Bridal Extravaganza 2018

New year, new Bridal Extravaganzas! If you were one of the lucky ones who got engaged over the holiday break, you might want to check this out. The Bridal Extravaganza comes three times a year, with the first show of 2018 in January (6th and 7th).

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The Bridal Extravaganzas are a great place for people who are planning a wedding to meet countless wedding vendors (and get quite a few deals too!). You will meet florists, caterers, outfitters (gowns and tuxes), rental providers :), venues, photographers… You name it, the vendor will be there.

So, here’s what you need to know about the show…

Anyone can go. You, your mother, your bridesmaids, sister-in-law, better half, youngin’s or all of the above. It is a great way to get any and all involved in your planning process (think back to our last blog– this is how you can get your extended family involved in a fun, no pressure setting!).

The January Extravaganza is two days long and is the most attended show of the year. The show goes from 12pm-5pm January 6th and 7th at the Palmer Events Center.

There is parking on site in their giant parking garage. There is a parking attendant taking money upon entry. It will cost about $8.00 to park.

Tickets to the show are $15 each and can either be purchased beforehand or at the door.

Going to the Bridal Extravaganza saves you money. You will receive $500 in Bridal Bucks just for purchasing a ticket to the Bridal Extravaganza. These Bridal Bucks are accepted by some vendors who are participating in the show, which means you get to save money on your vendors. Click here for more information on that.

Other vendors will give you discounts if you book with them at the show. If you do sign a contract at the show, bring a copy to the Wedding Guide booth for a chance to win up to $250 toward you wedding! Learn more about how you could be one of eight lucky winners here.

There are also tons of grand prizes that will be given away both Saturday and Sunday toward the end of each day. To see a full list of what you could win, visit this page, and let us warn you, there are some GOOD prizes.

There will be a fashion show to give you outfit inspiration for both brides, grooms and bridal parties.

There will be food and drink so you don’t have to worry about withering away while you are walking around for five hours! A lot of the food vendors will be passing out samples for you and your tribe to try. However, there is also a concessions stand where you can go purchase food and drink as well.

You might consider bringing some kind of a tote bag and a pad of paper/pen so that you can keep track of all of the wonderful vendors you meet and plan to work with for your wedding.

If you are on the fence about whether you want to attend the Bridal Extravaganza or not, let us push you in the correct direction…. GO! It is a great experience and one of the only times that you will have this many vendors in one place. Plus, you save money on your wedding just by going!

So since we are in agreement and you will be attending, make sure you stop by our booth to say hello and see what kind of special we’ll be offering! Can’t wait to see you and your squad there.

 

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Wedding Advice: Including the Extended Family

If you are planning your upcoming wedding, you have probably run into how best to include your extended family in your wedding planning. Because somehow, it seems as soon as you’re engaged, everyone has an opinion to share. Perhaps you’re trying to decide how best to include your step father without stepping on your father’s toes, or how to include Aunt Susan without stepping on cousin Carrie’s toes. Whoever it is, and whatever they might mean to you or your fiance, this is a delicate thing to try to figure out, but we promise, it is possible. Here are some pieces of advice we’d like to offer for traversing this tricky terrain.

The first thing to consider? Who is paying for the wedding? Whoever that might be… you and your partner, your parents, your honey’s parents, etc. Those who are paying for the wedding are the ones (outside of you and your soon-to-be) that should have the most influence/say in the wedding decisions. However, that doesn’t mean that it’s their opinion or the highway. It is still your day so you must make sure that you and your fiance are comfortable with all of the decisions being made.

Next thing to consider? Asking each person how involved they want to be. It never hurts to ask people where they stand, or what they expect. If your mother really cares about throwing the wedding shower and no one else seems to, then we know who will be throwing the shower!

If you would rather not have this conversation with multiple people, you and your fiance might consider sitting down and breaking things up between the two of you. This way, you can present the ideas to the family and not leave things up for discussion as much. Telling people what you would like for them to do, if they’re comfortable with doing so could cause a lot less heartache than if you allow them to pick and choose.

Now, if you’re afraid people’s feelings might STILL be hurt, a fun way to get everyone included who wants to be, might be to have a list of things with which you want help. Get everyone together and put people’s names on pieces of paper and draw for each thing. If people end up wanting to trade, let them, but this way you are not held responsible for anyone feeling slighted or like it wasn’t fair. (Plus we love any excuse to have a little party).

Not sure what all you might want help with throughout the wedding planning process? Trust us, there’s a lot to do, and plenty of things you could get your extended family in on. Just a few might be: wedding shower or bridal shower, engagement party, rehearsal dinner, room blocks, planning the seating chart (if applicable),  cake tastings, food tastings, signature drink tastings, picking people to give toasts, picking and hiring your vendors (food, transportation, hair and makeup, venue, rentals, etc.). The options (and to do list) are endless.

