The Fun in Outdoor Weddings

With Spring knocking at the door, and the itch to get outside, I thought I’d write about outdoor weddings. Outdoor weddings are a ton of fun when they are properly planned. A common misconception with outdoor weddings, is that they are automatically cheaper. Not true. Not true at all. While a backyard wedding can definitely save costs, not all outdoor weddings are created equal.

Whether it’s a small backyard wedding or great big garden wedding, not many places can provide the atmosphere and beauty that the great outdoors offers. Have you seen The Wedding Planner? “I’m envisioning an outdoor wedding, botanical gardens with a white silk tent thin enough to see the stars. candle light. Wedgewood. Exotic trees imported from Bali. I’m thinking Gatsby. Not a period wedding…but the spirit of it, the time.” That scene alone will make just about any heart swoon for an outdoor wedding. It’s not just the stars and candle light that make an outdoor wedding amazing, but the glow of natural light at sunset and the breeze in your hair. I think the prettiest wedding I have ever had the pleasure of being at, was an outdoor wedding under a clear-top tent at sunset (picture above). The views of the sunset were incredible, especially after the light rain shower that showed a double rainbow. Anyway, there was truly something SO romantic about the natural light beaming inside the tent at sunset. The lighting coupled with fantastic Big Band dinner music was so captivating I felt like I was in a movie.

Hopefully Spring will arrive soon and we can stop dreaming about these gorgeous outdoor weddings and start planning and attending them! If you are planning on having an outdoor wedding, contact us to rent our upscale, climate-controlled, bathroom trailer with full amenities! We can decorate it to match almost any wedding or event theme. ūüôā

Happy Day Dreaming!

The double rainbow I was telling you about ūüėČ

Common Planning Mistakes

Today is the first official day of Summer, but it’s already been a whirlwind of a season!  I just wanted to take a few moments to tell you all about some common mistakes couples make when planning their wedding, so you can hopefully avoid doing the same.  

Planning a wedding is a long and complicated process, but all the hard work you do will pay off on your big day.  Your wedding day is ALL about you and your fianc√©, but don’t forget to plan for your guests.  Happy guests will make for a smooth and fun wedding for all.  When thinking about your guests, don’t just think about the food and drink or favors they will enjoy.  Include your guests’ experience in your timeline by trying to minimize the time between events.  

For happy guests, don’t plan more than an hour gap between the ceremony and reception.  For an absolutely seamless timeline, consider doing a first look.  I know most people love the romance of not seeing each other before the ceremony, but here are some great reasons to reconsider.

  1. First looks allow for all the photos to be done ahead of the ceremony and reception.  This means you will have more time to relax and mingle with your guests. 
  2. First looks allow quality, private time with just you and your about-to-be spouse.  Not having anyone around but the photographer makes it a special moment where the two of you can soak up the moment and take each other in.
  3. Seeing your significant other before the ceremony can greatly reduce the nerves you will have before you walk down the aisle.  If being the center of attention isn’t your forte, consider a first look to help take some of the pressure off of the ceremony.

If after reading these reasons you are still completely in love with the romantic gesture of not seeing each other before the ceremony, than do what will make you happy!  Just remember to try to keep gaps minimized between events.

Keeping the time gap small is important, but so is planning for the average type of guest that will be at your wedding.  If you plan to have a cocktail hour with games outdoors in the summer heat,  reconsider this idea if your average guest is elderly. If the majority of your guest list contains elderly people, consider skipping the outdoor games for something more elderly guest friendly like a slide show of photos with fun facts about the two of you.  If your guest list is a good mix of young and old, consider doing both the games and slideshow.  Just be sure to take the overall guest list into consideration for planning.

Another mistake couples make when planning is getting the numbers wrong.  It’s important to make sure you have as accurate of a head count as possible.  If you have already told your vendors the number of guests at your wedding, but that number changes for any reason, tell your vendors.  They may be able to make last-minute adjustments to better accommodate the true head count.

