Most wedding-goers anticipate hearing speeches from the maid of honor and best man, and we have previously discussed ways to knock these speeches out of the park. So what about a thank you speech from the bride and groom? While not a "must" on the list of wedding day activities, it is an increasingly growing sentiment. Many wedding professionals even encourage their couples to give a short and sweet speech to set the tone at their reception and just show their gratitude.
Is it wrong to not participate in a thank-you speech? Not at all. Will your guests be appreciative that you took the time to address them? Well, wouldn't you if you were sitting in their perfectly chosen chiavari chairs, tucked nicely underneath those eggplant and royal gold linens?
The thing this, people attend weddings because they love the people getting married and want to share in their merriment, but it often does take some time, effort, money, and time in order to do that. A small "thank you" goes a long way.
So, maybe you're considering giving a speech but aren't sure where to start. For starters, it shouldn't be an overwhelming thing to put together, full of flowery words, expert jokes, and 30 notecards. While preparation is preferred, a heartfelt 3 or 4 sentences will do the trick.
Starting with a light joke or pun is often appreciated, one that everyone will find tasteful and easy to understand (steer clear of inside jokes or innuendos. That's just considered tacky). After you warm them up with your wonderful sense of humor, take just a minute to highlight those very key people who made your day possible, say, your parents and your bridal party, but this is not the time to list many people and achievements. It is your wedding after all, not the Grammys.
Depending on if one or both of you are going to speak, you may also want to thank your BRAND NEW spouse for being there through the wedding planning process and making your wedding special. This is another great opportunity to make your guests aww and chuckle.
If there are any special things you want your guests to know ("we can't wait to see you at the sparkler send off," or "make sure you try some of great-grandma Edna's peach cobbler"), you can mention that here. Wrap it up with another notion of gratitude and you're done! Sounds pretty easy, huh?
Here's an example:
Betty and I wanted to take a moment to thank each and every one of you for celebrating with us with today. We know you must really love us if you decided to be here over your living room watching the Patriots play. Don't worry, we DVRd it if anyone wants to come over and catch the highlights next week.
Today would not have been possible, or nearly as seamless, without some very key people. To our parents, thank you for your love, support, and example. To our friends and family who helped with showers, celebrations, and wedding plans, you are the best. To everyone who traveled near and wide to be here with us, we love you all.
We are grateful to be surrounded by many successful marriages in our daily lives and we hope as we embark on this new journey and join this exclusive club, you will offer your best advice and encouragement. We hope entry into this club comes without any crazy initiation rituals, though!
Today, we are just happy to have the most special people in our lives in one place with us. Enjoy the rest of the evening with dancing, great food, and you won't want to miss out on our Armadillo grooms cake!
Thank you again. It means so much to both of us that you all are here.
What do you think of the thank-you speech? Would you be open to giving one at your reception?
Whether you consider it to be "your thing" or not, planning a wedding is no joke. There are many details involved and things to consider and you'll want to make sure all your ducks are in a proper row come showtime.
While list-making might not be your cuppa tea, we have gathered 5 lists that should be made if you are planning a wedding. These will ensure things go smoothly and just as you envisioned.
1. The Vendor List
Whenever you book a vendor, be it the baker, florist, or the DJ (yours truly, we hope!) add their complete contact info and other details to this list. This would include a basic rundown of what they will be doing, when they are arriving, and anything else you or someone helping on wedding day will need to remember. Ideally, this list should be shared with your venue's coordinator, your wedding planner (if you have one), and at least one other point person that will be around all day (a bridesmaid, close friend, etc). Someone will need to be available to direct traffic and make sure things are going on schedule.
2. Wedding Day Timeline
Who goes where, when. Did you get that? This list is to explain everyone who will be involved or needed in some capacity, where they need to be, and when they need to be there. It should spell out every appointment and milestone of the day (getting ready times, flowers arriving, DJ sets up, location changes, etc), as well as the people needed for that thing. For instance: "8am- hair and make up artist to mother-of-the-bride's house. All bridesmaids arrive." Print that master timeline out in all its glory and pass it around a few days prior to everyone whose name appears on it. This will save you the hassle of tracking people down and answering lots of questions.
3. Contact List
Similar to the vendor list, this is a list of everyone who will be involved and/or who can answer questions on the wedding day (so, ideally, again, you don't have to). This could include the maid of honor, best man, mothers of the bride and groom, coordinator, venue contact, and every vendor. We love when it's titled "Call anyone but the bride!" so people know to leave you in peace.
4. Shot List
While there is something to be said for hiring a photographer (and all vendors, for that matter) who know what their doing and hiring them because your styles jive, a short photography shot list is still a good idea because you may have certain details or discrepancies that are not common to every wedding. Things to include: meaningful details you've included in your wedding day and where the photographer will find them, specific people you want a photo with, family members who may not get along or would be awkward to include in a photo together (estranged family members, divorced couples, etc), and certain poses you have your heart set on. Giving your photographer the heads up on these details and nuances will allow them to breathe a sigh of relief and will allow you to relax knowing that you don't have to think about it anymore!
5. "Stuff" List
Chances are you will have a lot of stuff you are bringing to your wedding- decor, frames, gifts, etc. Chances also are that you have to find a way to take those away from your venue once your wedding is over.
For everything that you need on your wedding day for yourself, your bridal party, your venue, etc- make a list and include a plan for how and where each thing is getting to where it needs to go afterwards. This includes things like your overnight bag for the hotel, your dress hanger, your bouquet, extra programs, guest book, decorations you brought, etc. Don't forget to include the things you didn't bring but will still need to take with you like the cake topper, gifts, cards, etc.
Were/are you a list-making bride or wedding planner? What list would you add to our list??
