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August 25, 2013

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Wedding Tipping Guidelines from Phoenix Wedding PlannerKim Horn, MBC

Wedding Tipping Guidelines from Phoenix Wedding Planner Kim Horn, MBC

Your RSVPs are in (finally), and you’re three weeks from your wedding day!  As your wedding planner, this is the time to have all your details wrapped up.  Relax and enjoy quality time with your family and friends prior to your wedding day!

One of the questions I get asked as things wind down is, “Who and how much should I tip?”  With all the details, many seem to overlook the important task (and etiquette) of tipping.

Below is my go-to guide on tipping, so you show your wedding vendors, who put your wedding together, your appreciation for making your wedding day amazing.  Tipping isn’t required, unless a service charge is spelled out in your contract.  Tipping is a voluntary and customary expression of appreciation for exceptional service.

The golden rule is to check your vendor list to make sure you don’t forget someone.

Tipping Guidelines

1). Use the guidelines below, and write a check or place cash into an envelope with their name on the outside of the envelope.  Always carry additional cash and bring your check book for possibility of overtime charges or other incidentals.

2). Personalize a thank-you note to the vendors with a few details on how they helped you throughout the planning process.

3). Give your wedding planner all the envelopes at your wedding rehearsal.  The wedding planner will discreetly pass out your envelopes to your vendors.

VENDOR SUGGESTED TIP PROTOCOL HELPFUL HINT
BAND/DJ Musicians $20-$50 each; Band leader $100-$250; DJ $50 – $200 Optional, yet majority do tip. Need # of Band Members
BARTENDER $20-$25 per bartender Expected, check contract. Need # of Bartenders and if they are assigned exclusive to your wedding.
BELLMAN $10 – $20 each Expected, check contract. Moving your gifts.
CATERING MANAGER $200 – $500 Optional, yet majority do tip.
CHEF $150 – $200 Optional, yet majority do tip, especially if designed a special menu for you.
FLORISTS Depends on contract. Optional, depends on if they already charge you for delivery, setup, strike, and moving sets.
GIFT BAG DELIVERY Avg. of $2 – $3 per bag for bellman to deliver to room. Expected, check contract. Names on bags help bellman identify bag(s) per room or guest.
HAIRSTYLIST/MAKEUP ARTIST/NAIL TECH 15%-20% of total bill Expected Let your wedding party know you are handling the tip so they aren’t tipped twice.
HEAD CAPTAIN or BANQUET CAPTAIN $1 – $5 per guest Expected, check your contract to see service charge fee, then find out how much of service charge goes to staff vs. catering company or resort vs. staff. Try to get multiple events with the same captain.
OFFICIANT If member of church, donate $500+ to church,; Non-denominational $50-$100 depending on fee they charge. Expected
PHOTOGRAPHER $50-$200 each Optional
SERVING STAFF 15%-25% (Normally in Contract, yet Servers don’t receive all of this) Optional, based on contract. Need # of servers, and see if Head Capt. Could dispurse.
TRANSPORTATION 15% – 20% (Normally % is stated in contract) Expected, yet check contract to make sure it isn’t already included in fee. Find out qty.  and names of drivers.
VALET $1-$2 per car Expected, yet check contract. Let your guests know if you are tipping so they aren’t tipped twice.
VIDEOGRAPHER $50-$200 each Optional Need # of manned cameras.
WEDDING PLANNER $200 – $500, depends on how much $, time, and stress they saved you Optional, yet majority do tip. Will your lead wedding planner be at your wedding or an assistant?

 

Copyright 2013, Kim Horn, MBC™

Hire Kim as your wedding planner, call 480.921.7891 or text your name, wedding date, and wedding planner request to 602.418.9089.

Kim M. Horn, MBC™

Master Bridal Consultant | 1 of 61 in the World

Scottsdale Wedding Planner | Paradise Valley Wedding Planner | Chandler Wedding Planner | Phoenix Wedding Planner | Destination Weddings

Publisher | Pres. | ArizonaBridalSource.com

AZ State Coordinator Assoc. of Bridal Consultants May 2003 – May 2012

2010 Annual Conference Chair (worked with David Tutera) – Assoc. of Bridal Consultants

O 480.921.7891

M 602.418.9089

F 480.829.6292

E info@ArizonaBridalSource.com

ArizonaBridalSource.com

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August 2, 2013

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Thanks to JanDekkerDesigns.com for the gorgeous photo!  Few vendors ROCK my world like Jan, plus her b’day is one day before mine, go figure, right!

http://www.JanDekkerDesigns.com

http://www.JanDekkerDesigns.com

You found the man/woman of your dreams, your soul mate, right, congrats!  You said “YES”, you’re engaged, and since many items do come in “threes,” or “multiples of threes,”– such as graduating from college, moving into a new home, switching jobs, finding a new job, buying a new car, and then you just added the “wedding to do list” which is a mile long, you are BUSY!  You thought finding time to do things was tough before, well, it doesn’t get any better!

