One thing I know as a wedding planner is that brides want to look their best on their wedding day. My clients ask me about everything from personal trainer recommendations to where the best spas are. I have incredible teams of stylists for the day of a wedding and I can even send brides coolsculpting leading up to the big day. I’m always learning about new products available and in the spirit of the shopping season, I have put together my list of the 10 best beauty products for brides.
Check out my favorite products below that are perfect for any bride to be. Whether you’re picking up these items for yourself, or as a stocking stuffer, there’s something here for every bride. Some items can even be received before Christmas, so don’t wait to get that perfect gift!
Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer with Pink Travel Case
If you haven’t heard by now, Dyson makes hair dryers and they rock. A bride’s hair is pretty featured on the wedding day and it’s important to take care of it until then. Using the right blow dryer is an easy way to take care of your hair. This hair dryer monitors the heat on your hair so you’re not frying every strand. The great travel case makes it easy to bring to a destination wedding or even a honeymoon location. Plus, the drying time is cut in half so you can spend less time drying your hair and more time planning the wedding!
La Mer Creme de la Mer Moisturizing Cream
With the winter wind constantly smacking me in the face, unless I wear a ski mask everywhere I go, my skin is rapidly drying out. La Mer is one of my favorite moisturizers and it’s truly the best of the best. If there was any time for a woman to splurge on her skincare, it’s while she’s wedding planning. La Mer reduces fine lines and is a well-known staple of the beauty industry. It was a no-brainer to include this product on my list of the top 10 best beauty products for a bride!
Kylie Cosmetics: The Nice Palette
This eyeshadow palette is so gorgeous! I am not a big fan of palettes that have one of two neutral colors with a bunch of bold ones, so this is one of my favorites. This is a great palette for brides to use on the day of the wedding and even bring along on the honeymoon. The pigments are incredible and the powder doesn’t flake onto your skin during application. Try this out before your wedding day and have fun discovering the look you want when you walk down the aisle!
Juvalips Lip Plumper
Lip liner can make your lips look a bit fuller, but injections can be too extreme for some. Juvalips lip plumper is the best choice for brides looking for something in between. It only takes two minutes for an instant impact as Juvalips increases blow flow to your lips. Results last for 8-10 hours, and longer with continued use. Pick this up now to use in the months before the wedding day, and be sure to use it on the morning your get married as well. Helping to make that first kiss even more amazing, Juvalips was an easy choice for my 10 Best Beauty Products for Brides!
Kerstin Florian Night Cream
Kerstin Florian is my personal favorite for skin care and I had to include them in my 10 Best Beauty Products for Brides. When planning a wedding, a bride can lose plenty of sleep, which is super bad for her skin. This night cream is super moisturizing and you will wake up with softer and more supple skin. So even if you can’t sleep because you’re worried about the wedding details, your skin won’t show it with this beauty product!
Majestic Castor Oil for Eyelash Growth
Every bride wants long gorgeous lashes, not just on the wedding day, but everyday. Even if you’re planning to wear false lashes on the day you get married, there are plenty of other times you won’t…like while on the beach during the honeymoon. An obvious choice for my top 10 best beauty products for brides is Majestic Pure Eyelash Serum. Castor oil has been used for years to increase hair growth and this product isn’t tested on animals and is completely cruelty free. Don’t wait to pick up this amazing product for your wedding day!
Amope Pedi Perfect
Besides winter taking a toll on the skin on my face, my feet aren’t exactly ready for sandal season. To get ready to wear those open toe slingbacks under your wedding gown, and those flip flops on the honeymoon, pick up this incredibly beauty product. Amope is heavily advertised and by now, everyone has seen the commercials. It has never been so easy to make your feet super smooth and look perfect in any shoe from any angle. Perfect for in between those pedicures you won’t get to during wedding planning, this is a must have beauty product for any bride to be!
Mario Badescu Drying Lotion
This product has been in my bathroom for over ten years now so I had to include it in my top 10 beauty products for brides list. Got a pimple? No you don’t…not with this! Pack up this little stocking stuffer in your overnight bag for the night before the wedding because it works that fast. Great to have for the whole wedding planning process, especially for brides that break out due to stress.
Vassoul Blackhead Remover Mask
You’ve seen those crazy black masks that you peel off from your skin to get rid of blackheads. Well, this is the mask that actually works! Not only does it effectively clean out your pores like in those weirdly satisfying videos, but it softens and firms your skin too. If you’re worried about it being painful, then don’t. The secret is to applying a really thick layer all over your face before letting it dry to peel off. Brides will notice a different immediately and since I am all about instant gratification, this had to make it onto my top 10 best beauty products for brides list!
