Gee’s Wedding Help Thread

Discussion in 'General Advice' started by Gee, Oct 7, 2019.

  1. Gee

    Gee the mail never fails

    in advice because tbh I have no idea what I’m doing. Feel free to comment / advise at will.

    Things about wedding:
    • Secular location preferred
    • Idk how much a budget
    • Wedding is April 18th 2020
    • Making some announcements / save dates tomorrow
    • Want a sort of nontraditional wedding structure
    • Family will be coming from out of state (and a friend coming from abroad) so cannot have Just Reception
    • Want family to be involved with vows but don’t want the nontradition to be too unfamiliar???

    Where do begin to tackle the things? Must find out What we Want I suppose? D is difficult at times with decision making, and I don’t want to make all the choices
  2. KingStarscream

    KingStarscream watch_dogs walking advertisement

    You live in Central Florida, right? If it's not too much a trip out to one of the beaches, look into companies around the Bradenton/Tampa/Sarasota area--a lot of them offer secular services and ceremonies, and they're relatively cheap since they're not "destination weddings" in the truest sense.

    If that's a no go, blocking out a hotel room block and an event hall in your local area could still work too, and you'll probably be able to find a wedding organizer that's able to direct you towards the people that can help you make a secular ceremony happen.
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  3. Gee

    Gee the mail never fails

    I'm about 80 miles inland from Vero Beach (which is closest), so just a tad far but it's an idea. There's definitely some.historic places around but holy shit why do so many people need a phone call to know how much it costs?? Just tell me how many monies to give on the website, venues.

    Cousin got married this weekend in a barn with an indoor option for her reception, which is exactly what I wanted, but don't wanna steal her thunder.

    Is renting a hotel ballroom tacky?
  4. Chiomi

    Chiomi Master of Disaster

    My parents had their reception in a hotel ballroom. As the location for the wedding itself, I don't think necessarily tacky, but really easily tacky? I spend a fair amount of time in hotel ballrooms for work conferences (which . . . is such a weird thing to say) and it'd be a really weird vibe in any of those, I think? Anything with, like, a view, though, or Architecture Of Interest (my friends got married and had the reception in an old mansion) could be really cool.

    And I don't think you'd be stealing her thunder if you also got married in a barn? Like, the same one, less than a year after, I'd suggest talking to her about it in about a month to see if she'd be chill with it, just because if she's not she's likely to be Very Not, but she might be really happy that you liked it that much. And then she'd also be able to tell you about pricing and the final invoicing details, like were there surprises on the final bill.
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  5. keltka

    keltka the green and brown one

    Partner and I are looking into parks! Renting one for the whole day is dummy cheap, like we're talking $200 tops
    downside of that is getting all the wedding stuff out there is kinda tough? so ceremony there, then we're having the reception elsewhere

    re: budgets, we're doing most of our own decorating? current plan is to go find cheap florals during floral off seasons, buy in bulk, then arrange and store until we use 'em for table decorations and shit
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  6. Gee

    Gee the mail never fails

    I've been looking at local parks / historic places and you're right. There's an old train station depot locally we might take a look at.

    on the downside, I've just been informed we have to change the date due to proximity of his sisters graduation; both of us have a lot of family from out of state, and his might not be able to make a trip four weeks before her graduation to do wedding then turn right back around and fly again. so now it's all kinda up in the air again.

    upside: more time
    downside: :C wedding now pls
  7. Gee

    Gee the mail never fails

    and you're right they're hella inexpensive**
  8. turtleDove

    turtleDove Well-Known Member

    For reception - going from what happened at my sister's wedding (which was just this August, so it's still pretty fresh), if you're going to have kids there? Make sure ahead of time whether the kids are going to be allowed to stay all night, and if you'll be allowed to serve liquor (if you're doing wine) if they are there. It's likely that, if they have any normal license requirements preventing kids from being on-site after a certain time, you can get an event license that will give you permission to have kids and booze on the same site for the whole thing.

    But my sister's reception venue didn't tell her until the night of that their license doesn't allow them to have kids on-premises after 9 pm. And by "night of", I mean "we found this out at 9 pm, when we got told that the kids had to leave Now". Which was a bit of an abrupt shock, and also meant that we ended up losing our MC because her brother is underage and her parents were her ride back to the hotel. Losing the MC threw everything else a bit off-schedule and meant some stuff my sister was hoping for didn't happen. (Nothing majorly important, in the big picture, but she was hoping to do a garter toss and a bouquet toss, and neither of those happened. We also ended up with a lot of thank you gifts leftover, because a lot of the guests assumed that since the MC was leaving, it was time to pack up and head home themselves, and we didn't get the thank yous out in time.)

    Other stuff:
    If you can pay someone else to do it? Try and budget for doing that. At bare minimum, I'd recommend hiring a florist and a wedding organizer, and having the reception venue do the catering if possible. Wedding organizer will help keep track of all the myriad details that go into a wedding (and will probably help out with the decorating too). Florist because, if you're planning on getting fresh flowers? Those...don't really keep for long, so buying in bulk and storing is going to be hard, and my sister ended up spending the day before the wedding having to run around and call every grocery store in the area to get some fresh flowers because she suddenly wanted some for decorations. If you're making all the decorations yourself, give yourself a lot of lead-time for that; also, give yourself more time than you expect will be needed to get the decorations set up and figure out who's going to be doing the tear-down afterwards. (Don't put yourself or your partner in charge of this - you're both going to be too busy to do tear-down, that day.)

