You’re planning a wedding. And there’s oh so many important decisions to make! One detail such as a place card might not seem like something that is of higher significance now, right? Let me show you that having a unique place card can make your beloved guest feel sooo special. How? Let’s examine how you can make this often-neglected detail a show stopping one.
Place cards are an important part of your wedding stationery plan- they indicate a certain person’s seating spot at the table. But they don’t just do that, trust me on that one! Table plan, flower arrangements, centerpieces, the whole table setting is very important when imagining your wedding reception. But so are the table cards! Every individual guest on your wedding day is unique and plays a huge role in your life- otherwise they wouldn’t be here, is that right? Why don’t you pay tribute to them by making their place card unique & memorable….
And here’s how you can make that possible…
Make a short/sweet personalized note – just a simple “Welcome” in the corner can make a difference. It doesn’t look like an ordinary place card anymore. You can even write person’s nickname, that would be such a personalized touch. It shows that you care about them, not everyone calls you by your nickname that’s for sure! They’ll love it.
Hand written place card – It will definitely take a bunch of time but it’ll be worth it. Imagine if you’re good at calligraphy, how amazing would the letters look like. Either way, it will look as though you left a part of you on that piece of paper/material. Every person has a strong attachment to their name, it is part of their identity. When you write it by hand it shows that you care about your guests. So much so, that you wanted them to see how their name looks like when you personally write it. It will make them feel appreciated and important to you. At least that’s what I would feel like. 😊
Think about your wedding theme – Don’t make the place cards black & white. (I mean by all means do so if it suits your wedding colors/theme). Place cards give you so much room to be creative and fun. If you have a Mediterranean theme wedding and you’re using different greenery- why don’t you incorporate that cute little olive branch into your place card? Or a lavender flower. It creates such an effortless flow into the whole wedding and leaves an impression that you cared about the slightest details. And let’s not forget how great it looks on the photos too!
Different shapes/materials – who said it has to be a rectangle? Be different, do a circle! Just kidding. Think out of the box and make things more memorable and unique! This little place card is such a great opportunity where you can use it and do a subtle “Wow effect”. Why not?
Think out of the box – Let them have a double purpose, make them as a little gift to carry back home from Dubrovnik. Do glass place cards. Do stone place cards. Shells from the beach. Edible place cards. Or drinkable (everyone loves a mini Dubrovnik grappa bottle with their name on it)! Make place cards out of wire. Lemon. Yes, the fruit. Lemon can be a place card. There are really numerous ways how to make this little detail stand out.
I think you got the idea… It is a detail that should not be neglected. Provides so much room to play with. And yet, can make a big difference and be a detail that your guests will talk about many years later. Thank you, dear reader, I wish I could know your name. 🙂
Hey future bride! It’s nice to have you here, seems like you would like to know more about types of chairs that you could have on your Dubrovnik wedding day; good thing you encountered us!
Among all the things necessary for arranging the wedding ceremony/reception setup, chairs hold a significant part in the visual impression of the venue itself. Don’t you think so too?! Unfortunately, chairs, in any shape or form, are often being neglected and looked over. Often times, brides (and grooms) think that chairs represent an additional cost to their budget so they end up not willing to incorporate them in their wedding venue. Most of the hotels in Dubrovnik provide regular covered chairs complimentary while rest of the chairs need to be rented for the big day.
But! (There’s always a but.)
Even though chairs are just a type of furniture, they don’t deserve this type of treatment and lack of hype. Chairs have the ability to lift the entire ambiance and elevate the feel that you have right at the moment when you step into that venue. Maybe you didn’t thought about it, but for example just look at how just their colors significantly impact the entire look/feel of the venue. If you choose to go with lighter/brighter color of the chairs it will give the venue an elegant and airy feel to it. It looks prominent, luxurious, classy and on a whole another level. Whereas darker tones are chosen to emphasize more of a rustic feel to the venue itself. Some Dubrovnik venues, such as Sponza Palace are versatile and any type of chair fits well into the venue and space, while some venues require a specific type of the chairs. Sometimes you don’t need to go over the top with the table arrangement when you have the chairs; chairs will lift up the whole design of the table and add specific touch to the décor. We’ve hopefully caught your attention and made you think of incorporating unique looking chairs on your wedding day too. It may demand for an extra ‘space’ in your budget but we definitely think it’s worth it in the end. To balance it all out, you are able to save on some other aspects of the wedding day preparations.
We have decided to have four types of chairs in our offer that you could rent on your most special day. Having any of these four will make your wedding photos most definitely stand out! (You’ll thank us afterwards 🙂 )
Louis chair – antique looking, timeless, woven back, leaving you with very French and posh vibes. Very classy and elegant, great fit for traditional as well as modern types of weddings. It holds a lot of character, versatility so they could be beautifully incorporated to any setting that you choose.
