tips on securing your wedding gifts at reception

It’s a huge concern for brides and grooms on how to secure their wedding gifts at the wedding reception. Short of having a security guard stand by the gift table the whole evening, it’s difficult to have this situation 100% effective. Usually the concern is not the large gift boxes, but the little treasures that come in the envelope cards. That’s where the real “Benjamin’s” are.

Instead of hiring the FBI to guard your gifts, let’s try these real life suggestions:

Have someone in charge of the gift table.

Especially watching the gift cards. We monitor the gift cards for our clients by removing them and putting them in another secure location. We also move all the gifts to a predesignated family member’s car before the end of the meeting. Security is best!

There is no such thing as a totally safe gift card box.

We’ve seen jars, birdcages, boxes that look like a cake, treasure chests, huge heavy mirror boxes and more. All of them can be opened. Obviously, how else would you get your cards out? So short of putting a safe on top of your gift table, you’ll just have to let that theory go.

Change the location of the gift table.

It’s normal to have your gift table by the entry doors at your reception, this is so guests can drop off their gifts as they enter the room. However, if your reception is in a busy hotel you may want to consider moving your gift table across the room to a more secure location. If you do that, you’ll want to appoint a hostess to take the gifts to the table to help your guests.

If your gifts or gift cards are stolen, you should report them to the stores immediately. Through the use of surveillance cameras, the culprit can often be caught.

Bottom line; you do your best to secure your gifts, but it should not be something that you overly stress about at your wedding. There many more fun things to do!

featured photo credit: equinox photography

plan on!



easy tips on reducing your wedding guest list

We all know the quickest way to reduce your budget, is to reduce your guest list. In this region, the average wedding is approximately 250 guests. In areas like Jasper, Indiana the guest list could be 500-700 people! Large families = big weddings!

If you have already gone through the excruciating process of selecting your guests and cannot seem to delete any names off the paper, here are a few tips:

  1. DO NOT send out save-the-dates. If guests don’t know your wedding date in advance, they can’t reschedule their lives to attend!
  2. Pick a holiday weekend for your wedding. There are always conflicts when it comes to holidays and guests may need to choose visiting family for graduation or going out of town over your wedding.
  3. Choose a Friday or Sunday for your wedding date. Perhaps choosing a less traditional day of the week may make it more difficult for the majority of guests to attend.
  4. Destination wedding! Get out of Dodge and fly away to a beautiful destination for your wedding!

Can you think of other ways?

plan on!



your office workers aren’t invited to your wedding…

This is a timely subject as I have had several clients who have asked me how to manage their office workers and their wedding guest count. For many people, their jobs afford them to know a lot of people. Take hospitals for instance, you will not only work with many people but will become closer because of life and death situations.

The problem is, you can’t afford to invite 200 office workers, plus all your family and friends (on both sides). Financially, in most cases, it’s just not possible.

So what do you do? Here is a few ideas:

Stick to your guns.

If you aren’t inviting any office workers do not waiver and start to feel bad and then invite someone. The word will spread..


If you are only inviting a few colleagues, then mention to them to please not talk about it with others. Explain that while you wish you could invite everyone, you are constrained by the size of your reception venue.

Preparation is key.

Be prepared for someone to ask if they are invited (the audacity of this still shocks me, but trust me it will happen). Rehearse your answer and be prepared. You may respond, “We would love to be able to invite everyone, but unfortunately our venue and budget will not allow it. I’m sure you understand“. Then be quiet. Don’t keep talking and going on and on or try to explain why you invited co-worker Betty and not co-worker Sally. You’ll dig a grave. Just be quiet, smile and hopefully your cell phone will ring to take your attention elsewhere. Secretly you can be pleased with yourself for not inviting someone who is rude enough to ask.

Again, shhhhhh!

If you are not inviting a lot of people from your office, then quit talking about your wedding. Just stop. Save it for your friends and family, people who will actually get to see your plans.

This will always be an awkward situation, especially if you have been invited to other co-worker weddings. The best advice I can give is have a plan and stick to it. It’s the best you can do.

featured photo credit: pfe iPhone

plan on!


what should your wedding guests NEVER pay for?

So I was out at a charity event this evening raising money for Riley Children’s Hospital and ran into one of my brides from last year. I can’t say who, because we are about to get personal.

She was telling me about this wedding that she was asked to be a matron of honor (again, I don’t want to say who). When she received the invitation it was clear that each guest was to send in $25 per person to pay for their meals.

My jaw dropped. Unfortunately it gets worse….not only are guests expected to pay for their own meals, but also for any morsel of moisture (er, drink) that they will have. Soda, beer, wine, or alcohol. Nothing is being provided gratis.

Remember when planning your wedding, you should never ask a guest to pay for a meal and you should always provide SOME time of liquid refreshment at no charge. You would never invite someone over to your home, feed them a nice dinner, give them a drink and then give them a tab.

Please never consider this as an option. Reduce your guest list. Reduce your food choices. Elope. Have a party. Invite everyone over for a BBQ. But don’t ask your guests to pay for their meal and all their drinks.

plan on!


am i invited to your wedding?

If someone you know asks this question, it can be uncomfortable and awkward. So here are some possible answers – pick or modify which one applies to your situation:

  • “We would love to invite everyone, but we have decided on a smaller gathering of close family.”
  • “Our (my parent’s) budget simply won’t allow us to invite a large number of people, I’m sure you can understand.”
  • “Our venue has limited space and we had to scale down our guest list.”

In some cases, you may want to invite these people over for a special dinner after the honeymoon – to give them some special attention. Or not…after all it is poor taste to put you on the spot like that.

featured photo credit: pfe iPhone

plan on!