February 28, 2011

5 Common Wedding Mistakes

Filed under: Uncategorized — Anthony Lala @ 2:25 am

As a New Orleans wedding planner, marriage is not only my profession, but my passion. I have seen weddings of every type, from intimate, garden ceremonies to cathedral-filling blowouts, but there are a few mistakes that couples seem to fall into again and again.

Drinking too much the night before

It is an easier mistake to make than you might think. Family and friends have traveled from across the country, everyone is excited and maybe you’re a little nervous and want to tie one on for the last time while single. By all means, entertain the guests that have traveled to attend your wedding, but let them do the heavy drinking. You should have a toast or two and then politely excuse yourself. Under no circumstances should you allow friends to plan a bachelor/ bachelorette party for the night before your wedding. A hangover is the last thing you want at the altar.

Letting the wedding ruin relationships

Many brides can get tunnel vision focusing on the perfect wedding, but remember that life goes on after the ceremony. If you refuse to invite someone or remove someone from the bridal party because they do not fit your “vision” for the day, feelings can be hurt and friendships can sour.

Crash dieting

If the perfect dress is a size too small, healthy dieting is perfectly acceptable, but the pressure to slim down can lead some brides to crash dieting.  It is better to look healthy and natural than to look sickly for the sake of a few pounds. The same rule applies to beauty regimens. Don’t try anything new or drastic just before the important day. You may not be happy with the results.

Not having parents released from their row first

After the bridal party follows the couple back up the aisle, many times the congregation is allowed to leave en masse, forcing the most important people in the front rows to exit last. An usher should allow your parents to exit first, so they are not forced to battle the crowd for your attention.

Praying for a“perfect” wedding

In the desire for the absolutely perfect day, many couples force themselves into having a wedding that lacks personality. There are millions of rules for the perfect wedding, but breaking rules is just as important as following them. Infuse a little spirit at your New Orleans destination wedding and let your wedding reflect who you truly are.

February 27, 2011

Picking a New Orleans wedding photographer

After months of preparing, your wedding day will begin a lifetime of happiness, but long after the cake is eaten and the dress is put away, the day will seem to have flashed by in a rush of ceremony and speeches. A professional wedding photographer can immortalize the most important time in your marriage, so you can remember every detail for decades to come.  If you’re looking to book a destination wedding New Orleans, here are some tips for picking the right p photographer.

Set a budget

The first thing to consider when choosing a photographer is your budget. You can skimp in certain areas, but the photographer should not be one of them. Years after everyone has forgotten what food was served, the photographs will be the same as they were on the day. Set a price you are willing to pay and be sure to stick with it.

Research what kind of service you will receive from each potential photographer.  How many hours are you paying for? How many sites are they willing to visit? While many studios have a preset listing for their prices, do not be afraid to haggle. Especially if you find a photographer you really want.

Get Samples

Next ask for samples of their previous work. For studios that employ more than one photographer, be sure to find out specifically which one will be at your wedding and ask for samples of his or her work. Rather than seeing the photographer’s best shots, it is helpful to see the coverage of an entire wedding to get a better sense of what you will be receiving.

Digital or Traditional

Find out whether the cameras being used are digital or traditional film. While some claim that film will produce higher quality images, the difference is rarely perceptible, and digital offers more options when receiving your prints. More pictures can be taken with digital because there is no film cost, and the photos can be quickly placed on a CD or posted online.

Establish deadlines

Ask when and how you will receive your prints. The easiest method is for the studio to create a secure account for you to view the pictures online. This allows family members to easily order themselves pictures straight from the studio.

Sign a contract

Finally, be sure to get positive references and a written contract. This will avoid any nightmare scenarios and give you peace of mind. Remember, the most important thing is to find a photographer you love.

February 13, 2011

Picking a wedding date in New Orleans

When my clients come to me to discuss their plans for a New Orleans destination wedding, they’re at a variety of stages of preparation. Some have already made significant plans toward their wedding; others are starting from scratch.

For those at the beginning of the wedding planning process, there’s one decision that trumps all others: setting the wedding date.  Here are a few tips to choose the best wedding date for your marriage.

Weather

It’s the first thing in many couple’s minds and tends to be one of the most crucial variables when choosing a wedding date. Of course, if you’re having an indoor wedding, then weather is a non-factor.  However, if you’ve scheduled the ceremony outdoors, then weather conditions can make or break your big day.

In New Orleans, we’re blessed with a generally mild climate, so the wedding season usually lasts from mid-march to early-November. However, the summer months bring intense heat. Nobody wants to be sweating through their gown or tuxedo, so I usually advise my clients to avoid the hottest temperatures, which occur between mid-June and early September.

Flora and Fauna

Unfortunately, this is something that’s often overlooked by New Orleans wedding planners, but is a crucial component in selecting a wedding date. If you’re planning on getting married in a natural setting, the surrounding trees and bushes will affect the ambiance. Make sure to research the blooming season of the plants around you, so you can try to schedule your wedding when the flora and fauna is at its peak.

Schedule Conflicts

If you’re scheduling a New Orleans destination wedding, you’re likely bringing in hundreds of out-of-town guests. If so, it’s important to make sure their schedules don’t conflict–especially if they’re in the wedding party. Inquire about your relatives schedules and make sure to steer clear of dates where conflicts, like college graduations or family reunions, could pop up.

Holidays

In general, I advise my clients not to schedule their weddings during or around holidays. Many families reserve this time for their own private celebrations and scheduling your wedding during Easter, Thanksgiving or Christmas is usually a bad idea. However, utilizing other, smaller holidays, like Labor Day or Veterans Day, can often be judicious. These three-day weekends often mean that out of town guests have a little more breathing room for taking off work.