Aunt Susan can help pick out the bridesmaids bouquets, Grandma can host the engagement party, parents of the bride and groom can help pick the food vendor, etc., etc. There are ways to include people in the planning process that will make them feel like they are a part of your big day. Keep in mind also, simply asking someone’s opinion (whether it be on the venue, the centerpieces or the colors you choose) will make them feel like they have played a part in your wedding. This goes a long way.

Making these decisions before you really dive into the planning process, however, will help alleviate some of the stress along the way. You want to be sure to talk through your options/ideas/feelings with your partner and make sure the two of you are on the same page before bringing anyone else (or their opinion) into the picture. It is, after all, your day, and one the two of you will hold near and dear to your hearts for the rest of your lives. Make yourselves happy first, and everything else will fall into place.

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In memory of those we wish could be there

If you are planning your wedding and have lost someone who matters to you or your partner, you are likely trying to think of ways that you might honor them on your big day. Whether it be a grandparent, parent, fur baby or a friend, if they mattered to you and you want them present in some way for your wedding, they should be.

Memory tables with pictures of those who have passed have been popular among couples, but now there are even more creative ways to honor those who have since left us. Here are some ideas to honor those we wish could be present that put a twist on the traditional memory table.

Stitching something into your or your partners clothing. Perhaps your loved one had a special shirt they loved to wear, loved palm trees or was very fond of the color blue. Using a fabric of their’s or finding a fabric that displays something they were fond of, is a great way to keep their memory alive on your big day. Stitching it into your clothing will keep them close to you throughout the entire wedding.

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A balloon release with all or some of your guests. Or perhaps just you and your honey if you don’t want all of your guests involved. You can tie their name to a tag on the balloon to make it a little more personal. You can do the balloon in a traditional white, or their favorite color. Maybe you’d even like to write a little note on the balloon before it is released?

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You can also honor them by putting their picture in your cuff links, including their picture(s) with your bouquet or even including with your boutonniere.

Have you considered a memory wreath instead of a memory table? If space is a concern at your event, this might be a good way to honor your loved ones to be sure you are able to include everyone you want to in your display.

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A candle lit to honor loved ones throughout the entirety of the night. Just be sure your venue allows open flame if you decide to go this route.
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Quite literally a family tree. If you have an outdoor space with a tree that you are able and allowed to dress up a bit, this is a stunning way to honor loved ones in a unique way.

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Reserving a seat or seats for those who have passed. Much like the couple pictured below, you can even dedicate a quiet moment just the two of you to silently remember those you are honoring.

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Anything that is personal to you or your soon-to-be, however, is what really matters. It is after all, about who you two want there and it is up to you how you choose to honor them and their memory. Whether that be a public display for everyone to see and honor with you or a quiet moment for you to reflect and show respect, that is entirely up to you.

For more inspiration, follow us on Pinterest!

 

 

 

 

All images taken from Pinterest.com

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Entertaining your littlest guests

If you are engaged or planning a wedding, chances are at least one of your guests has a child or children that you are including in your guest list as well. Perhaps they are the flower girl, or the ring bearer or just a good friends little nugget.

If you are planning on having children at your wedding, you are going to want to have some kid friendly activities for them to do. That way, they won’t end up wreaking havoc throughout your reception.

Maybe this is something you’ve thought about but are drawing blanks. Or perhaps you haven’t considered it but are now. Whatever the case may be, we have a few ideas on things you can do to keep the littlest wedding guests entertained.

One of the best ideas you might consider? Hiring a babysitter or two (depending on your little person guest count) for the evening. Now keep in mind, this should be someone you trust fully if you are leaving your, or other people’s children in their care. Having someone around whose sole purpose is to entertain and rally the kiddos allows the parents to let loose a little and enjoy your beautiful nuptial celebration.

Another idea that is sure to be a winner is to have a designated area for the kids. Whether that be their own kid’s table or a “kid’s cove” where they can hang out with other kiddos doing some kid friendly activities.

What might some of those kid friendly activities be, you might ask? Well, we’re glad you did. Here’s what we’ve got for you…

Coloring books. Because who doesn’t love to color? Some of the adults might even join in! You can either order ones that are personalized for your wedding (praise you, Etsy.com you think of everything) or just go pick up a few from one of your local stores. Or better yet, butcher paper on the table for the kids to color directly on. How fun is that?

A card making station for the happy couple. Leave them at the gift station at the end of the night so that they can read them when they open the rest of their gifts!

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Pinatas. Because there’s nothing like a good old fashioned pinata smashing.

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Bubbles and a bubble refilling station. Do we need to explain more?

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I Spy with their own little disposable camera (yes, they still make those).

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A scavenger hunt. Everyone loves a scavenger hunt.

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Yard games, if you have the space for it. Things like giant jenga, tic tac toe, corn hole and the like. Games like these keep everyone entertained, not just the youngest attendees. You could have them out just for the cocktail hour or leave them out the whole night. Regardless of what you decide, games like these always go over well with a crowd!

Need more ideas? Follow us on Pinterest for more, as well as wedding and event inspiration!

 

All images taken from Pinterest.com. 

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Are You Holiday Ready?