Another number couples accidentally get wrong, is the number of save-the-dates and invitations to order.  This is the one number where head count doesn’t translate into the number needed.  Save some money by only ordering the amount needed for each household and not each person.  If you do make this mistake, the worst result is some extra money spent, leftover invitations, and a good laugh.

Hopefully I will have some more time in the near future to keep up with the blog posts!  In the meantime, I hope this helps some couples avoid making some planning mistakes.

Happy planning and happy Summer!!

-MacKenzie

Pinpoint Event Planning, LLC

Things To Think About When Picking Your Flower Girl

flower-girl

Picking a flower girl can be hard, planning for a flower girl can be even harder.  When picking the person you want to be your flower girl, there are some things that you should first consider.  If you are fortunate enough to have many options on who to pick to be your flower girl, it might be best to first decide on who will be best based on age.

Age can be a helpful deciding factor since each age brings its own set of challenges and styles. ¬†If you know several girls in each age category, you can pick what age range will best fit your wedding style. ¬†For instance, an infant being pulled in a wagon is adorable in an outdoor setting. ¬†There are so many things you can do with the wagon to add personal touches or play more into your wedding theme. ¬†Not to mention the portrait photos will turn out great having an additional prop. ¬†If you are thinking of this age range for an indoor wedding,¬†a wagon inside a church may seem out of place so you may need to think about who will carry your flower girl down the aisle. ¬†If mom is already a bridesmaid, then it’s an easy way to get your infant flower girl down the aisle. ¬†The same can be said for a toddler-aged flower girl.

A toddler-aged flower girl may be the most challenging age range to plan for.  No matter how much you will it, plan it, or pray for it,  the flower girl getting down the aisle is going to depend on the toddler and how she feels that day.  NO ONE can predict what a toddler will do as a flower girl once the time actually comes.  If this is your only option for a flower girl, just know that anything can happen.  She may be the most perfect flower girl to ever walk, she might get scared or excited and run down the aisle, or she might have a complete melt-down and not be able to walk at all.  If Mom or another close relative is in the wedding party, you may want to have a Plan B for that person to carry her if needed.

The pre-school to pre-teen age range is your most reliable bet for getting the flower girl down the aisle the way you envision. ¬†For the flower girl that is almost to the pre-teen age, the only challenge this presents is she may want to be included with the big girls. ¬†If you are hoping to have several adults-only moments or party bus, someone will have to break the news to her that she won’t be able to join in.

If you plan on having a flower girl that is older than a pre-teen, you will have the same set of challenges as previously mentioned with the pre-teen.  A teen aged flower girl is also entering into the age where she may be better titled as a Junior Bridesmaid.  Many Junior Bridesmaids have acted as the Flower Girl, but appreciated the older title.

If you don’t know a girl within the previously mentioned age ranges, another option is to have an elderly flower girl. ¬†Several brides have mentioned the idea of having the grandmothers walk in place of the flower girl. ¬†I personally LOVE this idea, assuming the grandmothers can make it down the aisle with no issues. ¬†Plus, if you go on Pinterest and search for the grandma flower girl, it’s pretty cute to see the images of the older ladies having a blast being involved. ¬†Not to mention how cute it is when they wear a flower crown!

If after going through all the possible age ranges, and you still don’t have a Flower Girl in mind, then don’t have one! ¬†You don’t need a flower girl or a ring bearer if you don’t want or have one. ¬†No one will miss them once you walk down the aisle in all your bridal glory.

If you do decide to have a flower girl, here are some quick things to remember:

  1. Make sure to invite her to a bridal shower
  2. Don’t forget to include her by getting her her own wedding party gift
  3. Take photos of just the two of you
  4. Make sure that she is at rehearsal so she knows what to do
  5. If she’s nervous, have someone walk through it with her several times
  6. Have a back-up plan in case of an extreme melt-down
  7. Don’t worry how she gets down the aisle, the memories and photos will be great ones!

If you have any other questions about flower girls, feel free to post a question in the comments or contact me through my website!

