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Thread: Ugg... Wedding planning websites.

  1. #1
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    Post Ugg... Wedding planning websites.

    I know a few other people are getting married soon as well, I need to vent a little.

    I've been wedding website surfing for a few months now. Trying to feel out which ones I like, which ones seem to have the best advice. Or even one that I can navigate easily. That's a lot harder than it sounds.

    Some wedding websites drive me up the wall. Either the interface is all messed up, or they don't have quite the information I'm looking for, or they spew out all sorts of information that makes you scratch your head.

    I haven't found one that I'm crazy about yet. I came across WeddingWire, it's stuck out over the rest of them. And their forums are really active with a bunch of brides, so that helps. But if you read some of the venting posts... It makes the drama on Pangea look like childs play! Some of these people are so uptight. And they have the ability to "hide posts". They post, then hide it. I haven't looked into it, but I would assume only certain people can see it. If that's the case, why even post?! Seems to me it would be the same thing if they sent a PM. Then some of them post RIGHT after their hidden post. It's like they want people to see they actually contributed to the thread, since they can't if the stinkin post is hidden!

    I'm starting to think I'll have to just grab ideas from wherever I see them and put it all together like a puzzle. Which I really don't mind, it makes it more personal that way, and I really want our day to be dear to us.

    My question for the other people who are getting married is how are you going about it? Hiring a planner, or doing it yourself? Or hiring a Day of Event Coordinator? I think I might do that, I saw some people say they got one for around $300. Not too bad... But if I can get away with not doing that, I'll take it.

    I'd also LOVE to hear from others who have planned weddings or their own wedding.

    We were going to set the date in April 2012, but for a variety of reasons we're pushing it back to Fall/Winter 2012. Really good decision too, I was getting really stressed trying to plan a wedding by April. Our guest list is sitting at 67 right now, without any +1's or kids. I don't think we're going to have any kids at the wedding. We know too many people with kids, and honestly I don't want them to be around the reception with alcohol present. Some of our friends and family can get a little... bold when drinking. Other things I'm nixxing: Videographer, professional photographer, DJ... I feel like there's others but I can't remember now! There's SO much to this thing.
    Can you imagine a world where they would blur out our middle finger to protect a "consumer" over blurring out an innocent child to protect their integrity and privacy? - Pink
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    Gosh, my wedding was 23 years ago, but I'll dust off the cobwebs...
    You kind of go in order of how difficult things will be to reserve.
    They very first thing is to book the reception hall. This is the hardest to get for the date you want. In the fall, you'll be competing against high school homecoming celebrations. Weekends often book 9-12 months in advance.
    Next, get the church. (I'm assuming you're getting married in a church) Here, you'll only be competing with other marriages. Inform the pastor/priest you want to get it on his/her calendar. Often, the church itself has a wedding planner for a nominal fee, but they only handle the 'church' parts.
    Now ask your bridesmaids to save the date.
    Next you can tackle the parts that are easy to find--invites, flowers, cake, food, dj/band, photographer, dress. There are lots of these folks.
    The groom handles tux rental, and rehearsal dinner.
    At the rehearsal dinner, you give gifts to the bridesmaids, he gives gifts to the groomsmen.
    That's the basic outline. Grab the reception hall, then start to relax. You'll get through it. Then, 23 years later, you'll wonder why you didn't save $20,000 and get married by yourselves in Jamaica!

    Noelle

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    Yeah I've got a few places in mind for the reception. I've been stuck on nights at work though so I haven't had the gumption to go out and really tackle it yet.

    We live in wine country, and we're not religious at all so I'm hoping to snag one of the ~80 wineries around here. They're all pretty too so you can't go wrong. And an old trainer has offered to marry us (He's a pastor) so I was probly going to take him up on the offer. He's got a pretty good sense of humor too so I think it'll be a good match.

    One of our good friends step mom actually owns a nursery, so the florals won't be too much hopefully. And we'll probly just use Pandora for a DJ. Maybe play a few chosen songs first, but it's not going to be all formal and practiced so I'm not too worried about timing and whatnot. I'm focused and determined to have fun and really enjoy the day.

    I've already had the thought we should just fly to Vegas and do it. It's only a 50 min flight from here! But we're spending as little as possible and getting a lot of great support from our families, so might as well include them. Damn blood.
    Can you imagine a world where they would blur out our middle finger to protect a "consumer" over blurring out an innocent child to protect their integrity and privacy? - Pink
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    I'm old but got married just a few years ago...I hung out on ivillage for the wedding planning and it was a GREAT group of women, some of whom i am still in touch with. They had GREAT ideas and I was easily able to figure out what to DIY and what to hire.

