Trying to keep your wedding affordable? You too can save a lot of money and make this happen at your wedding for virtually dimes on the dollar. It’s really a simple idea. All you do is put out a selection of gimmicks and props and leave the photo fun up to your guests.
HERE ARE THE TOP 5 THINGS TO THINK ABOUT WHEN INCLUDING A “SELFIE STATION” TO YOUR WEDDING DAY
PROPS – Everything is about gimmicks. Fun hats, mustaches, picture frames, sunglasses, feather boas, wigs, foam fingers, canes, bandannas – you get the idea. Just go crazy at the dollar store and you really should be good to go.
INSTRUCTION SIGN – Don’t forget the instructions! Even though most guys don’t read them, it is important to not forget this next rule. So it doesn’t just look like a pile of junk from the thrift store, it is very important to put out a sign so people know the intended use of all the colorful goodies.
BACKDROPS – Much like a photo booth shoot, you set aside a little area where pictures would look good. While a backdrop is not entirely needed, it is a nice touch. If you are creative or really ambitious about this idea, you could set up a backdrop curtain to really help the station take off. Usually you can find these backdrops available online for $100-$200 or so on say eBay, or you could even put something together even cheaper using PVC pipe form Home Depot.
OFFICIAL HASHTAG – Finally, what good are pictures that you never see? Post your wedding’s official hashtag and tell people which social media platforms you endorse (i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc…) If you create a good official hashtag for your wedding (make it something original,) all your guests’ pictures will be easy for you and other guests to find on social media.
SMARTPHONE WEDDING APP – Don’t really want to go the hashtag route? There are now some really cool wedding picture aps that allow your guests to snap shots and send them all to one place in the cloud. If you think you have a number of photo-bugs with iPhones on your guest list, tell them ahead of time, maybe in your invitation, to download an app like The WedPics Smartphone App. This app doesn’t only collect unlimited photos taken by the guests, but it also gives important information like accommodations & your registry information.
Every bride-to-be has dreamed about getting married practically since they were little girls. Some brides remember drawing themselves with veils in crayon in preschool. Others remember practicing a new surname on the back of a a high school notebook.. No matter how you cut the wedding cake, every bride-to-be wants their wedding to be considered happy, special, and sometimes “THE BEST THERE EVER WILL BE.” However, the reality is …dreams do not always unfold into reality. So, what exactly can a bride do to help her happy visions actually come to life?
DO YOUR HOMEWORK!
A wedding reception is like a research paper. To make for a great one, research has to be done. But before you do any research, you need to focus on finding the right questions, before you can try to find answers. First off, the bride and groom should identify “The Big Question” and then decide on a thesis (an answer) they are both comfortable with.
THE REAL QUESTION IS…
The only real way to be happy with your reception is if all the people around you are happy. The big question, therefore, then should not be “What do I want?” but rather, “What do I want for my guests?”
By formulating this question every time you plan an aspect of your party, you are planning from the guests’ perspective. Planning using the “Big Question” instead of something more selfish and meaningful to only you, will spawn a number of sub-questions that go along with it like, “what do I want my guests to say when they sit down?” and also, “what do I want my guests to say when they walk out the door?”
WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE?
Demographics is everything. Thinking about who is going to be there before you actually plan, will make your reception “the best wedding of all time.” Different people like different things and you have to have a happy medium of what they will like and what you will like too.
BEING A GOOD WEDDING HOST MEANS BEING UNSELFISH –
Realizing that you are trying to accommodate all of your guests’ wishes from a great wedding reception is only the first step. Next, you have to do your research. Your homework is to find what really makes you happy, and also makes every guest attending happy as well. Because wedding receptions happen everywhere everyday, it is safe to say thousands of reception options have been created and your answers are out there. You just have to find them. Using this planning philosophy can work in every area including food, entertainment, music and even the overall look & layout of the decor.
THINK OF EVERYONE AT YOUR RECEPTION –
Don’t force eating restrictions on your guest. It causes friction.
Let’s apply this unselfish planning thinking from the guests’ perspective to one particular aspect of the reception: The Cake. While you may absolutely love the idea of a classy cream cheese carrot cake, Uncle Charlie may absolutely HATE IT. That doesn’t mean you have to be unselfish and not have carrot cake, it only means you have to think outside of the box. What would my guests like to see in a cake? How can I make everyone happy? In this case, why not TRY WEDDING CUPCAKES. Have you heard of this? You tier up a wedding cake display with many different types of cup cakes, in displayed in the shape of a traditional wedding cake. Everyone, including you and Uncle Charlie is now happy.
