brides magazine: do not feed your wedding photographer …

We came across an article by Sandy Malone, she’s a destination wedding planner and has had a show on TV. I’ve spoken with her personally on social media and this post is not to attack her. We have a different viewpoint from what she wrote and it is directly applicable to the area we live in, the Midwest – who typically experience very long, traditional, ceremonial wedding days. Also, we’re nice people over here.

Here is the article at Bride’s Magazine.

update: Bride’s Magazine removed the article. Controversy? february 5, 2016

second update: Thanks to Sean Molin you can’t delete anything from the internet, here’s the archive version. Bride’s Magazine simply deleted the post, thinking the negative social media would go away. I hope they plan on addressing the situation.

our viewpoint on feeding wedding vendors

bands

Almost all bands have a rider in their contract that will require a meal. The meal will be given to them before guests arrive or during cocktail hour. While they should be playing during the meal (IF you have contracted that additional hour), then it is up to the band to either eat before or have a few of the musicians playing. Music should be softer in sound anyway, not a full blown band with singing while guests try to dine and talk.

photographers/filmmakers

Many do not have in their contract to be fed. It’s an understanding. If your photographers have been with you from the hair salon (at 10am), pre-wedding photos, ceremony, cocktail hour, grand entrances, a welcome speech … then it bodes that they need to eat. HAVE to eat. If you are unwilling to provide a meal for them, then expect that they have the right to leave the wedding to eat and then return. Who wants that? They don’t need anything special, although she is right, in many circumstances it is more difficult for the catering to provide special, less expensive meals. Either way, they need to refuel their bodies. NO PHOTOS SHOULD BE TAKEN DURING THE MEAL. It’s in poor taste and photos that will never be used in any photo album.

wedding planner team

See above for the photographers, same rule is applied.

dj’s

It’s customary in our area to feed your DJ. They setup before guests arrive and then return to be on-site for 5+ hours.

who could you skip?

Perhaps you have certain vendors that “just showed up” (i.e. photo booth). They setup early and then are able to leave and return when the booth is to be open, may not require a meal. However, it’s better to feed vendors and have them on-site should the timeline need to be shifted due to unforeseeable circumstances.

While you should never need to contract a meal for your transportation driver that has to sit outside for hours to provide guests rides, we will wait until everyone is fed and IF there is left over food, go outside and give the driver a plate. Same goes for security (although most caterers will feed them anyway). This is not included in your catering final count. We do this, because we are all human beings and it’s a nice act of kindness.

final thoughts …

Your wedding planners will work with the caterers to have meals set in a different room while YOU eat. Please note, we don’t care where we eat. Usually it is the first time we have sat down all day and we literally gulf our food down. It’s not pretty. We’ve eaten with plates on our laps in stairwells. We aren’t complaining, our bodies need to fuel up.

Finally, know that we live in a geographical location that being gratuitous to your wedding vendors — that you will continue to see or interact with on social media or in person, is expected. We are not a destination location that you can whiz in, whiz out and never see that vendor again.

So please keep all of this in mind when reading articles that give this type of advice.

featured photo credit: pfe iphone

plan on!

2016 wedding trends

There are lots of wedding trends that don’t make it to our local area in the Tristate. However, here are five trends we feel that we WILL see, or in the very least, hope will come soon.

Or watch me on WEHT Local Lifestyles TV Segment regarding this topic.

5 wedding trends in 2016:apps

1. passed hors d’oeuvres instead of food stations

We are seeing that more of our clients are considering having passed hors d’oeuvres during cocktail hour (before the formal wedding dinner). This takes the place of a large food station for guests to serve themselves. It creates an awesome guest experience and encourages you not to over purchase the hors’d.

metallics

2. all things metallic

Metallic, sequins, glitter, foil … anything shiny will STILL be hot this year. Gold is the best option, but many people still love silver.

naked cake

3. naked cakes

Naked cakes aren’t necessarily a rustic option but certainly is not uber formal. We like to describe it as an organic and earthy look to your cake. Don’t be surprised that this may not save you money. It takes a lot more work to create a good looking naked cake. Your baker has to make sure that the lines are clean. There is no frosting to cover those imperfections, so it will take more time, which may mean more of a cost to you.

live musicians

4. blending live music with your DJ

We had this a few years ago at the request of our bride. DJ plays the music and a violinist and/or drummer accompany whatever song is playing. It’s freeform and totally cool. You’ll need to find the musicians that have this talent and of course talk with your DJ before booking. The result for the guests? #onfire

arial shot

5. drones, go-pro’s and same day wedding films

Having a still photo from an aerial perspective continues to be hot. Be sure to talk to your wedding photographer or filmmaker to see if you can’t capture a still shot. GoPro’s are kinda awesome too (we have one now and plan on using it this year for some fun). Think about how you could use one to capture some behind the scenes or at your actual wedding.

