Toasting the Happy Couple

So, you’ve been asked to give a toast to the newlyweds on their wedding day.

It’s a huge honor that also comes with a large amount of pressure. With our expert tips we’ve got you covered to create a stress-free, memorable, and tasteful toast.

Do:

TELL A STORY  

Using your own personal experiences illustrate a story highlighting the couple and their relationship with each other. Just remember keep your speech appropriate by staying away from inside jokes and touchy subjects.

MAKE SURE TO BE YOURSELF

Whether you’re sentimental, funny, or serious, great wedding toast come from the heart and are a reflection of the person giving it. Don’t be someone you’re not.

SPEAK UP

While giving your speech make sure to project so all of the guests can hear you.

TOAST TO THE COUPLE

At the conclusion of your speech, remember to raise your glass and wish the couple happiness as they transition into this new chapter of their lives.

Don’t:

JUST WING IT

Come prepared with you have speech to be proud of. Practice it out loud in the mirror and for a friend who will be honest with you. This will make you more comfortable and also give you an approximate length. This is the time to really polish your speech.

GO OVER TIME

Long toasts can be deadly. Keep your toast to five minutes and under to leave the crowd wanting more.

RAMBLE

It makes you look unprepared and nervous. Write down bullet points on a notecard and use those as a guide for your speech.

HAVE TOO MUCH TO DRINK BEFOREHAND

Having a cocktail or glass of wine before the toast to calm your nerves is fine but pace yourself.  Alcohol + a microphone = saying things you may regret.

Keep In Mind:

Being chosen to make a toast is your chance to honor the coupled on their big day – as well as – sending them off into their marriage with your best wishes. So don’t let stage fright keep you from enjoying and cherishing this moment with them.

Note to the Newlyweds:

Remember to thank your guests! They took the time to travel to where you needed them to be in order to help you celebrate your wedding. Showing them that you appreciate them is not only important, but a must. Your toast does not have to be long, just get your point across and you’re golden.

VENUE COORDINATORS vs. WEDDING PLANNERS

There is often confusion in what duties a venue coordinator performs and what duties a wedding planner will perform for you. Brides and grooms sometimes think that they may be paying double for the same service. A valid point, but perception is not the reality in this case. This is why.

WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES?

Your venue coordinator is responsible for your venue (thus the title). He or she is there to make sure all of the venue employees are informed of your reception plans and to ensure that your vendors abide by the venues policies. Think about it: the chef, the serving staff, the setup crew, the landscapers, the hotel staff, the bartenders, the cleaning crew, engineering, maintenance department… just to name a few. Yes, they will most likely be there when your cake is delivered or when your entertainment arrives, but that is the easy part.

Your wedding planner is responsible for YOU, your family, your wedding guests and, ultimately, your wedding – from the minute the first person (you or a vendor) arrives on property until the last person leaves. We are with you the entire day after putting together a comprehensive master timeline that includes all of your plans that you wish to happen, all of the personal touches that you want from your ceremony all the way to the reception. The venue coordinator may not be concerned where your dance shoes are, whether Aunt Mary in a wheel chair is comfortable, if the flow of your reception is going smoothly or perhaps how your liquor tab is progressing. The bride and groom may still be bombarded with questions from vendors (photographer, videographer, DJ). When we are there (or any wedding planner), we answer those questions so that you and your family can truly enjoy your celebration with your guests.

Venue coordinators are focused on doing their job… maintaining the integrity of the venue.  After all, that is what they are paid to do.  We, however, are paid by you, to take care of your every wish for an unforgettable day, from contract review and negotiation, the designing details, reviewing the flow, securing hotel blocks, monitoring your budget, answering etiquette questions, calming your anxiety to managing vendors plus so much more.

As former venue managers, we are fully aware of their importance and the role they play in making your wedding day successful.  We can’t lock the doors to the bridal suite to protect your personal belongings, access their liquor room and restock the bar, or find engineering when the ballroom is too warm.  But, to be real, your venue coordinator’s first concern at any given time is about the venue performing their contractual duties and it should be.

So, when you ask yourself if you NEED a wedding planner since you have a venue coordinator, think about the many details that go into your wedding – setting out place cards, placing gifts in the car, managing the photographer who wants an extra hour for photos, refreshing your cocktail, bustling your dress and so much more…. We will be in the right place at the right time to guide you throughout your day, from the moment you arrive until your grand exit as husband and wife.

KS and AR

 

 

Classic Garden Wedding | Montelucia

We love brides that give us their vision and let us run with the design.  Hannah was just that bride.  We aren’t going to lie, her vision for a garden inspired elegant wedding at the Omni Montelucia in Paradise Valley, AZ, made us a little more than giddy.  From eucalyptus garlands adorning the ceremony chairs, to an elaborate floral treatment on the Valencia Lawn gazebo and a 42-foot (yes, foot) hydrangea runner down the bridal party table, we were in designer’s heaven.  We know you will love this wedding as much as we did!

Design & Coordination: Us! Stellar Event Management; Photography: Jennifer Bowen Photography

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Tips for Finding the Perfect Venue

No doubt about it, choosing a venue for your wedding is exciting.  After arriving at a date, it is one of the first decisions you will make on your wedding planning journey. But before you put down any deposits or form attachments to rustic-chic barns that don’t have electricity, there are a few things to consider. Here’s our best advice for choosing a wedding venue:

Estimate your guest list and budget. 

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Photo Credit: Jennifer Bowen Photography

You probably don’t have a firm grip on your guest list or budget just yet, but you’ll need to know roughly how many people you’re inviting and how much you can spend before you start drawing up your list of dream venues.  Both pieces of information are critical to keep you from wasting your time touring venues that are too small or outside of your budget.  Your guest list doesn’t need to be etched in stone at this point, but you should have a rough idea of how many people are on your list and how many are on your future spouses.  Be sure not to overlook parents….if they are chipping in part or all of the funds, they may have a handful of close friends they would like to include.