As an experienced wedding planner, at the end of the day, in my opinion (which you will hear TONS of opinions), this is truly what matters…having an incredible wedding of your dreams is important, yet more important is the quality of the rest of your life together as husband and wife.

Your wedding may be the first “party” you have thrown with all of your family and friends in attendance.  To make it more stressful, it is not only your family and friends, you have added the family and friends of your fiancé too (many you may not have met yet)!

The golden rule is important.  You have heard of bridezilla, groomzilla, and momzilla, so please don’t let the stress of planning your wedding turn you, or someone you love into one!  Reach out to those in your close circle of family and friends in a kind way.  You may disagree, tempers may flare, yet pick your battles, since relationships and friendships may end over minor issues which may have been solved easily and quickly.

Here are a few MUST DO tips before you walk down the aisle and say “I do.”

1).  Happily ever after happens in fairy tales.  Pre-wedding anxiety is normal.  Confront your fears, stress, or concerns about your marriage head on.  Be open with your fiance and your inner circle of family and friends.

2).  Plan a date night with your fiance.  Have a date night with your fiancé where you talk about what he wants to talk about, and don’t bring up “the wedding.”  Make it at a location on “neutral grounds,” where you both are comfortable and get back to “normal” before the stresses of planning the wedding.

3).  Discuss a prenup, checking accounts, credit cards, savings, and joining finances.  If you haven’t already discussed this, it is important.  You may want accounts to stay at “your bank,” while he wants accounts to stay at “his bank”.   Once checks and bills start coming in, you don’t want confusion about whose account they should go into or out of.  Are you going to stay with “your” bank, switch to “his” bank, or go to a different bank altogether?  Finances are normally one of the top items of disagreements in relationships.

4).  Discuss plans to have children or not have children.  Many breakdowns in marriages occur when someone “thought” or “assumed” their spouse wanted and expected something, then when they brought it up, said they were “blind sided” and didn’t see “that” coming.  If you are planning to have children, when, and how many?  If you are not planning on having children, best to talk about it now.  If you do have children, how are you going to raise them if you are Catholic and he is Jewish?

5).  Plan “me” time.  Schedule something which helps you relax, and something you like to do for you.  May be working out, hiking, playing sports, purging your closet, something for you!

6).  Bond and have heart-to-heart moments with your family and BFFs.  Once you are married you will have less free time with your parents and friends.  Plan something you have always wanted to do with them, yet haven’t done “yet” together, something on your/their “bucket” list.

7).  Talk about “When we’re married…”  Here is a way to get the creative minds thinking (LOVE using this in your wedding ceremony wording too):  You have known each other for ____ years, through the first glance of acquaintance to this moment of commitment.  At some moment you decided to marry.  From that moment of yes, until this moment of Yes (your wedding vows), indeed, you have been making promises and agreements in an informal way.  All those conversations that were held riding in a car or over a meal or on long walks – all those sentences that began with “When we’re married” and continued with “I will, and you will, and we will,” – those late night talks that included “someday” and “somehow” and “maybe” – and all those promises that are unspoken matters of the heart.  All these common things, and more, are the real process of a wedding.

8).  You can’t change someone else.  This is one of the most valuable lessons I will ever share with you.  So many clients say “after the wedding, this isn’t happening…”and feel they have a magical way of changing their spouse.  When your vows say, “for better, for worse,” that is truly what to expect.  You love your fiancé for multiple reasons, and will be spending the rest of your lives together.  Marriage is a two way street, and communication and compromise are crucial to the success of your marriage.

9).  If you don’t like something, work at making a change in yourself to change the way you accept or don’t accept “it” in your life.  The definition of insanity by Albert Einstein is “Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different results.”

Copyright 2013, Kim Horn, MBC™

Hire Kim as your wedding planner, call 480.921.7891 or text your name, wedding date, and wedding planner request to 602.418.9089.