Chiavari chair – They’re named after a small town in Italy. See, we’ve mentioned France, then Italy, we’re already travelling and it’s not even your wedding yet! Italians are being known for their distinct taste and fashion sense. They also haven’t made a mistake with chairs. They have a simple design, are lightweight and probably remind you of bamboo tree joints. These chairs became prevalent after being seen at Jackie and John Kennedy’s wedding. Chiavari chairs are the most popular chairs mostly because they fit with any and every wedding theme – you name it, they’ll fit into it!
Cross back chairs – could be used in both rustic and elegant settings. It leaves an overall impression of warmth as well as formality. Just one additional tip: these chairs could be mixed with Louis chairs for a unique looking venue. We think it is very creative and will definitely make your wedding guests glance at them more than once!
Chameleon chair – These chairs are something new and fresh on the wedding charts. Very appealing, modern and stylish. Interesting design for sure. Could be a great fit for your special day plans!
We’ve hopefully proven to you that a chair could be much more than just a piece of furniture; it could bring your wedding to the next level. After all, you’re not getting married every day! Don’t be afraid to stand out, even with the simple use of chairs.
1. Dubrovnik’s beauty has long been inspirationally known and world renowned, even the famous poet Bernard Shaw said it himself: “Those who seek Paradise on Earth, must come to Dubrovnik”. This says it all and surely you will know what he meant once you visit and experience the picturesque sites this amazing city has to offer. You will be enchanted by its clear blue sea, pristine beaches, hospitality of the locals and that familiar feeling like you are at home, at a first glance. You will always want to come back to it.
2. Dubrovnik is also known under its alias “Pearl of the Adriatic”, as it truly offers you and your wedding guests absolutely anything you may need and want while leaving you without breath with its natural beauties, rich history, culture and romantic alleys. It has been a vacation getaway location for many celebrities including Beyonce, Paris Hilton, Tom Cruise, Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, Mickey Rourke, Nick Nolte, Steve Buschemi and Roger Moore, to name a few.
3. Today, you can directly fly to Dubrovnik for your wedding from most European and world cities, including New York from 2011! You can also fly to Dubrovnik’s local airport from England, Ireland, Germany, Russia, Italy, France, Spain, Turkey, Switzerland and Austria, to name a few. This definitely saves a lot of time and money for your guests, making it convenient, easy and even more desirable as a destination wedding location.
4. UNESCO has placed Dubrovnik and its famous city walls in 1979 as a city under their protection due to its incredibly rich cultural and historical heritage and the preservation of the mentioned. You will surely have lots to do around here- from learning about our rich history and culture, to, for some more fun stuff, such as paragliding, water sports, diving, kayaking, or simply sun bathing with an occasional swim in the clear blue sea. And you wont even have to look very closely to see the fish swimming around you- the sea is just that clear!
5. While walking through streets of Dubrovnik, you will be able to pick a lemon for your morning freshly squeezed lemonade, a tangerine to have for breakfast, some pomegranate for snacking fresh and healthy at the beach; and pretty much wherever you go- to a local tavern or your private accommodation Bed and Breakfast, you are most likely to be served mostly homemade and home grown produce. Croatians take pride in this so enjoy the organic fruit and vegetables at your hand’s reach.
6. Dubrovnik has 2554 sunny hours per year in average. looking for a sunny destination wedding location? You can’t beat that!
7. Dubrovnik has been a host to Dubrovnik Summer Festival for over 60 years- concerts under the stary skies, theatrical plays in most amazing lcoations you can imagine and medieval costumed festival on each cobbed corner! Your guests will have loads of options to choose from on their list of “what to do while in Dubrovnik”.
8. Dubrovnik’s accommodation and restaurant/bar offer reached an enviable assortment of all different kinds and categories of the properties, so you can stay and offer your guests to indulge at a 5 star hotel overlooking the famous Dubrovnik’s city walls while enjoying a relaxing massage with a glass of champagne, or enjoy the authenticity in one of the local B&Bs in the Old Town up in the cobbled streets. Or maybe a Villa with a pool for your guests, there are loads to choose from! Whatever their budget and preferences are, we assure you Dubrovnik has it all. And when it comes to dining and wining in Dubrovnik, you are in for a treat! We will happily send you a list of must visit places to taste the very best of Dubrovnik.
9. Your guests will be happy to visit a place for your wedding week where they will be able to make a vacation out of it- there is a bit for everyone’s tastes in this beautiful city. Also, Montenegro is half hour away and Medjugorje is only 2 hours away if your family wishes to do a pilgrimage trip.
10. After a couple of days walking through Dubrovnik streets and visiting local bars, you will feel like home, already getting exciting at the thought of coming back, and you will leave with so many beautiful memories and locals’ contacts who will truly be in touch with you for years to come. Indeed, Dubrovnik is a very special place for Your very special day.
