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Entries in Wedding Tips (7)


Wedding 101: Reception Dancing Timeline

Traditionally, the bride and groom choose a special song to be played at their reception for their first dance as a married couple. Consultants advise that you carefully consider your choice. Is the "special song" you select one that you and your groom can dance to comfortably with grace? Is it one that will stand the test of time? Sometimes a trendy or popular song of the moment will be forgotten before your first anniversary. When you relive the memories of your "first dance" ten, fifteen, or thirty years from now, will you or any of your family and guests remember the music to which you danced? Be sure to talk with your DJ, musicians and wedding planner to help you decide when and how to do your first dance and all dances thereafter.

When to start:
As a general rule, the first dance begins the dancing portion of the evening and begins after the meal portion has been completed, yet before the cutting of the wedding cake.  However, a trend we’re seeing is couples making a grand entrance at the reception and perform their first dance straight away. Consider your crowds energy level, how you want the flow of the night to go, and what time you'll need to be out of your venue.

First dance:
Traditionally performed to slow music, the first dance now has blossomed into a time to really showcase a couple’s personality. Choreographed dances are not only fun, they make for great feed on your wedding video and are an opportunity to get the whole bridal party in on the fun out on the dance floor.

Traditional Reception Dance Sequence:

  1. The new couple has their first dance together
  2. The second dance involves the father-of-the-bride, father-in-law and stepfather’s where applicable.  They can cut into the dance during the song or can each have their own song.  Keep in mind song length if many dances are scheduled or invite guests to join you during each song.
  3. While the bride is dancing with her father(s), the groom begins dancing with his own mother, than mother-in-law and stepmother. 
  4. After dancing with your respective parents, if you have children, this is their opportunity to have a special dance with their parents.
  5. Next the new couples parents share a dance.
  6. The dance floor opens to everyone to join.


This sequence is only a guideline. With today's non-traditional families, you might want to take a few moments well in advance of your wedding to decide how you will include all the significant members of your families and wedding party in the traditional first dance. Be sure to inform all the involved members how you want everything to work so that they are comfortable stepping in at the right time.

Last dance:
Don’t minimize the importance of the last dance. It’s the final hooray of an amazing day; choose a song that will get everyone out on the dance floor one last time.

Dance lessons:
Not everyone finds the attention of dancing comfortable. If either of you has "two-left-feet," dance lessons may very likely save the day. Plus the classes make for excellent pre-wedding date nights!  

BanquetEvent Lucky in Love's "Wedding 101", offers practical and inspiration wedding planning tools, advice, and connects you with the vendors who can make the wedding of dreams a reality. 


Wedding 101: Planning Your Ceremony

Wedding Ceremony Tips

The Order of Events: Begins with the procession where the families and bridal party are escorted down the isle and take their places either on the altar or seating area. Then the officiant or person presiding over the ceremony will begin with opening commentary, followed by the declaration of intent that includes the exchanging of vows and rings. During this time or after, is when songs are sung, readings are given, the lighting of a unity candle, taking of the elements, or a sand ceremony takes place.  Next is the pronouncement of marriage and the kiss. The ceremony ends with a reverse recessional of the beginning procession, lead by the newlywed couple.

Vows: Whether you use traditional vows or write your own, take the time to be sure that they reflect your relationship. Wording of traditional vows may vary within a religion or denomination; inquire about acceptable variations. Couples planning a civil ceremony may wish to consult with a church or synagogue when selecting their vows. If either of you has children, you may wish to include them in these sacred words.

Readings: Religious or poetic, choose text that has meaning to you and your partner. Reflect your personalities and feelings towards one another.  Officiants, religious text, poetry, literature, song lyrics, and quotes are great resources for your wedding ceremony readings.

