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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Lighting 101

As you begin to plan your wedding reception, there are many things to consider. Whether your reception will be upbeat and fun or formal and elegant, lighting is one element that can assist in making it the reception you desire!

Why use lighting?
Lighting sets the mood and the atmosphere! If you want the setting more intimate (during dinner perhaps), softer lighting would be in order. Then, when it’s time to pick up the pace, you can change to brighter, flashing lighting (don’t overdo it, though…too much flash can actually affect some people’s equilibrium). You can have lighting that will change colors, using colors that coordinate with your overall wedding décor. Lighting can transform even the plainest room to the setting your desire!

What is uplighting?
Uplights are theatrical lights placed at floor level throughout a room. They are aimed upwards to add a beam of light (with the color of your choice) to walls and ceilings. In addition to adding lighting to the ceiling and walls, uplighting can also be used to highlight a particular area of the room (your cake table or sweetheart table for example). If you don’t want to use a lot of overhead lighting, uplighting is a great way to go!

What is GOBO?
GOBO is the projection of light of a design onto a wall, floor, ceiling or dance floor. A monogram can be designed especially for your wedding and can be projected to add a touch of uniqueness to the décor of your reception. See the picture above for an example of a gobo and how it can be displayed.
What is Intelligent Lighting?
This is lighting that has the ability to change colors and patterns, and can move and change at predetermined time intervals. It can definitely create an exciting atmosphere!

Other simple lighting ideas
You can have tea lights on your tables to give a soft glow (this works well especially during dinner for an evening reception). If you are having an outdoor reception, consider lanterns in trees and lighting for walkways. The possibilities are endless!

Your Planning Assignment
There’s no need to be an expert regarding lighting. Write down your vision and consider hire an expert lighting designer! They can take your vision and translate it into the lighting that will create the perfect look for your special day!

Happy Planning!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

First Look

I'm somewhat traditional, so I prefer that the groom not see the bride before her grand entrance. However, I ran across these GREAT pics that may make me think otherwise...enjoy!


What do you think?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Help Me with My Seating Arrangements!

As you get closer to your wedding day, one of the most important things you will need to work on is the seating chart for your reception. If you are having a sit-down meal (either plated or buffet) it’s important that there is adequate seating for each person, and that each guest knows where he or she will be sitting. Handling your seating arrangements can be tedious work, but it will pay off in the end!

How should guests be seated?
The purpose of seating arrangements is to ensure that your guests feel at ease and comfortable with those they will be sharing a few hours with! Real-life example: I attended a wedding where a single person didn’t like where she was seated (although she was seated at a table reserved for special guests, she didn’t know anyone there!). She decided to move her place card (we’ll talk about those later) to another table, and when the guests at that table arrived, the seating was thrown completely off! Unfortunately, other guests had to be shifted around to accommodate this change, which didn’t make for happy guests. The moral of the story is….as much as possible, seat guests with those whom they know or with whom they have things in common. Be mindful of whether there are personal issues between people, so you will know not to seat them together. And finally, try not to seat a single person with a table full of couples (unless you know that they will feel comfortable with them).

What’s the best way to get started with planning your seating arrangements?
Some recommend that you begin by arranging guests as you receive their RSVPs. This is a good starting point, but keep in mind that you will probably have to do a couple of iterations of the chart as more RSVPs come in. Be flexible with your seating chart…in fact, I recommend that you not finalize it until a week before the wedding (just in case you get last minute additions or cancellations). A great software package that can help you with seating arrangements and RSVP management is http://seatingarrangement.com.

How to get guests seated in a timely manner
There are several things you can do to ensure your guests are seating quickly (the last thing you want is to you have your guests waiting a long time to find their table assignment).

Seating scrolls or charts – Charts can be posted outside of the reception room for guests to find their names and tables. There are several companies who will make a beautiful scroll for you…not only it is functional, but will add to the décor of your reception!

Place cards – These are small cards that contain the guest’s name and table name or number. They are typically placed on a table outside of the reception room, and guests can pick up their cards prior to entering the room. Or, they can be placed on the tables, so guests know exactly which seat at the table is theirs. But in order for that option to work, you will also need….

Hostesses/Table Escorts – If you decide not to post a seating chart or have place cards, hostesses are an excellent way to seat your guests. Hostesses would inform the guests of their table name or number. You can have a chart that depicts where the table is located, or you can have another hostess escort the guests to their table. I love this idea, as it makes the guests feel special! Make sure you have enough hostesses to expedite the seating process, and be sure they are friendly and personable! :-)

Taking the time to arrangements seating for your guests is time well spent! It will show your guests that you thought enough of them to ensure they have an enjoyable experience at your wedding.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Your Wedding TV Ultimate Bridal Show - August 8

Tampa Bay area brides! Mark your calendars for the Your Wedding TV Ultimate Bridal Show this Sunday August 8. An Elegant Affair will be a vendor at the show, and we would love the opportunity to meet you in person!

Stop by our booth for a chance to win a FREE Day-of Coordination Package ($800 value).

See you on Sunday!