Friday, June 25, 2010

Hiring a planner for the Rehearsal Dinner

While I spend most of my time working on weddings, I occasionally plan rehearsal dinners as well. I love having the opportunity to work with the groom's family as well as the bride's family to make the entire weekend special. There are some advantages in using the wedding planner for both events. The planner can insure the two events are unique, while also giving the entire weekend a consistent feel.

Both the wedding and rehearsal dinner can get expensive. The wedding planner can also help share some of the expenses between the two families.

Cost Saving Tips......

If you are looking to cut back on the floral budget, use the same florist for both events and ask them to re-use the flowers from the rehearsal dinner for the reception.

Buy a larger package from the photographer that includes Friday night and Saturday coverage. You usually get a good price break.

Instead of having two cakes at the reception, I am seeing a trend in the groom's cake being served at the rehearsal dinner instead of the reception.

I was recently hired to finish the planning for a client's rehearsal dinner. Since I was already working on the wedding, it was easy for me to pick up where the bride and groom had left off. They had already decided on the newly renovated state rooms at The Club, and invitations were already in the mail. I was left with the fun stuff...linens, table settings, place cards and logistics.

I collected wine bottles for a week (they were not all from my house, I promise) and used them for table numbers. To tie the weekend together, I used the wedding logo on one side and the table number on the other.

I robbed my sister and a friend's cork collection to make the place cards. Hint: You need to cut the back of the cork off to make it lay flat. Be careful, I almost lost my finger!

I made a large chalk board wall that listed all of the guests and their table numbers. Unfortunately, I forgot to get a picture of it. I am hoping Seven Devries, the photographer, got one that I can share later!

Stay tuned for a post featuring Marc and Prim's beautiful wedding.

Happy Planning!


Monday, June 14, 2010

Gather Wedding: Fawn and Collin

Fawn and Collin were engaged in December of 2009, but did not decide to start planning their wedding until a few months later. I was thrilled to take on the task of planning their Birmingham wedding while the couple concentrated on studies and work in Washington D.C.

The couple's dream was to be married at The Cathedral Church of The Advent. Neither being members, I was happy to make a simple call to the church I have called home all of my life to see what we could do. Not thinking there would be an open Saturday in such a sort amount of time, I crossed my fingers and was thrilled to accept the only date available...May 29, 2010.

With only three months to plan and a bride living hundreds of miles away, we pulled together a team of incredible vendors:

Hannahelanine Photography (Nashville)

Rush Videos

Scott Wedgeworth

Emily Holmes Custom Stationary (Nashville)

Ryan Morrison, bagpiper

The Cantina

When I asked Fawn what she wanted to do for a wedding cake, she said she wanted to make peanut butter pies. I thought we would eventually order a wedding can a bride have time to make pies for 150 guests and still have time to walk down the aisle?

What can I say, Fawn is pretty awesome and pies were the hit of the night!!

As if the pies were not enough, Fawn also made 300 of Collin's favorite chocolate chip cookies.
Collin is one lucky man! The pies and cookies were incredible!

Thank you Fawn and Collin for letting me be a part of your big day! Your wedding was perfect and I loved planning every minute of it!

Happy Planning!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Gather Wedding: Meg and Devon

If you have had a chance to watch the video I posted on June 2nd, then you have seen the wedding of Meg and Devon. While the video by Jason Wallis shows you every detail of the day, I wanted to share a little more about this magnificent day!

Meg, an interior stylist (, knew exactly want she wanted when she set out to plan her small, spring-time wedding. The planning began around the ceremony and reception being held at her father's house at Smith Lake. It was very important to the bride and groom that only family and very close friends attend their intimate affair. They wanted a "laid back" feel without losing the formality of a traditional wedding.

The ceremony decor was focused around a large white umbrella. We had Scot Wedgeworth create an exquisite floral arrangement within the umbrella that served as a haven in which Meg and Devon said "I do."

The photographer had to head back to Birmingham before Meg and Devon wanted the reception to end, so we changed things up a bit.......we created little cones filled with rose petals that were in the chairs of every guest when they arrived at the ceremony. The cones had a sticker that read "as the happy couple comes your way, toss the petals and shout hurray!" Mission accomplished -- we were able to get the "going away photo" without having to rush the reception.

My favorite detail of this wedding were the various cake toppers Meg's late mother collected over the years. Devon's sister, a cake designer form Tuscaloosa, created multiple wedding cakes for Meg, and a delicious cinnamon roll cake for Devon. Having a cake designer in the family was a huge perk! Check out her website...For Goodness Cakes.

I am hoping to have some photos from Jason Wallis to add to this post. His photography skills are far better than mine (actually, I think Tom took these....have I mentioned that the blog editor's job description now includes working every wedding as well? This might be a topic for another post).
Happy Planning!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Gather Wedding: Lani and Jim

Who doesn't love a fun cocktail party? Lani and Jim Clayton decided they wanted a smaller wedding with close friends and family. Gather worked for 6 months planning the perfect "Southern Greek"reception to compliment the bride and groom's family backgrounds. Foremost, it was important to find a venue that would not only set the right tone for the event, but would allow an outside caterer (who happened to be the bride's aunt!). Architectural Heritage was the perfect fit for what we needed because it offered indoor and outdoor space, a lofty atmosphere, and was the right size to fit our 200 guests. All of the catering was provided by Lani's Aunt, Annette Weaver, who is a caterer with Magic Muffin here in town. Lani and Jim liked the idea of serving speciality drinks to their guests, so we created "Mr. Clanton's cocktail." This added a personal touch to the night, and not to mention the drink was a hit!! The flowers were done by the spectacular Kappi Naftel. We worked together to decide on tall cylinder vases with submerged flowers and floating candles to enhance to the lofty atmosphere. Will Dickey was there to capture every moment with his stunning photography! Razzle Dazzle Creative design created a beautiful logo, invitation and program for all the guests. I'm so happy the night came together perfectly, and Lani and Jim have wonderful memories to look back on.

It's a sign of success when a wedding planner has to push the guests out the door because the party's over. So I raise a glass to Lani and Jim... thanks for letting Gather be a part of your remarkable day!

Happy Planning!


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A Sneak Peak.....

It has been a crazy May and first of June for Gather, LLC. Four weddings in four weekends have made me a very happy wedding planner. For a sneak peak for a future post, check out the link below that Jason Wallis put together. The link features a small, lake wedding that took place a few weeks ago.

I am working on a post for the various weddings. Stay tuned!

Happy Planning!