Music: Prelude to The Kiss

Music is the prelude to the kiss, which seals the commitment.  Your choice of music should be personal and deliberate for your ceremony as well as your reception.  Music sets the tone, enhances the setting and creates the ambience, which puts people in the mood.  Music says a lot about the people celebrated.  Too often, when we inquire about the ceremony music, we hear, “Just pick something nice.” Okay…but that says nothing about the events to come or the mood the couple is trying to create.  We decided to share some of our suggestions for setting the mood and questions to ponder in order to help you decide.

Prelude Music

The Prelude is the music that sets the tone for what is to come.  The time length for this set should be approximately 15 to twenty minutes in length. While played as your guests enter, your choices tell your guests, without words your expectations.  The prelude should begin by creating a feeling of excitement and/or anticipation.  Your guests are arriving, they are excited about your nuptials and the music should build on that feeling. As the time draws closer to your ceremony start time, the music should become more romantic, softer and the words (if there are any) should tell a love story.  As the music softens, your guests will reflect this mood change their chatter will become softer in anticipation of the ceremony.  The last song of the prelude starts the ceremony with the entrance of the Pastor and the entrance of the family. Followed by Groom escorting his mother.

Mothers’ and /or Groom’s Entrance 

The mothers’ (his first then hers) entrance should be dramatic yet reflective.  The words, if there are any, should speak about letting go…a new beginning…or a song of praise. This music is especially important if the groom is escorting his mother into the ceremony.  We encourage the groom to have his own entrance so he too can share some of the spotlight.

Wedding Party Entrance

The bridal party song or songs should lead the guests to understand the love shared by the couple.  “Do the songs have to be slow…or should they be set to a march?”  Our answer is YES.  Then we remind our clients music dictates the mood.  Ask yourself, what is the ambience we are trying to convey? Do we want our guests to settle in and relish the feelings or do we want them caught up in the drama or do we want little of both?

 The Bride’s Entrance 

The bride’s song, chosen to tell her groom what she has in or on her mind, how she is feeling or is a song that reminds her of him. Similar to the couple’s first dance song, which we always ask our grooms to choose independently from the bride then tell her why he has chosen that particular song while on the dance floor.  This secret is their first as a married couple.

The Recessional Music

The Recessional is the last ceremony song. Its importance lays in being the song that transitions the guests’ emotions in moving to the next mood- the Reception.  It can be reflective (“At Last”-Etta James/Beyonce); declarative (“The Girl is Mine”-Michael Jackson/“We are Family”-Sister Sledge) or start the P-A-R-T-Y (“I Do”-Colbie Caillat/“Celebration”-Kool & the Gang).

The bottom line is your music needs to reflect you.  Need help or want more ideas?  Feel free to contact us Dream Weddings & Events, LLC. 

Honoring Loved Ones

 Honoring loved ones who have passed may be one of the hardest, but at the same time, most rewarding parts of a any celebration; especially a wedding celebration.  Often couples come the realization their loved will not be a part of their celebration in my office. This often leads to tears.  I can truly relate to these couples.  In my head I knew my own father’s illness (Alzheimer’s) would not allow him to walk me down the aisle.   I had always dreamed of that walk with my father.  The realization of it not being able to happen didn’t hit me until I said it aloud.  And it broke my heart.  So I made a list of ways to celebrate/honor him, which I am happy to share them with you.

At/during the Ceremony

  • Special Candle.  Place a single candle for each honoree on a separate table from the other celebration candles (i.e. the Unity candle).  This is an opportunity to give a family member the opportunity to participate in your celebration in an easy but important fashion.  This person will be light the Memory candle at some agreed upon point in the ceremony, i.e. at the start of ceremony.
  • Seats of Honor.  Reserve seats in the front of your ceremony.  Hang the names or a picture of those who are being honored/remembered on the seat back in such a way it can be seen easily.  During the service lay a single flower or small bouquet on the seat of the chair, thus bringing attention to the person being honored.
  • Family Processional. Prior to the mothers’ entrance, have pictures of those who you wish to honor brought in individually and placed on a special table or in their own seats.  Do you have people you want to have a part in your ceremony but no place to put them?  This is wonderful way to accomplish this quandary.
  • Special Table.  Place a table in a prominent space, place your loved ones picture on the table with a single candle.  This should be already in place and the candle lit when your guests arrive.

