By Hannah McCarthy
Find your seat and bon appetit! The reception can be the most fun part of the wedding for your guests. It can also be the most awkward. Every wedding is unique and so are the relationships of the people present. Some guests might be close friends and some might not like each other. Family can be great, but sometimes those relationships are strained. Some of your guests might be the life of the party, but some might not know anyone else there. Making a seating chart for your reception can help everyone have a blast on your big day! If you have members of your family at odds with each other, put them at two different tables. If you have a friend there that does not know anyone, place them with an outgoing and inclusive table.
One of the things you will need to do is communicate seating arrangements with your guests. Having a seating chart at the front of the reception will give your guests direction! You can get creative and have fun with your seating chart. Below are a few of our favorite seating charts!
Each wedding is just as unique as your guests! Use these ideas to help you navigate the arrangement of your reception. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions about how to setup your big day!
By Hannah McCarthy
What’s Galentine’s Day? “Oh, it’s only the best day of the year. Every February 13th my lady friends and I leave our husbands and our boyfriends at home and we just come and kick it breakfast style. Ladies celebrating ladies. It’s like Lilith Fair, minus the angst. Plus frittatas.” Leslie Knope started a new holiday for women! Ladies have never needed a reason to celebrate one another and this exciting holiday encourages them to! Coming on the heel of Christmas and eve of Valentine’s Day, Galentine’s Day might come on the bottom of your financial priority list. Even though you’re working on a tight budget, you can still throw a great party for your ladies!
Who would’ve thought ladies celebrating ladies and breakfast food would make for such a fun party?! We hope this blog gave you some ideas to make your party special for your gals! The most important part of your party is to make sure your girls enjoy the night!
By Hannah McCarthy
Cocktails are sure to liven up any party! Whether you are having a wedding, anniversary party, or corporate party, cocktails will help you and your guests celebrate! One easy way to bring some fun to your party is by selecting a typical cocktail and giving it a custom name for your event. Another way to make your cocktail special for your event is by using a unique garnish. There are a few garnish ideas that we want to share with you!
You can have so much fun garnishing your drinks! Our team is super passionate about cocktails and would love to serve at your bar. Please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions about the drink menu for your next event!
By Hannah McCarthy
We are so excited to be preparing our team for wedding season! We know so many of you are helping your loved ones plan for their wedding. You are going on walk throughs with them, cake tasting with them, assisting them while they look for their perfect dress, and planning their many celebrations. One of the biggest celebrations for a bride is the bridal shower. As a close friend or family member, you are probably getting ready for the bridal shower. We wanted to give you tasty ideas for a bridal shower brunch!
We hope these tasty suggestions helped you as you are planning the bridal shower. You can totally customize some of these suggestions to be more personal for the bride. Let us know if you have any questions about ideas for the bridal shower. Our team would love to be of assistance at your bridal shower brunch!
By Gianna Bellino
There are some things for your wedding day that you are better off making a straight investment in. The food on the plate can’t be returned, and the perfect staff is irreplaceable (Sorry, shameless plug!), but there are other items you can rent that will save you so much time and money in the process.
Florals are one decoration that any wedding cannot go without, and unfortunately, renting is scarcely an option for this unless your flowers are fake and can be rented. A bonus to buying the flowers is that you can dry and keep them as mementos, and pass them off to your guests as a parting gift. However, the vases and decor that the flowers come in can be rented. Save hundreds by paying for the flower itself and not spending as much on the arrangement or vases.
It may sound unusual, but you can rent your jewelry including diamonds for your wedding. Other than that perfect engagement ring to last forever, other earrings and large necklaces will only be worn once. Sites like William and Henri allow you to rent jewelry (yes, even rings!) so you can be as elaborate as possible without breaking the bank.
We hope these rental ideas have been helpful! Feel free to reach out with any questions you ma have about renting items for your big day!
By Hannah McCarthy
The ceremony is the most special part of the wedding. This is what unites you and the love of your life! Through vows, the exchanging of rings, a kiss, and other traditions, this is sure to be a memorable time for you and your guests. Their attention will not only be on you, but the backdrop behind you. The backdrop can greatly enhance the mood of your ceremony.
With couples planning their spring and summer weddings, we thought it would be fun to share some of our favorite types of ceremony backdrops for these seasons. You are sure to find one that fits with your wedding vision. Using pastels will give your spring or summer weddings a light, romantic feel.
