10 Ways to Avoid a Wedding Day Horror Story

Posted by Caitlin on Oct 31, 2013


 Photo: Heather Brulez Photography 

Happy Halloween! We celebrated yesterday at WW headquarters with an array of creative costumes from Care Bears to “What does the fox say?” and Snow White and the seven dwarfs to Breaking Bad, but there’s nothing more scary to engaged couples than their wedding planning going awry. Spooktacularly, our editors have come up with tips below to help you avoid being a wedding day horror story:

1. Do research before you hire vendors. Check out WeddingWire’s vendor reviews to find the perfect match based on your location and preferences. Once one is added to your team, check in and confirm, reiterate directions, emergency contact numbers, and day-of schedule. Prepare final payments and tips ahead of time that way you don’t have to remember what is owed to whom on your wedding day.

2. Develop a timeline with ample allowance. Build in enough cushion time for your vendors to set up before the ceremony, cocktail hour, and reception begin that way if anything unexpected happens, no one will notice as long as you don’t keep guests waiting.

3. Organize your guest list. Create a no-expectations policy (significant others only if they’re engaged; no children under 18), if possible, in hopes that your guest list does not become larger than desired and use WeddingWire’s guest list tool to keep track of RSVPs.

4. Prepare for inclement weather. Mother Nature can be less-than-ideal — rain, thunderstorms, heat, snow — have a Plan B, especially if you’re having an outdoor wedding. Consider a venue with an indoor space or tent as backup. Provide fans that double as ceremony programs to keep guests cool or rent space heaters to keep guests warm.

5.  Have an emergency kit on stand-by. Of course, you’ll need the essentials like bandaids, pain reliever, and deodorant, but what happens if you have a broken heel, stain, skin breakout, or fallen updo? Have a pair of spare shoes or invest in Shoe Goo for a broken heel, baby powder and rubbing alcohol or white chalk for stains, concealer for cover-up, and bobby pins and hair spray for a fallen updo.

6. Consider having an “unplugged” ceremony. Politely ask your guests and bridal party to turn off all electronic devices, including cell phones, smart phones, and cameras and allow the professional photographers and videographers do their job. You wouldn’t want a bridesmaid to update her Facebook status, tweet, or Instagram a picture of you getting ready in your dress before the first look or walk down the aisle, it may ruin the surprise for the groom!

7. Indicate whether you’re having a cocktail, buffet, or plated dinner reception. Let’s be honest, you don’t want your guests’ stomachs to growl or your guests to have an allergic reaction to the food. Take note of those who do have special requests.

8. Monitor your speech-givers. Sometimes a toast needs to steer clear of sensitive topics such as exes, religion, or race. And if it’s an open bar, they might have calmed their nerves a little too much and could roast you to a crisp. Communicate that this is totally irrelevant and uncomfortable for not only you but your guests listening. A good rule of thumb is to keep it no longer than 5 minutes.

9. Create a playlist for the DJ or band. These songs are meant to be skipped: “Chicken Dance,” “Cha Cha Slide,” “YMCA,” “Macarena,” you get the idea.

10. Eat, drink, and be married. Don’t go through your wedding day on an empty stomach, pre-order oatmeal with chia seeds for breakfast, salad for lunch and an afternoon snack like trail mix. The oatmeal along with the chia seeds will keep your skin glowing from head to toe, the salad will diminish unnecessary bloating and the trail mix will cure your hunger in between the ceremony and reception dinner. Hydrate with water before you pop the bubbly!


Fall Foliage Venues That Match Your Color Scheme

Posted by Caitlin on Sep 05, 2013

From mid-September to late October, leaves transform their summer shades of green into the reds, oranges, and yellows that signify autumn’s return all over the country. The vibrant backdrops are perfect for any fall wedding. Choose a color scheme that will not only complement your venue but also Mother’s Nature scenery. Take a look at how these real couples pulled it off:

1. Haunted Historic Home = Red + Orange 

Lindsey and Skyler’s halloween-themed wedding was located at Belvoir Winery, also known as one of the most haunted locations in the Midwest. Guests helped carve over 100 pumpkins! See more here.


Photos: Heather Brulez Photography

Pumpkin-Filled Fall Winery Wedding in Missouri

Posted by Caitlin on Sep 03, 2013

Lindsey & Skyler

October 5

Liberty, Missouri 


Q & A with the Bride:

1. What was the one thing about your venue that made you know it was the one?

We loved the character and history of Belvoir Winery.  The building we held our reception in was built around 1900 and was originally used as a home for members of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows.  They were able to keep a lot of the original flooring, molding, etc., and there was just a certain charm about the building that we instantly fell in love with.  Plus, we absolutely love Halloween, and Belvoir Winery has long been known as one of the most haunted locations in the Midwest.  (In fact, they were recently featured in an episode of Ghost Hunters.)

2. Which three details from your wedding were your favorites?

1. Pumpkins. We love fall and probably carve about ten pumpkins every year.  We held our rehearsal dinner at my aunt and uncle’s house out in the country, and our guests carved pumpkins (over 100!) that were used as décor for the wedding.

2. Skyler’s boutonniere. Skyler is an antique collector, and one of his favorite things to collect is antique handmade marbles. We had our florist incorporate one of his marbles into his boutonniere.  

3. Favors. We had mason jars personalized with our names and wedding date on one side, and the tree logo from our invitations on the other.  They were part of the dinner setting, and everyone used them as their drinking glass for the night.  I received so many compliments about them and many of our friends and family have told me they still use their drinking glass.

 3. Give us the one moment in your wedding you can’t stop thinking about. 

One of my favorite memories is walking down the aisle with my Dad.  It was such a special moment that just the two of us got to share.  He looked so happy and proud when he gave me away. I think that was the moment everything finally felt real.  


Mindy & Jim

October 30

Kansas City, Missouri

Mindy and Jim planned a modern wedding at the Boulevard Brewery Company, overlooking downtown Kansas City, with the help of  Ultrapom, a wedding decor rental company in Overland Park, Kansas. Their outdoor ceremony had breathtaking views of Kansas City. The reception was full of personalized details and their portraits took place at the Nelson Art Museum, where they got engaged. ~Heather Brulez Photography

Vineyard Military Wedding: Amanda + James

Posted by Jeffra on Jun 28, 2011

Amanda + James

Libery, Missouri

May 2011

From the Photographer: “Amanda and James planned a gorgeous outdoor Summer wedding at the new Belvoir Winery with gorgeous yellow flowers everywhere. They married just weeks before James was scheduled to leave town for his U.S. Army position. They had just enough time to spend a week at Disney World after saying, ‘I do.'” –Heather Brulez Photography

{Photographer: Heather Brulez Photography | Caterer: Affordable Catering | Floral Designer: D’Agee & Co Florist | Reception Venue: Belvoir Winery | Dress Store: Teresa’s Bridal Boutique | DJ: Professional Sound Service | Heirlooms and extras: Rosebud Lips}