Luxury. That attractive word that has slipped into every pore of our lives – and found a way to slip into weddings as well. At the last year’s congress where about two hundred exclusive event planners from all over the world gathered, every workshop and every panel had a common phrase – luxury. There was so much talk about luxury in weddings that I was a little tired of that word if you will be honest. On the other hand, I’ve met colleagues who don’t talk to clients at all if their wedding budget is under a million dollars. And that’s what they say without blink of an eye. One of these same colleagues recently organized a wedding for the sister of a Qatari sheikh, and although we were unable to find out the budget itself (this is highly confidential information at these levels), we saw a five-minute video showing the lapse of building a 15,000-square-foot village that lasted six months and the results of that project was a wedding dinner on the glass floor while a cold river flowed beneath the guests- which in hot sandy Qatar was an inconceivable challenge for the planner and an absolute attraction for guests who are incredibly hard to impress. The walls were surrounded by jewels and with literally tens of thousands white orchids while guests were served filtered gold water with gold particles. Well, we could definitely call that a luxury wedding!
After all – what does a luxury wedding mean and what does it have to have in order to be considered as a luxury? There are as many answers to this question as there are people in the world – because for each of us, luxury is something different and just like beauty, in the eyes of the beholder. This definitely does not simplify things for us, but we are going to think the most general we can, Truth or Lie, and try to figure out the characteristics of luxury weddings.
Truth or Lie?
For a wedding to be luxurious, it must also be extremely expensive. To be honest -true. By some international standards, if we are not talking about hundreds of thousands of euros, a wedding is not categorized as a luxury. With this, we close the topic of the expected. Let’s go into a little detail now ….
At luxury weddings flowers must be at every corner, to say it in the simplest way. I dare to say – a lie. Although, if you type “luxury wedding” into Pinterest, you will get hundreds of pictures with floral installations that give you a headache, but a bunch of flowers does not necessarily mean luxury. Of course, at most lavish weddings you will have incredible amounts of flowers at every corner, including toilet décor to emphasize luxury, but I would say more attention is paid to details in the décor, such as silk, hand-drawn tablecloths specially ordered and designed by Japan conceptual artist from which Donatella Versace orders silk for her brand. That’s the luxury at a wedding. The point is not that it costs unimaginable lot that is for us, ordinary human beings, out of the budget, but the point is that it is difficult to obtain and has a story to tell.
A luxury wedding is mostly held in unusual, exclusive and preferably unique location. A hundred times true! By default, such locations cost a lot, but the point is that it is “hard-to-get” – by no means hotel, possibly a palace where no one has managed to get married so far (I’m just waiting to see when we will have our first space wedding and how that wedding dress will look!) and preferably a private island where each guest has their own villa with a butler. The trend of weddings, which has been popular for the last few years where newlyweds rent a whole cruise ship where each guest has two cabins – one for sleeping and staying and the other for luggage is now a slight passé, not to say shabby because it is a wedding which you will have to set aside several million euros. The point is to be first and original. This is, in the circles of the real rich, the definition of luxury.
At luxury weddings, guests are provided with an experience or service that they would not normally imagine at a wedding. Absolutely true! Anyone can have fireworks or lobster on the menu. I will also give you an example. Recently, one of my former clients was at a five-day wedding in Mallorca, where every morning, together with the breakfast of a king, they had a pagoda in which nurses from a private clinic gave a cocktail infusion of electrolytes and vitamins that eliminate hangovers in 15 minutes so guests may continue to party. I’m telling you most seriously. Well, it’s a luxury at a wedding.
At celebrities and other luxury weddings, privacy is valued above everything else. Absolutely true! The trend of taking a mobile phone at the entrance to a wedding ceremony and returning it only on departure has become more and more present at luxury weddings. Yes, there will be a time when the newlyweds will post pictures of their special day, but on the wedding day itself they want their guests to relax and have fun without scrolling and posting. And do you know who will be most grateful for 10 hours without a cell phone? Those same guests. It’s a luxury.
I could write to you about luxury at weddings until tomorrow. But the point is that luxury is a very relative term, so those from high society will consider, for example, a menu with organically grown meat and home-grown vegetables very luxurious because it is “hard to get” for them, while for us it is completely normal. So, don’t bother too much with the definitions of luxury in wedding – you can bring a touch of luxury with personalized gifts, top Croatian wines and a slightly different menu. And I don’t mean grilled steak or shrimp – few years ago, for one of my richest clients with the very exclusive venue we served – a hamburger and French fries for a dinner. All the food was homemade and organic, that was the only requirement. So now you say- who’s crazy here?
I know I know, you’ll say – I am getting married for the first time, how do you expect me to do everything perfectly right away?
I don’t know about you, but Pinterest doesn’t help. It’s just all over the place. And all those gazillion options. It’s easy to forget why we’re doing this at all! Ah, yes! Love, the crown of a relationship between two people. But even the most organized among us get lost someday. There are too many choices, too many expectations. Things are actually very simple and don’t forget the important thing – you’re marrying the man of your life. The One. Everything else is like a bow on the gift box. They may be used, but not necessarily.
