host of your shower
Think of a theme and be surprised and have your host choose the theme of your bridal shower.

Buy wedding shoes and start wedding dress fittings
Make sure to bring your shoes to your first fitting so the seamstress can make your dress the appropriate length.

Schedule hair and makeup artists or a salon
Make some appointments and take photos at each so you can compare results.

Choose your wedding music
What should be playing when? During the bride and groom entrance, your first dance, cake cutting, etc. Keep track of your must-haves and do not play list.

Three Months Before

Order favors and welcome bags
Monogrammed cookies are always a nice treat. Figure out what you would like to include in your welcome bags for your out-of-town guests, if desired.

Make a list of the people giving toasts and/or doing readings
Who would you like to have speak at the ceremony and/or reception. This is the time to ask them.

Purchase your undergarments
And schedule your second wedding dress fitting.

Print and/or create ceremony programs
Finalize the order of the ceremony and have programs made or do it yourself, if desired.

Purchase your wedding rings
This will allow time for resizing and engraving.

Send your event schedule to your wedding vendors
This allows plenty of time for feedback and adjustments.

Two Months Before

Contact all the vendors
Make sure any questions you or they had have been answered at this point.

Meet with your photographer(s)
Discuss specific locations, people, and other details you definitely want photographed on your wedding day.

Review the playlist with the entertainment
Although you probably won’t be able to dictate every single song played, you should still have a wish list.

Send out your formal wedding invitations
The typical rule is to mail out invitations 6-8 weeks before the ceremony, setting the RSVP deadline at 3 weeks after the postmark date.

Have a bachelorette party!
Coordinating a fun outing with your friends generally is the maid of honor’s task. If nothing has been mentioned by her then feel free to ask since this is typically when you plan one.

One Month Before

Confirm RSVPs and out into spreadsheet
Call people who have not yet responded.

Get your marriage license
The process is fairly simple and can take up to six days depending on where you live so do your research and plan accordingly.

Visit the seamstress for your last fitting
Just in case, you may want to schedule a dress fitting the week of your wedding. You can always cancel if your dress fits perfectly at that time.

Stock the bar and confirm final guest count
Now that you have a head count you can plan accordingly.

E-mail and print directions for drivers, vendors, etc. and confirm arrival times
This gives the chauffeurs and vendors ample time to navigate a route and be on time.

Put together a seating chart for the reception
Make sure you are putting people together that you think would be most enjoyable for them, if possible.

Buy your bridesmaids’ gifts
You usually gives these out at the rehearsal dinner.

Get your hair done, if desired

Week of the Wedding

Reconfirm arrival times with all vendors!

Delegate wedding day tasks
Choose the best person for each task. For example, someone to bustle your dress, someone to carry your belongings, someone to be in charge of gifts, someone to hand out tips, someone to direct vendors, etc.

Send a timeline to the bridal party
Make sure they understand exactly what is going on in terms of where they should be at what time and other important details.

Pick up your wedding dress!
Or make arrangements for a delivery or someone to pick it up for you.

Check in one last time with the photographer
Make sure they know the pictures you want captured that are most important to you.

Set aside checks for the vendors
Put tips in envelopes to be handed out at the event

Book a salon day
Make an appontment for a manicure and a pedicure a day or two before the wedding. A massage would be a fantastic idea at this time as well.

Send the final guest list count to all venues hosting your wedding
In most cases, places close their lists 72 hours in advance.

Assemble and distribute the welcome baskets
We recommend Bow Tie Bags do this part for you!

Pack for your honeymoon and make sure to enjoy every single moment because it goes by in a flash!

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Top 10 Wedding Trends in 2014


It’s a brand new year and we’re counting down the top 10 wedding trends in 2014!

1. Shades of pink with pops of color – Forget the dated all-white weddings. This year, soft hues with pops of color are back for wedding color palettes in 2014. The overall picture is to take a neutral, soft palette, like whites, blush tones, ivories and metallic, and to incorporate bold colors like plum purple, apple red, tangerine or indigo blue. We are seeing this trend in the flowers, wedding table settings, wedding cakes and so much more.

2. Don’t Instagram My Wedding – A lot of couples aren’t keen on the idea of their guests attached to their smartphones throughout the wedding. Some couples are going as far as providing a phone check at the door to including a note in their ceremony programs asking their wedding guests to not take photos or video.