    Details you're going to want to hash out:

    * what colours do you two want? This helps sort out things like what the decorations are going to look like.
    * are kids showing up?
    * what do you want for food, at the reception? How big do you want the portions to be? (Are any of the guests vegetarian/vegan? Are there any food allergies?)
    * what kind of cake do you want? (My sister did one small cake, for herself and brother-in-law, and a jillion mini-cupcakes which were a huge hit.)
    * are you doing a first dance? How about a first dance with parents?
  9. Gee

    Gee the mail never fails

    • budget? still a trash fire of hang wiggle noises
    • paying a wedding person? probably not going to happen
    • venue? heavily leaning towards something outdoors / like a park
    • colors? unimportant; my dress is one i've had for a few years and i never have a good occasion for. rainbow all over.
    • kids? very few, maybe 3 or 4 under 16
    • food? legit we have considered doing a potluck scenario? but i'm sure that's....tacky
    • cake? tiered brownie "cake" / many mini brownies
    • dancing? likely!
    we've also sort of figured a structure for the ceremony, a non-traditional one that we both seem to vibe well with, that hopefully won't be too confusing?

    everyone: sits
    talky person: gives anecdotes, introduces brief on the ceremony
    bride mom: says a small thing bout bride, asks for vow from groom
    groom: does the vow
    BM: gives small token / favor / flower / smth to groom.
    TP: ok now intro next person
    groom mom: says small thing, asks for vow from bride
    bride: does the thing
    ETC, lather rinse repeat until
    TP: okay its ur turn now guys talk to each other and do stuff
    US: does a vow thing to each other, swap ring, smorch
    and the marry

    maybe both parents present at the thing at the same time? his parents giving him away by asking for my vow / promise; mine doing same to him?

    idk it would mean a lot to me and him to have our immediate famliy in the ceremony. i mean. this is the joining of our families for(hope)Ever. it's not just My day or His day or even OUR day; this is a big moment where our families mesh and meld and become one with the link of the two of us.
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  10. Gee

    Gee the mail never fails

    also will probably be a dry wedding as far as alcohol goes; we have folks struggling with alcoholism on both sides includng myself. but that does make me feel al ittle left out for folks.

    oh! an idea, though: wedding can be at park or something. reception at one of our houses, maybe? cheaper than renting two places / one place for a long time and fighting with codes and stuff
    • Like x 2
  11. turtleDove

    turtleDove Well-Known Member

    Not just the venue for where the wedding is gonna happen - the venue for where the reception will happen. Colours kinda do affect things like "what colour is the icing on the cake going to be, what colours are the decorations going to be". The dress usually doesn't play into what colours the wedding has at all, actually.

    Potluck is not necessarily tacky - it depends on how you play it. If it's "we're Fucking Broke, this is it", then yeah, that's tacky. If it's "we want to bring our two families together by ensuring that we're more than just sharing a meal together, we've all made a part of it together", then that is sweet and touching.

    Brownies is a cool idea!

    How many people are you planning on inviting? Because if it's more than...20 or so, you're really going to want somewhere else to hold the reception. There's only so much physical space in one house or one backyard, y'know?
  12. turtleDove

    turtleDove Well-Known Member

    Dry wedding's perfectly fine! You can actually get non-alcoholic sparkling grape juice if you want to do toasts. (Or heck: put a bottle of white grape juice through a sodastream to carbonate it, that'd probably work fine too.)
  13. Verily

    Verily surprised Xue Yang peddler

    I really think it would be overwhelmingly difficult to do a potluck with so many of your guests coming from out of state. How would they cook? Would they have to squeeze around each other in one kitchen and then find a place to change for the ceremony? They would probably be very late and stressed. Even navigating an unfamiliar grocery store to buy something premade is quite a lot of effort to feel like you copped out on the spirit of the event.

    It’s hard enough organizing a successful potluck when you’re not also organizing a wedding. It’s difficult making sure there’s enough variety and no one’s dietary restrictions limit them to one item they probably brought themselves which is kinda disheartening. Even people organizing just a potluck often end up in the unwanted position of potluck dictator, having to message many guests multiple times, and suggest dishes to reluctant or anxious cooks. I don’t know if it’s tacky, but I do think that’s probably way too much to ask of your average wedding guest and yourself, though you know your guests better than I do.

    Catering is honestly a service that’s costly because it’s extremely fucking hard and requires a lot of very specific equipment and experience to carry off smoothly. I’ve been to events catered by helpful family members who are excellent cooks, and the food has always been hours late and required extra volunteers, because cooking for more than a dinner party worth of guests is a logistical nightmare even if none of them have dietary restrictions.

    ETA because I don’t wanna be a complete downer: There’s nothing wrong with asking specific family members who are local and/or you can give access to your own kitchen (and help finding their way around) if they’d be willing to help you brainstorm and create a menu of items that would keep well overnight and not suffer from being displayed attractively at the location of the reception for a while.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2019
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  14. turtleDove

    turtleDove Well-Known Member

    Ooh. These are good points that I was overlooking, yeah. In light of this: it doesn't matter if it's tacky, what matters is that it's likely to be Way Too Much Effort to do when you've got a lot of guests coming from out of state (heck, it'd be too much even if they were just coming from out of town) and that's even before taking dietary restrictions and variety into account.

    Is it going to be costly to get it catered? Yes, most likely. But you're paying for someone else to pull this off smoothly and make sure the food is there, on time, and edible for everyone. It is worth the expense.
    • Agree x 1
  15. Gee

    Gee the mail never fails

    engagement / romantic relationship with D has been amicably called off. thanks all for the help and stuff. i hope any of this might be helpful for someone else later, if you'd like it to continue to be the general wedding help thread.
    • Witnessed x 3
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