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4 Wedding Planning Tips You Need to Know

We love weddings around here (obvi), so we know you are inundated with tips from every girlfriend that’s ever gotten married, your family, your future in-laws, and probably your hairdresser and manicurist, too. So, we’ve culled all the tips down to a list of our top 4. These tips are super practical and “why didn’t I think of that?” tips for a fun season of wedding planning.

1. Make a list of your must-haves and nice-to-haves before you book or buy a single thing.

It’s easy (and fun) to get caught up in every single detail for your wedding – flowers, invitations, place cards, candle votives, calligraphy, shoes, hair accessories, and at least 100 other pretty little things in between. But, time and money can be tight so you shouldn’t feel like everyone expects you to have all of those things or that you’re missing out by not having every single one.

Before you get started planning, dream up your list of “must-haves” and “nice-to-haves.” Have you always dreamt of having hanging flowers at the altar and you can’t imagine any other time in your life you’d ever have them? Put it on the must-have list. Do you think the hand calligraphed envelopes are gorgeous but not sure your guests will appreciate? Put it on the nice-to-have list. As you start to plan and make your decisions with vendors, refer back to this list. It will help you make decisions faster and easier by reminding you what you really care about.

2. Google Docs should be your BFF.

Make a master spreadsheet document to hold your budget, guest list and vendor comparisons to share with all of the VIPs in your wedding planning process. Having a collaborative document for the guest list and seating chart will save you countless hours of back and forth with your parents and in-laws to make sure you have the right address for Aunt Fran, and that Cousin Bill isn’t sitting next to Cousin Joe after what happened at the Thanksgiving dinner table last year.

You can create spreadsheets, word documents or work off a blank canvas with Google Slides to get everyone on the same page with your perfect wedding vision and plan.

3. If you’re not using a planner, you simply must have a Day-Of Coordinator. 

While all of the beautiful things you’ve picked out will wow your guests and make your wedding one of a kind, events are made perfect by behind the scenes logistics. A Day-Of Coordinator will ensure that everything runs smoothly and that you don’t have to spend a single moment worrying about if the band arrived, a guest finds their seat, or if someone parks where the getaway car is supposed to pick you up.

Having a set person in charge with a full picture of the night is the difference between losing track of time and realizing the band is on their last song while you’re mingling with your coworkers sitting at a table, and having a coordinator give you a 20 minute heads up that the night will end soon and make sure you’re on the dance floor to enjoy the last bit of the party. And trust us, your vendors and wedding party will thank you for having a coordinator too.

4. Include some alone time for you and your new spouse on the wedding day timeline.

Having all of your favorite people in one place celebrating you means you and your new hubby will be doing a lot mingling. While you’ll definitely have time together on the dance floor, you’ll be surprised how hard it is to find alone time together if you don’t account for it in the timeline. It can be just 15 minutes between the ceremony and reception after the photographer has taken pictures, but it’s a chance to just be together and soak in the excitement (and maybe have your caterer bring you some hors d’oeuvres to snack on if you aren’t having a sit down dinner!).

You’ll want to remember every single thing about your wedding day, and this alone time will be a chance for you two to reminisce on the day so far and gear up for the night ahead to help you do just that.

April Bride of the Month | Alex

Meet Alex, our April Bride of the Month! She and her fiance, Sam, are getting married June 2018 at the Biltmore Ballrooms in Atlanta, GA.

How did the both of you meet? We met Sophomore year at UGA. We were friends for a year until he asked me on his Fraternity’s date night.

How did he propose? Sam proposed at his family’s lake house. There is a country club up there where we had 5pm “dinner reservations.”  He insisted we go around 4:30pm to check out the view and have a drink on the patio. We went early, and were checking out the view, when he squared my shoulders to his and started to propose. Turns out he had a photographer there to take pictures of the whole thing and that I was misled to believe was shooting a Valentine’s day promotion for the club. The club wasn’t even open to the public that day! They had a few people there just so he could propose. It was an amazing moment that we shared, while taking in that gorgeous view.

