Thursday, January 22, 2009

Guest blog/Alison Wenstrup of Aviva Events

I am not a wedding planner, nor do I play one on TV. Yet I always get brides asking me for timeline adviace. I asked the lovely and talented Alison of Aviva Events to enlighten us today on her expertise.
The craziest part of your wedding day is the time building up to your ceremony. Without a well-organized timeline, it is easy for things to get a bit chaotic and stressful, which is definitely not how you want to feel when you are about to walk down the aisle! Here are a few things to take into consideration when setting your timeline for the day.
1. Pad everything that happens pre-ceremony by 15 minutes. You'd rather be early and a little bored with time to kill than running late and stressed out of your mind. I include a newspaper and a few magazines along with light snacks for my clients in their pre-ceremony rooms just for this purpose.
2. Time-padding also applies to the driving times that either you are used to or that Google Maps tells you -- you never know what will be going on traffic or weather-wise, so don't count on your usual commute.
3. Talk to your vendors. Find out what sort of timing they need to do their jobs best. For example, your photographer may need between 1 and 2 hours of time pre-ceremony for photos, and hair and make-up artist will need varying amounts of time depending upon how complex your style is. (Typically 30 minutes to an hour per person). Never guess what amount of time they will need; always ask!
4. Always allow more time for yourself. Make sure to schedule some time to just RELAX as you get ready. Rushing from one thing to the next is no way to enjoy your wedding day. Make sure to give yourself extra time for hair and makeup as you'll want to make sure you have the time to get everything just how you like.
5. Simplify! Pick a pre-ceremony "getting ready" spot and STAY there throughout the day until it is time to leave for photos. This can be your home, a hotel room, or in some cases a room at your ceremony or reception venue. Have lunch delivered (or ask a family member to pick it up for you), and have your hair and make-up artists come to you. You never know who will be running late at a salon or restaurant, and keeping everything and everyone in one spot will allow you to better control your time and feel more relaxed. Many hair stylists will do "house calls" for their regular clients (just ask). And of course Brideface is available wherever you need them to be!
6. E-mail a copy of your timeline to each member of your bridal party and each vendor involved, so that everyone can work off of the same schedule.
So in short - allow slightly more time than necessary for each task, have everyone come to you, and make sure everyone is working off the same page and you'll be in the perfect position to be calm, relaxed and ready-to-go on your wedding day!
Don't miss Alison at the Norwood Joseph Beth this Saturday; she will be on a panel of wedding planning experts on behalf of Cincinnati Magazine, as will our own Jenny Costello from Brideface. The wedding consultants are at 12 noon and the beauty experts are at 2pm. Hope to see you there!

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