Kim M. Horn, MBC™

Master Bridal Consultant | 1 of 61 in the World

Scottsdale Wedding Planner | Paradise Valley Wedding Planner | Chandler Wedding Planner | Phoenix Wedding Planner | Destination Weddings

Publisher | Pres. | ArizonaBridalSource.com

AZ State Coordinator Assoc. of Bridal Consultants May 2003 – May 2012

2010 Annual Conference Chair (worked with David Tutera) – Assoc. of Bridal Consultants

O 480.921.7891

M 602.418.9089

F 480.829.6292

E info@ArizonaBridalSource.com

ArizonaBridalSource.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

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May 17, 2013

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Wedding Photography Checklist.  Photo:  PhotosByMary.net

Wedding Photography Checklist. Photo: PhotosByMary.net

You have been waiting for Mr. Right for EVER, and your wedding day is FINALLY here.  When you hire your professional photographer, (PLEASE do not delegate this important duty to a friend) it is helpful to give them an idea of what you are looking for in MUST HAVE wedding photos.  Make sure you give your photographer the quantity of time they need to photograph your wedding to get you incredible memories.  After your wedding day there are NO “do overs.”

For your family and friends, assign a “round-up” person who knows the bride’s side, and another one which knows the groom’s side.  Give them your list so you don’t forget your VIPs on your wedding day.  Don’t expect your wedding planner, or your photographer to round up your familiy and friends – we don’t have any idea who these people are, or what they look like.  You will be happy you assigned someone this important task!  This is perfect for an organized person who would like to help you out, and knows most of your family and friends!

Have a detailed photography timeline so everyone knows when to arrive, and where to meet to get their flowers.  If you don’t, it is disorganized, and many spend time waiting when they didn’t have to be ready, and it is frustrating.  Nothing is more frustrating than being ready for photos, and your photos are NOT taken at that time.  Be respectful of the time of your photographer, family, and friends.

As the wedding planner, a photography timeline is something I work closely with your photographer to make sure we have who we need, and where we need them.  This is customized for each wedding with names of who is needed, and where, then e-mailed to you for approval, then distribution to the wedding party and immediate family.  As your wedding planner, your wedding party gets hair and makeup schedules customized (if your hair and makeup stylist don’t handle this).  Your entire wedding party and immediate family get an itinerary to know when and where to be somewhere, so they are “in the know.”

GETTING READY WEDDING PHOTO IDEAS

□ Bride having hair styled and makeup applied (wear something FUN)!

□ Wedding party in personalized robes, shirts, and shoes (BEFORE getting into

wedding apparel).

□ Close up photos of bride’s wedding gown details.

□ Bride’s wedding gown on a “photo worthy hanger” (get a Mrs. “last name”

hanger from Etzy.com or search, Wedding Dress Hangers).  Take this

photo FIRST so the bride may get in her gown!

□ Artsy shots of your dress, shoes, jewelry, something old, something new, something

borrowed, and something blue, sixpence for your shoe, etc.

□ Close-up shot of wedding bands

□ Bride’s bouquet, bridesmaids bouquet, and flower girl halos/baskets

□ Candid shots of the bridesmaids getting dressed.

□ MOB (Mother of Bride) zipping, lacing, or buttoning the bride’s dress.

□ MOB helping the bride with one final detail (veil, jewelry, hair accessory, etc.).

□ Full-length photo of the bride in her gown, looking at herself in a mirror, or something artsy.

□ MOB/bridesmaids reacting to the bride in her gown.

□ Bride and First Look with FOB (Father of the Bride).

□ Bride with her MOH (Maid of Honor or Matron of Honor).

□ Bride with her bridesmaids.

□ Bride with her parents and siblings.

□ Groom with groomsmen getting ready.

□ Groom with best man.

□ Groom with his groomsmen.

□ Groom with his parents and siblings.

□ Groom finishing last touches to get dressed with MOG (Mother of Groom) or

FOB (Father of Groom).

□ Other __________________________________________

□ Other __________________________________________

□ Other __________________________________________

BEFORE THE CEREMONY PHOTO IDEAS

□ First Look Photos when the Groom sees the Bride for the first time

(traditionally only photographers are with the bride and groom at this

private moment!)

□ Bride with her mom.

□ Bride with her dad.

□ Bride with both parents.

□ Bride with her entire immediate family.

□ Groom with his mom.

□ Groom with his dad.

□ Groom with both parents.

□ Groom with his entire immediate family.

□ Bride and groom with bride’s family.

□ Bride and groom with groom’s family.

□ Bride and groom with both sets of parents.

□ Bride and groom with immediate family from both sides.

□ Bride and groom with flower girl and ring bearer.

□ Bride and groom with flower girl and “here comes the bride” sign.

□ Bride and groom with ring bearer and “happily ever after” sign.

□ Bride and groom with entire wedding party.