How cute are these backdrop examples? We hope they helped you decide what you want as the focal point for your ceremony. Let us know how we can be of assistance with your wedding ceremony!
By Gianna Bellino
Your wedding is such a special day to you, and when the time comes to tie the eternal knot, it’s important to have the right people by your side supporting you and sharing this experience with you. Whether you are the bride or the groom, you want to make sure whoever you choose to be in your bridal party is someone that will encourage you, support you, and remember all of the little details so you don’t have to fuss or stress on your big day.
Not only do they need to support you, but you also need to support and appreciate them. Remember that whoever you ask is going to have a lot of work to do for your wedding. The maid of honor and best man will plan the bachelor/bachelorette party, guard the rings, help organize so many important details, and most of all be your number one support.
If you have already chosen who those special people are in your life, then you want to invite them in a way that will flatter them, surprise them, and get them excited about saying “yes.” Most importantly, you want to invite them in their own language. We all have a love language that we speak with all of our friends, not just in our romantic relationship. If you have a successful friendship with someone that will be there on your wedding day, then the odds are, they are already someone who you know well. If you know their love language, then ask them to be your bridesmaid/groomsmen in a way that will make them feel appreciated and loved. If you don’t know their love language- I encourage you to find out. It will help you along the way in your relationship to make sure they feel valued in the friendship and it will help things run smoothly on your wedding day.
Hopefully, this blog gave you some inspiration to ask your wedding party. We hope your bridesmaids and groomsmen will feel extra special when you ask them!
By The CSE Office Team
Holiday traditions are a great way to get in the Christmas spirit! Maybe you have a family that is festive or maybe holiday traditions are a foreign concept to you. If you would like to start a tradition, this is the year to do so! Our office team shared their favorite holiday traditions. We hope this blog inspires you this Christmas season!
Amidst all the presents, get-togethers, and celebrations there are pure moments of joy that I adore about this time of year! The build up to the Holidays is a favorite, but nothing beats my all time favorite tradition of decorating the tree. When I was little, each year we set up the Christmas tree together as a big family singing along to the Christmas music being played in the background. We would hang collected ornaments from years before that commemorated the things we have done, places we've been, and things we have seen. Now I get to carry that tradition with me into my home. My parents have handed down ornaments to me that have a special place in my heart. As I grew up, my now husband and I Colby, boyfriend at the time, started a tradition where we pick out a new ornament together each year. The first year, him being a firefighter, we got one of a fire truck and one that said "my hero," because he truly is! This year we took on a huge endeavour and bought our very first house! I can't wait to hang up our house key on the tree as our ornament this year! Although, I do still have what I like to call my "Pottery Barn" Christmas tree that's all color themed and symmetrical, the one that means the most to me is the mish-mashed collections of memories.
The Christmas season for me has always been a time of being with family, and enjoying so many traditions such as decorating the Christmas tree, sipping hot cocoa out of home-made mugs, baking sugar cookies with my cousins, and decorating the house in Christmas lights, just to name a few. But the tradition that I am most fond of is the one where we give to children in need. When I was a little girl, my church hosted a drive for collecting shoe boxes to give to kids in the world who live in poverty. This charity called “Operation Christmas Child” through Samaritan’s Purse, provides shoe boxes filled with gifts to kids who would not otherwise receive any Christmas gifts. My mom would take my sister and I to the store and we would be so excited to pick out the perfect amount of gifts for another little girl or boy our age. I was surprised to learn that I enjoyed that process of shopping, wrapping, and shipping off those shoe boxes for someone else more than I enjoyed making my own list. Since that year, it’s still a favorite tradition of mine that makes me feel connected to the giving season a little more.
Christmas is one of the only times during the year that everyone in my family starts to slow down and prepare to take a few days to disconnect from everything and reconnect with those around them. One tradition that has always stayed true to the very first time I remember, is placing the tree topper as the final touch. Any sort of decorating during the holidays has always been different every year since my family has complete opposite schedules from one another. No matter where we go for Christmas, a tree must be present no matter how big or how small. Even if it is a last minute trip to Utah or Lake Tahoe, decorating a tree is very important since it is one of the only things we really have time to do together, other than buying Christmas presents of course!! It is unlike many family traditions I know of where people start to decorate the day after Thanksgiving, but for me it has always been like that. It usually happens on Christmas Eve since that is my parent’s anniversary. We will all dress up with something festive and cozy (including our lovely dogs and lizard) to decorate the tree with the theme we choose and play some Christmas music in the background. The tree topper symbolizes unity because we gather a few chairs and all place it on top of the tree together once we believe the tree is fully dressed. We are careful to not knock the tree over since our dogs and lizard are in each of our arms at the time because they are the heart of our little family. Once the tree is done, we wait until midnight on Christmas Eve to begin opening presents to finalize the late night tradition and we look forward to celebrating the New Year wherever we might be.