Music: Can be broken down into three main parts: prelude, processional and recessional music. Prelude music tends to be quieter, allowing guests to still talk softly among themselves as guests continue to arrive.  Processional music is the song(s) your wedding party walks down the isle too.  Recessional music, often the most exuberant of all the music, is played when the wedding party then exits.  Music can also be played during special moments, like the sand ceremony or signing of the marriage certificate. Think about ceremony/altar space when choosing whether the size of our your musical ensemble. 

Check all the rules: Make sure you know all the rules and restrictions the church, chapel, synagogue, indoor or outdoor venue may have. Some have strict rules about photographs or videotaping, candles, music, and so forth.

Make your ceremony special: Write your own vows, select special music, or partaking in lighting a unity candle. Officiants and wedding planners can also help to make your wedding ceremony meaningful for you and your partner. Ask about personalizing the ceremony, they may be able to offer suggestions that will enhance your ceremony in ways you hadn’t thought of.


BanquetEvent Lucky in Love's "Wedding 101", offers practical and inspiration wedding planning tools, advice, and connects you with the vendors who can make the wedding of dreams a reality.  


Wedding 101: Wedding Cakes & Desserts

Choosing the perfect wedding cake is one of the tastiest and most creative elements in planning a wedding. The cake table has blossomed into not only including traditional wedding cakes, but desserts of all types. Today pies, cupcakes, donuts, and macaroons, also decorate the cake table. Cakes and desserts are also reflecting the wedding theme and couples personalities more and more.

Book your cake or dessert caterer around 6 months prior to the big day. This should be after such big decisions as what venue, season and décor theme you want. You want to make sure your cake will complement the rest of the day. Keep in mind the busiest wedding months are June through September, and December. At ordering time you need only an approximate number of guests. Confirm the number two to three weeks before your wedding. 

Serving sizes:
Your baker will be the most helpful in advising you on the amount you will need based on the number of guests and style of cake or dessert you’re serving. Keep in mind that wedding cake slices are traditionally smaller than other party cake slices and guests usually only partake in one slice.  Whereas if you’re featuring a s’mores bar, the count could very well be more than one per person.  On average, an 8” round cake will serve around 20 guests, a 14” round cake 40 guests, an 16” round cake around 50 guests when sliced in a square pattern, not pie-shaped, and are around 2”x2” slices.  Square cakes serve more people.   Prices are usually based on a per-slice amount. Due to their size and elegance, wedding cakes can be tricky to serve. Make sure your baker provides you with instructions for cutting and serving your wedding cake. Appoint someone to be in charge of cutting and serving; give that person the instructions, or ask your caterer if their servers can be available for this task.

10 questions to ask your baker:

  1. Could we see photos of your work?
  2. What flavors do you offer?
  3. Can we taste samples?
  4. Do we have to choose from set designs or can you create a custom piece?
  5. If we want to use fresh flowers, will you work with our florist?
  6. How are your cakes/desserts priced out?
  7. Are you a licensed by the state health department and insured?
  8. Can you accommodate certain dietary restrictions?
  9. What is your delivery process?
  10. Do you provide/rent cake stands and serving utensils?

BanquetEvent Lucky in Love's "Wedding 101", offers practical and inspiration wedding planning tools, advice, and connects you with the vendors who can make the wedding of dreams a reality.  


Winery Weddings: Helpful Hints and Tips

A winery wedding can be so intoxicating.  These romantic, memorable, unique and timeless venue locations are ideal for wedding ceremonies, wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners or bridal and couple showers.  With Washington quickly becoming of the nations largest producers of wine and host to four major wine country areas, it has become the destination for a wedding winery.

Winery wedding venues and reception sites can range from grand tasting rooms to within in the vineyards themselves.  Some offer complete packages including everything from an onsite consultant to the linens and catering, while others provide the picturesque setting and require all additional décor, catering, and planning to be hired from outside sources.  Despite what type of packages are offered, ask for their “Preferred Vendor” list to see which companies they recommend working with.