Happy Planning,

MacKenzie

Winter Place Cards


Winter may be outside of the high-demand wedding season, but it does not lack decorating options.  In my opinion, winter is one of the easiest seasons to decorate weddings and events for.  From Christmas, to winter-wonderland, to Frozen, to New Year’s glam, the options of easy themes are endless with winter.  

Along with endless theme options, are endless decor options thanks to all the additional holiday decorations that appear.  If you are thinking of having a winter wedding or holiday gathering, and need some place card inspiration, these ornaments are perfect for the DIY host!  The designer decided to keep the ornament simple by writing the name directly on it, but made it unique by placing it in a small bowl to act as a bird’s nest.  This look easily complements the bird cages that were used as part of the centerpiece decor.

From a budget standpoint, the ornaments are a great option versus printed cards, to help keep printing costs low.  Printing costs for events are one of the costs that often get overlooked or underestimated.  Ornaments can be purchased in almost every size and color, and are easily purchased in bulk and on sale.  You can expect the best sales to be right after the holidays.  Of course thanks to your local craft store, the paint can come in almost every color too, making your look match your theme with ease!  

However, if budget is your main reason for picking these ornament place cards, you may want to skip the bird’s nest bowl, as that will easily cost more than your traditional name card.  Bowl or not, the ornaments are still adorable and double as a gift for your guest to take home to add to their Christmas tree.

Happy hosting!

MacKenzie

Pinpoint Event Planning

A Weekend at The Elms

A short drive from downtown Kansas City, Missouri, lies a sleepy, little town called Excelsior Springs. I recently traveled to Excelsior Springs for a weekend stay at The Elms Hotel and Spa.  The entire town has a 1920s, prohibition-era vibe, but it is accentuated in the hotel.

The Elms plays on the era in which it was built, with big band music playing in the background, lounges to be found in all corners of the hotel, and elegance in every detail.  Just walking on the hotel grounds can make you feel like you have stepped back in time.  

The only part of the hotel that does not feel like it’s from the 1920s, is their renowned spa.  With  The Grotto having options of a hot tub, steam shower, steam sauna, dry sauna, cold-plunge shower, and self-serve exfoliation bar, you’ll relish the modern amenities.  If paying for relaxation isn’t for you, The Elms offers gorgeous outdoor amenities, including a pool, hot tub, and several fire pits.  The included indoor amenities are equally as stunning, with the European lap pool, hot tub, cold tub, lounge space, and fitness facilities.  

With so much elegance and class, The Elms is an easy choice for romantic affairs.  While I was there, there were two weddings, and several couples celebrating their wedding anniversaries.  One couple, who was celebrating their anniversary, was married at The Elms ten years ago!  

With my love of weddings, you know I had to sneak a peak of their main reception hall, after set-up.  The bride chose her colors well to play on the room’s gold chandeliers and walls.  I also thought she did a great job with having alternating centerpieces to give the room even more dimension.  The tall gold floral arrangements were tall enough for guests to easily converse.  The short floral arrangements were tastefully done, and the tables with floating candles helped keep the party mood romantic once the lights went out.

The hotel also boasts a large outdoor gazebo for outdoor ceremonies, a small reception hall, several meeting spaces, and private lounges.  Both reception halls have easy access to the outdoor patio and pool deck for guests to enjoy.  The Elms offers ceremony and reception options, but will not offer a ceremony-only option.  Catering is offered on-site with their restaurant The 88.  

Whether you are looking for a romantic getaway, a relaxing getaway, or a wedding venue that is close to the Kansas City area, The Elms is an excellent choice.

Thanks for reading,

MacKenzie

Pinpoint Event Planning, LLC

What to Expect When Shopping for a Wedding Dress

Shopping for a wedding dress should be fun, right?  Absolutely!  But, there a few things that will help make it more enjoyable if you know in advance what to expect.  

Let’s start with the dress shops themselves.  Most bridal boutiques prefer, if not require, that all brides make an appointment.  Some stores allow you to browse dresses on your own, while others keep all the dresses in back and will only bring out the styles you ask for.  There are pros and cons to both methods.  Getting to browse dresses on your own can help give you an idea of what may be in your price range, but might also distract you from what you are looking for. Whether you are looking through the dresses, or they are being brought out to you, keep in mind how a dress looks on the hanger is no indication of how it will look when it is on.  

