Are You Ready for Everything that Goes Into a DIY Wedding?

By now, you must be buzzing with excitement over your big day. After all, how often do you really get to experience an entire day that’s all about you?

If you’re planning on taking care of some of the wedding details yourself, keep reading to find out if you’re ready for everything that goes into a DIY wedding.

Saving Money with DIY

It only makes sense that it will cost more to hire a wedding planner than to dive in and do it yourself. But due to the mystique that’s been created about wedding planners by Hollywood and other sources, most people think it costs a small fortune, which just isn’t the case.

Another aspect that many DIY’ers don’t consider is that buying materials yourself can cost considerably more because you don’t have access to the same suppliers. That’s not to say you can’t make it work and end up spending less, but when weighed against the other elements of DIY wedding planning, “spending less” loses some of its appeal.

The Stress Level

When you look at everything that goes into planning a memorable wedding, it can really get your head spinning. When you consider things like

  • The marriage license

  • Flowers

  • Wedding dress

  • Who to invite

  • Seating

  • Entertainment

  • Invitations

  • Photographer

  • Booking a venue

  • Videographer

  • Venue

  • Officials

  • Budget

  • Wedding party

  • Caterer

  • Bridesmaids

  • The dinner

  • Rehearsal dinner

  • Transportation

  • Fittings

  • Hair and makeup

  • Music

  • Rings

  • Favors

  • Timeline for the big the day

  • Toasts

  • Announcements

  • Playlists

  • Seating

  • Bridesmaids gifts

….not to mention the honeymoon…it can be completely overwhelming!

The Troubleshooting Element

And that’s if everything goes off without a hitch. What do you do if something goes wrong? What if the florist sends the wrong flowers, the invitations have a misprint, the caterer doesn’t have the right appetizers or you get the runaround trying to get a liquor license for your venue? When you take a look at the laundry list of tasks that make up a successful wedding, just assume there could be five times as many potential issues on the way to the big day.

What Do You Really Want?

Now, I’m not saying that it isn’t possible to DIY your wedding and have it turn out exactly how you planned. Many have done it before you, and many will do it in the future.

The key is to dig into the details a little and figure out what you really want from the experience. When you picture your future self, looking back at your wedding day, you want to remember it as the most magical day of your life and not a stressful time that you “made it through”.

There is no right or wrong answer to how much or how little you take on yourself. Just be sure to keep your goals in mind and follow the path that gives you a balance between price, stress level and simplicity.

Do You Need Insurance For Your Wedding?

Of all the facets that come together to make a successful wedding day, insurance is sure to be one of the least romantic. Many couples don’t bother putting it on their to-do list for various reasons, but if you are all about “peace of mind” and stress-free wedding planning, you may want to add it to yours.

Why Would I Need Wedding Insurance?

Basically, you need wedding insurance for the same reasons you need any type of insurance. In case something goes wrong and you are liable to pay for it out of pocket. With so many different components that need to come together on one day, things can go wrong, and it’s a good idea to be covered.

Some possible scenarios that could come up unexpectedly include:

  • Serious weather events

  • Forced relocation on short notice

  • Unexpected military deployment

  • Vendors that go out of business before the big day

  • Damaged wedding cake or food that has spoiled

  • DJs, photographers or caterers that don’t show up

It’s safe to say you’ve invested a lot of time and money in your wedding, and having insurance is a way to protect that investment.

Most of the time your venue will require your various vendors to provide them with their insurance information. This is crucial because without this insurance that particular vendor cannot perform their duties in that hall.

Make sure your photographer, videographer, DJ, florist, Limo company all have the proper insurance before hiring them. I cannot tell you how many times we have been called to photograph a wedding last minutes because the photographer that was originally hired does not have the proper insurance. These things may seem like common knowledge but for a vendor just starting out, they have no idea these things are 100% necessary. That is why it is so important to hire a professional in all aspects of your wedding planning.

4 Tips for Planning Your Wedding Food Service

It’s no secret that some of the most memorable weddings are the ones that feature incredible food. Whether it’s appetizers that your guests can’t keep their hands off or a main course that has them talking for months afterward, the food service at your wedding plays a big role in the perception of your guests.

Here are five points to keep in mind when it comes to food service at your wedding:

1 – The Budget

Everyone has to work within a budget, and it’s crucial to figure out what your food budget is before you get into any detailed planning. Quite often, the budget will decide what type of food is being served, how many courses you will serve, which caterer you will use.

2– Which Serving Style to Implement?