    The biggest piece of advice i have for you is that please remember that the wedding is just a party for all of your friends and relatives to celebrate your happiness. Its not the most important day of your life, its not something to completely stress over - its just a party to celebrate that you have found your better half. If you can keep that perspective, you will find that small things that go wrong aren't such a big deal and it will allow you to actually ENJOY your wedding instead of stressing. Try and make the CEREMONY all about you and your marriage, and then try and make the party fun for all your guests, know what I mean? That way, if they are having fun, you will also have fun!

    I did alot of things DIY to save money. I did our flowers which was easy if you are inclined but takes up time the day before the wedding. One thing that I should not have tried to save money on was a photographer - my cousin wanted to do the photography and I should NOT have counted on solely her - the pictures are not what I would have liked (she just didn't have the lighting equipment).

    If you are the type of person who stresses about details, and would not stress if you had a coordinator the day of the wedding, I think that sounds like a good purchase!!

    Do you have a venue selected? Where? What time of day are you thinking? How large is the wedding party? Give us details!
    Beth in Alaska
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    Strongly agree with Beth.

    I got married last May, and I don't envy you. I know how stressful it is for you right now.

    Random advice:

    1. Start working on your dress early. It will likely be one of your bigger expenses and long term projects. I wasn't planning on spending what I did on my dress ($700 before alterations), but I just fell in love with it and decided that I should get what I love rather than save some money. Even if you only spend a few hundred on the dress itself, you will likely need at least some alterations, and it can take months to get those all done. This is because you have to go to a fitting, then they decide what to do and pin things while you stand there in the dress for 30 mins-2 hrs, then you come back a couple of weeks later when those alterations are done, then the process is repeated until all alterations are done.

    2. Start paying off flowers early. Flowers might be the most expensive part of a wedding, so if you can find a good deal or figure out a way to do the flowers yourself, that's a plus. We used wildflowers. We spent a good chunk of money, but my parents helped out some and our florist was AMAZING. Obviously, check out the florist's work before you commit to him/her. The lady we picked was perfect for us, because we were able to trust her to the details. There are a lot of details you can pick out and fret over, so I recommend finding a florist who seems very confident so that you feel comfortable just letting him/her make decisions about some things rather then stress out over every little detail yourself.

    3. I absolutely strongly suggest hiring a professional photographer, but I guess it depends on how much your photo album will mean to you (if you do plan to make one). To me, it was one of the most important things, since I am a nostalgic sort of person. I would love to have a big thick wedding album on my living room coffee/end table full of beautiful pictures of that happy day. In fact, I'm finally starting to put mine together tomorrow! Anyway, I chose a professional photographer and purchased a package. Another thing that came with it was a DVD slideshow, which is nice, and all of the pictures on a CD with the rights, so we can take the CD and have pictures printed anywhere easily. Oh, and I also put disposable cameras on all of the tables at the reception, so that my guests could take pictures and then leave the cameras there for us! It allows for different kinds of pictures... pictures of a more fun/amateur variety. Plus, it's fun to have them developed and see what kind of pictures people took Anyway, making sure the photography was handled was the very best decision I made for my wedding. Looking back, if I'd skipped out on the professional photographer, I'd sorely regret it.

    4. Let the bridesmaids/groomsmen pick out some of their own attire, within limits. If you force them all to wear the exact same brand and model of shoe, exact same jewelry, etc, it's just more for you to have to hound them about and stress out about. I just told my bridesmaids to wear black, dressy, open toed shoes of their choice and no cheap plastic/rubber jewelry. I let them all pick out their own hairstyles. The only thing that had to be exact was the dress. Oh, and be prepared for all of your bridesmaids to wait until the last second on their dresses, since they are all going to be planning to lose weight before the wedding

    Oh, and we did not have a planner. However, that would have relieved a lot of stress, I'm sure! We just didn't have the extra money to spend (although we didn't even check into the price, honestly). If you can afford it, it might be worth it, but I can't tell you for sure.

    Your laid back attitude is the right one to have, as far as planning on making it a priority for it to be a fun day. The BIGGEST hurdle I had to jump was understanding that this day was about and for us and US ONLY. The rest is white noise. Your friends and family are going to hurt your feelings. My husband and I dated for 6 years prior to our wedding and we were always treated like a role model couple. We thought our wedding would be a highly anticipated event. We invited around 200 people and about 50 showed. A lot of people won't come (unless they all just happen to live right in your hometown) and some won't even respond to your invitation. It's their loss.