What has been the most difficult and most fun part of the wedding planning process? We both have huge families, so trying to accommodate both sides has been challenging! The most fun part has definitely been picking out the band and putting together our own kind of style to it. We love anything 60s, 70s, and soul, so it’s been a blast!

Congratulations Alex and Sam! We can’t wait to see the photos of the wedding!

Green with Envy

Bridal Extravaganza Award Winners Share a Little Green

What better way to celebrate everything green – St Patrick’s Day, the first day of Spring and of course, spring weddings with the refreshing and revitalizing shade of Pantone’s color of the year “Greenery.”

Natures neutral, “Greenery” is a fresh and zesty yellow-green shade that evokes the first days of spring when nature’s greens renew our spirit of love.

So, what does this mean for Spring weddings? Designer Shean Strong of Shean Strong Floral Design said “After seeing this beautiful Martinique Banana Leaf pattern pillow that Collection Event Furnishing had just received, I knew we had to include that pattern, along with the new color, greenery. 

Shean believes that brides should consider adding various greens into their wedding décor to create a lush organic feeling that is natural and not contrived or forced.  Shean incorporated lush greenery in a variety of wedding details for his romantic design gallery featuring Barnsley Gardens, Collection Event Furnishings and Events of A Lifetime. The textures, shapes and colors really made the gallery pop for this design that won Best Design Gallery at Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta.

And what better way to celebrate your big day than a roof top garden wedding in the heart of downtown Atlanta at the stunning Ventanas!  Designer, JWilbur Smith of Eventscapes Atlanta  won the Best Booth Award at the January 2017 Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta. “Designing the area was a delight, with a focus on bringing nature indoors with the Pantone color of the year – Greenery, as well as featured floral statements with stunning white phaleanopsis orchids!” said Jwilbur Smith.

Green is a bold color, but there are gorgeous shades and variations you can include in your wedding décor during any season.  Look for variegated foliage and textures that are unique. This helps create an aesthetic that is able to play with multiple color palettes and make your wedding green with envy!

  photos by Janet Howard Studio

 

March Bride of the Month | Liz

Meet Liz, our March Bride of the Month! She and her fiance, Eryk, are getting married at the Cherokee Town & Country Club in Atlanta, GA.

How did the both of you meet?

We met through our good college friends, Adelyn and Brock, at a UGA house party. We bonded over our common appreciation of UNC basketball. Eryk being the slightly more dedicated fan than me! A few weeks later, I needed a date for my sorority’s Tacky Christmas night, and Adelyn thought that Eryk would be the perfect date for me. The Tacky Christmas date night went off without a hitch, and Eryk and I began a friendship that neither knew would result in marriage. We’ve been together for three fun years full of eating our way through Atlanta, Hawks games, trips to our family farm, hikes along the Chattahoochee, and some games of 1-on-1 at the YMCA.

How did he propose?

This past October, Eryk and I had booked a little cabin up in Bryson City, NC, one of my favorite places to spend a weekend in the mountains. We woke up on Saturday to hike the Chimney Tops Trail, which is a steep, rugged trail in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park that rewards hikers with beautiful, panoramic views at the top. I am not normally afraid of heights, but Eryk really wanted me to hike out along the spine of the mountain away from the crowds despite my reservations. I had no idea why he wanted to hike out so far from everyone until he got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife! Definitely the best surprise of my life.

What has been the most difficult and most fun part of the wedding planning process?

My mom passed away two years ago, and it has been pretty tough at times planning the wedding without her to share in the excitement. We were very close. Supportive family and friends have made wedding planning a little easier though, and I am so thankful for everyone’s help.

While wedding planning can feel daunting at times, I’ve really enjoyed planning the setup, decor, and floral arrangements for our ceremony and reception with our florist, Carla, and wedding coordinator, Allison. There’s nothing more beautiful than a room full of fresh flowers and greenery. I’m also excited about our cocktail buffet style reception so that our guests can mix and mingle with each other!

Congratulations Liz and Eryk! We wish you years of happiness together!

January Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta Award Winners

Atlanta’s best wedding professionals pulled out all the stops and wowed engaged couples at Bridal Extravaganza! It was a difficult decision but brides and grooms chose their favorites. Drum roll please…announcing the award winners from the Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta on January 29, 2017! Congratulations! They all were amazing!

Best Gallery Design Award

Barnsley Gardens Resort, Events of a Lifetime, Shean Strong Floral Design, Collection Event Furnishings and Paper Parfait

Bride’s Choice Award

Perfect Wedding Cake

Best Booth Award

Venatanas and EventScapes

Spirit Award 

Impression Bridal

Photos by Janet Howard Studio

February Bride of the Month l Chelsea

Meet Chelsea, our February Bride of the Month! She and her fiance, Ty, are getting married in Okatie, South Carolina in April 2017!

How did the both of you meet?

Ty and I met serving on a mission trip in Londrina, Brazil the summer before our senior year of high school. Ty was shy and quiet, and I assumed that his quietness was arrogance. Toward the end of the trip, Ty asked to sit by me on the bus and I quickly realized that he was just a bashful guy. In the months following, we both crushed on each other and He asked me on a date two months later.

How did he propose?

Ty took me to Rice for sushi, the place where we had our very first date. He wouldn’t tell me what our plans were and drove me around in circles through the city while I tried to guess. Finally, he pulled into a boating park on Lake Lanier, where we spent a lot of time hanging out and talking during our high school days. It also happened to be the same spot where he tried (and failed) to ask me to prom.

He set up a blanket by the lake and surrounded it with rose petals, telling me he just thought we could watch a movie on his laptop. He pulled out cupcakes and macaroons, then flipped open his computer. Pictures of us throughout the years flashed across the screen, in a timeline starting from our high school days and playing through our college years. The video ended with a letter. He said he knew I liked to tell the story of the failed prom-posal, and he wanted to give me a new story to tell. In the midst of my full-blown ugly cry, he led me out over the rose petals and got down on one knee. All I can remember him saying was, “I know you’ve been waiting on this for a very long time” and I can’t remember another word. 

What has been the most difficult and most fun part of the wedding planning process?

I think the hardest part is finding a photographer and videographer. I really valued having a high quality video and photo album, but I had to be mindful of my budget. It took me a really long time to sort through all of the options out there, especially when a lot of the ones I was interested in were already booked (10 months in advance).

I think the most fun part was choosing my venue. I had an appointment scheduled and I was about to cancel it because I thought I had already made my choice. We decided to go anyways, and I absolutely fell in love with it. I just loved seeing each part of the venue and imagining my wedding day taking place there. It’s magical!

Congratulations Chelsea and Ty! We know your wedding is going to be beautiful!

Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta is Today!

Today is the Day! 
We can’t wait to see you at Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta 
today from 12-5 pm
 
 Trends & Inspiration with stunning design galleries, couture fashion shows, tasty treats & fabulous prizes!!  
You’ll find everything from Yes to I Do!
 
Meet Atlanta’s most talented and creative wedding professionals!
You’ll find everything you need from Yes to I Do!
 
Featured Events:
 
The Best Ever Giveaways!
Brides can win everything from Romantic Honeymoons to a Wedding Gown as well as awesome door prizes from the exhibitors!
 
The Knot Ultimate Wedding Giveaway!
Choose what you want to win for your wedding. Everything from the venue to the cake! See all the details here!

Themed Wedding Galleries & More!
Browse through spectacular themed wedding galleries designed by Atlanta’s best wedding professionals. See the hottest trends of the season that will personalize your celebration and make your wedding unforgettable.

Swag Bag!
Arrive early! The 1st 200 brides receive a Knot swag bag!
P.S. It’s not too late to buy tickets! 
Save $5 if you buy your tickets in advance
 
Get Tickets Here! 
 
Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta
The South’s Most Beautiful Bridal Event
Sunday, January 29, 2017  12-5pm
 
The Atlanta Convention Center at AmericasMart 
230 Ted Turner Dr, Atlanta GA 30303

1 More Day Until Bridal Extravaganza

Reason #12 why you should be at the Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta on January 29th
 
12 lucky brides will win what they want for their wedding from these amazing sponsors! 