Fake Bake Flawless Self-Tanner
This self-tanner is my total and absolute favorite self-tanner on the market. If you didn’t know this, let me inform you that I am super pale. Right now I can basically use my summer concealer as a contour because I look like a cloud. Self-tanners have always been tough for me to love because they are either too orange, or they streak or smell. I found Fake Bake Flawless about two years ago and I haven’t looked back since. With the mitt that comes with the spray, you get an even look that smells great and doesn’t streak onto your clothes either. Grab this to look great for your bachelorette weekend, the wedding, the honeymoon and forever as a wife!
Whatever your beauty routine is, every bride wants to take it to the next level. Now it’s even easier with my 10 Best Beauty Products for Brides and I can’t wait to hear which ones you try. What are you looking to improve before the big day? Share your beauty secrets in the comments below!
CoolSculpting: The hottest wedding trend for 2018 that you may have heard about but maybe not. Well, what if I told you to eat whatever you want during the holidays? What if I said you don’t need the gym in 2018? What if I said you could target problem areas without going under the knife?
No more “what if”, because now, you can.
What Is CoolSculpting?
Essentially, CoolSculpting targets fat cells by freezing and killing them. There are no needles, no incisions and you are awake the whole time. It’s painless and a fraction of the cost of any invasive procedures. The best part? The fat never comes back no matter what you eat. Obviously, CoolSculpting isn’t just a hot trend for 2018, but rather, it’s the hottest.
Can I Really Eat Whatever I Want?
It’s hard to believe right? When I visited with our partner, Below Body Bar, I had to ask Monica about 30 times to make sure I heard this correctly. While no one on their team advocates an unhealthy lifestyle, it is true that the fat will never return. Monica walked me through how it works and explained how fat cells stop developing after a certain age. Basically, if they stop developing, and you kill off the ones you have, you’ll never see more. Amazing right?
Wedding Trend Winner for 2018
When I was first introduced to CoolSculpting, I knew very little about it. Now, I can’t imagine why anyone would spend money for a surgical procedure when this is offered! There are no scars and no down time, and the procedure is relaxing and chill…see what I did there? You can finally spot treat problem areas so you look amazing in your wedding gown and on your honeymoon.
What About My Squad?
If you’re the bride looking for an amazing spa trip with your bridesmaids and moms, this is totally for you. Besides offering CoolSculpting, Below Body Bar has everything from Cryo-Facials to increase collagen and reduce fine lines along with an infrared himalayan salt sauna that burns up to 600 calories a session. You can create the ultimate girls’ night out and customize a package as Below Body Bar will close the spa for your private event!
How Do I Do It?
Our friends at Below Body Bar recommend visiting for a consultation early in the wedding planning process. During this consultation, you’ll discuss your goals and the staff will create a program just for you. With background in health and wellness, they also offer nutrition and work out counseling. Best of all your consultation is complimentarywhen you visit the website and enter the code: BFITWEDDING
CoolSculpting: The Hottest Wedding Trend for 2018
Whether or not you’re planning on making (and keeping those New Year’s Resolutions), coolsculpting will help you achieve your best wedding day look. From cryotherapy to cryofacials, you can create any kind of package with Below Body Bar. Don’t forget to use the code BFITWEDDING for your complimentary consultation with our amazing partner. Get that wedding day and honeymoon look you are dreaming of and tell them Rothweiler Event Design sent you!
It’s hard to believe, but 2018 is right around the corner! Each year, Pantone selects one “color of the year”, which represents trends in the world of design. Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year is called “Ultra-Violet” and we are ultra-excited!
The past few years have been all about pastels and greenery in the wedding world. Don’t get me wrong, I loved it all but Ultra-Violet brings a different type of energy that we really need in wedding designs. In this blog, I am going to show you how to use Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year in your wedding!
*Disclosure: Affiliate links are contained within this blog and I will be compensated if you purchase a product described here through one of the links. That said, I do not endorse anything that I don’t already love.*
Lighting plays a big role in the world of wedding design. It enhances what you want to see and hides what you don’t. A great way to use Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year is by having it illuminate your wedding. This shade works with many different color palettes, but really shines when using lighter colors in the same family. You can use ultra-violet as your uplighting color of choice, or even in your monogram over the dance floor.
Not looking to make your reception ultra-violet? Another great option is to use lighting outside, like we did for our Solar Eclipse Styled Shoot earlier this year. The purple lighting added a romantic glow to the tree-lined driveway. Have this lighting in place to give your guests something to look at even as they depart for the evening. Just be sure not to spoil the surprise!
Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year is romantic and bold, but could be too much of a statement for some brides and grooms. For an outdoor wedding under a tent like the one we designed in the picture above, a softer shade of the color is the best choice. Mix in some white florals and touches of greenery to complete the look.
Since Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year is blue-based, don’t be afraid to mix in shades of blue with ultra-violet for a super dreamy look. We used this color combination in our Solar Eclipse styled shoot to create a rustic chic and showstopping centerpiece. If you’re looking to combine colors like we did here, keep your glassware and holders simple by using clear pieces with little detail.
If you’re like me though, and Pantone’s Color of the Year also happens to be your favorite color, then go all out for a monochrome bouquet like this one! A bold contrast to a white wedding gown, this combination of purple flowers is perfect for a chic event.
As a wedding planner, I like to see aspects of the overall design in as many places as possible on the big day. Creating a cohesive look is something many brides and grooms struggle with, and it’s not uncommon to run out of ideas. The food served on the wedding day should taste amazing but also be presented well. In this dish created by one of our caterers, the colors of the wedding were incorporated. You can work Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year into your dinner service too!
When working with your catering team, keep your colors and theme in mind. You can use amazing rentals such as the ultra-violet glass charger plate above to really create a chic dining experience.
With a color as strong as ultra-violet, it’s important not to let it overwhelm the wedding decor. If you want to use Pantone’s Color of the Year in your linens, consider something similar to what we did above, and work in another color. The purple table runner is romantic on its own, but when we added the sheer white runner underneath, the look became unique.
If you’re attending a wedding and want to rock Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year, but you’re not sure how long you’ll love ultra-violet, then head over to Rent the Runway. I love using this site because you never have to wear the same dress twice and I can make my selections without leaving the house! I am loving this chic purple dress that retails for over $200 and is available for less than $40! Plus, if you’ve never shopped with them before, enter the code FIRST you can get an additional 20% off!
Rent the Runway is also a great option for bridesmaids’ dresses, especially since no one ever really wears them again. Don’t want your bridesmaids wearing the same gown? Maybe you only have one bridesmaid and want something extra special? This Badgley Mischka gown is stunning and perfect for the bride that wants her girls in the color of the year. With a retail price of close to $700, your bridesmaids will thank you when they don’t have to spend more than $100…especially if they use the code FIRST when making their selection!
When guests receive your wedding invitation, they are getting a sneak peek into the wedding day and what it will look like. Ultra-Violet will make a statement that your wedding day will be chic and fabulous. One of my favorite things about Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year is that it works with gold and silver, so the options are endless. Check out this amazing invitation:
Our friends at Minted have just come out with “All in One” wedding invitations like this one. Perfect for the bride and groom looking to cut down on enclosures, this invitation opens up and gives your guests everything they need. I love the purple tones and how they are softened by the white font and watercolor design. You can find even more options on their website right here!
No matter how you choose to incorporate The 2018 Pantone Color of the Year, the choices are endless. Ultra-Violet is bold and dramatic enough for a swanky New York City wedding, but can be soft and romantic enough for a wedding in the country. We haven’t seen a strong Color of the Year like this for a few years now and I can’t wait to see couples embrace it. How will Ultra-Violet be part of your wedding day? Share in the comments below and inspire other engaged couples!
If you’ve ever been invited to a wedding, at some point in the process you probably received a “Save the Date” card in the mail. That card is sent out before the invitations, roughly 6-8 months prior to the wedding date. Many couples choose to be informal and use one of their engagement photos for the background along with general wedding details. But that’s not the only reason why you totally need an engagement photo session prior to your wedding…
**Please note there are affiliate links within this blog post which means I may receive a small percentage of the price at no additional cost to you. No worries though, as I never endorse anything I don’t absolutely love**
As a wedding planner, I am always encouraging my couples to schedule an engagement session with their wedding photographer. Besides the fact that you’ll receive great photos of the two of you, there are multiple other benefits to consider. There are also things to consider as well as some misconceptions that I am going to share in this blog. If you are engaged and on the fence about setting up an engagement session, not sure about the details or just totally clueless, then read on!
“O what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.”
Those words aren’t exactly the ones that come to mind when you think about a wedding. But this week, there isn’t much else, as a popular Jersey City venue has closed its doors and countless couples have no place to say “I do.” It almost feels like a reality show or something you would see on Netflix…
…..I really wish it was.
Just last week, Battello, a restaurant in Jersey City, reached out to their private event clients via email from their attorney. This email basically said that the space would be closed on September 15, 2017 with the anticipated reopening date being sometime in April 2018. I covered all of the details in a Huffington Post article which I would urge you to read if the team from Battello’s didn’t flag it to death to have it removed. But they have nothing to hide, hence the harassment on my facebook page from the chef’s wife, the flagging of my comments by their marketing director and the endless “no comments” they gave to reporters yesterday…
Whatever, I will repost it here and they can flag off.