At/During the Reception

  • Special Table.  Place a table in a prominent space, like next to your guestbook and place your loved ones picture on the table so that it is already in place when your guests arrive.  Be sure to create a name card for each picture so your guests will know who your loved one is.  To make it even more special write something about that person on their name card.  This allows YOU to walk memory lane with that person as you write and honor your loved ones.
  • Table of Honor.  Set up an extra table in the front of the room.  Decorate it the same as the others including place settings.  Place your loved ones picture at the table so that it is where their plate would be.  For one wedding, I turned the pictures throughout the evening so that they faced what was going on.  For example, during the couple’s first dance all pictures were facing the dancefloor and during dinner they were facing each other as if they were talking with one another.
  • Special Candle.  Put a single candle for each person to be honored on a table with the Unity candle such that the honor candles surround the Unity candle.  This represents the couple is supported and surround by the warmth of family love.
  • Shadow (father-daughter or mother-son) Dance.  If you are brave and don’t mind others seeing your emotions.  Dance with only a picture of your loved one for a time.  Too long would be too dramatic.  Finish the song with a special relative.

It is surprisingly cathartic to include your ancients/loved ones/elders, whatever you call them, in your special day.  We encourage you to be innovative in including them, then please, come back and share your ideas. Or if you are looking for ideas, feel free to contact us  http://www.dreamwellc.com or via email dreamwellc@gmail.com.

Emergencies On Your Wedding Day? Be prepared!

Wedding Day emergencies are inevitable. Are you prepared? At Dream Weddings & Events, LLC  having a kit is a mandatory tool; no different from wearing your communication device. After seeing a question in the Facebook Brides Group about what goes into a Wedding Emergency Kit, we knew we needed to share.  Therefore, here is our professional opinion on what we strongly suggest to be in your Wedding Day Emergency Tool kit and in some cases why:

  • Advil, Tylenol
  • Antacid
  • Antihistamine
  • Aspirin- low dose for Heart or Stroke emergencies
  • Barrettes
  • Clear nail polish- stops runs in stockings
  • Cough drops
  • Dental Floss
  • Deodorant travel size (spray)
  • First aid kit  band aids
  • Gum-calms nerves
  • Hair and bobby pins
  • Hair spray
  • Handy wipes (baby wipes or freshen up cloths)
  • Kleenex
  • Lotion
  • Makeup remover pads
  • Masking tape- repairs hems or seams
  • Moisturizing Eye drops
  • Nail polish remover
  • Peppermint or breath mints
  • Pepto-Bismol or Imodium
  • Powder        
  • Safety and straight pins
  • Sewing kit w/neutral colored thread
  • Straw-to avoid smudging lipstick when drinking
  • Sunscreen
  • Tampons/pads
  • Toothbrush & toothpaste
  • Wash cloth

Additional Items

There are additional items found in our emergency kits based on past need.  Some seem crazy, but after the second time of needing an item we have just included them. Consequently, we do not have to send someone to the store.  As a Wedding Planner, here are some additional items that are also in our kits:

  • Anti-Static spray
  • Bottled water
  • Batteries 2 of each kind
  • Cake knife set
  • Chocolate
  • Glucose tabs
  • Extra garter
  • Hair spray
  • Preparation H- reduces puffy UNDER eye swelling
  • Slice of white bread (in a plastic bag to keep fresh) removes fresh lipstick stains   
  • Small bottle of white wine- it removes red wine stains (along with cool water)
  • Vaseline-applied to the teeth makes smiling easier

We know it seems like this list is long; you might need a suitcase just for your emergency kit (that’s how we carry ours),  but take our word for it, to need one of these items and not have it could cause a lot of needless heartache or stress. While traditionally the kit is maintained by your maid or matron of honour; it is part of our service to our clients.  Until next time…….Keep DREAMing

 

If you want to know more or have other questions, feel free to contact Dream Weddings & Events, LLC at 216-672-5451.

 

Marriage License: Q & A on the Process

Questions regarding the process for obtaining a marriage license is one of the most popular inquiries posed by our clients.  Please be aware, each State and county within that State may have their own process; contact your County Probate Court for exact details.  The information presented in this blog is the process for those of you from the State of Ohio, specifically Cuyahoga County.  It is my goal for you to have a few less bumps in the road on your journey to marriage.

Where do we go to apply for our license?

  • A resident of the state of Ohio must apply for your license at the Probate Court in the county in which the Ohio resident lives.  If neither of you is a resident you must apply in at the Probate Court in the county in which you are getting married.

Can one of us just pick up the form, take it home to complete it and return the form during office hours?

  •  You must BOTH go to the County Probate Office TOGETHER.
  • In Cuyahoga County, you may pre-register online at Online Marriage Pre-Registration then bring in the confirmation number.

What do we need to take with us?

  • Birth certificate (or some proof of citizenship like a passport)
  • A photo ID (like a driver’s license)
  • Social Security card
  • Certified copy of the divorce decree  (if you have been previously married)
  • If you are under 18, you need proof of consent by a parent.
  • If either or both applicants is physically incapacitated, that person’s physician must complete an affidavit stating the physical disability, and then it is filed with the application for the marriage license.

How much does a marriage license cost?

  • The cost varies from county to county, as each county sets the cost.  The price ranges from $45 to $60.

