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So You're Planning a Wedding?

UncategorizedRebecca Potzner5 Comments

I think it's a sign you’re getting older and you've hit your adult life when, there’s a notification about someone getting engaged or married on Facebook  EVERY SINGLE DAY. Ok, I might be a little bitter or annoyed…but that’s beside the point! I am truly happy for all of my friends that have gotten married or engaged recently, especially for one of my best friends, Amanda. I was offered the privilege of being a bridesmaid in her wedding and I answered instantaneously with a YES! Now, putting my bias opinions aside…. but Amanda had the best wedding of all time. Honestly, it was one of the most gorgeous weddings I’ve attended and I didn’t even help with most of it! It was elegant and classy, yet had the personal and comical touches that made the wedding just perfect for Amanda and Chris.

I have attended and helped with a handful of weddings with Aviva Events and I was able to help Amanda with pieces of her wedding as well. Below is a list of highly important items that need to be on a wedding checklist.

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-The Time & Date:

            There’s not much to it; just pick a date! The date could be sentimental or you may just want to get married in a certain season. Be mindful of whether you would like an indoor or outdoor wedding. You or your guests may not appreciate an outdoor wedding in December. If you’re looking to not break the bank, try to plan for a Friday; most venues offer a lower price as opposed to Saturdays. Amanda and Chris were married in September and had an outdoor ceremony. There was a bit of a rain scare, but it held off until the end of the reception!

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-The Venue(s)

            Some people have their ceremony and reception in separate places and some have them in the same place. In all of the weddings I’ve recently worked and attended, it’s been more popular to have them at the same place. Either way, make sure you’re booking the venue well in advance. The sooner you book the venue, the more likely you’ll be able to get your ideal date.

Amanda and Chris had their ceremony and reception at the Savannah Center, one of the best wedding venues in our area. Their outside set up with a gazebo and lake was perfect for their outdoor ceremony.

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-Dining & Dessert

            Who doesn’t love food? I’ve always said, choose what you like! After all, it IS your day and you’ll be eating the food eventually. It’s always good to have options for your guests as well. You never know if there is someone who has special food requests. Then there's dessert. Cake shopping is such a big deal these days! Pick something that looks good AND tastes good. A beautiful cake is nothing if it tastes like crap. I like the idea of serving ice cream with the cake. Not everyone is a cake person...just a thought!

Amanda and Chris had amazing food selections. The food was absolutely delicious (we had 2 choices) and was accompanied with an open bar, can't complain about that! The cake was magnificent. It was both eye-catching and delicious.

Amanda's cake

-Aesthetics

            Every wedding has a color theme that can be seen through the clothing of the bridal party, flowers, and decorations.  Decide what kind of feel you want your ceremony // reception to have. Whimsical? Antique? Classy? Earthy? Establish what you want and build your decorations around that. This usually includes: table cloths, seat covers, and centerpieces!

         Amanda had the most beautiful flowers, orchids, as center pieces. They were absolutely breathtaking with their purple color. The tables were draped in black, but the room was lit up with purple lights on the walls. 

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-Fashion

            Besides love and matrimony, we all know this is a major factor in a wedding. A girl dreams about her wedding dress, probably at the start of her conception. Don’t just go for “what’s in”, but go for what’s you and what flatters you.

Also, please be nice to your bridesmaids. Take them along to pick out the dresses. Pick out something you like and also something they could wear again. Think,” Do unto others as you would have them do to you,” when shopping for dresses.

      Amanda picked out a gorgeous black Vera Wang dress. I’ve already worn it, besides her wedding and plan on wearing it again.

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-Music & Photography

            If you don’t book this section correctly, you’re going to regret it for the rest of your life. Music sets the scene for both the ceremony and the reception, so do some research before you book something/someone.I’ve noticed that many people have booked a live jazz band for dinner or cocktail hour and then switched to a DJ for after dinner. I think the transition works well.

During the ceremony, Amanda and Chris had a Live string quartet and a DJ during the reception. 

-Guest List & Invitations

The guest list can be a little tricky. Don’t go overboard and invite anyone you and your fiancé have ever met, but don’t forget the important people in your life either. Start out by making a list of the people you absolutely want at your wedding. From here, it will be easier to set a number not to exceed by too much. As for invitations, get them out no later than 3 months ahead.

     Amanda had beautiful white, black, and purple invitations to match the wedding colors. Amanda and Chris invited just the right amount of people; All the people they cared about were there and it wasn’t too little or too much.

