Jenny and I sat down earlier this year to talk about where we wanted to take our blog this year. In the past it has been to showcase all of our favorite images, and to give people a glimpse into our lives, i.e. our wonderful children (and now lovable basset), and that’s about it. We’re going to continue to do that, but we came up with a few different things we wanted to share with our readers as well. You’ve seen a few of them already and there will be more to come soon! I started the What I’m Loving posts to share what’s inspiring me from time to time. We also started the In Their Own Words posts to let our past couples share their most memorable images from their wedding. This post marks our first guest blogger. We’re going to have some of the awesome wedding vendors we’ve worked with over the years contribute to our blog community with their expertise in the wedding industry.
Selecting the “Right” Vendors
by Kim Ho, Owner/Event Planner, You’re Invited Weddings and Events
As a Wedding Planner and Day of Coordinator since 2003, I have had so many wonderful experiences with my couples. And, I’ve learned quite a bit along the way. When Josh asked me to write an article for their blog, I really had to think about what to write. So, I thought that maybe I should just pass along some wisdom that I pass along to all of my couples as they begin the planning process. With that said, there are only a few things which I feel strongly about regarding the planning process. These come from both my personal and professional views and I hope they are helpful.
- Go into the wedding planning process with a mindset that planning your wedding is supposed to be fun, NOT stressful-Make or find a wedding planning checklist (via a good wedding planning book or there are plenty online) and start going down the list. Determine what is the most important thing (or two or three) for you, your fiance and your families then prioritize. Know from the start that things may not always be as smooth as you’d like them to be, but all will work out in the end and you will walk away the happiest person in the world when all is said and done. And most of all, enjoy the process and share it with those you love. It’s one of the most wonderful times of your life!
- Set a budget and know your guest list before you start any form of planning-See one of my recent posts at www.yiweddings.blogspot.com for a full explanation on this piece.
- Every bride/mother of the bride deserves a day of coordinator-All I have to say that if I would have thought about having a day of coordinator when I got married 10 years ago, I personally would have found the money to pay for one not only for myself, but my mother. Personally and professionally, I believe that every bride and her mom should thoroughly enjoy the wedding day. It is 100% worth having an experienced person oversee every single detail you have planned for the last year to ensure that these plans fall in place and if they don’t (it happens) then it gets fixed and you have no idea about it, nor do you need to worry about it. My mother worked the entire day of my wedding, when really it would have been wonderful to see her enjoy it a bit more from the Mother of the Bride perspective.
- And, last but not least, select the “right” vendors for your wedding-In particular, I feel very strongly that every couple should have a GREAT connection/feel with three vendors they select during the planning process: The Planner/Coordinator, the DJ and the Photographer.
To explain, the Planner/Coordinator (for those of you who choose to have one) will be with you for several months during the planning process (whether the full time or the last couple of months). Of course, it’s important that this person is selected based on merit, but also because they understand you and your ideas. This will make you feel comfortable with this person handling your big weekend. Each vendor you select will work with that person the entire day, so you need to feel like this person can not only carry out the details, but carry out those details with your views in mind.
The DJ/Emcee is the vendor who will make or break your reception. If you aren’t a fan of their voice, their personality or their style, it doesn’t matter that they may be the only one within your budget or that a friend recommended them to you. You or your guests may not enjoy the wedding reception for those reasons alone. So, select a DJ who wants to work with you regarding your style of reception and they make you feel comfortable, because they will be the person running your reception.
And of course, the Photographer. This is an area that I feel very strongly about in two areas: Spend money on good photography and LOVE your photographer, not just the photos. Other than your own personal memories, the photos are what you will walk away with at the end of the day. If your personalities and styles do not fit, there is potential for disappointment in those photos. The very last thing you want is to let your feelings for the photographer (or their process) show through in your emotions that day. With that said, I’ve never had anyone not LOVE the Solars
At the very least, wedding planning is a fun process. It’s blissful and such a wonderful experience!! Congrats to anyone getting engaged and/or married in 2010!
Phil & Rosemarie and all their friends and family straight brought IT to the photobooth. Nuff said.
This is my favorite photobooth shot ever. I loved this old man.
