Wedding Vendor Communication Problem

This question came in from a potential client.. check it out.

I’m not personally having this problem, since I’m not at this stage of planning right now, but what do you do if a vendor doesn’t get back to you? You get in contact with them, set things up and everything is going well, but then when you need to be updated, they won’t answer you? Has anyone had this problem before? If so, what did you do about it? I like to ask in advance in case something like this happens.

You got engaged. Yay! Then you start with wedding planning. Vendors picked and contracts signed. Everything is running smoothly on the first few weeks but all of sudden, updates just stopped coming.

Wait! What? Oh no no no, don’t panic! Breathe. Count 1 to 10. Get yourself composed. Read below.

  1. Review your contract. Go over the prefered mode of communication. If via email, send an email. If via phone call, give them a call. If still no reply, proceed to #2.
  2. Keep planning and moving on while waiting for a reply. Give them at least 3 days to get back at you. However, while doing so, make sure you are still working on the other details. If after the waiting period, there still is no reply, don’t lose hope, you can do #3.
  3. Give them an ultimatum to reply within the next day. You should emphasize the urgency of the reply from them. When this time lapses and nothing came through, it’s about time to do #4.
  4. Visit their office or shop. Sit down with them.Be nice to ask what improvements they can do in regards updating you. Make sure you’ve agreed at everything.

Everything can be resolved with an honest to goodness conversation. However, if none of the above worked, then it is a sign for you to find new vendors. 

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How To’s of Wedding Planning!

Every bride has her own dream wedding. Where to start is probably one of the hardest to do while the least you want to feel is burned out and pressured. So here’s some How To’s that will truly benefit you. Learn how to make your wedding a story.

How to wow your guest

The moment you announce your engagement, you could be hearing expectations on how great your wedding would turn out to be. And the day you give out your save-the-date cards or the wedding invitation, you’d surely want to hear a compliment, what more on the day itself right?  

You could have an endless list of ways for your guest to commend your wedding — who wouldn’t right? Consider some of these tips.

  1. Set up an interactive bar with wine, champagne and liquor tasting. Have a beverage expert offer your guests a sample and a little knowledge on the flavors.
  2. Get lively on the dance floor. Either get friends to teach guests different dances or hire dance instructors.
  3. Hire your favorite celebrity’s impersonator to jazz up the moment by performing, interacting and doing photo ops.
  4. Think of unique and classic acts during events like caricaturists, fire dancers or singing waiters and hire these experts. Just think of how “guests will talk about the experience for hours afterward,” says Maxine Andrew, of Instead of You Events, in San Francisco.
  5. Keep your flower girls and ring bearers and the youngest guests entertained. The parents and guardians would surely enjoy if someone is designated to take care of them. Get a puppeteer or magician or play kid’s movies.
  6. Put up a “Starbucks” stall or a specialty after-dinner coffee bar manned to serve your guests cappuccino and other espresso drinks giving them option to personalize which delicious toppings they prefer to add fun.
  7. Assign an official wedding hashtag. Have it made as a standee with a photo of you and the groom at the reception where guests can take their photos and post in their social media.
  8. Photobooths are a hit where everyone can pose all they want and bring home the photos as souvenirs.
  9. Sweeten the dance floor with sweets falling down in mini-parachutes, the “Oscar’s” way!
  10. End the festivities fabulously with a grand fireworks display with your wedding motif.

How to incorporate family and bridal party

Even before you start the wedding planning, there will surely be family members and friends giving you feelers they want to be a part of your big day. To add, you think of either following tradition or creating your own. Keep in mind to follow your hearts on who will be there in your bridal party.

So go ahead, make your bridal entourage and you’ll have plenty of activities and  roles to fill in. Read on to get ideas on how your wedding can be an all-inclusive event of your family and friends.

  1. Pre-Wedding Activities
    1. Engagement Party – kickstarting your wedding events, usually this is a very intimate closest family and bridal party gathering hosted by your or your groom’s parents.
    2. Bridal Shower – this is all about fun and gifts for you hosted by any of your friends or workmates, however these days also by your mom or your sister.
    3. Bachelorette Party – hosted by your maid or matron of honor with help from your bridal attendants, this is your time to bond with your girls.
    4. The Rehearsal Dinner – a celebration for your VIPs  right after your wedding rehearsal usually hosted by your groom’s family.
  2. Ceremony Proper
    1. Honor Attendants – you can assign to friends or family members who is not included in your official entourage whom you’ve asked to dress similar to your wedding party though could be a different shade and are seated near the front of the ceremony or reception.
    2. Ceremony Helpers – from the choir, or special song number to the readers and offerers, these roles you can assign to relatives, friends or work mates
  3. Reception
    1. Guestbook Attendant – great for cousins who’s friendly and outgoing to get everyone to sign your book
    2. Program Attendants – from the emcee to song or dance numbers, you can be as creative as you want and can include as many of your friends or relatives you want
    3. Ushers and Usherettes – they can be your teenager nephews and nieces guiding your guests to their assigned tables and seats