Yesterday, Battello closed its doors at 5pm.
Imagine being a bride, showing up to your venue 24 hours before your wedding and knowing that your venue won’t even be open in one month’s time. Now imagine hearing that your wedding won’t be happening either…as you drop off your champagne flutes, cake cutter and server.
What are you going to do?
Then there are the couples that probably breathed a sigh of relief knowing that their wedding was before the anticipated closing date of September 15, 2017. They’re out of luck too now.
My phone rang early Thursday afternoon about the couple getting married there the very next day. I reached out to every venue I could think of and every single venue that I reached out to via email called me back in under 5 minutes. All of them.
As I write this, that displaced couple is having their wedding day. For everyone else, I have taken the time to put together a “directory” of other venues as well as vendors that are willing to help out. For that information, scroll to the end.
After I wrote my Huffington Post article covering last weekend’s events, I was contacted by the media and countless couples with planned weddings at Battello.
The stories are intense.
The couples all seem to have one thing in common: they were not told about the closing of the parking lot and the patio on May 25th. The marketing director for Battello had sent me this letter earlier this week after we discussed the entire situation. But there’s no proof that it was ever sent to the couples. Furthermore, if this letter was sent, then why didn’t any of the couples say anything?
Oh what a tangled web indeed…..
As I mentioned in my Huffington Post article (the one Battello doesn’t want you to see) one of the brides I spoke to was also unaware of this May 25th letter. It was by her own outreach that she found out that the patio and parking lot would be closed. And she didn’t find out until July.
Another couple with a 2017 wedding was also unaware of this May 25th correspondence and spent all of July going back and forth with Battello once they did become aware of the construction on the pier. This couple had a credit card payment charged just 72 hours before Battello’s attorney emailed everyone letting them know about the September 15, 2017 closure.
The daughter of two immigrants and a veteran of two tours in Afghanistan, is another bride now without a venue. She and her fiancé are praying that Battello doesn’t declare bankruptcy because they haven’t received their refund and their wedding is in 2017.
On a twitter account associated with Battello, there is a job listing for a pastry assistant for a new pastry chef. The date? July 28, 2017.
Who knew what and when?
On May 25th they allegedly sent out a letter to couples about the closure of the parking lot and the patio. No one I have spoken to has seen this letter. I haven’t been provided with proof of receipt. Not one couple pulled from Battello or demanded an explanation when the letter was allegedly sent. However, they did start asking questions when they found out on their own in June and July. One of those questions was whether or not to find a new venue.
So, what should I believe? What should the couples believe?
The pier is not structurally sound and needs to be repaired. If couples were given this information back in May, with the option to walk away losing their deposit or stay and roll the dice, Battello would be absolved from all of this. Just as each couple chose Battello for their wedding venue, they should’ve had a choice here. Battello took that away.
That’s the problem.
It’s not about the pier falling apart or the alleged lack of communication from the landlord to Battello about the impending closure. None of the couples need to hear “we didn’t know either” from higher ups at Battello because it doesn’t fix it. You can’t fix this. Money doesn’t fix this. Time, the time you took away, wouldn’t fix this…but it would’ve helped.
As a wedding planner, I am usually on the side of the wedding professionals. For so many reasons that are too long and boring to explain, I tend to side with employees over clients. Believe me when I say that I did my due diligence to get their side and review with a fine tooth comb every last document their marketing team sent to me. I was desperate to find something, anything, to give me the ability to argue both sides.
I came up with nothing.
They didn’t handle this well.
When I interviewed with NBC News yesterday , the Battello pier and surrounding area was hostile. I was told, while sitting on a bench not on their pier, by their security guards, not to take pictures or film anything. Meanwhile, countless pictures have been taken in that exact same spot for years.
Reporters had to rely on the Jersey City Police Department, who allowed them to film off the pier but did not push them to the sidewalk. The second the police left, the Battello folks pushed them to the sidewalk. Someone approached me, claiming he was an investor of Battello, and practically went blue in the face insisting that they all were blindsided by this. That everyone is “really sorry for the couples” but they “didn’t know either.”
They still don’t get it and they never will.
“Your reputation is what others think of you, your character is who you really are. Battello lacks both.” – Former Battello Groom
My cell phone is basically a landline now as it has to stay plugged into my charger with all of the calls and messages I am receiving. Couples worry not only about their wedding details, but what will happen if Battello declares bankruptcy. As much as I would love to use direct quotes, every last bride and groom wants their money back first, because they are terrified they won’t see a dime.
