My last wedding post highlighted some ways we're planning to save money; now, I'm going to explore some options where it's worth it (in my humble opinion) to splurge.
Surely no one will be shocked by my thoughts on this as a future wife of a professional photographer, but your wedding photos are SO IMPORTANT. They'll be there long after the food is eaten, the wine is drunk and your dress is hung up in the closet for all eternity. They'll be what your kids and grandkids look at for years to come, and they'll be a lasting reminder of your special day and all the wonderful memories that go with it. A professional will know how to pose you, be able to deal with lighting issues and might even have some leads on fun photo locations.
SO I am begging you, please please please do not ask your uncle with a nice camera to snap some photos of you, and instead go for the professional photographer. It's worth the extra money.
I know, last time I said not to have dinner if you can swing it. But, if you are going to feed people, feed them right! When I went to Tom & Emily's wedding last year in Santa Rosa, whenever people asked me how it was I always gushed about the food first. They had grilled cheese sandwiches served with a shot glass of tomato bisque, pulled pork sliders, delicious cupcakes... I could go on. It was tasty. Bailey and Thomas took everyone out for buffet in Vegas, as well as had a bunch of tasty treats at their reception (including sushi!). Finger foods are fun, but they can get pretty pricy (because of all the handwork involved), so if you're trying to get married on the cheap you may have to cut back in other areas.
But it's also important to be sure to cater to your guests' tastes. Ian and I will probably be having prairie food, which includes a lot of Eastern European fare - think cabbage rolls, perogies, roast beef etc - which is awesome because it's also our favourites, and is the stuff we grew up on.
Yeah, yeah, yeah who doesn't have an iPod or a laptop with iTunes nowadays? The problem with doing your music is that:
a) you have to do all the set-up yourself (which wouldn't be a problem in my family because we're all a bunch of musicians)
b) either you or someone else has to be monitoring the tunes all night, thus taking them away from the party. It's YOUR night - let someone else do the work.
c) part of a DJ's job is to monitor the room and get a feel for the crowd and the mood. If your friend decides he wants to hear a certain song, he can just go up and play it, which could totally kill the vibe.
But DJs don't have music I want, you say. This is why you should find a group that will do music consultations and will work to get the music you want to listen to!
This list will be different for everyone. Do you dream of having a wicked first dance with fireworks and backup dancers? Or maybe you want to drive up in the perfect 1940s car. If there's something you really want, go for it - but remember that some other things may have to be sacrificed for you to get it.