So, let’s start! Read this through and learn on other people’s mistakes.
1. You don’t put your and your fiancé’s priorities first. Wait, whose wedding is it anyway? So, who should decide then? And don’t let yourself get lost right away, set a guiding thought that will be your main wedding planning direction. When you have a direction, it’s easy to go forward.
2. You forget about your guests. Not literally, but if you expect your dear wedding guests to walk around the grass gardens or sand in suits and heels at 35 degrees Celsius in the shade just for the sake of that perfect photo you saw at someone else’s wedding, you are not being a very considerate host, are you? Or that they will walk from location to location all day because you couldn’t decide between the three options, so you opted to spend part of the day with the whole wedding party at all three locations. Think about the comfort of your guests – they are there for you and they have invested both time and money to share your wonderful day with you in the best possible way.
3. Buying a wedding dress before choosing a date. Need I say more? A light silk dress at -15°C or a luxurious multi layered crinoline with a bolero at plus 40°C? Not ideal, is it? Plan! That’s why it’s called wedding planning. A wedding dress is one of the most essential elements of your wedding. You will be in it all day, walking, dancing, sitting and eating. Trust me, you better be comfortable with it. Otherwise, you’ll curse it and the day you chose it before the main course is presented on the table.
4. You forget planning /ordering food for the people working on your wedding. What are you like when you are hungry? Guess what? Your photographer, who’s been with you since dawn and hasn’t had a bite since is like that as well. And that singer too that has been rehearsing and doing sound checks all day. Nobody is happy when they’re hungry. That’s why a word Hangry came in, perfectly suited! And if you want to be happy that day, trust me they have to be happy too. Feed them for God’s sakes! Arrange in advance a table for the people working at your wedding – the planner if you have one, the band / DJ, the photographer and the cameraman are usually at the “staff” table. Musicians from a ceremony, for example, or a florist are not standard on that team.
5. You have all your single friends at one table. You are not fair, point. Sort people according to common interests, hobbies, similar jobs, but forget on relationship status and table for ‘singles’.
6. Power of paper is always underrated. Yes, paper. I know everything is digital these days, but a handwritten thank you note, guest names or a menu that you can frame in super cool picture frames and put on the table as a decoration are priceless. You don’t have to go so far to scribble something with an ordinary pen, consult with professional calligraphers, include your design and theme and enjoy. Old school never goes out of fashion! Especially when it comes to personalized details. And if you use recycled materials, you’re being natured friendly too 🙂 .
7. You go OTT with the decoration. I know I know, there is so much around and so much of it is just pure beautiful! Trust me I know! But that doesn’t mean you have to have all- both metal lanterns and those hanging Chinese paper and old school bulbs and Edison bulbs and shabby chic picture frame and modern photo booth- I’ll say it again- set a theme and stick to it- the golden rule of wedding planning- it saves not only time but also money. And for God’s sake, make sure that the people at the table see each other from that splendor of flowers. There is nothing worse than when you spend all that huge money on a table decoration and good old Uncle Frank, visibly annoyed because he can’t talk to his neighbor Joe, puts your magnificent decoration on the floor. Or worse, under the table.
8. DIY takes you over. I know it’s a tempting idea to make flowers with friends and ask a cousin who handles his Iphone camera well to do some shots, but hey – it’s not a random birthday or a house party, it’s probably the most important day of your life so far when a) you want to be relaxed and know that you have booked professionals to do the job properly and b) you do not have time to tie the laces and buy additional ribbons for bouquets / vases and so on. A good florist can be paid, your precious time and a calm head do not.
9. Exaggerate with spray tan and / or makeup. I have seen this too many times. Yes, you definitely want to be at your best on your wedding day, but you also want to stay true to yourself and want your future husband standing at the end of the altar when you enter the church recognize you. And you don’t want to laugh at yourself 20 years from today when you look at the pictures and say to yourself – good God, what did I mean when I even walked out of a room like this! Beige lipstick is not the happiest solution, in the pictures especially, but don’t overdo it with tribal colors on your face either.
10. You leave the “small things” to do on your wedding day. For example, printing guest names on cards. Or typing menus. Or assembling a cake box. You need to get married on your wedding day. Wake up, smile and tell yourself- today is my day! Do all the work before the wedding day, the day before go through all the details once again with your godfather / mother / sister to make sure that everything is under control, and on the day you get married – enjoy, you deserve it!
The third question I ask all my new wedding clients, after I ask them where they met and how they got engaged, is the one related to their wedding priorities. Everyone has their own – for some it is décor and flowers, for some it is cars in which the bride will come, for some it is music and for others it is lighting. I remember exactly when I got married and made a list of priorities for our wedding, food and wine automatically took first place unquestionably, a couple of spears ahead of everything else. For my wedding bouquet, for example, the florist was horrified when I told her to just grab everything from that bucket with the rest of the daisies and wrap it with rope. And the bouquet was perfect!