The doors are shut, the staff is gone, and the promises of hearing from anyone inside Battello continues to be empty for every couple I have spoken with.
I was and am still overwhelmed with the support from my industry. The compassion and sense of urgency everyone felt and still feels to help out couples that aren’t even their clients, is amazing. I don’t personally have clients getting married at Battello, but this is what our industry is about.
No one should ever go through this, and below I have listed venues and vendors available to help, as well as contact information. I am putting this together in the hopes that it will be a helpful tool for those searching for a new venue and even new vendors.
From the bottom of my heart, I hope that every last couple will have their wedding day come together and that this will just be a story they can laugh about over holiday gatherings.
…..or one narrated by Morgan Freeman on Netflix.
Venues and Vendors
Please use this list to help you find a new venue and/or new vendors and don’t forget to mention that you are a Battello couple and you found this information on this blog!
Breeze Hill Farm, Long Island, Waterfront, 350 guests max, 2017 and 2018 dates available, 917.821.1201, ask for Kathleen
Greenery is the 2017 Pantone “Color of the Year” and many brides and grooms started using this trend before the announcement was made. But it’s not always easy being greenery. What is there besides table runners? How do you work with the color for a fall wedding? Is there a difference between eucalyptus and seeded eucalyptus?
In this blog, we’ll show you how to use greenery in your wedding décor and design. There are ideas for brides and grooms of every season, and you can pin your favorites for inspiration. Read on to see how to make this trend completely original!
A Gorgeous Greenery Backdrop for the Ceremony
Nothing frames a first kiss better than an amazing backdrop. We were inspired by our bride and groom’s boho forest feeling and worked with a talented florist to hang greenery at the ceremony location. Perfect for an outdoor or indoor wedding, you can use all types of greenery to create this look.
Rustic Initials for a Dreamy Escort Card Table
Perfect for a rustic chic or farm wedding, these initials created in moss were the perfect touch on the escort card table. Who needs fancy linens when you create a greenery piece like this? We also added in pops of color, to really surprise the guests as they picked up their seating cards.
Garland Draped Along the Stairs
What better way to make an entrance, than to walk down a beautiful staircase adorned with greenery touches? We mixed greenery types here to add texture and added pops of blush pink for added romance. Even if you’re not coming down any stairs, this look will definitely give your guests something to talk about!
Romantic Mantle Design
Create an elegant and timeless look with a mantle design and plenty of greenery! A mix of ivy, eucalyptus and hanging amaranthus, created a textured look for this rustic chic wedding we designed at The Ashford Estate. To pull everything together, our florist added flowers that were in the centerpieces for the reception.
Greenery in Glassware
For a unique twist on a big trend, we used green glassware to take these wedding guests by surprise. This tented wedding was full of bold and dark colors, so we couldn’t use clear basic stemware. This little touch was a luxurious statement against wood farm tables and sparkly black runners.
Wedding Cake Greenery Goodness
The wedding cake for this garden wedding included greenery cascading around the entire design. Our bride and groom got married at The New York Botanical Gardens, so we incorporated their flowers in this romantic design. A wedding cake is traditional, but your design doesn’t have to be!
Dramatic Ceiling Designs
At the Market Mixer we designed for The Knot, we wanted to create an upscale and rustic design. We used gold laser cut signage and draped greenery to frame the whole look. These ceiling displays were the perfect contrast against the warehouse where the party was held. Don’t forget to ask your venue if you’re allowed to hang things from the ceiling before you start creating!
Wondering how you can bring the greenery element to the flowers people will see the most at your wedding? These elegant centerpieces incorporated various types of greenery, but also used pops of white. The flowers were delicate and traditional and created an upscale look for this formal wedding.
Unique Table Names with Green Touches
Coordinating with her garden theme, our bride created these table names instead of using standard numbers. We love the added touch of greenery under the names and how she used locations that were meaningful to her and her groom. Even the menus that were tucked in the napkin fold had touches of the greenery we used throughout the wedding design!
Jaw-Dropping Floral Walls
This amazing floral wall was created with boxwood by one of our favorite designers for the Knot Market Mixer. It served as a perfect backdrop for photographs and was something different for guests to talk about. Using laser cut signage pulled the overall look together and complimented the ceiling décor we created!
Whether you’re having a rustic farm wedding or a chic black tie affair, greenery can be used in many different ways. Share in the comments below if you plan on making this trend a part of your big day!
As a wedding planner, I have personally witnessed couples lose their minds so much that eloping sounded like the best idea ever. These meltdows didn’t happen while looking for a venue or the perfect wedding gown though. In fact, that hard stuff is really nothing compared to the endless hours it takes most couples to figure out how to create their wedding day guest list.