The Holidays are my favorite time of the year! Christmas is a time of hope and excitement! I come from a large family and Christmas has always been a big deal. We decorate Christmas cookies, look at Christmas lights, watch Christmas movies, host parties, exchange gifts, and eat delicious food. It is easy to get lost in the midst of the hustle and bustle of the holidays, which is why I have always appreciated my family’s Christmas-Eve tradition. Every year, we attend a church service and get dinner at a greek restaurant after. We get to sing Christmas carols, hear the Christmas story, and eat tasty Saganaki at dinner; but Christmas-Eve is more than a church service and amazing cheese. It challenges me to slow down and intentionally remember what I am celebrating and why I am celebrating it. I get to celebrate the hope I have because of Christmas. It allows me to be a part of something so much bigger than myself!
Thank you for taking the time to read our blog! We are so grateful for each and every one of you. Happy Holidays!
By Hannah McCarthy
The Holiday Season is dreamy and romantic! It is no surprise that couples are getting engaged! With so many couples looking forward to their special day, we wanted to share some tips for planning a wedding!
Setting a budget for the wedding is the first thing to do! The budget will help you decide how much you can spend and what you want to spend it on. Below is a percentage breakdown of a wedding budget.
Creating a binder and checklist for wedding planning is a great way to start the process! The binder will give you one place to store items like signed forms, receipts, orders, and other various documents. A checklist is great because it allows brides to see how their dream wedding can become reality. It is a practical way to see what is needed for the big day. Each time you complete a task, you can cross it off, and are one step closer to marrying the love of your life!
Email Account for Wedding Planning
Making an email account will come in handy for your planning. This provides one place to communicate via email for all things wedding! Emails for the wedding will not get lost in the midst of emails from work, school, friends, or family. Our staff recommends a Gmail account. There are added bonuses to Gmail like Google Docs, Sheets, Forms, and many other tools to help organize the details of your big day!
Start the guest list early! Having a general idea of how many people you want to invite will help you choose the venue! If you want to invite 150 guests and a venue only accommodates 50 people, you know that venue is not right for your wedding because you already created your guest list and know how many people you want at your big day!
Once a date has been picked, secure the venue. This will help finalize wedding details. Knowing the venue will provide a guest count limit. Each venue has a maximum of how many people it can accommodate, which helps to finalize the guest list. Venues typically have a preferred vendor list. Brides can see these vendors and decide who they want for coordination, catering, rentals, a DJ, decor, etc.
Picking a color scheme early will be helpful when making decisions for the rest of the wedding. The color scheme will come in handy when designing the wedding website, choosing invitations, picking florals, determining the wedding party’s attire, selecting wedding decorations + rentals, etc.
A wedding website is a great way for brides to communicate with their guests! On this website, make sure to include RSVP’s and the registry. You can also include food information, song requests, and even share fun information about the wedding party with your guests.
Trial Hair and Makeup
If you are getting your hair or makeup done, it is recommended to do a trial run. Some artists will do a sample of hair and makeup so that they know exactly what you want. Plan an outing with your wedding party afterwards. This will give you a night away from planning the wedding and you can also see how your hair and makeup will last!
A skilled photographer can capture the wedding day so that couples can look back on these images for the rest of their marriage! There are so many great memories in pictures. Whether it is family or close friends, let your photographer know which guests to focus on so that you have them in your photos. In addition to telling your photographer who to photograph, let them know if you want any special poses with your wedding party. Photographers know how to make your wedding party look great, but you need to let them know if there are some special images you want taken!
This list of ideas is not exhaustive, but we know these tips been beneficial for couples getting married. We hope this list is helpful for you as you are planning your big day! Please let us know if you have any questions about planning your wedding!
By Hannah McCarthy
Winter is a season for engagements, weddings, and romance! One fear that brides often have is that their winter wedding will appear cold and gloomy to their guests. Although this can happen, there are many ways to make a wedding feel cozy and warm.
We hope this blog gave you some ideas for your winter wedding! Although, this blog was written for weddings, some of these ideas can be applied to any event. Here at Common Sense Events, we love winter and would be happy to serve at your wedding or any other holiday event!