But for food, eh it was already another pair of sleeves. The owner of the restaurant in a rural household where our wedding dinner was held, said that only after our wedding he can take his vacation! And he took our wedding menu extremely seriously 😊, which we tried four times! Yes, you read that right, four times, and we don’t even live in the city where we got married. Even today, many years after that very happy day, when I remember food, there’s not the slightest detail I would change.
Given that my two passions are weddings and food, today we’re going to chat about a few tips on how to create an ideal wedding menu. So, let’s go!
1. TIMING – It is never too early to start organizing a wedding. Do you have a date? Make sure that even your most important suppliers, those at the top of your wedding priorities list, are booked a maximum of one month after the engagement, even if you plan to have a wedding in the next two years. The location and catering company must be determined at this stage. As well as (of course) a photographer, band / DJ and decorator and definitely additional locations if you are planning to have a day before and/or day after the wedding. It didn’t happen once that we changed the wedding date because the priority supplier was busy. Therefore, get to work – the sooner the better! When vendors are confirmed, then you have some time to relax. 😊
2. LOCATION – with the location, things get complicated immediately, but still at solvable levels. You love a restaurant but not their food, or vice versa – a place with your favorite food also looks like a slightly better fire station? There is a possibility to have the best of both worlds and it is to have a wedding in a location where you’ll be allowed to bring your own catering or at least, chef per your choice. In Croatia, these concepts are still in their infancy, but they are developing slowly and safely. Good chefs are more and more willing to work with restaurants where they are not employed and restaurants are flexible to bring a part of the team, so they together make a menu from your vision. And if none of that is really feasible and the location is fixed with your team, do it like me – try the menu until you bring it to perfection, but always stay realistic! Don’t expect or force a team of chefs in a rural household to make emulsions and foams. The wedding should be harmonious, and here the balance of food and location is extremely important.
3. BUDGET– a good old, ever-present issue of money. Do your homework and gather as many offers as possible from various locations to have a clear picture of the market and the prices of wedding menus. Be realistic, how much can you set aside from the wedding budget for food? And calculate that you will spend on average at least 10% more on everything related to weddings, including food. Almost never less. If food is your priority, and the menu you like costs more than you can afford with the current guest list, reduce the number of guests! The perfect excuse for your wedding to be exactly as you have always dreamed of it – with really your loved ones (ok, and mother-in-law, you can’t help but invite her to the wedding 😉 ).
4. SERVICE STYLE– everyone has a ready answer to this question- served menu or buffet option? What is your choice? Why not a combination? People love dynamics in food. For example, a buffet with homemade prosciutto, Pag cheese, vegetable fritters and a lot of condiments such as olives, spreads and sauces, various cakes and crackers while guests mingle and enjoy the evening in front of the restaurant, then 2 served courses (ideally warm) and finally dessert at the buffet. Midnight buffet with mini burgers and barbecue sausages with warm bread also at a couple of stations. And you covered everything! Unless, of course, you have imagined a wedding very formal, without too much dancing, then treat your guests with seven course menu . This is ideal for smaller weddings, say up to 30 people, when the emphasis is on hanging out at the table rather than having fun. There is a solution for everyone 😊
5. SIMPLICITY IS THE KEY – even if your chosen menu is one with a few buffet stations or with seven courses, believe me when I tell you that simplicity is the key and for a very simple reason- people are very sensitive when it comes to food. So, shoot to the simple, universal and diverse. Don’t complicate but also don’t repeat the foods on the menu. Choose the battles that matter to you! If you really want the most perfect macaron cake in seventy-three colors instead of the standard chocolate with whipped cream, then compromise with your parents and let it be prosciutto and cheese as an appetizer. After all, it is both simple and universal and very acceptable to most. Just let the food be top quality and you’ve scored!
6. YOU WILL NEVER PLEASE EVERYONE WITH YOUR CHOICE – related to item number 5, know that you will never, but never, delight everyone. You may think you would, but it is simply impossible. Unless you’re just the two of you at dinner (which, now that you’re reading all this, you probably think it’s not a bad option 😀 ), there will always be someone who won’t be pleased, and that’s just fine! Accept it from the beginning as something that goes “by default” and don’t get provoked.
7. KEEP VEGETARIANS AND OTHER ‘TEAMS’ IN MIND – good old saying says- everyone knows best for themselves! Don’t judge, be those cool friends who will make sure that people with special dietary requirements are well taken care of, so much so that (and believe me when I tell you this!), after your wedding, they will walk around and talk about how well you have taken care of them. And that’s such a cool thing.
8. CHOOSE LOCALLY AND SEASONALLY– especially when it comes to fruits and vegetables- you don’t want to be served a Caprese salad at your January wedding, do you? Talk to the chef of your catering company or restaurant and don’t be afraid to ask where they get fresh groceries from, including meat. After all, it’s about your wedding, which is very likely only once in a lifetime and you absolutely want to know not only what you will pay for, but exactly what you and your guests will eat. To the last detail. And then include that in the written menu on the tables – for example Drniš prosciutto, Pag cheese or Baranja kulen – people love such things and at the same time you promote the most delicious delicacies of Croatia. Food experience guaranteed!