You have several options when it comes to serving style. They include:

  • Sit down, plated dinner

  • Food truck

  • Banquet-style

  • Different food stations

  • Buffet

In the end, you’ll want to select a style that works with all the other factors, but also one that you love and that speaks to your personality.

3– The Theme

This isn’t a necessity, but many brides like to match the type of food to the overall theme or style of their wedding. Elegant, stylish weddings may work well with elegant dining experiences, while a rustic, outdoorsy-type wedding might do well with a family-style comfort food kind of meal. You may also want to include sentimental touches like foods that are associated with the area you were engaged or first met.

4– Dietary Restrictions

There’s always a chance that one or more of your guests will have a dietary restriction of some kind. Whether it’s an allergy, a health problem or some other issue, you’ll need to make the necessary adjustments to the menu.

Remember You Can’t Please Everyone

Dietary issues aside, keep in mind that it’s not possible to please everyone, so stay true to what you really want. If you follow your heart and keep these points in mind, you and your guests will remember the food from your wedding for years to come.

One element that is part of almost every wedding is the expectation. It may be your own, your family’s or someone else’s, but they need to be managed if you want to have fond memories of your big day. Stay tuned for our next email to help create a wedding that meets both your own expectations and the expectations of your guests.

Things to Keep in Mind About Indoor and Outdoor Wedding Venues

The subject of venue will always be an important one when it comes to your wedding planning. The indoor vs. outdoor debate has caused a good deal of stress for many brides-to-be, and for good reason. All it takes is one mishap that is beyond your control and you may end up regretting your decision for years to come.

Trying to balance your ultimate wedding vision with practicality and certainty can be a handful, so it’s wise to take a few deep breaths and explore the good points and bad points of each choice.

Indoor Wedding Venue

An indoor wedding venue is definitely the safe choice if you are concerned about weather being a factor in your wedding. Depending on the time of year, keeping it inside will eliminate the potential for an unexpected frost, heavy spring rains or sudden summer thunderstorms. Here are some of the benefits of having an indoor wedding:

  • Climate control and guaranteed comfort regardless of the time of year

  • Better lighting control for photos and video

  • Greater freedom when it comes to decoration

  • Greater freedom when it comes to table settings and type of food service

Of course, an indoor wedding also means that there is a limit to the number of people you can invite. That might be a blessing for some people, but it can be tricky reserving an indoor venue to match the number of people you want to attend.

Outdoor Wedding Venue

There’s something about getting married outside that is so appealing, many brides-to-be focus on how to make it happen, rather than any possible pitfalls. Naturally, the possibility for inclement weather is the most significant stress point when planning a wedding outside.

You can try for a time of year where there is traditionally less precipitation, but because you have to book it so far in advance, you can never be certain. The key is to plan effectively and have a solid backup plan in place for if the weather doesn’t cooperate. Here are some tips that will help:

  • Let everyone know it’s an outdoor wedding in the invitations

  • Weigh down decorations and avoid lighter fabrics in case the wind picks up

  • Have an indoor alternative like a sturdy tent, barn or clubhouse available

  • Hand out umbrellas to guests if there is a threat of rain

  • Plan hair and makeup according to the weather forecast

  • Keep guests well hydrated if it is going to be hot outside

  • Plan with your photographer how to use the rain for creative shots

Planning for any issues will help you stay in control if problems do arise, but this extra work is worth it for most people that dream of an outdoor wedding. When you have your wedding outdoors, some of the benefits include:

  • A natural backdrop to enhance your special day

  • Natural lighting for photos, including the “golden hour shots” about an hour before sunset, make for some of the most magical wedding photos imaginable

  • More space for more guests

  • Less time and money dedicated to artificial decorations

  • More space for photographers and videographers to move around

Just like the other components of your wedding, there is no right or wrong answer to the indoor vs. outdoor debate. You may have had your mind made up before you were even engaged, or it might take some deeper thought to come up with the best choice. Just remember, the day is about you and when it’s all said and done these will be your wedding memories.

What Should I Do with My Wedding Cake After the Wedding?

Your wedding cake is a special feature of the big day, and it can also continue to create special memories over the coming year if you treat it right. No one likes to eat stale cake, but luckily, you can keep yours fresh and just as delicious as when you received it from the baker.

Just follow these tips to enjoy your wedding throughout the first year of your marriage.

Tips for Storage

First, you’ll have to decide how you want to eat the remainder of your cake over the coming months. If you plan on having it slice by slice, then it makes sense to store individual slices. If you plan on eating larger sections at a sitting, then you can store them that way.

