What to do 1-2 months before your wedding

posted in: wedding | 0

Other posts in this wedding planning series:

What to do when you get engaged

What to do 6-9 months before your wedding

What to do 4-5 months before your wedding

What to do 2-3 months before your wedding

This week…

 

Ceremony Details.

Start writing your vows, if you haven’t already.

Finalize readings and songs for the ceremony. Review them with the people that will be performing them.

Meet with your Officiant to finalize his or her words.

Bridal Gown.

Once your alterations are complete, have another bridal gown fitting. You want to leave enough time to make adjustments, if necessary. Take a friend with you so you can get an opinion on the cut and fit.

Write thank you notes.

Stock up on nice thank you notes, envelopes, pens, and stamps. Begin writing thank you notes for any gifts received so far. Update your registry and add more items to it, if necessary.

Hang with your girls or guys.

Schedule a casual luncheon with your bridesmaids or groomsmen. Take this time to relax and enjoy those you consider special enough to be included in your wedding party. This would be a great time to give them any gifts you’ve purchased for them.

Wedding insurance.

Wedding insurance is a growing concern for many people. Should you get it or not? First, you need to find out whether your venue requires liability insurance. More and more venues are making this a requirement, so make sure you double check! In the grand scheme of wedding budgets, wedding insurance isn’t that expensive. And it just might give you peace of mind.

 

You’re almost there!! Yay!


Check back for more wedding planning tips and videos. If you’re in the Detroit or Ann Arbor areas, contact me for help!

If you are having a Detroit wedding (or anywhere in the vicinity) you can find some great wedding vendors linked within this post!

Brunch & Bubbly 2018 | Planning your Detroit wedding

posted in: event, wedding | 0

If you are having a Detroit wedding (or anywhere in the vicinity) you can find some great wedding vendors linked within this post!

When I found out we were moving to the Ann Arbor-Detroit area, I knew instantly I needed to connect with local brides and other wedding industry professionals to be successful in my wedding planning business. I fully believe in community over competition, so if I can help other vendors and brides connect as well, then that would be icing on the cake!

Elise Luddy of The AIsle Agency jumped on board without a question! It took us a little over a year of planning to see the dream come to fruition, but we did it! We just hosted our first bridal show on June 24, 2018. We collaborated with some amazing vendors and volunteers to pull it off! They set up display tables, prepared speeches, answered audience questions, and stepped up when we needed additional assistance. I think I’m said “thank you” to them about a million times! LOL

The Venue, Food, & Drink

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides was held at The Baronette Renaissance Hotel in Novi, MI. We received so many compliments on this gorgeous event space throughout the event. The catering staff prepared a delicious breakfast, lunch, and mimosa station for everyone. It not only tasted good but was all displayed beautifully. It is a great location for your Detroit wedding reception, as it is connected to the hotel. Your out-of-town guests won’t have far to go after the wedding is over!

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel

Registration

Every attendee received a beautiful rose from Mancuso’s & Mancuso’s Weddings.

Our registration volunteers, Mary & Miranda, were such a huge help!!

The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Mancusos Florist| Mancusos Weddings

Speakers

I didn’t want this event to just be vendors selling their services, like so many other bridal shows. It was important to me that our speakers actually teach the brides something about planning their wedding. We started off with Lawton Lunce Mobile Entertainment. Lawton spoke on choosing your wedding entertainment and how to determine where to place your entertainment to get the most bang for your buck.

The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Lawton Lunce Mobile Entertainment

 

We heard from Devoted Beauties by Trae next. She spoke about finding your perfect lip color for your wedding day.

The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Devoted Beauties by Trae | Lipsense

 

We had a few extra minutes before lunch, so Stephanie Holmes Hair volunteered to speak about finding a hair stylist that will give you the look you want for your wedding day!

The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Stephanie Holmes Hair

After lunch, Ashley Wilson of The DULCE Experience spoke about the process of creating a wedding cake. She also gave some pointers on fitting a luxury wedding cake into your budget!

The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | The DULCE Experience

Vendors

Our attendees had time to speak to each vendor…and, in some cases, sample their goods!

