I will preach over and over again, that your guest’s experience should be a top priority when planning your wedding. There are many things you can do to help ensure they have a great time. From the smallest detail to the amazing entertainment you book, it all comes together to ensure a great time for your guests at your wedding. One of the best ways to ensure a great time, and keep your guests energized throughout the evening, is by offering late-night snacks.
Here are my favorite Top 8 Late Night Wedding Snacks:
Build-Your-Own Nacho Bar
Like many good things in life, this one can get a little messy. Get a small plate with chips already laid out, and then have bowls full of various toppings. Make sure to have all the favorites, like pickled jalapenos, ground beef (or ground turkey), queso cheese, cilantro, and pico de gallo.
Alone or added on with your nacho bar, tacos are always a big hit. And it’s super easy to make high-quality ones, and with multiple filling options—anything from shredded beef, roast pork, cheese, avocado, and so on.
Cookies, brownies, cupcakes, cheesecakes, tarts, there are so many yummy options that come in mini sizes. What else could you ever ask for? I’ll leave it at that.
Another versatile option, and an all-around favorite, are burger sliders. You can have vegan, vegetarian, and meat-eating options so everyone is satisfied and represented.
Can you really go wrong with a classic? It’s cheesy and filled with carbs to soak up the alcohol, and if they take a piece to go it’s always good cold in the morning.
Gourmet French Fry (or Tot) Bar
Getting potatoes of various colors and then making fries out of them might be the next big thing for food spreads. When a bunch of different colors is represented, the result is dazzling and beautiful, and very much unlike what we’re used to with standard fries.
Soft Pretzel Bar
Salted or without, and complete with dips of all flavors. Again, carbs are great to soak up the alcohol and there is just something about a nice warm, soft pretzel that not only boosts your energy to keep dancing….but makes you happy inside.
Anything That Can Be Miniaturized or Handheld
Think mini chicken and waffles, grilled cheese and tomato soup in a shot glass, Asian steamed buns, ice cream sundaes, mac and cheese…….seriously, the possibilities are endless. You just want to make sure that it is something that people can eat easily, with little mess and if possible one-handed while they are dancing the night away with a drink in the other hand.
Photos by: Johnny Joo
So many words to say about this wedding, yet so little time to put it into words. Heather & Brandon were the lucky couple to be my last of the wedding season for 2017. I was so lucky to go out on such a high note.
When I met Heather it was just a little over a year from her wedding day at the venue she had booked for her wedding. We were talking about her plans and I shared that I had a wedding coming up on October 13th, 2016. Ironically her wedding date was October 13th, 2017. It seems to be my lucky day even though this year it landed on a Friday as well. Two weddings exactly one year apart in the exact same venue. It was fate.
We had such a wonderful consultation and just clicked. I knew this was going to be a dream wedding to help design and plan, and that it was. Heather had three things in her head that she wanted for her wedding. The first was sunflowers, the second was Beauty and the Beast and the third was touches of Friday the 13th (the day not the movie). I scoured the internet and Pinterest (yes, even as a professional I use Pinterest) for inspiration to go with my ideas. With my good friend Julie Elizabeth, I presented to Heather, Brandon and her mother our vision for the day.
It started with the sunflower and fall leaves for the ceremony. Her beautiful bouquets and leaves to be thrown by her adorable flower girls set the scene. It went so well with the pumpkins on the front steps. We added some small touches of luck with signs and pennies on every guests chair. “See a penny, pick it up, and all the day you’ll have good luck.”
After the ceremony the guests were invited inside to a Beauty and the Beast themed reception. Centerpieces were designed to reflect the main charachters. Hand beaded napkin rings to be able to fold them like the dancing ones in the dinner scene. Red floating roses and a gorgeous cake topper to match. To push it home Heather had some amazing signs created that really reflected the entire look and feel of the wedding.
The evening was filled with laughter, dancing and fun filled photos from Magnet Me Now. When the end was near I know I was filled with mixed emotions myself. The wedding being over, my season being complete, is always bittersweet. Yet this amazing couple being so happy, being able to enjoy their day with their friends and family, still brings a smile to my face.
This even would not have been possible without the amazing work of the following vendors:
Photography: Johnny Joo
Venue: Steele Mansion
Hair: Katie Oskowski
Make-up: Lindsay London
Entertainment: Tommy Kozlovich
Photobooth: Magnet Me Now
Stationary: Megan Gesing & It’s All Personal
Wedding Signs: Lola’s Design Loft
The wedding registry. To some couples it is the chance to create the ultimate wish list for their home, a way to begin planning their new life together. To others they feel they have everything or don’t like asking people for things. Or the last type of couple, they don’t want items, they just wish people would give them money (we’ll touch on this situation later and why its still a big no-no to ask for cash). But seriously, wedding registries can be really fun to create but they can also become stressful and overwhelming. So let’s talk about some tips on creating a wedding registry.
When should we start our registry? Traditionally you would create your registry before you announce your engagement. But frankly, that’s a lot of work to do when you’re bursting inside wanting to share the good news. So I recommend to my couples to make sure that it is completed before you have your engagement party, and if you are forgoing that, then make sure it is done before your wedding shower invitations go out.