Same goes for the seating. Putting older folks close to the DJ is usually a bad idea!
As a wedding DJ specialist in Upstate New York, I tell my clients that if you really want to have your guests look back at attending “the best wedding ever,” keep them in mind as much as yourself. Happiness breeds happiness. Playing your favorite songs is important and fine, but remember to always involve some of your guests’ favorite songs as well-even when they might not involve the same types of musical tastes.
Find the happy medium, it is out there.
Speaking of the cake… Here is something else to think about: Try to make the cake as late as possible as this is often a point of exit for many guests. No matter what anyone says, dessert feels like the end and if your reluctant party-goer guests get this feeling, they may leave early!
Video Confessional Booth – Want to take the boring, played out idea of a traditional photobooth shoot to the ext level? Have your guests confess and have a video condfessional booth set up so people can tell their sins. In the spirit of reality TV, have your guests record a quick on-screen message for you of well-wishes, or better yet, some naughty or funny story that happened at the wedding. This is the perfect way to know which of your guests needed to get voted off the island!
Ceremony Cue Cards – Want a fun ceremony? Add cue cards. They can say anything and will get a great response!
Reception Ushers – Have some stubborn guests coming to your wedding? I’m sure you are going to have ceremony ushers, but why not do the same for the reception itself. Quite often, it is very difficult to coral the guest in from the cocktail hour – but this is the perfect way!
Pizza Run Midnight Snack – want to keep attendance up? Bring out more grub! A slider bar, a smores roasting table, a milkshake spread, or a DIY taco tray are all ways to keep the party rolling. If it were a straight up pizza delivery guy delivering the fun, that would probably be even better!
Hot Air Balloons – If you need to shuttle from the ceremony to the reception, why not take wedding transportation to new heights? How about a magical hot air balloon ride? Make sure to add a “Bride and Groom’s wedding or bust” sign!
Built Bouquet – Have a small basket at the end of each aisle for your ceremony, each with one flower in it. Have guests hand the bride a flower as she walks down the aisle and create her own bouquet live as she walks!
Blindfold the Groom – for the first look, make the groom wear a sleep-gear-like blindfold. This way, there is further anticipation, and the first thing he sees at the ceremony is his beautiful bride in full regalia.
Face Painting Booth – Want to add color and fun to your wedding? Set up a face painting booth to make the party even more fun and over-the-top.
Air Guitar Basket – You have probably seen the basket of flip flops for dancing. Borrowing from this idea, put out an empty basket and label it “air guitars.” Then pass the basket around and have your guests mime that they are taking an axe out of it to jam with during your best rocking rock song!
Official Hashtag – Social Media is everywhere. You know already that your guests will be taking pictures of the event. Why don’t you create the official hashtag for your wedding and plaster the place with your soon-to-be-trending keyword? After the wedding reception, all you need to do is search the hashtag and find more pictures from different perspectives after your special day!
Who wants their wedding to be just like everyone else’s? If your answer is, “Not me!” – then here is a real neat idea that you may have not seen before. How about shaking up your ceremony seating? Instead of the typical straight row layout for your chairs, remove the element of what everyone expects. Put your own “spin” on your wedding ceremony!
You can still have a beautiful traditional wedding ceremony, yet be creative with your seating at the same time. Sitting your guests in a completely different arrangement than they are used to sets the mood for the rest of the night.
Spin your guests head and set a fun and unique tone!
THINGS TO THINK ABOUT WITH SPIRAL / CIRCULAR SEATING
1) WEDDING PARTY POSITIONING: Think about where your bridesmaids and groomsmen will stand and in what formation. In some seating arrangements, there may not be room for all your attendants to stand alongside you and your groom. Worry not as they can always be seated, instead.
2) FUN GUEST CONFUSION: Guests are accustomed to facing forward and know exactly where the couple will be positioned. Alternative layouts may leave guests guessing where the best seats are!
3) USHER ROLES: Once guests arrive, you don’t want them to be confused or hesitant to sit because they’re not used to the seating layout. Whether you have ushers directing guests or signage explaining the set-up, make sure you communicate to guests what your expectations are for them.