Here is what to do to store your cake:

  • Remove all of the ornaments and decorations from the cake

  • Cover the cake board in foil if you are going to be using it to support the cake. This will prevent any cardboard taste from infiltrating the cake

  • Place the cake in your freezer for around 20 minutes to firm it up a little

  • Remove it from the freezer and wrap it 2-3 times in plastic wrap, so it’s airtight

  • Wrap the cake with at least two layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil

  • Place the cake in the back of your freezer for a consistent temperature

Eating the Rest of the Cake

When you are ready to eat some cake, you’ll have to defrost it first. About a day before you want to eat it, remove it from the freezer. Let it sit in the refrigerator for a couple hours to defrost a little, then unwrap it carefully and continue to defrost. Let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes before you serve.

You can eat your wedding cake on whatever kind of schedule suits you. It was your day and it’s still your day, so enjoy your wedding cake whenever the mood strikes. If you want to follow a common wedding cake tradition, you can eat a piece on your wedding date every month for the year.

When to Eat the Top

The top of the cake is special all on its own, and is often reserved for a special occasion. Many newlyweds save the top for their one-year anniversary, then bring it out of storage and enjoy it together. How you choose to honor the top of your wedding cake is up to you, but if you follow the tips in this email, you can feel confident that it will taste great whenever that happens to be.

Tips for the Drink Service at Your Wedding

Unless you have specific reasons for not including them, alcoholic beverages are likely going to be part of your wedding reception. And while most people have heard some unsavory tales about drinking and weddings, that doesn’t mean your wedding will be the next one.

If you plan your drink service properly, address any potential issues before they occur and keep the safety of your guests front and center, there’s no reason everyone can’t have a memorable time without being a cautionary tale for the future.

Here are some tips that will help ensure everything goes smoothly:

Pick up service

Let’s face it, after a 5 hour reception and an open bar, most guests are going to be a little drunk, that’s ok. Get them home or to their hotel safe with a scheduled pick up service from your Limo company.

Signature Cocktails

Signature cocktails can be a fun and creative way to commemorate your big day. There is an endless list of possibilities and combinations, and it will likely take some thought and planning to come up with just the right drink. You can opt for a favorite cocktail you’ve shared with your new spouse when you first became engaged or combine ingredients that speak to both of your personalities. Just be sure to sample first so you know it tastes good!

Rules, Regulations and Permits

Don’t forget that your venue will have rules and regulations regarding alcohol consumption. If it is a common place for weddings then everything should be straightforward, but it’s still wise to check so you’re covered. If you are having your reception in a non-traditional venue, then you will likely need special permits in order to serve alcohol, so make sure you take care of it in advance to prevent problems on your wedding day.

Wedding Cake Alternative to Serve at Your Reception

If you are a traditionalist and want to stick with what has made weddings work for decades upon decades, then you are likely going to opt for a standard wedding cake. And there is nothing wrong with that. Traditional wedding cakes are works of art and have an elegance that just fits in with a classic wedding.

However, if you like to think outside the box and aren’t really interested in a wedding cake, then it’s time to set your creativity free. When you consider the range of wedding cake alternatives out there, you can really celebrate your uniqueness and keep your wedding about you.


If you choose to serve pie at your wedding, you have many options.

  • You can go with one type for all that fits your personality and taste

  • You can serve one that ties into the season, like apple pie at a fall wedding

  • You can mix it up and serve a range of pies to keep everyone happy

Ice Cream

Dairy intolerance aside, it’s tough to find anyone that doesn’t appreciate a good bowl of ice cream. As with the pies, you can serve one flavor to everyone or mix it up and have several. You can also opt for cones to add some extra style or even rent a soft serve machine for a different texture. Providing a range of toppings will also allow your guests to personalize to fit their own taste.

The Dessert Bar

A self-serve dessert bar is a great wedding cake alternative because it encourages the participation and interaction of your guests. There will also be less waste because you won’t have desserts being served that aren’t eaten. Some suggestions include the ice cream mentioned above, a bacon bar, popcorn bar or a mix and match dessert bar with several items.

Sweet and Savory

Adding a bit of savory to your wedding desserts can be a nice change from the classic sweet-only wedding cake. Things like salted caramel cookies, squares, tarts or brownies, chocolate tort with a pretzel crust and bacon-infused brownies or other desserts make exciting choices.

If you are going to forego a traditional wedding cake, remember to let creativity be your guide and not to put any limits on your imagination. Your caterer, wedding planner or friends and family may have some ideas if you want to expand your options, but the main thing is to have fun with it.