□ Bride and groom with entire wedding party and props (colored parasols, sunglasses, signage)

□ Other __________________________________________

□ Other __________________________________________

□ Other __________________________________________

CEREMONY PHOTO IDEAS

□ Exterior and interior shots of the site before guests arrive.

□ Details on the aisle décor and altar décor.

□ Musicians playing.

□ Honored family members being seated.

□ Grandparents entrance

□ Parents of the Groom’s entrance

□ Mother of the Bride’s entrance

□ Entrance of wedding party

□ Close-up of Groom’s expression while waiting for bride to enter.

□ Close-up of Bride and FOB (or her escort) before they walk down the aisle.

□ FOB (or escort) giving bride to groom.

□ Bride and groom at the alter or the chuppah.

□ Officiant.

□ Both sets of parents watching the ceremony.

□ Wide shot of the altar or chuppah from the guests’ point of view.

□ Wide shot of the guests, from the couple’s point of view.

□ Special moments during the ceremony (candle lighting, unity/sand/wine

ceremony, vows, and rings).

□ Close-up of the bride and groom as they recite their vows and exchange rings.

□ The KISS!

□ Close-up as the bride and groom walk down the aisle.

□ Bride and Groom and all the guests BEFORE leaving the ceremony (at the back

of the aisle looking towards the front of the ceremony.)

□ Bride showing off her ring to family and friends.

□ Bride, Groom, and witnesses signing the marriage license.

□ Bride and groom leaving the ceremony site (especially if you have special

transportation arrangements.)

□ Other __________________________________________

□ Other __________________________________________

□ Other __________________________________________

RECEPTION PHOTO IDEAS

□ Exterior and interior shots of the site before guests arrive.

□ Shots of centerpieces, table settings, favors, champagne glasses, escort cards,

place cards, lighting and menus.

□ Wedding cake

□ Hors d’oeuvres and specialty drinks

□ Bride and groom grand entrance.

□ Wedding party grand entrance.

□ Bride and groom first dance.

□ Welcome by the FOB (father of the bride) and MOB (mother of the bride).

□ Welcome by the FOG (father of the groom) and MOG (mother of the groom).

□ Toasts by Best Man and MOH (maid or matron or honor).

□ Reaction of Bride and Groom to the welcome speeches and wedding toasts.

□ Thank-you by Bride and Groom.

□ Food and Beverage photos

□ Bride and FOB dancing their Father/Daughter Dance.

□ Groom and MOB dancing their Mother/Son Dance.

□ Generational shots on bride’s side and on groom’s side.

□ Parents and grandparents dancing.

□ Band and/or DJ performing.

□ Guests signing guest book.

□ Guests getting ready to take photos in the photo booth.

□ Sunset photos of Bride and Groom.

□ Photos of Bride with her High School/College/Work friends.

□ Photos of Groom with his High School/College/Work friends.

□ Photos of Bride and Groom with Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, and Godparents.

□ Bride and Groom cutting and feeding each other wedding cake.

□ Bouquet toss

□ Garter removal

□ Garter toss

□ Garter put on person who caught the bouquet.

□ Exit for Bride and Groom (fireworks, sparklers, transportation, etc.)

□ Other __________________________________________

□ Other __________________________________________

□ Other __________________________________________

Copyright 2013, Kim Horn, MBC™

To hire Kim as your wedding planner, call 480.921.7891 or text your name, wedding date, and wedding planner request to 602.418.9089.

Kim M. Horn, MBC™

Master Bridal Consultant | 1 of 61 in the World

Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Chandler, Phoenix and Destination Weddings

Publisher | Pres. | ArizonaBridalSource.com

AZ State Coordinator Assoc. of Bridal Consultants May 2003 – May 2012

2010 Annual Conference Chair (worked with David Tutera) – Assoc. of Bridal Consultants

O 480.921.7891

M 602.418.9089

F 480.829.6292

E info@ArizonaBridalSource.com

ArizonaBridalSource.com

 

 

 

 

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May 12, 2012

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Alexa and I at Turks and Caicos at Beaches, best vacation ever!

Alexa and I at Turks and Caicos at Beaches, best vacation ever!

Happy Mother’s Day to you if you are a mom.

Happy early Father’s Day if you are a dad.

If you aren’t a parent, then please pass on love, hugs, and best wishes to your parents and grandparents!  If you don’t have a mom, or grandparents, I understand your loss, and remember their laughter, smile, and incredible times you had together.

As a parent, you feel fortunate to be able to bring a child into this world.  You understand what it means to want more for your child than you and your spouse ever had.

Before becoming a mom, I used to think life was “busy”.  Now being a mom, and running multiple businesses, have a new definition and balance for the word “busy”.