4) PICTURES: Whenever planning a location for your wedding, always think background. It is important to pay attention to what is behind you as your backdrop for your ceremony photos. Consider where your photographer will be positioned to get the best shots and what you’ll likely see in the background in those images.
5) SOUND: How tight or loose your spiral is will affect how well people hear the wedding officiant. If you want everyone to hear what’s being said, think about how far away the furthest guest is to be seated from the action.
6) WHERE IS YOUR AISLE? You’ll need to figure out the best place to position your walkway; one that makes the most sense for the ceremony. Angling your wedding party to enter the wedding ceremony may need to be strategic.
7) ALTERNATIVE SHAPES: These could include horseshoes, complete circles, or squaring off the edges of circular seating arrangements.
HERE ARE SOME PICTURES TO HELP YOU WITH YOUR OWN SPIRAL WEDDING CEREMONY:
Last year was a rough one. The holidays are finally behind us now. We have opened our presents, made our returns, made our resolutions and probably already broke them. A bunch of celebrities died. A bunch of Hatchimals didn’t hatch. BUt we made it through all of that, somehow regardless.
Now it is time to get back to reality. For some of us, the big wedding is only around the corner and waiting to plan because it could bring some headaches is a bad idea.
I too often hesitate to do something that can be stressful. Hell, sometimes I sit in the parking lot of the gym and fiddle with my phone, because I know the gym is going to hurt a little. However, if we take this approach with planning a wedding, it could impact the success of your wedding in the long run.
IT IS TIME TO PLAN YOUR WEDDING NOW!
In other places throughout this blog, I posted information that encouraged you to plan six months or more ahead of time to book your DJ, and up to a full year ahead of time to secure your hall/catering service. That means if you are planning on getting married in the prime time availability slots; summer on a Saturday might, you really need to start moving now!
Yoda once said, “There is only do, or do not.”
If you wait until the last minute, you may have to settle for something you do not really want for your special day. Last week in the Albany NY area, we already had days with about 3 to 5 wedding inquiries, speaking with anxious, but prepared brides looking to secure particular dates. They could be competing for day with a location that you have in the back of your head, or a vendor that would fit you perfectly.
Even with four DJ’s at TheDJService.com, we have already seen conflicts on dates and may have to turn a few couples away. There are only so many good companies servicing the Albany & Troy, Saratoga Springs & Schenectady NY area. Get a move on it!
If you start planning now and you will be all good! Just pick up the phone and call.
Put down that massive three ring binder and take a look at your smartphone. It’s time to throw away the paper and streamline your special day by going digital!
Wedding apps are becoming more and more the “in-thing” among bride & groom smartphone users. You already must know that there is a boat load of hard work involved in planning your special day. The planning and organization you need to throw a successful wedding is unnerving to say the least. Well, worry no more. There is an app for that!
Thanks to the countless app developers out there today, you now have various wedding applications in all categories that will allow you to get more things done quickly and better.
ALBANY NY DJ OFFERS HIS TOP 10 WEDDING APP LIST
WedPics – This is our top wedding app pick of them all. It not only gives your guests all of the information needed surrounding the event, but it also connects them to your registry and acts as a drop box for your guests to post an unlimited amount of wedding pictures. WedPics is the absolute best photo & video-sharing app, collecting them all in one place. Invite your guests via email, text or Facebook.
iWedding: This is a really good DIY wedding planner app. With this download you can go and plan every little detail about your wedding. It helps you manage wedding activities, details and even your wedding guest list.
Wedding Gawker: WeddingGawker.com is a great web site for ideas and now has an app. This one brings its ideas for couples to your iPhone to make your wedding unique and fun.
Wedding Planning Complete: This tool is great! It keeps track of your checklist, budget, guests list and also offers a fun wedding countdown ticker.
WeddingHappy: This happy tool gives you everything. It has vendor contact information, plus loads of tools to make sure all bases are covered for your special day.
The Knot Ultimate Wedding Planner: The Knot helps you to organize your wedding by offering an all-encompassing checklist, budget keeper and plenty of fresh ideas for your wedding. It also has a countdown feature.
Wedding Countdown: Want a simple reminder app for your wedding? This app allows you to track how many days are left before the big wedding day.
Appy Couple – This tool like WedPics allows people to share their own wedding photos and socialize before, during and after the event. It also lets guests RSVP and make travel arrangements. (There is a charge)