3. Photo Booth Fun – Photo booths are no Top 10 Wedding Trends in 2014thing new for weddings, but now couples are putting a twist to the popular trend. From vintage photo booths with monogrammed photo strips as favors to point-and-shoot booths that project guests’ photos in real time over the dance floor. Enter the slow-motion video booth. Using a special infrared camera, a videographer creates an amazing keepsake.


4. #Wedding Guests – This is the opposite of the unplugged wedding. If the couple wants their guests capturing the entire wedding day via a custom hashtag announced by the couple, they’ll make sure phones stay charged the whole night with charging stations at the reception! These chic and creative charging stations don’t look ugly at all, florists are being asked to dress up tall cocktail tables with pretty linens and small flatbeds of roses or wheat grass with little flowers and cords peeking out.


5. Back to the ’90s – The ’90s were no doubt the party decade, so it may not be a shock to hear that ’90s-inspired details are all the rage for weddings this year. Couples are getting creative by having temporary tattoos as wedding favors, fun hip hop music & break dancers to entertain guests! Not to mention, brides are considering wearing crop-top wedding dresses!


6. Fabulous Flowers – in 2014, flowers are getting bigger and more elaborate. Picture overflowing, cascading floral arrangements that spill over onto the dance floor; florists are often being tasked with making wild and unique arrangements. Wow your guests at the very start with having a beautiful arrangement at your ceremony.

7. Embellished and Dramatic Backs – Brides everywhere are wanting to show off their style and body in 2014 with more sleek fabrics and dramatic cuts and embellishments in the back when it comes to choosing the perfect wedding dress.

8. Suspended Wedding Cakes – Kaley Cuoco was reported to have this amazing upside down chandelier wedding cake! Now the rest of the world wants to hang their wedding cakes from the ceiling in dramatic ways.

Top 10 Wedding Trends


9. Multiple Engagement Rings – Many celebrities are being seen wearing multiple stacked engagement rings instead of the traditional solo ring. This trend looks very fashionable, but surely comes with a higher price tag. We think this style takes away from the traditional engagement ring & wedding band look. What’s your opinion?

10. The never-ending nuptials – We’re seeing more and more long wedding weekends. It makes sense when you have a lot of guests from out of town that you want to keep entertained. Just make sure to make your arrangements ahead of time so your guests don’t feel left out.

These are the trends we think we’ll see the most of this year. Which of these top trends might you use for your wedding in 2014?

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Wedding Photography Checklist

Wedding Photography Checklist

Wedding Photography Checklist


If you think it will be hard to remember what you want the day of the wedding, imagine how much you will forget once the wedding is over. Don’t let yourself get upset about pictures you may have missed taking on the big day. Instead, come up with a list of Must Have Pictures before your wedding day to discuss or give to your photographer. Remember also that wedding photographers are professionals and it’s their job to capture the moments you will remember the rest of your life.

Also remember that photographers love to capture all of the little details that made your wedding unique. Have those special DIY’s, programs, invitations, your garter, and any other details you have with you when you are getting ready to give to the photographer when he or she arrives. This will help to save your photographer’s time and make sure that all of those hours of craftiness won’t be forgotten.

Here’s a simple wedding photography checklist that can get you to start thinking about the types of pictures you can’t forget.

Before The Ceremony Shots

___ Wedding dress lying over a chair
___ Zipping up or buttoning the wedding dress
___ Mother of the bride fastening the bride’s necklace or looking through her veil
___ The bride’s garter
___ The bride’s veil
___ A close up of the bride’s shoes peeking out from under the dress
___ Bride looking into a mirror
___ Bride looking out window
___ Bride and bridesmaids putting on makeup
___ Bride pinning corsage/boutonniere on mother/father
___ Mother/father handing bride bouquet ___ Bride hugging parents
___ Bride touching up
___ Bride and parents leaving for ceremony
___ Groom tying tie
___ Groom looking into mirror
___ Groom looking out window
___ Groom pinning corsage/boutonniere on mother/father
___ Groom hugging parents
___ Bride and parents leaving for ceremony

Will you be having a first look? Think about how you want that special moment captured.