The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Nova Photography
Nova Photography

 

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Stephanie Holmes Hair
Stephanie Holmes Hair

 

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Good Cupcakes
Good Cupcakes

 

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Open Me When Box
Open Me When Box

 

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Golden Mirror Photobooth
Golden Mirror Photobooth

 

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Devoted Beauties by Trae | Lipsense
Devoted Beauties by Trae

 

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Lawton Lunce Mobile Entertainment
Lawton Lunce Mobile Entertainment

 

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Sweet Kathy's Bakery
Sweet Kathy’s Bakery

 

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Mancuso's
Mancuso’s provided all our beautiful flower arrangements

Q&A Panels

Our final event festivity included two Q&A Panels! The first was composed of a hair stylist, a makeup artist, and a photographer (all businesses linked elsewhere in this article). The second panel consisted of amazing wedding planners.

A Trace of Elegance

Andrea Solomon Events

Vows & Veils

Dressed In Details

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Andrea Solomon Events | Vows & Veils | Dressed In Details

 

Thank you to Nova Photography for all the beautiful photos!!

Thank you to The Baronette Renaissance Detroit-Novi Hotel for hosting us!

Thanks to The Aisle Agency for coming along on this journey with me!

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel | Christa Graham Weddings & Events | The Aisle Agency

Brunch & Bubbly for Brides | Bridal Show | Detroit | Ann Arbor | Wedding Planner| Nova Photography | The Baronette Renaissance Hotel

I won’t lie: The planning and execution of an event like this is exhausting!! But, because this is what I love to do, I am already craving another opportunity to plan a wedding or event. If you need help planning your Ann Arbor or Detroit wedding, please send me an email!

wedding budget

Deciding your wedding budget

posted in: wedding | 0

Deciding your wedding budget and how to adjust for new items

Congratulations on your engagement! Deciding your wedding budget is one of the first decisions you should make after telling the most important people in your life that you are engaged. If you work through it and make some tough decisions in the beginning, then making decisions along the way will become more rational and less emotional. Whether it is just you and your fiance, or a third party added to the mix, it’s important to establish the ground rules from the start. Consider this practice for your marriage! My husband and I have budget meetings every 2 weeks and it has transformed how we speak and think about our money.

Who is contributing to your wedding budget?

If someone else (like a parent) is contributing to your wedding financially, it would be beneficial they can give you details of the offer. Details how much? Lump sum or installments? Will they give you the money or will they pay directly?

Who will be responsible for the decisions?

Deciding your wedding budget | Christa Graham Weddings & Events| Ann Arbor Detroit Michigan Wedding Planner

Will it be 50/50 between the two of you on everything? Will you have more input in design choices and your fiance on the menu? Let your experience and your expertise guide you here. For example, if you are naturally good at numbers, offer to keep an eye on the budget. It would be a nice gesture to ask any third parties contributing to the budget if they would like input on any decisions. They can also be the tie-breaker in case you two can’t agree on something. (Just make sure they are really able to make a neutral decision!)

What is important to you?

When you decide your budget, you should also rank the budget items in order of which are most important to you. This will help you make decisions if you need to adjust the budget as you start spending. Let’s imagine you’ve budgeted $4000 for your wedding dress, but the dress you fall in love with is $7000. The only wiggle room in your budget is to pull funds from catering. If you’ve ranked these things in order of importance from the beginning, you should have no problem making the decision whether to buy the dress or not!

Include some padding.

Deciding your wedding budget | Christa Graham Weddings & Events| Ann Arbor Detroit Michigan Wedding Planner

There is always something unexpected that comes up with a big project like planning a wedding. A budget item might be a lot more than you expected or you see a new fabulous idea for your reception and just have to include it! My suggestion is to include 5-10% of your budget as a buffer or padding. The larger your initial budget is, the higher the percentage should be. This padding will make those unexpected items much less stressful! And, if you don’t need it, then, yay you for coming in under budget!

Hire someone to help.

Deciding your wedding budget | Christa Graham Weddings & Events| Ann Arbor Detroit Michigan Wedding Planner

Of course, the easiest thing to do is hire a wedding planner that will help you determine your budget and allocate those funds. A wedding planner can also help you make decisions and be a neutral tie-breaker. With Christa Graham Weddings & Events, you have full control of your money paid to vendors. You never have to worry about handing over your entire budget to me. But, I will help you make decisions and remind you when vendor payments are due!

For a price list and more wedding planning and budgeting tips, click here!

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Wedding Budget | Wedding Budget Tips | Ann Arbor Detroit Michigan Wedding Planner