Bride Beautiful | $2000 Gift Certificate towards a Wedding Gown

From Sir With Love | Exclusive Engaged Gift for Him & Her 
($150 value)

Laura Burchfield Events | Wedding Planning Consulting Package ($1500 value)

Lethal Rhythms Entertainment | Lighting Package ($500 value)

Liz Erikson Photography | 90 minute Atlanta Engagement Session + 16×20 print ($1350 value)

Men’s Wearhouse | Six Gift Certificates for Tuxedo Rentals 
($1320 value)

{palate} catering & design | $1000 Gift Certificate towards Bridal Decor

Paper Parfait | $500 Gift Certificate for a Custom Wedding Invitation Suite order of $1,750 or more

Perfect Wedding Cake | One Wedding Cake ($700 max value)

Shutterbooth Atlanta | 4-hour Photobooth with Online Gallery & Custom Monogram ($800 value)

Southern Portrait & Video | Documentary Style Edited Love Story (up to $1250 value)

Venetian Room | Complimentary Venue Rental for 7 Hours Total ($3500 value)
See the prize stipulations and the official rules and regulations here
Brides can register at the Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta to win one of 
3 exotic honeymoons to celebrate your “I do’s” in style! 
Visit All Travel Company‘s booth to register to win a honeymoon to Secrets Silversands in Mexico! 
Visit About Going Places Luxury Travel Pavilion to register for a chance to win a honeymoon to El Dorado Royale in Mexico or Calabash Cove in St. Lucia! 
 
Get Tickets Here! 
 
Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta
The South’s Most Beautiful Bridal Event
Sunday, January 29, 2017  12-5pm
 
The Atlanta Convention Center at AmericasMart 
230 Ted Turner Dr, Atlanta GA 30303

2 More Days Until Bridal Extravaganza

Reason #11 why you should be at the Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta on January 29th
 
TWO couture fashion shows highlighting the latest styles in wedding gowns! You’re sure to find the ONE! 
Each fashion show will feature different designers! 
 
Get Tickets Here! 
 
Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta
The South’s Most Beautiful Bridal Event
Sunday, January 29, 2017  12-5pm
 
The Atlanta Convention Center at AmericasMart 
230 Ted Turner Dr, Atlanta GA 30303

3 More Days Until Bridal Extravaganza

Reason #10 why you should be at the Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta on January 29th
 
 
12 lucky brides will win what they want for their wedding from these amazing sponsors! 

Bride Beautiful | $2000 Gift Certificate towards a Wedding Gown

From Sir With Love | Exclusive Engaged Gift for Him & Her 
($150 value)

Laura Burchfield Events | Wedding Planning Consulting Package ($1500 value)

Lethal Rhythms Entertainment | Lighting Package ($1500 value)

Liz Erikson Photography | 90 minute Atlanta Engagement Session + 16×20 print ($1350 value)

Men’s Wearhouse | Six Gift Certificates for Tuxedo Rentals 
($1320 value)

{palate} catering & design | $1000 Gift Certificate towards Bridal Decor

Paper Parfait | $500 Gift Certificate for a Custom Wedding Invitation Suite order of $1,750 or more

Perfect Wedding Cake | One Wedding Cake ($700 max value)

Shutterbooth Atlanta | 4-hour Photobooth with Online Gallery & Custom Monogram ($800 value)

Southern Portrait & Video | Documentary Style Edited Love Story (up to $1250 value)

Venetian Room | Complimentary Venue Rental for 7 Hours Total ($3500 value)
See the prize stipulations and the official rules and regulations here
Get Tickets Here! 
 
Bridal Extravaganza of Atlanta
The South’s Most Beautiful Bridal Event
Sunday, January 29, 2017  12-5pm
 
The Atlanta Convention Center at AmericasMart 
230 Ted Turner Dr, Atlanta GA 30303