Ceremony Shots

___ Outside of ceremony site
___ Guests walking into ceremony site
___ Bride and father entering ceremony site
___ Parents being seated
___ Grandparents being seated
___ Maid of honor walking down the aisle
___ Bridesmaids walking down the aisle
___ Flower girl and ring bearer walking down aisle
___ Groom waiting for bride
___ Ceremony musicians
___ Officiant
___ Altar or canopy during ceremony
___ Close up of bride, just before she makes her entrance
___ Bride and father walking down aisle
___ Groom seeing bride for first time
___ The back of bride and father walking down the aisle – with the groom waiting in the distance
___ Bride’s father and Bride hugging at end of aisle
___ Shot of the audience from the bride and groom’s point of view
___ The unity ceremony
___ Close up of bride and groom saying the vows
___ Wide shot of bride and groom saying the vows
___ Exchanging the rings
___ Close up of hands
___ The kiss
___ Bride & Groom walking up the aisle
___ Receiving line
___ Bride & Groom outside on steps
___ Guests throwing confetti/rose petals/birdseed
___ Bride & Groom hugging guests, laughing, getting congratulations
___ Bride & Groom getting in car
___ Bride & Groom in back seat

Formal Shots

___ Bride alone (full length)
___ Bride with Maid of Honor
___ Bride with bridesmaids
___ Groom with bridesmaids
___ Bride with parents
___ Bride & Groom together
___ Bride & Groom with parents
___ Bride & Groom with families
___ Bride & Groom with entire wedding party
___ Bride & Groom with flower girl and ring bearer
___ Groom with parents
___ Groom with best man
___ Groom with groomsmen
___ Bride with groomsmen

Reception Shots

___ Outside of reception site
___ Bride & Groom arriving
___ Bride & Groom greeting guests
___ Table centerpieces
___ Table setting
___ Bride & Groom’s table (head table)
___ Musicians or DJ
___ Guest book
___ Place card table
___ Closeup of bride and groom’s place card
___ Wedding cake
___ Groom’s cake
___ Gift table
___ Decorations (specify which ________)
___ A shot of bride & groom with guests at each table
___ Bride with college alums
___ Groom with college alums
___ The buffet or, if having table service, a dinner serving
___ Bride & Groom’s first dance
___ Bride & Father dancing
___ Groom & Mother dancing
___ Guests dancing
___ Bride & Groom cutting the cake
___ Bride & Groom feeding each other cake
___ Toasts (specify who is giving them: ______________)
___ Bride & Groom drinking champagne
___ Signing the marriage license
___ Bride throwing bouquet
___ Groom retrieving garter
___ Groom tossing garter
___ Garter/Bouquet dance
___ The getaway car
___ Bride & Groom leaving party
___ Bride & Groom driving away

Wedding Reception Shot

Remember this is a very basic list to help you think about what types of pictures you want taken on your wedding day. Be creative with your list, think of shots that haven’t been taken before. 

Many Cheer’s and Happily Ever Afters,

The Bride Box Team

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Top 10 Wedding Tips for Brides

 Wedding Day Tips

The Bride Box’s top 10 wedding day tips for brides to remember on their Big Day!

1) Bring your marriage license! This is important to making your marriage official so remember to research the process well before your wedding day.

2) Please do not sweat the small stuff! It’s your day – let your Maid of Honor, bridesmaids, parents, etc. take care of whatever might come up.

3) Make sure to have your photographer take pictures of you with your family (or have someone remember for you)! We cannot tell you how many brides forget to take a pictures with their family members.

4) Remember to eat small and drink water throughout the day! Staying hydrated and eating small meals like cheese and crackers will help keep you energized leading up to your wedding ceremony & reception.

5) Go over your day-of itinerary ahead of time so you know when to be ready, when vendors are scheduled to arrive, and so on.

6) Do not forget to pack for your honeymoon early so you do not forget anything.

7) Make sure to pack a wedding day emergency kit! Extra bobby pins, hemming tape, face powder/lipstick, hairspray and more!

8) Remember to make your guests feel welcomed that are staying in a hotel by putting together a nice bag of goodies.

9) Have someone be in charge of picking up your belongings if you plan on staying in a hotel on your wedding night and leaving for your honeymoon the next morning.

10) Most of all…make sure to take everything in! It’s the one day that is about you and the love of your life – you’ve spent a ton of time making it beautiful so be in the moment!

We hope this short list of wedding day tips to remember helps in planning out your fairytale wedding day without a hitch! What other tips would you say would be helpful to remember on the Big Day? Let us know your thoughts by commenting below on this post. Remember to check back often for the best advice, contests, and more from The Bride Box!