Determining a guest list for a wedding is one of the more annoying tasks in life. It’s right up there with filing your taxes and getting your passport renewed. You’d think it would be easy since it’s simply listing people you want to spend time with. But it’s so much more than that.
There are plenty of charts and guides to help you decide which people make the cut, but it’s not just about inviting someone because they invited you to their wedding. Regardless of your invite rules, there will always be exceptions to juggle. Combine that with the people your parents would like to are making you invite, and pretty soon it’s a three ring circus.
But you can avoid flying through the air without a net by eliminating the guests with toxic behavioral traits. In my most recent YouTube vlog seen here, I talk about these guests, so make sure you check that out. Identifying people you know with these horrible traits (and not inviting them) is how to create your guest list for your wedding day. Sadly, sometimes that won’t be possible…
Below are the 10 types of people not to invite to your wedding, and what to do if they show up anyway (because sometimes that happens):
1. The Thunder Stealer
You probably already know the exact person in your life that would not think twice about making your wedding day about them. These are the guests that think nothing of proposing during your reception or taking a pregnancy test in the bathroom and asking your MC to announce the results. Maybe this doesn’t make your skin crawl, but I personally think it’s tacky and would’ve gone full on linebacker had this happened at my own wedding.
While it might not be possible to keep this person off the invite list, you should make sure they aren’t in your wedding party. Nothing makes taking the spotlight away easier than standing next to the people who are in it all day. Assuming they are just a guest, make sure it’s known how you feel about those “bouquet and garter tosses turn wedding proposal” videos you’ve seen.
Then take it one step further and instruct whomever controls the microphone to not allow anyone to use it except for those you know about. In advance.
Oh you’re pregnant? Sorry, can’t hear you.
2. The Guest That Wants You To Fix Everything
This helpless soul makes you wonder how they survive getting through the day. Prior to the wedding, they might ask how they should get a hotel room when the block is full. Meanwhile, it’s full because they procrastinated and missed the cutoff date. During the wedding they could expect you to fix everything from an incorrect food order to your sister’s attitude problem.
There are several ways to prevent having to hold this person’s hand while simultaneously planning and/or enjoying (God Forbid) your wedding day. In the instance of a hotel block, make sure that your RSVP date coincides with the date that the hotel rooms will be released. You can read more about how to do that here in my wedding planning timeline blog.
From not securing their hotel room in the block you set up, to expecting you to handle their super specific vegan, gluten-free, no carbs entrée request, there is nothing they will not ask of you. This is why you make sure that they ask someone else. Discuss, in advance, whom is responsible for handling Aunt Sally’s complaints about everything under the sun.
3. The Photographer
For the life of me, I cannot figure out how wedding guests lose all common sense when it comes to taking pictures at a wedding. I have seen wedding guests turn into Stretch Armstrong and reach across an aisle to take the picture of the couple’s first kiss. Meanwhile, they completely blocked the photographer and now he doesn’t have one of the shots you really wanted.
Thanks Aunt Sally.
It’s impossible to keep these people off your invite list (because it’s everybody), but you can take preventative measures. Consider having an “unplugged” wedding, where guests are asked to not take pictures. If that is too extreme, you should at least do this for your ceremony. You can guide your guests with signage, notes in the program and even announcements made by your officiant and MC.
[tweetshare tweet=”Most importantly, communicate to your guests that no pictures are to be posted onto social media until you and your spouse want them to be.” username=”RothweilerEvent”]This can mean no posting until the reception as long as they use your hashtag, to nothing posted until you get your professional photos back. Guests should respect your wishes here, but they need to know what those wishes are.
4. The Illiterate RSVPer
Somehow, sending back the RSVP card is basically the absolute hardest thing in the world for some people. When you create your guest list, this is a personality that will be tough to avoid. In fact, you probably can already guess which people will fail at RSVPing correctly. Now add 10 more people to that list to even come close to being accurate.
I have seen cards come back without names on them, with additional guests added (up to 5), questions handwritten to the couple and just missing information in general. Everytime I see a response card come back late and/or with missing and/or incorrect information, I am reminded why certain warning labels exist.
Be sure to develop a wedding website where guests can constantly access information and put the web address on your Save The Dates. The invitations should have all of the information needed but be designed in a way that is easy to read. If you’re having a black tie wedding without children, putting that in fine print buried under calligraphy is a great way to get people showing up in jeans with their little ones in tow.
