night wedding portrait at mildred b cooper

#1 Thing Brides Should Do but Aren’t

We all make mistakes. That’s just part of life. We try to do the best we can, but still, nobody’s perfect. The thing that’s really tough is when you make a mistake and you don’t even know it. If you had simply known better, things would have been different. I see this in the wedding world all the time, unfortunately. Brides simply don’t know everything about weddings, so we are here to try to educate them as much as possible. Here is the #1 Thing Brides Should Do but Aren’t.

#1 Thing Couple Should Do but Aren’t

Make Life Easier with a Double Sided Buffett

OMG…double sided buffets are one of our biggest things we tell brides to do right now.  It seems silly we know, but we have seen buffets that take over an hour and a half to serve the guests because they are one-sided.  Guess what, that is about 45 minutes of party time you just gave up!

The other thing, because so much of what we do is centered around the reception portion of the day…is make sure everyone is on the same page with the floor plan. We try to meet with all of our couples prior to their big day, and we discuss where we will be setting up in the venue.  But when we get to the venue we often find that we are not in the agreed-upon spot, and we don’t have enough room to set up or equipment etc. So just make sure all parties involved have a final floorplan before the wedding. We realize things change constantly, and we go with the flow and find a plan B every time…but communication on this important point sometimes falls through the cracks.

Brian and Todd Rudisill
dancing at Cypress Barn Wedding

Be Unique and Use All the Space

Each wedding is unique and wonderful! Make sure you aren’t simply copying what you’ve seen in a magazine, the internet, or someone else’s wedding. It’s ok to borrow a few ideas, but you want to make sure you include something that really represents you and creates a unique experience for their guests.

Another big mistake is not fully utilizing all the space at your wedding venue. Here at Sassafras, we have so much space and so many different areas for our couples. You can get ready in one area, have the ceremony at another, and the reception someplace different. Not only does this give the guests a lot of experiences, but it also makes your life easier because you don’t have to fight over space or flip a room for the reception.


More Drink Options

It is so simple but we see it missed at almost every wedding. Not everyone wants to drink alcohol all night. Whether a guest is driving, underage or simply not a fan of alcohol, it is important to have drink options for all. So many groups neglect to have good non-alcoholic beverages available besides water. Here are a few ideas of ways to offer these beverages:
-A beautiful variety of craft sodas in an iced farmhouse tub.
-Tea and lemonade in glass carafes with an heirloom ice bucket.
-A coffee and hot cocoa bar for late fall evening occasions.
-A colorful virgin punch with the option to add alcohol.
-Coffee urns with special flavored syrups and mixing tips from the bride or groom.
Be sure to offer lighter or low-calorie options. Offer both sweet and unsweet tea, a collection of sparkling waters or a mix of full and low-calorie sodas.
guys chugging beers

Splurge On What Matters

From my past experiences with clients, I’d say we covered all bases pretty consistently. I always advise to splurge a little extra for a good photographer and, if there is room in the budget, get a videographer. The memories are all you get to keep from your wedding day, and it is super important to have everything well documented or years to come!

I might be biased, but honestly having a planner can save you so much stress, and money! So if you aren’t thinking about hiring a planner or a day-of coordinator I recommend looking into meeting with a couple of us and figuring out how we can make the planning experience way easier! That way you don’t have bridesmaids running around trying to find the florist, or having groomsmen flipping a room for the reception.

Tanya Castella

Instagram: @social.icing.nwa
Facebook: @social.icing.nwa

More People = More $$$

The number 1 thing couples should be doing but aren’t is understanding that more people equals more money needed. In the excitement of the engagement, couples often forget that more guests, bridesmaids & groomsmen equal more tables, chairs, linens, silverware & drinkware, food, cake, favors, centerpieces, bouquets, boutonnieres, corsages, etc needed.  And EACH of these adds to the overall cost of the wedding.  

By having conversations about the budget before the guest list is determined, before the wedding party is selected, and before anything is booked and by prioritizing which things are most important to the couple, they can more easily have the perfect wedding.  Personally, it’s much more fun to design fewer pieces that are exactly what the couple wants than to design more pieces where we’ve had to adjust the design to better fit the budget.


Spend Time on Couple Portraits

It’s really amazing how things can change over the years, which is a good thing. People are starting to learn and make things better. A few years ago, I would have said everyone needed to do a first look, but now, most people do that. The same thing goes with photo booths. They are so much fun, and most couples have them at their wedding now.

The one thing the couples need to be doing is spend time doing couple portraits. Most couples will do some portraits right after the first look or after the ceremony, but that’s about it. This day is about the two of you, but you might only spend 15-25 minutes capturing that?

You can get a good amount done in 25 minutes, but I don’t think that’s enough. I try to spend 30 minutes in natural light, and then another 30 minutes later when it gets dark. This way, it’s all spread out and you get some really different looks.

night wedding portrait at mildred b cooperConclusion

I love hearing all of those ideas from other weddings vendors. Honestly, there were a few of them that I didn’t think of myself, so I’m sure there are plenty of brides out there that hadn’t heard them either. That’s really my biggest goal. I just want brides to know all of the options out there, so they can make the best decision for their wedding, “and knowing is half the battle.”

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