Consider the style of wedding you want to have. 

Whether it’s rustic, formal, boho, low-key, or a blow-out bash, the wedding style you and your partner envision will be a big factor in determining where you can host your celebration. Consider whether you want a traditional or non-traditional venue. There are plenty of venues that regularly play host to weddings — including barns and art galleries — but if you opt for a totally non-traditional venue that’s not equipped to host a party (say, an industrial warehouse space), you’ll be responsible for a lot more details. Wedding-ready venues often have tables, chairs, and linens available for your use and, quite often, a set-up and clean-up crew on hand. If you’re renting out a non-traditional space, remember to factor in all of those details and make sure they are in your budget.

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Photo Credit: Jennifer Bowen Photography

Slow down and consider the logistics. 

Once you have a list of possible wedding venues and begin to visit them, you may find yourself falling instantly in love with the aesthetics of a space. But be sure to slow down and consider the logistics of having a wedding at your dream wedding venue.  Don’t forget to think about available parking – is it on property? Is there a fee to park?  Does the venue have a liquor license? Is there a contingency plan in case of bad weather? Is there a required end time? All of these could adversely affect your budget if you aren’t prepared.

Think about how much control you’ll want to have over your wedding’s decor and details. 

Most venues are either full-service or not, meaning they either provide all tables, chairs, and linens…or they don’t. Find out what each venue provides, ask if the venue has any vendor restrictions, and decide whether or not you can be happy with those options.

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Photo Credit: Marry Jordan Photography

Consider your catering needs. 

Many of today’s couples are foodies and want to serve their guests a very specific menu. But not every venue will allow you to bring in your own caterer, and some may require you to choose from in-house catering menus. Discuss your catering needs before signing a contract to ensure that the venue matches your desires.  And be sure to schedule a tasting.

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Photo Credit: Foskett Creative

Visit your potential venue more than once.

Once you’ve whittled down your list of venue options to two or three frontrunners, go back and visit them again. Do they have the same charm? Do they fulfill all your logistical and stylistic requirements? Are they big enough, and will your party have a comfortable flow? If possible, visit the venue around the time of day you want to marry — if you originally saw the venue at 11 AM the first time you visited, you’ll want to see it again at the time you plan to start your wedding. Note whether or not the lighting and aesthetic of the space is the same. (This is also a good time to bring in your wedding planner if you’re working with one.)

Signing a contract.

Read the fine print!  Ask all of your questions before signing.  When you sign a contract, it is assumed that you read, and agreed to, every word.  It is also important to note that many vendors are not willing to modify their agreement so only ask if there is a clause that you simply can’t work with (i.e. the need for Kosher catering and there isn’t an option provided by the venue).

Once your contract is signed, you will undoubtedly want to show the venue to your family and wedding party.  An open house is the perfect opportunity for that. Remember that, while you have one wedding, your venue coordinator could potentially have over 50 events booked and several more pending so don’t just pop in!

Do you have questions regarding your venue contract?  We can help you sort out the details and let you know what you are signing before you sign.  Our hourly packages are designed for couples that need a little assistance with contracts. Email us for more info!

Now go celebrate and start your design board or call us and we will help you design one!

 

 

 

 

The Story of Stellar Event Management

Kristin’s passion is working with couples that share that one special quality – a genuine desire to share their love with the people they love.ks pic web

After years of managing event venues, off-premise catering companies and planning corporate and fundraising events throughout AZ, Kristin Sanchez turned her attention to wedding planning.

Stellar Event Management was born out of Kristin’s love for design coupled with her Type-A personality and attention to detail. Seeing niches in the existing wedding and event planning market, Kristin set out to create a totally client-focused wedding planning service.

Drawing on a diverse range of skills and experience, Kristin has crafted a valuable package of services to give couples the best wedding experience possible. Stellar Event Management streamlines your wedding management process, seeking creative ways to bring your particular ideas and desires to life.

Stellar Event Management hand-picks its suppliers from the top of their respective industries. Strong relationships with these suppliers mean that delays and hiccups are minimized. We aim to go above and beyond that expected of traditional wedding planners, making every wedding as special as it can be.

Couples from all walks of life can be assured that all their needs will be taken into account with no cut corners. No event is too big or too small – our services are scalable to match your exact needs.

From engagement, to invitations, to the final ‘I do’, the wedding planning process is involved and complex. Of course, we believe this shouldn’t detract from the romance or the fun! Stellar Event Management is there to support you and your partner every step of the way.

At Stellar Event Management, your special day is as important to us as our own. We’ll do our best to make it memorable in ways that will keep your guests talking long after the last dance!

5 Aisle Decoration Ideas

Decorate your aisles with one of these great ideas to give your ceremony a personal touch.

Add a twist to your aisle with one of these very cool, and clever, ideas.

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Baby’s Breath Ceremony Decor

Galvanized buckets filled with baby’s breath lined the ceremony aisle creating a romantic feel to this rustic chic wedding.

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Ceremony Chair Greenery Bundles

Natural bundles of seeded or silver dollar eucalyptus, rosemary or lavender hung from the chairs along the aisle perfectly complimented this couples outdoor ceremony.

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Tissue Paper Decor

The bride added bursts of white and green to the wedding aisle with large tissue paper pompoms and mason jars filled with baby’s breath and bells of Ireland .

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Hanging Floral Decor

Small, delicate glass cones filled with a single peony hung from the chairs along the ceremony aisle.

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Photo Ceremony Decor

White and yellow frames with pictures of the bride and groom throughout the years hung from the pews which created a talking point among guests.

How are you decorating your aisle?