Once you receive the responses, both the late ones and ones missing information, reach out to those people immediately. One week prior to your RSVP date, call every single person that you don’t have a response from yet. You’ll get the inevitable “but the RSVP date isn’t until….” nonsense, but you can’t wait until then to call so just ignore it.
5. The Passive Aggressive Guest
Maybe it’s just me, but nothing makes my head explode more than someone being passive aggressive. I’m a super direct person and it’s challenging to call these people out since their response is frequently “I didn’t mean it like that”.
When you know they did.
A passive aggressive wedding guest will express themselves during your wedding planning by using words like “interesting” to describe your venue, your dress, your everthing. It’s not a negative comment but it’s also not positive and needs to exit stage left from your guest list.
When they aren’t commenting on how interesting everything is, they are side-stepping you by calling your mom to confide in her about how your lack of a “plus one” option has hurt their feelings. They always make sure to preface everything with “don’t tell” while full knowing that it will be told to you. Which, of course, wasn’t their intention…except it was.
If you can’t leave this person off the guest list, you have two options about how to deal with them. You can choose to appease them in their requests delivered third hand through your mom and just let it roll off your back. However, if you know this will start bothering you, anticipate the behavior and let mom (or whomever) know that you expect them to diffuse the situation and not take it you. It is very important that you have a support system while planning your wedding, so ask for one.
6. The Competitor
Know someone that just got married? Do they consider themselves a wedding expert? Are they always reminding you how fabulous their wedding was? Leave them off your wedding guest list.
Look, it’s fine to look back on your wedding day and how perfect it was. However, recent brides (and even some grooms) can take it to Level 11 by giving you a steady stream of unsolicited advice and then backing it up with evidence from their own flawless wedding day. If you’re able to roll your eyes and laugh with your fiance about this, then just ignore it. If not, you can limit your interaction leading up to the wedding day as well as on the actual day of.
On the flip side of that is the bride that offers advice to you based on the mistakes she made that she doesn’t want you to make. I’m a big believer in not giving advice unless it’s asked for, so if this scenario bothers you, speak up. You don’t have to be a mean girl about it either, and a simple “thanks, we’re good so far but will let you know if we need anything” will suffice.
When designing your seating chart (a whole separate type of hell), place this person with people she either knows and that can handle her, or with people she doesn’t know at all. If she is with people she doesn’t know, she might think twice about talking about how fabulous her own wedding was while attending yours.
7a. The Guest That Doesn’t Care Where She Sits (Except She Does)
If you haven’t reached the point in your planning where you are designing your seating chart, it’s not possible for you to imagine how tortorous it can be. Somewhat of a juggling act, you’ll have to contend with people that don’t like each other, people that don’t know each other and people that will be offended if they aren’t sitting near you. Those are just three of the hurdles.
A little different than the passive aggressive wedding guest, this person is only concerned about one thing and it’s where she is sitting. Some of my couples have told me stories of guests asking where they would be sitting before the invitations were even sent out. Presumptious much?
Passively, this guest will tell you that it doesn’t matter one bit what table she is located at, but just in case you were curious, here are 40 places she would prefer not to be. Unlike the next example, she will sit where she is told, but best believe you will know she isn’t happy about it. This is also another reason not to have a receiving line aka an assembly line of complaints passed off as concerns by your guests.
It’s always a good idea to leave whiny brats off your guest list in general. If you find yourself contending with one and stuck in a conversation of where an appropriate seat for her would be, how you react will set the tone going forward. If you can brush it off, just do that and go about your business of wedding planning. If you can’t, depending on your relationship, you can either be upfront with how this discussion is stressing you out or you can use sarcasm and suggest a seat on her couch for the evening.
7b. The Guest That Plays Musical Chairs
While the guest mentioned above has a full understanding of sitting where you’re supposed to sit, this guest is YOLO about the situation. On many occassions, I have been approached by guests that when they walk over to me look like they are going into combat. As I hold the seating chart in my hands during the cocktail hour, many want to know where they are sitting, especially if they can’t find their escort cards.
But then there are those guests that aren’t satisfied with the answer. Instead of looking at the escort board or cards on their own, they usually want to see the list I am holding which shows each table and the names of the guests at each one. Typically, I just ask this guest whom they are looking for, tell them the people at their own table and call it a day.
Whatever the approach, many guests have asked (rather, told) me to switch their seat. It never matters how hard the couple worked to create the seating chart or that it’s their wedding and their call. It also never seems to matter that this could affect the place settings, the food orders, or anything else. They just need to be moved and never tell me why.
Spoiler alert: I have never moved a guest. Ever.