Finally, the “same day wedding” edit films are finally becoming more mainstream if you can afford the extra service.  The idea is, right after you kiss and say “I Do” your filmmaker team starts editing a short film of the getting ready, the ceremony and behind the scenes that happened earlier that day. Then at the reception when the dancing starts you can share with your guests to relive what they missed. The additional cost is for more film editors, but, the reaction from your guests is nine-kinds-of-awesome.

What trends would you like to see happen here locally?

feature photo credit: pfe iphone

plan on!

plan your engagement photos …

We’ve always been an advocate for engagement photos and have talked about it frequently on the pfe blog. Our engagement photo is still hanging on the wall of our bedroom, 22 years later. We are often amused at how sweet and young we looked.

a few tips before you book your engagement photo session …

  1. Be yourself. If you area casual person, wear your favorite clothes and colors that make you feel good. Don’t try to be formal if that’s not you. Go to places that are meaningful to the both of you. A restaurant, grocery store, cafe, whatever. Be you!
  2. Don’t be intimidated. There are a lot of creative engagement shots on Pinterest and all over the internet. You, be you.
  3. Book your trial hair and makeup appointment. You’re going to pay for this service anyway, why not book those appointments early in the day and take your engagement photos later in the afternoon?
  4. Time of the year. Don’t worry if you haven’t gotten your engagement photos until only a few months before your wedding IF the weather hasn’t been cooperating. It’s not that big of a deal.
  5. Several outfits. This is not necessarily something you have to do, but consider taking some clothing options to make the most of your session. So you can have a lot of different looks.
feature photo credit: equinox photography

plan on!

first look before your ceremony

It’s still a controversy. Do you see each other before your wedding ceremony? Honestly, most of our clients ARE seeing each other, about 70%. We find it’s usually the groom that doesn’t want to see his bride before the wedding. Go figure.

There are a lot of pro’s and con’s to this and we’ve talked about it before on this series here.

bottom line:

  1. Do what you want to do.
  2. Remember, sometimes it really helps to calm you down.
  3. Your vendors will setup an epic First Look. Just you and your groom/bride (and a photographer and videographer capturing the moment). Most of the time the groom’s cry, not the bride. See the photos below.
  4. Be flexible. Inclement weather and other situations may change your opinion about seeing each other.
  5. Almost every single one of our clients that saw each other, were happy they did. They enjoyed their day and their wedding reception so much more.

here’s a glimpse of real First Looks (this could be you!)

first-look1

first-look3

photo credit: amy shepherd photography

Or you could not see each other but take some cute photos like the one in our featured photo with our bride Erin and groom Zach.

featured photo credit: elizabeth vincent photography

plan on!

 

morning after your wedding photos …

Is there a new trend for wedding photography? There may just be.

Have your wedding photographer come to your hotel suite for a potentially sexy “Morning After” photo session. Just the bride, groom and your photog. At least that is what the msn.com article said.

Intrigued to learn more, I contacted the photographer, Michelle Jonne. She gave me the low-down on this super cool concept:

“The Morning After” does not take place the night or next day of your wedding for multiple reasons: 1) we respect the wedding night and do not want to photograph any sexual acts 2) we do NOT want to photograph couples that are hung over 3) the photos are done in a tasteful manner and are meant to be implied, playful, sensual, edgy and tasteful all in one. The Morning After not only has to be for newlyweds but any couple in love and wants to capture it.  I think it can be used as a tool to re-ignite the fire in ones relationship, celebrate an anniversary.

I totally concur, Michelle. Now at first I was a little doubtful. But realize this is more of a staged photo shoot and is a just a beautiful reflection of a couple’s love. Whether you want it to round out the wedding photo album or frame on your bedroom wall around your anniversary.

Check out this love that Michelle captured:

What do you think? Would you be up for it?

photo credit: michelle jonne photography 
featured photo credit: pfe iPhone

ps You should know that most wedding couples are usually so tired from partying the night before that the morning of starting new lives together is when they actually get to, er, consummate the marriage. Now THAT would be a whole different type of photography session. 🙂