You might have found the perfect style in a magazine, or on a rack, but when you try it on, find that it doesn’t work for you.  If you are disappointed when trying on your dream style then listen to the bridal consultants.  Most consultants will push you to try a dress on that is totally out of your comfort zone or out-of-the-box.  This can seem annoying to the bride that knows what she wants, but bridal consultants are good at what they do.  If you are struggling to find the perfect dress, try dresses on you think you may never go for.  Too many brides have said they were dead-set on having a lace dress but ended up choosing satin instead, or wanted a mermaid style but went with a ball gown, and vice versa.  Sometimes it takes trying on several dresses before you find “the one.”

Trying on wedding dresses is different than trying on any other clothes.  A large percentage of stores will send a bridal consultant in the dressing room with you.  They prefer helping you try them on rather than your mom or a friend.  These dresses are often heavy, delicate, and expensive.  Be prepared to strip down in front of a stranger.  If you are shy, we suggest wearing undergarments that are full coverage.  If you’re not shy, consultants are used to brides being in their underwear or even sometime their birthday suits.  Though for sanitary reasons we prefer at least underwear.  But, let’s be honest, some dresses don’t allow any undergarments to be worn.  If you are completely against having anyone help you but your mom, some stores will be understanding if you explain your concerns in advance.

Trying on wedding dresses is also different from regular clothes because the dress you are trying on is most likely not the same dress you will walk out with.  That means the dress you try on is most likely a sample and not in your size.  This is a major drawback to designer dresses because, in some cases, you have to use your imagination on what a properly fitted dress will look like.  The bridal consultants have tricks they use (see above picture) to help it feel and look fitted, but you still have to use some imagination.  If you are the type of bride that plans to lose weight for your wedding, don’t worry about not hitting your fitness goals before shopping.  Hitting your fitness goals before shopping can be a major confidence boost and help you feel great in any dress, but it’s not necessary for shopping.  Again, the dresses are mostly sample dresses and not the correct size. 

Once you find the perfect dress for you, if it is a designer dress, it will need to be ordered.  Waiting for your dress to come in can take anywhere from three to seven months, so make sure you will have your dress far enough in advance of the wedding to allow for alterations.  Your bridal consultant will have the answers on how long a particular designer takes and the amount of time needed for alterations.  We have seen brides  have to scramble because they waited too long to go shopping and the dress couldn’t be ordered in time for their wedding date or came in too close to their date and they needed emergency alterations.  Emergency alterations will cost you a fortune compared to nonexpedited alterations.  Complete overhaul alterations are expensive as well, so listen to your consultant on what size of dress to order.  If you plan on losing weight, don’t order the smaller dress as motivation.  The risk of not fitting in your dress and/or not having enough fabric to make the dress fit is far too great.  Don’t put that stress on yourself and just order the correct size of dress.  If you do lose the weight it is easier to take the dress in, than to let it out. 

Last, but not least, who to take with you when shopping for your dress.  This is a very personal decision and no one should make this decision other than you, the bride.  Having your entire bridal party sounds like a fun idea, but most boutiques are not equipped to handle large groups and the more people you have the more opinions you will get whether wanted or not.  If you know you need them all there, than just be prepared for possibly unwanted opinions and tight spaces.  For the bride who tries to please everyone but herself, keep the audience to the bare minimum.  Finding your wedding dress should be your decision and your decision only.  Find the dress that makes you happy, not one that will please others.  Even if you think you can invite someone knowing they won’t insert an unwanted opinion, you will most likely be reading your audience and nonverbals can commmunicate volumes.  If this concerns you, keep the audience to a minimum until you find your dress, and then invite more people to a fitting appointment instead.  You can still include them without risking your mind on choosing your dress.

Keep this information in mind when you start your shopping experience and wedding dress shopping should be fun!  Let the champagne flow and enjoy your turn in the lights in front of the mirror. 

Happy shopping,

MacKenzie