9. HEALTH IN FRONT OF EVERYTHING– yes, we know that sushi station with a Japanese master who throws knives is a big hit at events, but are you sure you want to serve raw fish at your summer wedding? Leave those extravagances for a hen or stag party, and for your wedding menu think carefully about food preparation techniques and whether there is any and the slightest possibility of poisoning. Remember that wedding when two hundred people became infected with salmonella? You remember. Me too. And everyone else probably. You don’t want to be a part of that statistic.
10. TRY YOUR MENU until you are completely satisfied. And don’t settle for mediocrity or excuses that something is now unavailable or out of season- there are ways to make things right if you try, we all know that. You are their clients and you have the right to try your wedding menu to the last detail. If you choose the buffet option, have them show you pictures of their previous performances and ask them to make the presentation as authentic as possible to what you liked about the pictures. Also if you have chosen the served menu, there is absolutely no reason why the presentation of each of the plates would be any different from the one at the wedding itself. Make sure that the menu tasting setup is identical to the one that will be set up for you and your guests at the wedding reception itself. And don’t be afraid to try more things – that’s what tastings are for- to find the best option that you will be satisfied with, the guests will be delighted and the restaurant is sure that it can execute with perfection.
I rarely write such general posts but I really felt it was time to do one… Trends, what a big words, isn’t it? But whether we want it or not, we follow them, some of them of course and perhaps we set some too! In weddings however, you can see same paatterns and trends taking place worldwide! So let me tell you some of them that are expecting us in 2020- and by all means do write more if you think of them or know of them 🙂
1. Let’s start with an official one and quite big on the chart of wedding priorities- color of the year! After last year’s vivid living coal (which wasnt an easy one on floral choices let me tell you that!), this year Pantone went for- wait for it…. CLASSIC BLUE! You may find it dull for a wedding, but there is a lot you can do with this color when it comes to matching and pairing. Think gold (like in below photos of a stunning wedding we did in Dubrovnik’s Art Gallery a couple of years ago), magenta or simply white. And let’s not forget using it in fabrics such as groom’s and his ushers’ suits or even bridesmaids dresses!
2. Sustainability- that’s a tough one but definitely one we have been seen much more awareness for in the past few years. Couples are more and more thinking of the carbon footprint vendors are leaving in creating their events and usage of plastic at weddings as well as where all the food and ingredients are coming from! Think flowers too- reusing and recycling is the way to go- many couples are asking what happens to all the decor after the lights are turned off or take the flowers from the wedding to decorate their day after venue. The truth is- many local vendors don’t have proper sustainability practices in place, but the awareness is rising, make sure of that. And keep in mind that Croatia and its people value their nature above all so it’s a place where environmentally friendly has always been in trend!
3. Special food stations with an accent on local and personalized- ok this has really always been a trend, more or less! But we have seen more and more couples wanting to do something different and personalize to the best extent possible so their guests recognize them in the little things throughout the wedding. A few years ago we had a bride who ate popcorn every night she’d come home from work. Of course we brought a popcorn machine to her fortress wedding (the guy who had to bring it up 200 steps wasn’t so thrilled about it :D) and served popcorn in personalized carton boxes. Everyone LOVED LOVED LOVED it! Moreso, think prosciutto carving stations, local cake making station, grappas or olive oil as favors and local fish sushi making stations. Yup, we got them all!
4. Specialty Liquor Bars- ok this is a big one! We have seen weddings where clients asked for cocktail barmen but mixology is a whole new level lately! And cigars of course- last year we did an event with Cuban theme and had a station with a uban guy rolling cigars for the guests in front of their very eyes. Pretty cool, huh? Proper glassware and garnishes are a must too! Most popular in our experience have shown to be whiskey and tequila bars but cocktails are still trending. Basically, whatever does it for you! And your guests, of course 🙂
5. Videography. Yes, the time of your uncle videoing with his shaky hands is done and so is the time where your friend film the most important moments of your life to date by their very good Iphone camera. It’s become a part of any decent wedding, video that is and the only job you have to do is find the right team to film your special day. And please don’t mention those times when videographers stood with a camera in your face- yes those times are past tense as well- video teams are nowadays equipped with state of art tehnology, drones, tinies mics you can imagine and very artistic talents. So don’t wait up, email us about the video options! You’ll be sorry later if you don’t!
6. Destination weddings in locations that are still hidden gems :)- and yes, this is where Dubrovnik and whole of Croatia comes in! Don’t wait up! Email us for more info!
Let’s face it- we all want to make sure we get the best value for the money. Be it in home decor, shoe shopping or wedding planning.