    Oh, and

    5. Hire a good DJ. The beginning of our reception was kind of lame/stuffy, and a lot of people left shortly after the ceremony. No one was dancing, so my husband and I had to break the ice, even though we were terrified and have no idea how to dance! Then we started buying people shots and requested that the DJ play "Shots" by LMFAO ft. Lil John (try this, they'll love it) and people started loosening up! Pretty soon, everyone will be drinking and dancing and having a good time. Two of my goofier cousins even took the dance floor to themselves and did some sort of dance with chairs. Everyone surrounded the dance floor and cheered and it was hilarious. I should see if someone has a video of it. Anyway, at first I was worried about the reception, but eventually I realized that all of the fun people stayed long enough for things to loosen up. My brother in law ended up getting really drunk (along with a few other people) and a bunch of people met up at a condo we rented after the reception and continued to party. Make sure you invite a few really fun, entertaining people. One of our groomsman is just something really special, and he sang silly made up songs and played the guitar while everyone got a kick out of him all night. Later, he joked that he could be hired for future parties if anyone was interested. Seriously... I WOULD have rather paid him than him not come! Oh, boy... haha. I am pleased with the turn things took at our reception! And make sure you get enough drinks in yourself to be pleasantly buzzed, so that you can calm down and let loose. This is an important day for you, and you deserve to let go of your inhibitions and act out of character. You're the hostess and the main focus! You want everyone to marvel at you. NO ONE would have expected me to dance like I did. I am not a partier and I'm shy. My hubby and I almost passed up that first dance that broke the ice, and I am extremely grateful that we did not. Even though I was not convinced of it (I had actually been freaking out about my hair just hours before the ceremony), I was surprised that many people came up to me and told me that I had never looked so beautiful before. I'm sure it had a least a little bit to do with my carefree, fun attitude.

    Annnnnyway, feel free to PM me if you have specific questions. I'm not going to promise that I will always respond promptly (I'm a busy lady), but I would love to try to help you however much I can!
    Currently working with R. ciliatus

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    http://www.pangeareptile.com/forums/...d=1#post458569

    I just made a thread of my wedding pictures. If you look at them, maybe you'll get some more ideas.
    Currently working with R. ciliatus

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lauren and Hunter View Post
    http://www.pangeareptile.com/forums/...d=1#post458569

    I just made a thread of my wedding pictures. If you look at them, maybe you'll get some more ideas.
    Definitely helps! Thanks everyone for the advice! I'll post more details when I can get a chance.
    Can you imagine a world where they would blur out our middle finger to protect a "consumer" over blurring out an innocent child to protect their integrity and privacy? - Pink
    My Boys!
    1.0 Flame w/Dalmatian Spots - Maynard
    1.0 Halloween w/Dalmatian Spots - Zero
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    I literally just got married a month ago so i'll post a list of suggestions i have my wedding ended up costing around 6K so not bad for a wedding and it was everything i wanted.

    The dress is fun but take people you know will be ok with what you like with you to try it on. I say unless you are CRAZY busy do it yourself much cheaper and ends up the way you want it. The last week was CRAZY for me but i did it somehow.
    Lets see what else, Do it yourself things are amazing but somewhat time consuming. Printing your own invites and such is good but printers can be ANNOYING lol.

    As far as flowers go we went with fake flower arrangements, cheaper and you can't even tell they are fake and they can be completely ready months in advance.

    As far as websites with advice i liked theknot.com very nice and helpful but i don't know if it has a forum or not. I found the list of what to do and when very helpful thoughout the wedding planning.

    Spend time with your guy and don't just talk about the wedding still go on dates and enjoy.

    We didn't hire a photographer but that is because i trust my mom to take better photos than a professional. Our pictures turned out great, but unless you have several family members and friends who know how to take good pics and have done so for a wedding before find a professional photographer and be careful they are EXPENSIVE. My cousin, grandparents and mom took mine and they turned out AMAZING But this is the 3rd wedding my grandparents took pictures for so they knew what to do.

    Cake, We did a small cake for the wedding party and immediate family(parents and sibs) and used sheet cake for the guests i highly reccomend this as you get the nice cake you want but at a better price.

    Ohh and i had the cutest thing i used for centerpieces... We got birdhouses from michaels and painted them (me and friends and family) each table got one brightly painted birdhouse it turned out amazing.

    hope this helps a little and good luck with the wedding i hope it turns out as GREAT as mine did. If you wanna see my pictures to get ideas just send me a PM and I'll send you a link to my facebook page of pictures.

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