Do not feel pressured to cave to this guest’s immature and unreasonable request. Should they approach you directly or through someone else, you say nothing more than “I will see what I can do.” Then do nothing. The bottom line is, this guest is an adult and they can find ways to avoid the table unless it’s time for dinner by visiting the dance floor or the bar.
Not your circus, not your monkeys.
8. The Really Bad Gift Giver
I’m probably going to catch a lot of flak for this, but let’s go there anyway.
When you are planning your wedding, part of the floor chart for your reception will include the placement of the gift table. This is typically a small table, anywhere from 30-48” (or if you’re a certain bride of mine, 6 feet and she’s lucky I adore her). On this table, you will place a card box/birdcage for guests to place their cards of well wishes.
Typically, this table is near the cake table and sweetheart table, and there is no room for large packages. However, some people think a card and a check is just unacceptable and that you would much prefer a hand cut, 450 pound, crystal Waterford vase that looks like something in your grandmother’s house that she got at her wedding. This box will also come wrapped in really tacky and usually reflective wrapping paper.
Being that the gift table is only available during the reception (usually), there is no opportunity for guests to drop their cards until that time. This means they will carry it with them during the ceremony and the cocktail hour. Envelopes fit easily inside purses and suit pockets. Not so much in the case of the vase that you don’t need.
To avoid watching Aunt Betty (because let’s give Sally a break) walk around with a package that seems so heavy her hips might break, hide all of your wedding registries the day of your bridal shower.
Guests sometimes refer to these registries when they want to actually give you something and when they see they no longer exist one of two things will happen:
They ask your mom (sorry moms) what happened and what to get you. Prepare mom to say something like “they’re all set really/honestly a check will be just fine.” Be prepared to say the exact same thing should you be asked directly. You might still get a gift, but at least you tried to avoid it and hopefully the receipt is included.
They shrug their shoulders and just go the check in card route.
Of course, there is also the option of having a registry for your honeymoon through sites like Honeyfund where guests can purchase excursions and such for you in advance. If you think your guest list is chock full of people that have to buy something because a check is so not personal (like my mother), consider setting up something like this so that everyone’s happy.
9. The Financial Analyst
Weddings are expensive and even though people never like to talk about money, that awkwardness about the subject seems to vaporize when people want to know what you spent on the big day. Whether it’s a direct question or beating around the bush, you will likely have a guest or two want to know what everything cost.
Now, to be fair, many wedding guests want to know what you spent per plate so that they can cover that cost in their gift/check in card. However, with some venues starting at the $200 per person plus plus mark, it’s not likely that information will help as I know of few wedding guests cutting $400 and $500 checks.
For whatever reason, you will be seen as rude if you don’t answer “how much were these flowers?”. There isn’t one good reason to give an answer and you wouldn’t believe how offended some guests get when they found out what you spent. I mean, no one is questioning the amount of money Aunt Sally is spending on her sterling silver collection, so…
Dance around these questions with non-answers. If you’re still planning, then just say that the final bill hasn’t come out yet. Follow it up with a playful, “Why? Do you want to cover it?” That should shut it down moving forward.
When the questions come past the point of knowing what everything costs, say anything but a number. Phrases like “we got such a good deal”, “so much less than we thought” and “I can’t even remember anymore” are good pacifiers. But never ever give a number and remind yourself that it is inappropriate for anyone to ask in the first place.
10. The Drunk
It happens. It’s a wedding. Weddings have open bars (the good ones at least). You can’t keep this person off your guest list, but you can keep the wedding going without being kicked out. Assuming this drunk or the drunks are friendly and not bitter angry drunks that want to smash centerpieces, here are a few preventative measures to take:
Give a head’s up about guests you’re worried about to your venue, the catering staff and anyone handling liquor such as the bartenders. Make sure you understand the shot policy and that they have the right to cut people off, and make sure they know you would like that strongly enforced.
If there isn’t a “no shot” policy, make it one
Don’t service any alcohol prior to your ceremony.
Keep these people out of your wedding party if possible.
Have a strict list of people that are allowed to use the microphone and give a copy to your MC, wedding planner and venue coordinator. No toasts unless you’re on the list.
Ask a few people close to you to keep an eye on anyone you’re worried about and if they see things getting out of control to speak to the coordinators about how to handle the situation.
Designing your guest list can be a nightmare and should be one of the first items on your to-do list. If there are guests you are on the fence about, push them onto a B list or off the list completely. A great group of guests can make or break a wedding day and there are no do-overs. It’s perfectly fine to be cut-throat when making final guest list decisions.
But if you can’t remove everyone you want to, now at least you’ll be able to handle them.
What guests are you worried about attending your wedding? Is there a type that I missed and you want to warn other couples? Need more advice? Leave me a comment and share your stories below!