We know we just finished up Thanksgiving (and are still nomming on the leftovers from it) but have you thought about how close we are to Hanukkah and Christmas now? It’s actually crazy how quickly the holiday season snuck up on us. A little over two weeks until Hanukkah and exactly one month until Christmas. If that makes you feel the pressure, you are not alone.

In between running around, decorating the house, making a menu, purchasing the perfect presents for everyone, now you have to figure out how to jazz up your holiday table for you big holiday get together. Well, we’ve done it yet again. If you are feeling overwhelmed and don’t know where to start, let us help you. We have two table set ups below that will surely put you and your guests in a fuzzy holiday spirit. Check them out!

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All images by Jerry Hayes Photography. Centerpieces by The Flower Studio. Rentals by us, Premiere Events.

Ready to start thinking about your holiday get togethers? Remember, it’s never too early to plan. Come on by one of our showrooms or give us a call today to see how we can help make it the perfect event!

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Michelle Goes to D.C. for ARA!

Last week we sent Michelle, one of our Event Rental Consultants, to visit Alexandria and D.C. for the Young Professionals Network Conference hosted by the American Rental Association Foundation.

When Michelle arrived at Reagan National Airport she hopped in a cab to take her to The Alexandrian, a gorgeous boutique hotel in historic Old Towne Alexandria. Michelle attended an opening reception for the conference and mingled with conference attendees from all over the US, one from Canada, and one from Australia as well!

The next morning she walked around Old Towne, grabbed a coffee from Misha’s (a local cafe), and strolled in the crisp fall air checking out the Narrowest House in the US (just 7 feet wide!), Founder’s Park along the Potomac waterfront, and the square around City Hall.

The rest of the day was spent networking and learning about effective leadership and goal setting strategies from Kirk Weisler.

“One of our greatest stewardships is to grow ourselves and our people.”

“When the student is ready the teacher will appear.”

“The principles of excellence may be taught. The desire for excellence must be caught.”

That evening the group took a riverboat tour with the Potomac Riverboat Company that took us up the river past the Washington Monument, Jefferson Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, and Kennedy Center then back.

On her last day, Michelle met up with an old friend to hit the National Mall and sneak in some touristy D.C. culture before catching her plane back.

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Make Your Thanksgiving Gobble-licious

Thanksgiving is ten days away. We repeat, Thanksgiving is TEN DAYS AWAY. Are you as ready as we are to stuff our faces, spend time with loved ones and go into a turkey coma once it’s all over and done with?

We countdown to this big gobble-licious holiday, but do we plan ahead to be sure we’re ready for everything that comes along with it? As with many things, this may have snuck up on you and now you’re left thinking “Well, poo, I haven’t even thought about how I’m going to fit everyone at my dining table.”

If this thought has passed through your mind at any point, we can assure you, you’re not alone. Although we are big proponents for planning ahead (who says you can’t pick out your Thanksgiving rentals in February!?) we understand that life gets in the way and some things are put off until you can really focus on them.

If this is you, you might consider stopping by one of our three showrooms this week, however. This way w can make sure you are covered for your Thanksgiving meal and your guests are impressed with your hosting prowess.

Not sure where you might start? Well, let’s start with what you are serving. Are you making the full sha-bang? Or will some of your guests be bringing casseroles and cranberry sauces galore? Whatever dishes you are responsible for, what will you be serving it in? Do you have a big platter for your turkey? Or perhaps two smaller ones- one for light meat, one for dark? Do you have serving utensils for everything? Perhaps you need extra in case your uncle forgets the spoon for the stuffing.

Next, let’s think how many guest you’re having. Will they be at one table? Will you have a big adults table and a smaller kids table? Do you have all of these said tables or will you need additional with additional seating as well? Do you have enough plates, forks, knives, wine glasses for everyone who is attending? It’s important to have your counts (or a relative idea on your counts) before you get started putting your rental order together.

Once you know how many people you are expecting, you can start playing with linens to decide what tablecloth you want for your table. Grab a couple and try a few different things. You might be surprised by the combinations you end up liking the best.

Once you have a few linens you like, pick out your china, glassware, flatware and napkins. Each of our showrooms have a small table you can use to mock up the full look to be sure you really like what you are putting together.

After you have all of your rentals picked out, it is as easy as sitting down with an event consultant to check availability and have it input it into our system. We are open the Wednesday before Thanksgiving (so you can send one of your cousins, grand kids, brother/sisters, what-have-you’s to come pick up your items). We open back up the Saturday following Thanksgiving for your return. If you need until Monday, that is okay too.

So you can see it’s not too terribly difficult to get all set up for your guests! You can even place a quote request through the website if it is easier for you to do things online. Or give us a call and do things over the phone. We are here for you and want to make this aspect of Thanksgiving just a little less stressful if we can.

Need a little inspiration for your table set up? We have that for you too. Take a look at a Thanksgiving table we put together just for you guys!

Centerpiece by The Flower Studio, Rentals by Premiere Events, Photographs by Jerry Hayes Photography.

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