Is there anything I should look for when choosing where to create my registry? First and foremost, make sure it is somewhere that actually carries things that you want, not just somewhere that will make Mom happy. Second, make sure their registry is user friendly. Nothing sucks more then having a registry that is hard to find or navigate because the system in place is complicated. Another thing to look for is if they have completion rewards. Some places give you a final coupon after your event for 10-20% off everything that is left on your registry that wasn’t purchased. So maybe the towels you’ve been dreaming about in your sleep were never gifted, but you just have to have them, well now just because you registered for them you can get them for 20% off.
How much do I need to register for? A lot more then you think. The thing is everyone that is invited to your shower will more then likely be bringing a gift. And if it is a lower priced item, then multiple gifts. Then you have people that won’t be able to attend the wedding but still want to send a gift. And then the people that actually bring a physical gift to the wedding. Do you work somewhere with friendly co-workers? They may throw you a party without you knowing it and you’ll have to have enough items on your registry for all of them. But it also goes back to the previous question when I mentioned the completion reward. Those coupons only work for items that you registered for before your event, so register for anything and everything you can think of so that even if it’s not purchased you can go back and buy it later at a discount.
But what if we have everything we already need in our home because we have lived together for a while now? My husband and I have been together 14 years, I was ecstatic when my mother bought me a new knife set for Christmas. Just because you have a lot of items already, doesn’t mean they couldn’t use an upgrade. Or that you couldn’t ask for a new tent to have for future camping trips. Or something that you are planning on buying for yourself, but could wait till after the wedding to get. You can always use new items or things to replace the old. It is a new chapter in your book together, it might as well start with new shiny things.
Seriously, I don’t want gifts, I just want cash. Seriously, no. I mean, I know, you’re putting a lot of money into your wedding and you’re hoping to not start your new life together in debt. I get it. But it is still UNACCEPTABLE to ask your guests for cash. Register for your honeymoon. Register for activities (see a few points down on registry options). Register for anything and everything that you will never use at a place with a wonderful return policy and get the money back. I don’t care, but do not ask your guests for cash, or let anyone know you returned everything or that I even mentioned it. In fact, forget I even said it. Go to Walmart and register for your groceries, just register. (Funny note, my husband and I registered for chips and salsa – totally worth it.)
OK fine I’ll make a registry, but do I have to do more then one? Yes. At a minimum I recommend you do two, and no more then four. But really two will do you just fine. The reason? Not everyone likes to shop at the same places. Not everyone can afford high end items and want more practically priced items so they prefer a different store. Give your guests options and they will not only buy you things but be more happy in the end. Make their shopping experience easy.
Make your registry practical and fun. Make sure that when you are choosing items to put on your registry, to pick things that you not only need, but items that you want too. I mean not everyone feels that they need zombie head cookie jar with removable brains, but if it’s something you really want then why not? (By the way it’s available at ThinkGeek). Make your registry practical, because you really do need dinner plates but also fun because who doesn’t want to drink their morning coffee out of a Back to the Future heat changing mug (also available HERE)?
Think outside the box. There are a lot of options out there for wedding registries. Not only those at brick and mortar stores, but a lot of options are now online. From Amazon registries to companies like ZOLA and My Registry. The nice thing about companies like ZOLA is that not only can you choose items but you can choose activities or honeymoon items. And My Registry takes every registry you create and puts it all together in one location. Let me touch back on brick and mortar stores, not only do people like to go and see and touch what they are buying, but a lot of people don’t feel comfortable or know how to purchase things online. Again, make everyone’s shopping experience easy.
Flatware. Check. Towels. Check. What else should I add? Storage items. You can never have enough storage items. Bins, baskets, totes, shelves, storage, storage, storage. As someone who is a big organizer I cannot recommend this enough. After all, where are you going to keep all of your new items?
So my registry is finished, now what? First, if you went to a brick and mortar store, go to their online store. Sometimes there are items that are only available online, but also keep in mind online exclusives or seasonal items may be out of stock if you create your registry very far in advance of your date. Lastly, tell your immediate family who can now spread the word to people they know. Make sure whoever is hosting your engagement party or shower knows where you are registered and give them any pertinent information like website or the handy-dandy cards you are sometimes given to put in invitations.
I just talked to my stationer and I keep being told I can’t put my registry on my invitations, why? Because it is another etiquette faux pas. Your registry information should be given to your guests in your engagement invitations or shower invitations. It can also be given by word of mouth through immediate family. It can also be listed on your wedding website. On a separate insert within your invitations you can add your wedding website, and that’s where people will find your registry.
I just received my first gift off my registry from someone who is not coming to my wedding. Can I open it? Yes. Open that sucker up and see what they sent! You want to make sure it is not broken or missing pieces as return policies differ for everything. And once you have checked it all out send them a thank you note now. That way they know you received it and enjoy it.
So there you have it. Just a few things to think about as you are creating your wedding registry. I hope that creating your registry turns out to be a simple process, as there are many other things to be working on when planning your wedding. Creating the registry should really be something fun you can do together.
Photo Credit: Blask Media