We love what we do (I know that’s cliche & cheesy), but it’s true. We are extremely passionate about wedding photography because it’s so much bigger than just images of an event. We love that we get to take images that have meaning and purpose. Images that will get passed down from generation to generation and seen by many people we will never meet. There are stories behind many of these images.
This is the first in our “In Their Own Words” series. From time to time, we’re going to ask one of our past couples to share with us the stories behind their most memorable image or two. These are great stories that need to be shared with the world.
First up is Becca & Kyle. They got married last June. Here are some of their wedding pictures. Now here, in their own words, are the stories behind some of their favorite images.
Becca – I love Kyle dearly, but cool under pressure he is not. On our wedding day he was a nervous wreck, threw up (sorry Kyle), and was such a bundle of nerves that the best he could muster when we first saw each other was “um, you look cute.” Now, let me take this opportunity to send a message to any grooms-to-be out there—the correct adjective in a wedding-day situation is beautiful. Stunning perhaps, amazing, breathtaking…you get my drift. I could be cute in a t-shirt. As a result of his nervousness, Kyle looks a little unsettled in a lot of our pictures, and I briefly wondered if he was having second thoughts, because really, who would be such a wreck if they were sure they wanted to be legally bound to someone. Then I saw this picture. I love it because his smile is so genuine and he is that happy because I, in my cute white dress, am walking down the aisle. This is my favorite smile of his, and while it only made a few appearances that day until he had a few beers, I love that he flashed it during this moment. Because really, this was the moment that it mattered. (Also, I think he tried to make up for the cute comment with his favorite picture….what do you think guys, should I let him off the hook?)
Kyle – This picture is my favorite because it not only is technically a beautiful photograph, but it is a reflection of happiness and is highly symbolic. I remember how happy I felt as walked down this road together, knowing that despite any struggles or obstacles in life, I had found the woman I wanted to spend my life with. As for the context, on the day of our wedding, a light rain started a few hours before the wedding. This had brought me a lot of anxiety, because for months Becca had wished and hoped for a sunny wedding day. I wanted Becca to have her perfect wedding, but the weather was the one thing she couldn’t control or organize. Though Josh and Jenny had consolably prophesized that the clouds would break and the sun would eventually come out, I was less sure. However, I should have trusted these expert photographers (and amateur meteorologists) as they accurately predicted the sun would come out. This picture was taken shortly after Becca and I walked outside the church with the weather still cloudy. As we slowly made our way down the driveway of the church and towards this beautiful road between the grove of trees, the bright warmth of the sun finally came out and beat down on the pavement below us, insuring Becca and I that everything was going to turn out wonderful. Finally, I love this picture because of its symbolism. There is something magical and timelessness about an open road, with our futures and all of life’s possibilities in front of us. As Becca and I walked down this road, hand in hand, I was certain that I had found that special someone to walk this road of life with me, which is why I love this picture.
Becca – Let me tell you about my sister. She’s awesome. But she is awesome in a “I wear skinny jeans and Chuck Taylors every day, play the guitar, and get tattoos in my spare time” kind of way. She does not, I repeat, does NOT wear dresses. But she took one for the team on our wedding day, and she looked beautiful. She even held off on getting her latest tattoo so she wouldn’t make our pictures too “rock star.” I love this photo not necessarily because of how gorgeous she looked, but because of how it makes me feel. She had no clue Jenny was taking this photo and the look on her face almost brings me to tears because to me it says “I can’t believe my big sister is getting married, I love her so much even though we fought every day growing up, I’m proud of her, I’m so excited to be getting a brother, and of course, when can I take off this dress?” This photo reminds me of why people get married and start families in the first place. We do it so that one day sisters can look at each other like this. We do it so that the people most dear to us can share in something special. We do it to start something special that will hopefully result in someone looking at our children like this on their wedding day.
Kyle – I love this picture because of its emotional weight. I see not only two sisters with love, pride, and happiness, but also two people with an unbreakable bond. This photo gives me hope that no matter what struggles emerge in the lives of these two people, I know that they will always be there for each other, and it motivates me to be someone who my new family can lean on.