How to stay stress free

Wedding is one of the most wonderful moments in your life so stay sane and follow these how to’s:

  1. Research the web. You’ll get a whole lot of resources online that can help you jumpstart your wedding planning until you have a clear view of what you want your wedding to be.
  2. Create a realistic timeline and checklist. You have to prioritize and give yourself deadlines. In line with this, your checklist will guide you on what needs to be done.
  3. Designate a go-to person who knows every detail of the wedding as much as you do. This can be your maid or matron of honor. You shouldn’t be the “helpdesk” of your wedding.
  4. Delegate tasks to family or friends you trust. You can’t do everything as much as you want to.

How to accomplish everything you need for the day of the wedding

Your checklist should include the Wedding Day Must-Haves. A week before your wedding, get heads up on all vendors and prepare the important things you’ll need on the day to save you from last-minute panic.

Here’s a sample of the Ultimate Wedding Day Checklist from Martha Stewart Weddings.

  1. For the Getting-Ready room:
    1. Food and Drink
    2. Music
    3. Wipes, sanitizer and tissue
  2. For the Emergency Kit:
    1. Safety pins
    2. Fabric tape, to fix any fallen hem
    3. Bobby pins
    4. Clear nail polish
    5. Bride’s color nail polish
    6. Nail file
    7. Earring backs
    8. Face powder
    9. Eye drops
    10. Aspirin
    11. Antacid
    12. Bandages
    13. Tampons
    14. Breath mints
    15. Hand lotion
    16. Fragrance
    17. Double-sided tape
    18. Krazy Glue
    19. Sewing kit
    20. Anti-dust white chalk, to cover any dress stains
    21. Scissors
    22. Tissues
    23. Phone charger
  3. For You:
    1. Button-down shirt, to wear while getting hair and make up done
    2. Dress
    3. Veil
    4. Shapewear
    5. Undergarments
    6. Shoes
    7. Jewelry
    8. Hair accessories
    9. Hair styling products and tools
    10. Makeup and beauty tools
    11. Mirror
    12. Deodorant
    13. Toothbrush and paste
    14. Floss and mouthwash
    15. Extra pair of contact lenses, if you’re wearing one
    16. Straws, for drinking without ruining lipstick
    17. Comfortable flats
    18. Something old, new, borrowed and blue
  4. For Your Groom:
    1. Suit or tuxedo
    2. Underwear
    3. Socks
    4. Shoes
    5. Shoe polish kit
    6. Shaving tools
    7. Hair styling products and tools
    8. Deodorant
    9. Toothbrush and paste
    10. Lint brush
    11. Fragrance
    12. Cash
  5. For the Ceremony:
    1. Programs
    2. Unity candle or ceremonial equivalent
    3. Copy of the vows
    4. Copy of the readings
    5. Rings
    6. Marriange license
    7. Ring pillow and fake rings
    8. Flower-girl basket
    9. Aisle runner
  6. For the Reception:
    1. Signage for guests
    2. Menus
    3. Table cards
    4. Place cards
    5. Table numbers
    6. Favors
    7. Photo booth props
    8. Guest book and pens
    9. Toasting glasses
    10. Cake topper
    11. Cake knife
    12. Garter

How to get healthy for your big day

It’s important that you’re fit and fab during your wedding. There are so many options for you from enrolling in a fitness program to religiously just follow fitness tips over the internet to creating your own health routine. But seriously, there’s no fast way to lose weight so you’ll have to be really committed on which option you prefer.

Here’s the most basic and general ways for you to do so.

  1. Eat healthy food on time. Real food – not processed and canned foods. More on veggies and rich in protein. On time means breakfast, lunch, dinner and at least one snack daily. Do not skip meals.
  2. Exercise daily. If you’re busy, well, make time for this. You gotta put in your work for at least 30 minutes of sweating. Apart from achieving your desired weight, you actually are burning calories which increases blood flow that helps in blood circulations giving your skin a healthy glow. On top of it, it can help reduce your stress.
  3. Get enough sleep. In times like this, don’t compromise. Make it in your priority list to at least get 7 hours of sleep and no less. You’ll need to be well-rested to get the energy you’ll need for the next day’s activities.
  4. Keep hydrated. Drink at least 8 glasses of water daily. Hydration is linked to metabolism and skin health.
  5. Pamper yourself. You deserve this! Take the time to have your facial, manicure and pedicure and hair treatment.