When it comes to wedding budgeting, all of us, including us as wedding planners, first think of the big items- food and beverage, wedding administration costs, music, photo and video and similar big items. But we also all know the devil is in the detail 🙂 Here are the most commonly forgotten wedding costs, and honestly- most of you will have most of these, so be prepared and don’t say I didn’t tell you 🙂
1. BEAUTY TREATMENTS– yes, you’re thinking of your own hair and makeup, maybe even same for your bridesmaids, but did you forget your mum or even worse- your mother in law to be? Make no mistake, in my experience, in 99% of the cases they expect to be a part of the bridal party. But these are not the only costs I am referring to- how about spray tan? Manicure and pedicure? A massage to relax the day before the wedding? When you’re planning a wedding in initial stages these seem needless, but I assure you in a lot of occasions at least some of these will be booked in final stages of your wedding planning.
2. OUTFITS FOR THE DAY BEFORE AND DAY AFTER EVENTS– of course her Majesty Wedding Dress holds a pedestal, but have you forgotten you will be a Bride on all of these events? I suggest you go with white on all of the events, after all you are the Bride! A cocktail dress for the night before and a casual beach dress for the brunch/BBQ day after. Don’t go overboard, but do plan on this cost. And don’t forget the shoes!
3. WEDDING STATIONERY (not thinking of invites here! 🙂– when you think of paper stuff needed for your wedding, invites first come to mind along with maybe save the date cards and RSVPs. Though technology has taken over a lot of wedding segments and more and more couples are opting for wedding websites and wedding apps, I do have a feeling stationery will never go out of fashion. Especially the non planned items such as place cards, seating plans, welcome signs, menus and different signs you want to place throughout the wedding in the same theme. I suggest you use the same designer for all of your planned stationery and I suggest s/he does it all! This is one of the prettiest personalization wedding segments and it is definitely noticeable, I can assure you of this. Then simply email it to your planner for print locally or have it printed at home if you want to make sure the print and paper is exactly what you had in mind.
4. CEREMONY SOUND SYSTEM– yes, your planner booked a lovely string duo to play for your charming garden wedding in Dubrovnik. You love the fact there is a hushing sound of the waves in the background too. And the humming sound of the trees, with a few birds singing only for you. If you have over 30 people I strongly suggest you rent the PA for the outdoor wedding ceremonies. Yes, the officiate is likely to be loud enough, but do you really want to yell out your vows while so gracious and elegant, on the most special moment in your life? And your cousin who you selected to do a reading is not all that open to public speaking and without a mic is probably going to be heard solely by the two of you. Take my advice, those couple of hundred Euros will be well worth it, I guarantee you that!
5. HOTEL ROOM FOR THE NIGHT BEFORE– you are so proud of yourself as you are so well organized- you booked your hotel for your wedding, before the wedding and honeymoon too months in advance. Did you think about the fact that you and your soon to be husband will want to spend the night before the wedding separately and that it makes sense he stays in the accommodation that is booked for the wedding week while you book a room in a hotel where you’ll be getting ready in to make things easier on yourself? You didn’t? No worries, most brides don’t. Book this room now, and don’t forget to ask from your wedding planner to put a note in the reservation system not to move you from this room or to have a late check out. Details like this can save the day, trust me on this one!
6. FEEDING YOUR VENDORS– being one of those vendors myself, I am obviously subjective when it comes to this subject. Providing a small meal that rarely costs more than 20€ per person in most venues is a token of appreciation for the wedding staff that spent most of their day with you. And yes, they are working and getting paid, but supplying them with a small meal is the least you can do. I assure you it goes a long way! P.S. Don’t raise the subject of covering a meal for the band or the DJ, these guys are setting up in the direct sun in the peak of the summer since early afternoon and doing sound checks and most of the time take a shower in the hotel changing rooms. Do feed them, you don’t want hungry /read cranky/ vendors at your wedding, do you? 🙂
7. GIFTS FOR YOUR PARENTS– you think you thought of everything? There’s always something left, I guarantee you that :). Of all the items ever in wedding planning, I would say this one gets forgotten the most. Only God knows how many times I called our florist to create two bouquets for mothers in less than 10 minutes as the speech is starting and this little detail went forgotten. I even had cases where the couple had presents for parents but never gave them out during the speech and left them in reception room under the table. Housekeepers found some lovely gifts ;)To keep it short- DO NOT forget your parents. Yes, they are happiest for you on that day and they don’t need a present but a small memorabilia from this most special day will be more than welcome. And do go with something more lasting than flowers. Ask your wedding planner for local present ideas, I have no doubts they will be happy to help!