Do we need to get a blood test?

  • No, not in the state of Ohio

How long is the license valid?

  • The license is only valid for 30 days from the date of issuance.

For more details contact your County Probate Court Office.  We hope this blog assists you on your journey towards marriage.  Finding you need assistance making your DREAM day a positive memorable occasion? Contact us at Dream Weddings & Events, LLC 

 

Post-Wedding Checklist

Hello readers.  A post-wedding checklist is something I have often given my clients.  The following article, created by Ethan Lord Jewelers  goes into much further in depth.  I thought the article would be perfect for you, just click on the enlargement arrows to read it.    Happy reading.

The whirlwind of wedding planning is but a memory now. After months of meticulously mapping out every last detail, heartfelt vows and cherished wedding rings were exchanged, and your love was celebrated in style with family and friends.  Congratulations are in order … but there’s still more to do as you set off down the road toward wedded bliss. The accompanying checklist presents a dozen tasks to tend to in the aftermath of the wedding to make everything just right. There is gratitude to express, legal matters to labor over, and especially for sentimentalists, keepsakes to create. And there are plans to ponder to make the future even brighter.

Now that you are used to taking vows, check out this checklist to discover why it’s important to transform your “I do” to “We will … ” Take on these tasks as a couple for a picture-perfect way to wrap up your wedding-related activities. Be assured that the “thank you” cards in particular are most meaningful to the many who made your day so special.

Children: Age Appropriate?

Children!  Nothing can change the mood of a wedding more than those little darlings chosen to be the ring bearer and/or flower girls.  In my experience, I have seen them destroy a mood by crying or refusing to go down the aisle or be a comical mess with their interpretation of how they should go down the aisle.  One of the most frequent questions I get from clients is: what is the most appropriate age for a flower girl or ring bearer?  It depends.  There is really no definitive answer to this question. So how do you choose?  Let’s look at it…

Too Young?

Even though your three year old nephew or niece is cute and outgoing.  How will he/she be affected when all of those eyes are looking at him/her walk down the aisle?  Stage fright hits even the strongest of adults.  Yes it is true all they are doing is walking but for some little people it is a walk of death. All of those people staring at them…that’s scary!  Then there are a few, who will relish the stage and upstage everyone and everything.  Drawing attention to themselves, doing things they normally would not do but because the spotlight is on them they take advantage.

Too OLD!

Just like you don’t want a little one who is too young walking down the aisle.  Don’t embarrass a tweenager, especially young ladies, by giving them the honor of being your flower girl.   Young men generally don’t make a big deal out of being a ring bearer.  They are just happy they get to stand up front next to the groom.  There are always exceptions but generally tweenagers (ages 11-14) are NOT interested in “baby” jobs!

My Recommendation

Children participating in the ceremony be at least school age. Preferably in at least first grade.  Why?  Experience.  Maturity. Desire. Tweenagers, on the other hand, should be given the positions of Junior Groomsman/Usher or Junior Bridesmaid/hostess.  Here they still get the spotlight most tweenagers crave, without looking like a baby.  Before you assign these positions to tweenagers I would strongly suggest asking them first, if they would mind being a flower girl/ring bearer or would they prefer being a Junior Bridesmaid/Groomsman.   

 

All in all it is your choice.  Some of my clients like the excitement and drama little people bring.  At times they do make interesting, sometimes hilarious video footage.  Remember, the bottom line is what you want your guests’ take away to be; of that cute kid or the beautiful couple?  Do you want or need assistance creating a beautiful and memorable occasion that includes children?  Contact us at 216-672-5451

Cleveland, OH Event Planner | Dream Weddings & Events, LLC.

Insurance for the Bride: A Diamond Ring

The following article about the tradition of giving a diamond engagement ring by M. Wyzanski was shared with me by Malky Okowita caught my attention.  I just love the history of traditions and here is one you might not know.

Insurance for the Bride

The Diamond Ring, ‘Symbol of Affection’ or ‘Collateral’?

They say diamonds are forever. So, when a man presents his bride-to-be with a diamond engagement ring, it stands to reason that it’s representative of the promise inherent to an eternal relationship of bliss.  From a historical standpoint, there’s another facet of sparkle.  By the mid-1940s the engagement ring was seen as something more. It was a form of insurance, so to speak, for the bride. Should her groom desert her, she had something of worth to take with her.  And considering the pricey cost of any such rock embellishing ring, a groom would think more than once before walking away from his commitment.

Today, just as in years gone by, the phenomenon of broken engagements exists. According to statistics, however, contemporary women involved in a breached engagement, by and large, return the jewelry they receive. For those that go on to actually tie the knot of marriage, obtaining a conventional form of insurance coverage for the diamond engagement ring guarantees protection in the event of an expensive loss.