Being a teacher and positive role model for your child, you hope and pray the map for their road of life is filled with good choices. You have a positive mindset overflowing with strength and energy, especially on the days when there are detours.

When you are a parent you understand 24/7, you understand there is no time off, and traditions you pass on and implement will be passed on to your child’s children.

You want to be there to share great experiences and all those “firsts”.  You want to listen to everything about their day.  You want to give them hugs, dry their tears, and pick them up when they fall.  You understand one day when when you least expect it, they will be on their own.  You hope and pray you have instilled in them the knowledge, tools, and ability to make their own right choices as if you were there beside them as they follow their road of life.  It is hard to know all your parents sacrificed, yet you get a better idea when you become a parent.

When the doctors told me I would never have children, my mom told me “Kim, you will never know what love is”.  At that time I had no idea what she meant, and now after beating all odds to become a parent, I do “get it”!

Blessed that Alexa (our miracle daughter), Steve, and I have an incredible relationship.  We have each others “back”, and together anything is possible!

One of our favorite sayings is “I love you to the moon and back a zillion times, and I love you more than you love me and it is possible!”  Alexa is now 9, and in 9 more years she will be graduating high school and off to college.

My mom passed away almost 19 years ago next month.  Disappointed Alexa and her never met, yet know they have many things in common, which I have discussed with Alexa – their blue eyes, their nose, and their artistic creativity just to name a few of their similarities.

Steve and I celebrate our 22nd anniversary today, and can’t wait for another weekend experience as we are together for Mother’s Day!

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First Dance at Your Wedding

A DJ or band will set the tempo and mood of your wedding.  Music is one of the first impressions your guests experience when they arrive.  It pays to do your homework when hiring a DJ and band.  You do get what you pay for, if it appears to be too good, it probably is.  The personality, knowledge, and expertise of your DJ and band will make your event.  A professional DJ and band will be able give you guidelines on the flow of your wedding, and to assist you as you select your “must play” songs and your “must NOT play” songs.

Select Music for a Diverse Group of family and friends.  As a bride and groom, you have your favorite songs, yet your parents and grandparents may have an entirely different song list.  Review your guest list to see what type of music will work best, and ask your DJ and band for recommendations.  As you review your guest list, it normally narrows down to a diverse group of family and friends, which translates to a diverse group of music selections.   You may want live music for a portion, and a DJ for another portion. Music played during dinner will be an entirely different selection compared to the last hour for dance music.

Load In and Set Up.  Your DJ and band need to be scheduled to have enough time to load in, set up, have a sound check, trouble shoot, change clothes, and be ready for the arrival of your guests.   The last thing you want is your DJ or band loading in as your guests arrive.  If you have a band, they will have multiple breaks.  Make sure you have someone play music during breaks.

Are you a musiczilla?  As a wedding planner, always have lots of stories!  One bride had a song list of what she wanted played to the minute for her entire three hour wedding reception.  This is not recommended!  As her wedding planner, let her know it was not recommended, yet the DJ would follow her plan “her way”, yet she needed to understand if it wasn’t working we needed a Plan B.  Plan B was the most of the same songs, yet played in an order and timing the DJ felt worked best for the flow.  After 10 minutes of no one dancing, I approached the bride, and she agreed to go to Plan B.  Please remember you hire a professional for a reason, and each song may be three to four minutes long.  If you have a MUST PLAY list of 150 songs, you may have 600 minutes of music, translating to 10 hours of music.  Allow your DJ or band leader to guide you in selections which will get your guests up on the dance floor.  If there are songs which you do NOT want played, even if requested by a guest, make sure they honor your requests first.

Team and Timeline.  As your wedding planner, one crucial item requested of you is to be respectful to your vendors and give them a realistic timeframe to do what they feel they need to do it in.  You will need a timeline from your photographer to know how much time they need to photograph you, your wedding party, your family, and  your room before guests enter.  Depending on your menu selection and service style, you may want to position songs like the Father/Daughter dance after the servers have cleared tables, while everyone is waiting for your next course to be served.  You want your vendors to be able to do their personal best in a realistic timeframe.

Cake Cutting vs. Cake Service.  One of the key issues when timing your dinner is when to cut the cake.  Many feel when you cut the cake, your guests leave.  There is a “gap” in time from when you physically “cut the cake”, to when the cake is “served” to your guests.  Most people eat dessert and have coffee after their entrée (they don’t wait an hour or two for dessert).  Would recommend the bride and groom to cut their cake when most of the guests are finished eating their entrée.  Once the cake is cut, then have the DJ and band open the dance floor for dancing (approximately 20 – 30 minutes) while the catering staff disassembles, cuts, and prepares the cake to be served to the guests.  After 20 – 30 minutes of dancing, your guests are normally ready to take a break, and return to their table to eat their cake.