8. BREAKFAST, LUNCH AND DRINKS FOR YOUR WEDDING PARTY– you’d be surprised at the importance of this. I refer to the above in feeding vendors, same goes with bridal party- have them fed and well hydrated, sparked up with some champagne or prosecco at least. It’s a morning you will never forget, make it memorable for your ladies of honor too, it’s your choice they are there with you, don’t have them running to the bakery minutes before ceremony. I have seen it happen and nobody’s happy. And it’s so easily prevented! If you’re in a hotel, email in advance so it’s one thing less to think on the wedding day, and order some fruit platters and non bloating breakfast items in the morning (eggs and bacon work too!) with some fizz and about 1 hour before the time you put the dress on order some fries, they wont bloat you but will comfort you when you will need it. And everyone else around you too: )
9. EXTRA DECOR– nobody plans for this from the beginning. Not because it is omitted on purpose but because the extra decor such as lighting, balloons, charger plates, chandeliers, different chairs than what the venue has, festoons over the dance floor, lanterns dotted around the venue, fairy lights around the trees and similar items are something that is added once the whole concept of the wedding is finalized. And trust me, it can be a significant cost. I suggest you plan on extra money for decor just in case. It is quite likely you will have one of these beautiful mood setters. And if you ask me- they’re worth every penny!
10. INCLUDING YOURSELF IN THE FINAL HEAD COUNT– it is utterly unbelievable how many couples (including me at the time of my wedding!) forget to count themselves in the final head count. It adds up easily trust me, a canape here, a glass of champagne there….My suggestion- put yourselves first in all of the lists. As a positive RSVP of course 🙂
That’s it folks! I am sure there is more, but these are in my 12 year long experience 10 items most often forgotten to be planned for. And the costs do add up, we all know that. What we also know is that it’s not about the cost but the feeling, the emotion and the memory. Still, it feels good not to save on your honeymoon because you forget items 3,7 and 9 🙂 Happy Planning!
This last couple of weeks I have witnesses a few occasions where a couple’s wedding vision and the whole special day were compromised to a great extent due to the fact they had no reliable local contact to ensure all of their wedding vendor communication is indeed agreed upon and set in stone. I couldn’t help but think: see, this is exactly why one needs to hire a wedding planner, especially for a wedding abroad. the questions is- how to find a reliable one, that will indeed work in your best interests and ensure your dreamed of day truly goes as a day of your dreams?
We give you a few tips how to know the professional you hire is indeed an expert professional wedding planner:
1. RECOMMENDATION is the most obvious way to find out if your wedding planner is any good- look for testimonials from other couples and maybe even vendors. Other people’s experiences with the person you are looking to hire to plan the most important day of your lives will help a lot in making this decision. Don’t ask for reference letters only, but contact details of couples as well, especially those who have had similar wedding to what you have envisioned. It will also help get an idea of what they thought of these choices and how the planner contributed to the whole day.
2. SAMPLES OF PREVIOUS WORK- we all know that any craft is crafted and perfected with practice, so is the wedding planning. Ask for a brief history of the planner’s company, how many weddings they have done up to date and pictures of previous weddings. Ideally, if you are asking for references, your planner will supply you with a couple of contacts from each of the previous 3 years of business at least. Also, ask for photos and maybe even videos of weddings that have a similar concept to your own to see the closest picture possible.
3. PROFESSIONALISM, INVOICING AND CONTRACTING- your planner should clearly explain you how the payment and contracting procedure takes place for your wedding and draft you a contract proposal immediately after your date confirmation, outlining all agreed upon segments, cancellation policy, their fee structure and explanation of potential costs that are upcoming. You should also expect from your planner to issue you another annex to the contract closer to the wedding with every single detail agreed for your wedding with all prices and fees agreed upon, leaving no space for misunderstandings or unpleasant surprises. Make sure you check with your planner any potentially unexpected costs at the initial stages and if they would increase their fees if your guestlist goes up or the scope of their work goes wider. Finally you need to expect to receive a receipt for each deposit you make as well as final invoice for your wedding, outlining each and every item of your wedding.
4. THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING LOCAL can never be stressed out enough. Local people look after each other and will always have a better relationship with local vendors than a foreigner will, and as much as we say this shouldn’t be true, this is an unwritten rule and there are rarely exceptions. By hiring a local wedding planner you will ensure there are no miscommunications either as you wouldn’t appreciate the fact that your flowers came purple instead of pink due to the language barrier. Finally, a local will know and feel the region, venues, possibilities, capacities and “hidden” vendors better than anyone else.
5. THE FEELING OF TRUST that you won’t miss when you meet your true bound wedding planner. Your personalities will match and compliment each other and you will simply feel like that’s the right person to entrust this important role. Everything about Your wedding should have the right and good feel to it, as does your Wedding Planner. They will become your best friend over the coming period whom you will be in touch with more than with anyone else probably, so it has to be a person you feel comfortable with -sharing your thoughts, feelings and asking any questions that pop your mind. Your true wedding planner will know exactly how to calm you down when needed or nudge you into being proactive if you are not. Your true wedding planner will make you feel at ease at any step along the way and will indeed plan and make your dream wedding day your reality.
Dubrovnik Event wishes you happy planning!
If you would like Ines & Marin of Dubrovnik Event to be your wedding planners, for your personalized wedding offer please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info about us and more pictures please visit dubrovnikevent.com