We just love seeing awesome articles and photos swim around the web and get lots of attention, especially when they deal with one of our favorite topics- weddings!
Today, we've gathered up the best and brightest of the web lately to give it to you all in one place.
1. Model with Down Syndrome Wows in Bridal Photo Shoot
You may remember Madeline after she broke onto the scene last year and has been breaking barriers every since. This wedding shoot was the stuff fairy tales are made of... we don't think Madeline will be going anywhere anytime soon!
2. Wedding Flowers, Repurposed
We have seen tons of wedding flowers go to waste over the years so this video made us so happy! Why didn't we think of this sooner?
3. Bridesmaids FAQ
Style Me Pretty always has great info, and this slideshow is great for bridesmaids. Signing on to stand by your gal-pal is an honor, but it can also be a little work and require money, time, effort, and support! This is great info for bridesmaids to ask or brides to answer!
4. Tip please?
Wedding tips, how much, and who they go to can be hard for brides and grooms to navigate. Sometimes rules of thumb are not so cut-and-dry. This article provides all the answers!
5. Adele + Proposal = Epic
Just when we think we couldn't possibly love her more, she goes and does this!
6. Our best friend is married!!
If it's not viral yet, it should be. Last weekend, owner of Sara Gillianne Wedding and Events and co-founder of the Wes married her one true love, Damien in a picture-perfect Pensacola soiree. The pictures are breathtaking and we couldn't be more happy for these friends. Aislinn Kate Photography, as well as a slew of other phenomenal vendors, did a fantastic job as always!
Here along the Gulf Coast, couples from all over the country want to take advantage of our best asset... our beautiful coastlines! Can we blame them? From locals to visitors alike, couples who want a wedding on the beach may have some high expectations, ones that we believe can absolutely be met with the right preparation and mindset. After all, along with our beautiful beaches comes other interesting characteristics like unpredictable weather and sand that you'll find in nooks and crannies for days.
In order to pull off the beautiful beach wedding of your dreams, we've got some great tips that we've picked up along the way from our favorite beach weddings along the beautiful Gulf Coast.
1. Plan for the sun
We know our weather is unpredictable and the sun may or may not choose to shine bright but you can usually depend at least on the times it will rise and set and from what direction. With this information easily accessible, you can plan the best time and location for your nuptials.
2. Let your guests know
Your friends and family will surely be excited to spend time soaking up beautiful views along with your infectious love. Let them know you'll be swapping vows outside so they can dress and bring items that might make this time more enjoyable (or in the case of stilettos, leave them at home). Add some flair and care to your wedding by providing a flip-flops, fan, and/or sunglasses station at the ceremony site.
3. Listen to the Crashing of the Waves
...you won't hear anything else during your ceremony if you don't have the right sound set-up. Luckily for you, that's our speciality! You'll need proper microphones and speakers to amplify, music, the officiant, and the bride and groom. While your guests are going to be surely grateful for such wonderful ambiance, the real reason they came is to HEAR you get married!
This one is a bit of a trick! While there are wonderful things to add to make a beautiful ceremony location, part of the appeal of a beach wedding is that you already have so much natural beauty all around! Choose minimal decor that will enhance the setting, stay put (it's bound to get windy), and bring the focus to the bride and groom.
5. Work with Locals
From wedding planners to DJs (hello!), working with wedding specialists in the area will ensure you have the low-down on what can and can happen- permits, items brought to the beach, privacy, events, etc.
It is possible to have a beach wedding that is memorable, beautiful, and free or uh-ohs! With a few mindful tips and keeping the focus on the main point of the day- celebrating marriage!- your day will be as beautiful as a Pensacola sunset.
Much like dresses, rings, and grooms, wedding vendors come in all shapes and sizes. While planning your wedding, it is often tough and overwhelming to not only choose wedding vendors, but gain the confidence that they are the one your wedding day has been waiting for.
Being a wedding vendor ourself, we understand how many great choices are out there and how different each and every one is. For some weddings, you are offered a preferred vendor list through your wedding planner or venue- some venues even take the stress off of you by coordinating and working logistics straight with the vendors so you don't have to! For others, brides and grooms want to scour the lot, trying each and every option on for size and hoping that bringing all their favorite instruments together will create perfect harmony.
We heard from a bride recently who had experienced more than her fair share of snafus during her planning season. The shop she purchased her dress from went back on their word, hair and makeup artists weren't working out, photographers misrepresented themselves, and then- a month before her big day, she starts calling the florists that her venue provided on their "preferred vendors" list, only to met with one after the other who was less concerned about answering questions and providing good customer service and more concerned in securing a deposit.
While we don't think it is possible to completely avoid running into vendors like this, let us assure you of two things:
1. This is not the norm
2.EVERY couple deserves and can attain great wedding vendors
For the majority of us, especially those of us in Pensacola at the Wes, we work with weddings because we LOVE weddings and everything that surrounds them. We love hearing your proposal stories and stories about the different personalities in your bridal party, or the lengths you went to to make those adorable DIY favors. We know that this season is so crucial and memorable in your life and we want the wedding day to come and you look back with only fond and FUN memories! We know that your wedding day is so important- no matter what it looks like, what the budget is, or how big the guest list is- and it is our job to take care of you and make your life easier, not add stress to it.
No matter where your wedding is and what it may look like, find those vendors who make your life easier. They don't have to cost an arm and a leg and in fact, sometimes they come in unlikely places. Take recommendations from friends and vendors you've already chosen and love, but make the decision for yourself whether or not it is a great fit. After all, you will be working with these people for many months and will have to see their faces on your big day, so you want to make sure that face stirs confidence in you. Pick vendors who will make you sad that the wedding is over because that means you don't get to work with them as closely any more
The Blog & Podcast
Every month we sit down and discuss topics important to our company, namely DJing and the wedding industry.