Check references, and meet with the DJ and band directly.   The DJ and band leader should give you recommendations or a guideline to help you with song selections for your:

  • Grand Entrance
  • Dinner Music
  • First Dance
  • Father/Daughter Dance
  • Mother/Son Dance
  • Cake Cutting Song
  • Dance Music (slow and fast selections)
  • Last Dance

Read and understand your agreement before signing it.

What time will they start and end?

What is included in their fee?

What is an additional fee?

Who is your DJ?

Who is your emcee?

Who are your band members and what instrumentation or vocals will they include?

What are overtime charges?

What will they wear?

If it is a band, how many breaks do they have and for how long?

What and who will be play on band breaks (or do they have a DJ to handle this)?

If it is a band, are they willing to learn the music of your First Dance, and other special requested dances?

Do they have a wireless microphone for announcements?

Do they include lighting, or is it extra?

Two recommended DJ companies:

http://www.CitronSound.com (ask for Jon)

http://www.RayTheDJ.com (ask for Ray)

Copyright 2012, Kim Horn, MBC™

To hire Kim as your wedding planner, call 480.921.7891 or text your name, wedding date, and wedding planner request to 602.418.9089.

Kim M. Horn, MBC™

Master Bridal Consultant | 1 of 61 in the World

Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Chandler, Phoenix and Destination Weddings

Publisher | Pres. | ArizonaBridalSource.com

AZ State Coordinator | Assoc. of Bridal Consultants May 2003 – April 2012

ABC 2010 Conference Chair worked with David Tutera

O 480.921.7891

C 602.418.9089

F 480.829.6292

E info@ArizonaBridalSource.com

ArizonaBridalSource.com

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December 29, 2011

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ArizonaBridalShow.com

ArizonaBridalShow.com

Arizona Bridal Show – Save the Date – Sunday, June 9, 2013 at Phoenix Convention Center in the SOUTH building from 9am – 3pm.  Tickets are $12 at the door.  ArizonaBridalShow.com for tickets online.

Bridal shows are a great planning tool when you are a busy bride, groom, or parent planning an upcoming wedding.  In one day and in one place you are able to talk directly with many different exhibitors, see/hear/taste/smell/touch samples of their work, and get an idea of costs involved in hiring their products and services.  Many bridal show exhibitors have show “discounts” or “specials” available for a limited time.

Bridal shows may be overwhelming, crowded, and confusing.  Would highly recommend you spend time planning ahead to get the most out of your bridal show experience.

After being a wedding planner for 25 years (probably older than you, right), these wedding planning tips are priceless to make your “Bridal Show Experience” the most productive!

1).  Visit the bridal show web site for discount coupons on admission.

2).  Mark your calendar with the day(s), start time, end time, and the location with the address and parking details.

3).  Come early, since the you will get more accomplished.

4).  Attend the fashion show, and check the start time.

5).  Bring the people involved in making major decisions for your wedding.

6).  Bring your phone and take photos and video to capture what you like.

7).  Bring address labels or an address stamp with your name, address, phone number, e-mail address, and wedding date to register for prizes.  This will save you time and prevent writer’s cramp.  Remember to register at locations you are interested in, otherwise your in box and mail box will be overflowing!

8).  Bring a large bag (or bag with wheels) so you may comfortably carry all of the hand-outs and samples you receive from the exhibitors.

9).  Wear comfortable shoes since you will be walking and standing on your feet for hours.

10).  Bring your calendar so you may book appointments.

11).  Bring cash and your check book to take advantage of show discounts on site.

12).  Bring your color swatches if you still need a designer, florist, and bakery.

13).  Make a list of priorities of products and services you need the most.

14).  Some vendors may be able to book 1 or 2 weddings a day which will make them book more quickly.  Photographers, DJs, wedding planners, florists, and videographers may be examples of this vendor type.  Other vendors may be able to book multiple weddings on the same day.  Keep this in mind when organizing your priorities.

15).  Stay until the end of the show, you may be able to have props which are leftover from the exhibitors.

Copyright 2013, Kim Horn, MBC™

To hire Kim as your wedding planner, call 480.921.7891 or text your name, wedding date, and wedding planner request to 602.418.9089.

