Hello and welcome to our first ever "Tuesday Tips" on our new blog! Today we are excited to share with you some fun advice to help make your wedding day run much smoother.
One of our weddings coming up in the next 2 weeks is actually doing a lot of this and we are so proud of our bride for being on top of her stuff! While we as planners and coordinators do a lot to make sure your wedding day runs smoothly, there are ways to get some extra help from friends when we are covered up with other tasks. So let's get started! >>
Greeting Your Guests
Pick a few fellas to use as ushers. Their task is to greet guests as they arrive as well as help them to their seats. Whether you are having designated sides or not, ushers help tremendously to ensure the ceremony will start on time as the guests will be seated as soon as they come in. Having ushers isn't something that is new or unheard of, but there is so much more that you can have your ushers do to help throughout the day.
Our bride that I mentioned earlier, is not only having ushers, but she will have hostesses to help as well. As guests are greeted by the ushers, they will receive a program from a hostess. This is great because too often, programs are missed by guests who can easily get distracted. Hostesses can also help to remind guests to sign the guestbook as they come in. Again, while your guest book will get signed, there are a lot of people who may just walk right past it. Having a friendly face there to urge guests to sign is a great idea!
If you have a coordinator that you've hired for the day, they will handle pinning boutonnières and corsages for you, unless of course you would rather have a family member or friend do it. However, it is great to have your hostesses hand out everyone's boutonnières and corsages until your coordinator gets there to pin them on. If you do not have a coordinator, this is a great job for your hostesses to handle. Make sure they know how to pin so they aren't poking everyone and to be sure they will stay in place!
While I always suggest for my couples to make a list of pictures they want after the ceremony and to try their best to plan out their group shots in order to make it easier for their photographer and help make things run smoothly, I'm going to suggest something better and this is another task that you can have your hostesses and ushers handle when the time comes.
Create a detailed list of who all you want in your pictures and place everyone into numbered groups. (Ex: Group One - Bride, Groom & Pastor... Group Two - Bride, MOB, FOB, Brothers & Sisters... etc.) Obviously you'll want to list everyone's first & last names. Print out the list and have your ushers & hostesses pass out the photo list immediately after the ceremony. Be sure to also let everyone know prior to the ceremony (even better, prior to your wedding day) that they need to remain after the ceremony for pictures.
Ceremony & Reception Set-up/Clean-up
If a coordinator was not hired, have your ushers and hostesses manage your set-up and clean-up of your ceremony for you. Give them a list of items that belong to you as well as where it goes and whether or not it will be used again for your reception. Have bins with items labeled so it is clear & easy to understand. You'll want them to do this after they are no longer needed for pictures though! Make sure they know what time they can get into the venue as well as what time they need to be out. The same thing goes for the Reception.
Again, having your ushers and hostesses greeting guests as they enter your reception site (if you're having your reception in a different location or at a completely different venue.)
Sometimes, you may have guests who say they plan to attend your ceremony, but they won't make it to the reception. Or you may have guests who said they weren't coming, show up. Then there is always the option of a guest bringing the plus one that they were not supposed to bring. This can cause a bit of a problem when it comes to catering and sometimes your bar tab. If you weren't intending on an extra 10+ people being there, it can throw things off. Having a list of guests who RSVP'd for your reception along with a plus one (who was included in the RSVP's) and letting 1-2 hostesses check guests off of the list will help to keep that under control.
Others duties might include welcoming guests to sign the guestbook if they did not do so prior to the ceremony, taking pictures at your photo booth, and partake in happy hour and refreshments.
End of the Night
At the end of the night, too often there are flowers left over, whether they be from bouquets or centerpieces. At times we'll have someone ask us to distribute flowers to family members, but we as coordinators might not always have time to find everyone as we are busy working on breaking down the decor & making sure everyone is getting cleared out on time.
Having your ushers & hostesses distribute flowers and extra decor pieces can make that run much easier. Giving them a list prior to the day will help them to get it done quickly too!
If you do not have a coordinator for the day, having your ushers & hostesses help with cleanup and breakdown is another great option. With the help of them along with your wedding party, things can get done pretty quickly. Have a game plan in place so they can get everything done in the time your contract time ends with your venue.
Hopefully this post sparked a couple of ideas to help you make your wedding day smoother! Talk to your planner about their ideas and what all they offer in their day-of services to make sure your bases are covered.
Thanks for stopping by and Happy Planning!