Start with this Wedding Checklist because we certainly wish you a stress-free wedding!



Ask DIY: Hiring A Food Truck To Cater My Wedding

Ask DIY Bride is a regular column where you, our dear readers, may ask our community for their help or opinions on wedding or craft-related issues that are important to you.

Jemma from Austin wants to know:

We’re thinking about hiring our favorite food truck to cater our wedding. What do we need to know before we approach them?

DIY Bride Answers:

Hi, Jemma. Food trucks can be a fun and yummy way to feed your wedding guests especially since you’re in a food truck Mecca like Austin that has dozens of unique options to choose among. While food trucks are indeed awesome, they’re not the right fit for everyone. Here’s what you need to know about hiring a food truck for your wedding:

Venue Considerations

1. Does your venue allow outside food or non-approved caterers? Some venues, like hotels or resorts, require you to use their on-site catering while others allow you to only select from a small list of approved caterers.

2. If your venue does allow you to bring your own caterer, they still may not allow food trucks due to local laws, permit requirements, liability/insurance issues or any number of reasons. Ask your venue manager before you hire a food truck and, most importantly, get it in writing along with any rules and regulations regarding food trucks they may have.

3. Is there enough parking for the food truck(s)? Is the parking on the street, in a driveway, or in a parking lot? The parking location (and availability) can affect whether or not the truck can legally or logistically serve you. A truck may be able to legally operate in a private parking lot at your venue but may not be able to operate on a public street right outside the venue because of local zoning laws, for example.


Food Truck Considerations

1. Is the food truck licensed to operate at your location? The majority of food trucks need have licenses or permits for each city/county they service. Within their service areas, many jurisdictions have restrictions on where food trucks can park and sell their food. Most cities often have no-vending zones near places like restaurants and cafes, schools, and fire hydrant locations. Your food truck vendor will know all about permits and requirements, of course.

2. Is the full menu available for special events? You may love your truck’s Asian chicken & waffles with Sriracha syrup but that may be off limits for a large event because they couldn’t serve it fast enough in a reception’s time frame. Will the truck provide main dish and sides? Or just the main dish? What about drinks?

3. Are the food prices the same for a catered event as they are on the truck’s menu board? Some trucks may charge a different rate to help cover their special event operating costs like extra prep time, more staff, special permits, clean-up, etc. Are there any other fees you need to be aware of?

4. How long will guests have to wait for their food? Ideally, you want everyone to be able to get their food within 30 – 45 minutes of the dinner’s start. Can the food truck deliver all of the meals in that time frame? How?  (Extra food trucks? Buffet-style layout? Limited meal selections? The Dark Arts?)

5. Will the food truck provide napkins, forks, cups of your choice? (If you want compostable bamboo forks, for example, that may cost you extra or you may have to provide them to the truck if it’s not something they do on the reg.)

6. Who’s responsible for providing and maintaining trash cans, cleaning up tables, and removal of food waste? The truck, the venue, or you?


Guest Considerations

1. The biggest challenge with food truck catering is getting your guests fed in a timely manner. If you’re doing an order-at-the-window queue, here are some numbers to consider: if you have 100 guests and it takes 3 minutes to complete each order and the food truck takes 2 orders at a time, the last guest will get her food 3 hours after the first guest. Not cool! For a large gathering, a single food truck may not be efficient enough to feed your nearest and dearest.

2. Some food trucks like to issue meal tickets for large events so that each guest will get 1 meal/entree/item per ticket. Do you want your guests to be able to go back for seconds if they want more food? Work with your truck’s manager to determine how much food to prepare ahead of time to avoid disappointed guests and food shortages.

3. While you may totally dig your fave truck’s foie gras poutine with duck fat fries, it may not be the most enticing meal for the majority of your guests. Can your food truck offer meal options that fit your foodie fantasy while still appealing to the masses?  Can you hire more than 1 food truck to give your guests more options?

4. Instead of hiring a food truck for the main course, how about bringing in cool trucks to do only appetizers, drinks, or desserts? Or how about late-night, after-party snacks?

5. Virtually no food truck companies are prepared to deal with seating for your guests. Where will your guests sit? Are tables, chairs, cups, etc. part of your venue rental or will you need to organize that on your own?

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