Kim M. Horn, MBC™

Master Bridal Consultant | 1 of 61 in the World

Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, Chandler, Phoenix and Destination Weddings

Publisher | Pres. | ArizonaBridalSource.com

AZ State Coordinator | Assoc. of Bridal Consultants May 2003 – May 2012

ABC 2010 Conference Chair worked with David Tutera

O 480.921.7891

C 602.418.9089

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July 22, 2011

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What is the difference between a resort wedding planner, church wedding planner and having your own personal wedding planner?

Since brides, grooms, mothers, fathers, wedding party attendants, and vendors repetitively ask me this question, decided it is time to blog about it!  Could give you multiple essays on this topic, yet know you are busy, so will limit it to a “few instances” to show you brief examples.

At the end of the day, as YOUR wedding planner, I work for YOU in YOUR BEST INTEREST.  I am NOT paid by the resort or the church to act on the church or the resorts behalf.  You hire and pay me for expert knowledge and to help create your wedding to be seamless, allowing details to be done in advance since it is organized, and on your wedding day, you are a BRIDE, and your mom is the MOB (Mother of the Bride) NOT the wedding planner!

As your personal wedding planner, I help you:

1).  Design your wedding (no 2 weddings are EVER alike – have even done 9 weddings in one family – making each one unique to that daughter or son’s wedding);

2).  Negotiate your agreements;

3). Mediate situations which may arise;

4). Plan your wedding with detailed timelines for photography, hair and makeup, and your entire day to the minute which one approved by you, is distributed to your parents, wedding party, and immediate family.

5). Implement your details at your wedding rehearsal, ceremony, cocktail reception, and dinner and dance!

The church and resort wedding planner manage multiple weddings and events at their same location, and are familiar with the ins and outs of their property.  The church and resort wedding planner may have more than one wedding and/or event on the same day and/or same time as your wedding.  Make sure when you are looking for a ceremony and reception site you know how many weddings and/or events they will book on the same day as your wedding (before, during and after your wedding).  It may affect your vendor load in, your photographs, and time frame of what you may create or NOT create with your wedding design because of lack of time of setup and preplanning.

At a recent wedding where I was hired by the groom as their wedding planner, the resort wedding planner checked in with the bride and groom, then me. The resort wedding planner let me know at the wedding rehearsal the day before she had another wedding at the same time as my bride, and she was going to assign another resort wedding planner to be at her wedding.  I asked her if she had let my bride know, and she replied, “No”.   I highly suggested to the resort wedding planner a substitute the day before the wedding was not acceptable, and the bride and groom did not need any additional stress because of a resort situation.

The resort wedding planner was spread between multiple events at the same time at different locations at her property, since “both brides” wanted her, not the other person on site.  The resort wedding planner could not be with 2 brides at 2 different sites at the same time, she told me she would “be right back” to help get the ceremony started on time.  The resort wedding planner did come back, yet she missed my bride’s entire ceremony. The resort wedding planner showed up 23 minutes past the start time of the ceremony. The resort wedding planner was out of breath, and thanked me for starting everything without her. The bride and groom had just kissed, and were ready for their recessional (when you walk down the aisle as husband and wife).

At a recent bridal show, a few brides told me they had a “wedding planner included in their package.”  Asked them who their wedding planner was, and they didn’t know.  They also did not know what the “venue wedding planner” did vs. what I could do for them as 1 of 61 in the World as a Master Bridal Consultant.

Would you want this to happen to you, especially when it comes to the most stressful part of the wedding day, where it is beneficial to have an experienced wedding planner  lead, line up, and direct your VIP entrance of your closest family and friends, in the middle of making sure your musicians change the music on time for the appropriate VIP entrance.  Remember, everyone knows what time your ceremony is expected to start, it is printed on your invitation!

Focus is “all about my bride”, and I organized and directed the bride’s wedding rehearsal the previous day, and started her ceremony processional (when your VIPs walk in and you too) on time. My bride had no idea the resort wedding planner missed her ceremony, and that is the way it will stay. No names or photos are listed here for a reason, and if you are a client and think it was your wedding, I will deny it!

One church wedding planner tried to have the Mother of the Bride escorted down the aisle by her ex-husband. I immediately stepped in, diffused the situation, and had the mother walk in with her son (which is how we rehearsed it, and how it was on the approved wedding timeline which the church wedding planner had in her hands).

Thankfully the bride didn’t know, yet the MOB (mother of the bride) knew. The mother of the bride thanked me for eliminating what would have been an awkward situation, and commented, “You are worth your weight in gold”!  The church wedding planner had gotten the bride confused with the details on the wedding which was right after this bride’s wedding.

Precision with details and experience are everything when it comes to hiring wedding planner!