Insuring Your Diamond Ring

Although a standard NJ Homeowners Insurance, including typical NJ Renters insurance, embraces the articles in your home, it has limited value.  A costly item like a diamond ring needs extended coverage. Known as scheduled personal property coverage, this addendum to your homeowners or renters insurance escalates the typical limits on your standard plan allowing your ring coverage for maximum appraised worth.

Now that you have your ring and the insurance to cover it.  Are you ready to start planning?   CONTACT US 

 

Bridal Shows- 5 Things You Need

The Bridal Shows are Coming! The Bridal Shows are Coming!  Are you prepared?  Bridal shows are wonderful, exciting, and full of dreams but they are also confusing, repetitive and overwhelming.  These are adjectives used by brides who are unprepared to navigate through the journey called a bridal show.  In my professional opinion and from experience, there are five things you need when attending  bridal shows that will make your journey more pleasant.

  • Stickers with your name, contact information, and wedding date.  You are going to write the same information for just about every Service Provider you meet.  Consequently, having all of this information on a sticker saves you time and effort.
  • A calendar or plan book of your available dates and times.  If you meet your ideal Service Provider you are going to need to know your schedule or availability in order to set a meeting date and time.  Thus saving you time and the possibility of losing your dream Service Provider because someone else booked before you.
  • Comfortable Shoes.  This is NOT the time to wear those cute shoes you just bought..   You will be doing a lot of walking and standing on concrete floors, as most venues that host shows do not have cushioned flooring.  When your feet hurt, it makes for a miserable experience.
  • Patience.  Bridal Shows are notoriously busy places; with stressed out brides all looking for the best deal and best Service Providers.  Sometimes that means you will have to wait in order to speak with that ideal person you want.  In addition to patience….. 
  • Smile.   Your smile coupled with patience, something this simple can make or break your experience.  Smiles generate free thought and infer openness.  Free-thoughts and openness create pleasant conversations.  Pleasant conversations generate feelings of pleasure all of which translate into aiding in your planning being stress-free.  

Need more ideas?  Want help with your planning?  Contact us at dreamwellc@gmail.com

Wedding Planning Choices….

He asked. You said yes. You have your ring. What next? Your wedding planning choices…. Most brides or couples today, together with the Internet and their closest friends, choose to plan their own wedding.  Most do a fantastic job.  Frankly, I applaud their planning efforts.  So if that is the case and it’s that easy then why do couples need a Wedding Consultant? It is simple, couples can’t be everywhere.  Couples need to look for a consultant who offers a variety of services to meet the different needs of today’s couples.

For the couple who has the time, energy and patience to plan on their own, I say, go for it.  Personally, for me that is the fun part, which is why I became a consultant.  This couple is still going to need help tying up loose ends and with the little things on the day of the wedding. On that day,  the couple will be busy enough preparing themselves for the ceremony let alone checking on other details such as the flowers or ensuring the reception site is ready as contracted.  Their parents will busy with out of town guests and family consequently, they cannot do it. Their friends tend to get caught up in the excitement and forget they are part of what is happening, instead of watching it.    In swoops the wedding consultant to save everyone’s sanity.  This service is called, Day of or Month Of planning.  Here the consultant is charged with organizing, orchestrating, implementing and the development of a plan and a backup for anything that could possibly go wrong with the rehearsal, ceremony and/or the reception.

For couples who want/need help getting started or guidance along the way, Partial Planning Services would be best.  These couples do most of the work themselves with a planner serving as a consultant, that is making sure the chores involved in planning their big day are completed in a timely fashion, while also assisting the couple stay within their budget. Ideas should flow in both ways.  The consultant has to be able to hear what the couple is saying and be able to translate that idea into a doable service or be honest enough to say this is not going to come out the way you wish and have a workable solution.  Honesty and tact are key to assisting the couple in creating their dream day.  Friends tend to agree with the couple, when in their hearts they hate an idea, for the sake of maintaining their relationship.  Family members tend to disagree with the couple’s ideas.  In my experience, they relate to what they’ve seen or done in the past or would want to do themselves.  The consultant has no bias, consequently (usually) gives sound advice based on input from the couple.

The last kind of wedding planning service is Full Service Planning, is also the most expensive service.  Couples who choose this service are generally very busy or get bogged down when confronted with too many choices.  They only want to know when and where to be, thus, the consultant to does all of the running around, research and then presents the couple with two to three choices in each area of the preparation.  This level of assistance requires open and honest communication between the couple and their consultant. Failure to communicate by either party can end with disastrous results.

The wedding planning choices presented, represent the general levels of services offered by most Wedding Planning services.  There are many more options available depending on your needs.  The difference between a good consultant and a great one is not in what they do but how they do it.  If you have any questions or would like to use our services, do not hesitate to contact us at https://dreamwellc.com.