           

-Seating Chart

            Dun Dun DUN! I feel as though the seating chart is what brings out the Bridezilla in a woman. My advice is deep breaths and don’t stress! Once people scarf down their delicious dinner, they’ll move around anyways! Just don’t sit great grandpa next to the speakers.

I thought Amanda did a great job with this. Right when you walked in, there was a sign with the seating arrangements. Since I was in the bridal party, I sat with the bridal party, which left my boyfriend at another table. She sat him at the table directly behind me with people he had met before, so it worked out great.

-Favors

            This isn’t a MUST, however it’s always fun for your guests. There are tons of websites to pick from with wedding favors. My favorite wedding favor is a personalized mixed CD and a photo booth (Amanda had both!).  The Cd is meaningful and heartfelt. Photo booths are always super fun and it captures the moment for your guests for forever. Majority of the time, the newlyweds will receive a copy of all the photos taken in the booth, which adds to your wedding photo collection!

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Wedding photos taken by Wisteria Photography + CK Photography

Suh-rawr-ity ∑v∑nts

UncategorizedRebecca PotznerComment

Oh, the joys of planning a sorority event. I've planned two major events and at least 5 mixers for my sorority. I've also contributed to the planning of other events.

I honestly do not even know where to begin this entry. I guess by saying, I feel as though planning a sorority event is much more complicated than planning other events, such as a wedding. There are so many restrictions, rules, and different people approving everything. I'm going to go over different things that I went through to get to the finished result. :)

MOOLAH: With any event, you need to figure out what kind of budget you have to work with. Now with sororities, you don't really have the best budget. You've got to work with what you've got! It's extremely important to make sure you keep track of all expenses, that way you know how above or below the budget you are. My chapter requires that we fill out an expense sheet on excel. This helps tremendously with keeping my spending organized.

Pick a Date: Picking out a couple dates can make it easier to narrow down your venue selection. When planning an event it is important to look at the dates you've picked out and see if there are major conflicts. When planning Date Party this fall, I had to go with my 2nd date choice because my first choice fell on the weekend of an important leadership conference.

Ven-Who? Ven-YOU!: There are many things to consider when looking for the perfect venue for your event. Can their rooms hold your expected capacity? Are they in your budget? Do they cater? Do they allow you to bring in your own food/beverages? Is it presentable? Can you bring in decorations? Do they decorate or let you pick out linens? Research and visit more than just one venue. Then compare and see if they have your dates available. CAREFULLY look over the contract and make sure you know what you are paying for. My advice is to make a list and take it with you when you meet with the venue.

You want to try to book the venue WAY in advance. The sooner you book it, the less you have to worry about and the more likely they will have your date available. So, get to bookin'!

Paper Planes: Man, I would've loved to have taken all the paper work and just shoot them into the trash as paper planes! For my specific chapter, I had to keep up an event planning sheet and an expense sheet. Though it feels like a pain in the butt to do, it's really helpful. Now, I also had to gather paper work for the venue including the contract stating everything that our Nationals expects, plus copies of the venues insurance and liquor licenses (if alcohol was being served at the event). It's always good to make copies of all the paperwork and keep them filed.

WickaWickaDeeJAY: Now for the music! The music can make or break the event. When you are looking for a DJ, I would recommend sitting down and talking to them and also going to see them at a gig. Make sure you find out how much they charge and whether they have their own equipment. It may even be at your best interest to make up a contract, if they do not already have one.

At one of my events, we hired my friends brother and his friend to DJ. We had talked to them and everything sounded great. Then a day before the event, they called and told us their speakers didn't work. Boy, did that just add to my stress level. At that point it was their job to fix their problem and show up with working speakers...and thankfully they did. However, they showed up with more people than what was expected. PLUS, these unexpected "DJ's" were not dressed appropriately and called my advisor a not so nice name. UNACCEPTABLE. I wanted him kicked out. Another issue was that the DJ's would not play any of the music that was on the request list or any music that people were requesting at the event.

Whoever you book for a DJ should realize that it's not their party its YOURS. If you want something played and the DJ has it...they better play it. They are getting paid to serve you, not themselves.

Can you tell how much these "Dj's" frustrated me? haha. Well, at this past event we booked a phenomenal DJ. You can check out DJ Jag on facebook.  Cincinnati has a great scene for Dj's. You've got to keep in mind that if they DJ at Bars/Clubs you're going to have to pay them at least what they would make if they were at the Bar/Club. Which could get pricey. Feel free to ask me for DJ names and contacts!

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Well, this post is getting pretty lengthy, so I will leave it at that. I'll touch more on other things in future entries. Hope this helps!

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