Copyright 2013, Kim Horn, Master Bridal Consultant.

To you have your own personal wedding planner, contact:

Kim M. Horn, MBC
Master Bridal Consultant | 1 of 61 in the World
Publisher | Pres. | ArizonaBridalSource.com
Sponsor ArizonaBridalShow.com
AZ State Coordinator 5/2003-4/2012| Assoc. of Bridal Consultants
ABC 2010 Conference Chair

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July 14, 2011

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Your upcoming wedding will affect people in your life differently. Many weddings are “all about the bride”, and rarely do you hear much about the FOB (father of the bride), except when another check needs to be written!

Hoping this helps explain your dad’s pre-wedding behavior (why is he suddenly always in the garage?), not to mention his “day of” apparel requests. Communication during stressful times is important.

During your engagement, make time to be with your dad and spend quality “one-on-one” time together. If you sense your dad is getting emotionally distant, ask him to be involved in a part of your wedding you and your mom think he would enjoy. This would be a perfect time to let your dad know that although your relationship may change, no one will take his place. Let him know you look forward to and will treasure this part of your relationship with him. Your dad is working on trusting another man to protect you, which has always been his duty.

With your wedding day around the corner, your dad may feel a sense of loss or feel “his job is over” once you are married. Mothers normally feel an “empty nest” when you leave for college. Yet with fatherhood, this is a major part of his identity, especially since fathers reflect on when you were little, when he taught you things, and remembering how quickly the time has passed.

Verbally walk your dad through your wedding day schedule for the “when and where” of your rehearsal, ceremony, and reception. Let him know the photography timeline, how he will be walking you down the aisle, and his very important line “her mother and I” or “we do” at the ceremony. Remind him of his welcome/toast to everyone and give him a time limit so he knows to be brief. Practice your father/daughter dance together, and ask your wedding planner for assistance if you need help with song selections and choreography.

Copyright 2011
Kim Horn, Master Bridal Consultant (1 of 59 in the World)
Publisher, Arizona Bridal Source
ABC AZ State Coordinator
ABC 2010 Conference Chair worked with David Tutera
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September 3, 2009

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With toasts and speeches, the more you have,  the more time you and your guests are “waiting” for something to happen.

Traditionally 3 minutes maximum is great for toasts and speeches, otherwise things may be “too wordy”, and get boring fast.

Will never forget one wedding in April, which was the 3rd wedding I had planned for the three siblings within 5.5 years.  The bride had been in the wedding parties at the previous weddings, but had not been involved in the “wedding day scheduling”.  Never wanting a bride to “settle” on her wedding day, with the bride saying it was a “MUST” for an open microphone.  We had the VIPs go first (five of them), then opened up the microphone with a “sign” between us (knowing she would realize “enough was enough”).  35 minutes later, the bride gave me the “sign” to signal the last toast, and let’s get on to the dinner!  (For safety, had already talked to the head captain at the BEO meeting to make sure the chef was informed to hold the meal – no cold food)!

The rehearsal dinner is a perfect place for an “open microphone”.  Most of your closest family and friends will be there, and it is a fun and loving atmosphere.  Don’t forget to have your wedding photographer and wedding videographer capture your wedding rehearsal dinner toasts and festivities!

“Open microphones” for your wedding day are NOT recommended.  Speeches and toasts  in sequential order, with time limits, work well to keep the flow of your day moving forward (and your food warm too)!

Cutting everyone to 3 minutes maximum will make it easy to have 5 people (taking 15 minutes).  If you allowed those 5 people to have 5 minutes each, you just took 25 minutes away from your evening.  Your choice, but spend and allocate your time wisely.

FOB (also known as the Father of the Bride)

Good idea to have the FOB welcome guests first (after the first dance).  The FOB may go behind where the bride and groom are seated (a great photo opportunity), and may want to take the MOB (Mother of the Bride) with him.  The FOB does not need a glass with champagne, since he will only be welcoming, (not toasting – since this is traditionally the best man’s job).

1).  Thanks the guests for coming from near and far.  May want to mention various states, or countries of key interests to both sides of the family.

2).  Thanks the MOB (mother of the bride) for everything she did for making their family be as incredible as it is.

3).  Reflects on positive aspects of  his relationship with his daughter, watching her grow up, and how incredibly proud he was to walk her down the aisle, or of  when she did “x”, or when he knew the groom was “the one”, etc.

4).  Welcomes the groom into their family, and looking forward to them having many happy years together, excited to see grandchildren, family excursions, etc.

5).  Proposes a welcome to the bride and groom wishing them a future of happiness.

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