9 Questions to ask when planning a winery wedding:

  1. What are their beverage policies? Can other alcoholic beverages be served?
  2. What areas of the venue are open to you, your wedding party and guests? Some wineries have banquet areas, bridal rooms, barrel rooms, or outdoor spaces available.
  3. What wedding packages do you offer?
  4. Do they offer a discount for weekday or off-season venue rentals?
  5. Do they have enough parking, offer valet parking services, or management?
  6. For outdoor weddings, what are the local noise ordinances?
  7. Are there any decoration restrictions?
  8. Is there a discount on wine purchases?
  9. If a tasting room is apart of the venue space, what are their hours? 

Winery weddings beg to have the wine theme carried throughout the event.  Pour on the fun with these Wine-Themed wedding ideas:

  • Wine Bottle Labels – Create custom wine labels, featuring your engagement photos or to function as the menu
  • Guest Book - Instead of a traditional guest book have guests sign a Magnum bottle (in gold or silver Sharpie) or on a wine barrel or have them sign the wine corks themselves, which will be stored in a cork holder to display (and add to) in your home.
  • Wine Cork place cards – use wine corks as a base to hold the name cards so your guests know where to sit
  • Table Numbers – break from the traditional table numbers and use wine bottles featuring numbers, wine types (Syrah, Merlot, Chardonnay, etc.) or even photos of the couple
  • Cork Boutonniere – use corks as the “vase” for the groom and groomsmen boutonniere
  • Wedding Favors – wine bottle stoppers, wine keys, wine(!) the possibilities here are great.
  • Photos – make sure your photographer captures a ring shot with wine corks
  • Vases – fill wine boxes with flowers or empty bottles for an alternative to the traditional floral vase
  • Décor – use wine barrels for tables, create a wine cork monogram of your new initials, or use wine barrel platters for serving antipasto’s Lucky in Love's "Wedding 101", offers practical and inspiration wedding planning tools, advice, and connects you with the vendors who can make the wedding of dreams a reality.  



Wedding photo booths: Helpful Hints and Tips

Photo booths are a fun way to entertain guests during your wedding reception. They give your guests something to occupy their time while your finishing up photos or need a break from getting down on the dance floor. Also, they make great keepsake wedding favors. These strips of photos are fun alternatives to the traditional guest book. With so many different photo booth styles, you can really incorporate them into your wedding theme and decor.

Photo Booth Styles:

  • Stand-alone photo booths: these curtain style booths can accommodate up to 4 guests conformably, and traditionally feature black curtaining.
  • Green-screen photo booth: this booth uses green screen photographic technology by taking photos of people in front of a green background and then replaces the green background with a new background image, such as the Louvre or the Superbowl.
  • Classic arcade-style photo booth: ideal for 1-4 people, these full-enclosed metal booths offer a bench for seating.
  • Open air photo booth: open all sides, this style allows for the most amount of people to be captured in one frame and versatility for location, as this booth style uses its surroundings at your wedding as the backdrop. This option is popular for those couples wanting to customize their backdrop for the photos with such things as vertically hanging garlands or fabric and outdoor weddings, as you can take advantage of the natural surroundings.  


Grab a prop and strike a pose! From mustaches to fun hats, picture frame cutouts, boas, stick props, masks, chalkboard to bubble signs, jumbo or sunglasses, photo booth props are a fun element to add in to the fun of the photo itself.  

7 Questions to Ask:

  1. Does the photo booth company offers custom headers? Many let you personalize your photo strips with custom logos, wedding dates, initials and so forth.
  2. Do they offer social media integration with instant email, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram feeds?
  3. How much space will they require for their set up? 
  4. Will there be an attendant operating the booth? And if so, what attire will they be in?
  5. What is included in the price? Many companies offer "Add-ons" such as guest books.
  6. How can you access your photos? Will you receive them on a DVD or via an online gallery?
  7. Do you carry insurance? Remember you get what you pay for more often than not.

BanquetEvent Lucky in Love's Helpful Hints and Tips, offers practical and inspiration wedding planning tools, advice, and connects you with the vendors who can make the wedding of dreams a reality.