Article originally posted on The Knot.com
The good news is that you can get a lot done.
When it comes to important life events, weddings easily top most folks’ lists as one of the biggest days of their lives in terms of family involvement, lifelong commitment, and financial investment. So while there have been massive lockdowns nationwide (and abroad) and an increasing number of restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic, many couples who've planned for months, or even years, are searching for ways to find a way forward or plan ahead for possible postponements.
Wedding retailers nationwide are taking quick steps to react to the ever-evolving coronavirus news, with many closing their brick-and-mortar stores to prevent the spread of the virus and practice safe social distancing. (Wedding planners, too, are advising couples to listen to officials and health organizations, first and foremost.) With so much hanging in limbo right now, here’s what to know about how to responsibly plan your upcoming wedding amid a global pandemic.
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Communicate With Your PartnerBefore diving into anything else, take the most important step, which is communicating with your partner first. “Work with your significant other, gather your thoughts, and establish your priorities,” says celebrity event planner Edward Perotti. “Ask yourself: Is a specific date most important to you? Or is it a meaningful venue? Is having the wedding the same size a priority, or can you scale to provide more options? Is there a vendor you want to work with no matter what? Then read your contracts, make a list of your ideal options, and start with those phone calls.”
Whether you’re quarantined at home with your partner or hundreds of miles away, you can spend this time working through communication exercises. Services like Lasting can help you navigate possible premarital conversations—without excuses that you’re too busy or inundated with dinners, in-person meetings and more.
Finally, perspective is key. “Remember throughout this process that it’s important not to focus on how things should have been, but to focus on how they can be,” he adds. Indeed, planners far and wide have echoed this sentiment and asked for couples to have an attitude that is solution-oriented as all sides are currently impacted by the ongoing pandemic.
Shift Your Schedules If You’ve Postponed
Now is an ideal time to restructure those calendars and get organized. Talk to your planner consistently or shift your calendar dates where necessary if you’re planning on your own. Communicate accordingly with all vendors once you've locked down a new date.
“Let me be blunt: if your wedding is planned for anytime between April and June, you need to accept that fact that postponement may be necessary,” says Perotti. “Now that the Band-Aid has been ripped off, what’s next?”
Ask about your venue’s postponement policies, and be patient with anyone you speak with; they’re likely scrambling to try to accommodate for multiple nervous couples at the same time. Check your wedding insurance policy and see what will be covered, and if there’s anything that can be negotiated given the unusual circumstances. Read here for more tips if you’ve postponed your nuptials due to COVID-19.
“We are all sailing in unknown waters right now,” Perotti says. “What we can do is partner together. Know that your event planner, venue, caterer, photographer and florist are your team members, and they want to make your wedding [the best possible]. The dream might be slightly re-imagined, but it’s still your dream, nonetheless.”
Seek Inspiration OnlineIf you have yet to nail down your wedding theme, take The Knot Style Quiz to narrow down venue options, color palettes and even floral arrangement ideas. The quiz is an easy starting point; plus, it connects you to the best vendors who can execute your vision in your chosen destination.
While shopping in-store may not be a viable option for the foreseeable future, some brands are offering additional support online for brides looking to get all their ducks in a row amid the chaos. BHLDN, which is temporarily closing its physical locations, recently launched The Book, an online resource with a quiz to find your perfect wedding colors, hair and makeup tutorials, and dress decoders, so brides can be as well-informed and inspired as possible. Of course, there are plenty of articles to help you determine what silhouette or types of accessories work best for your body too. Head over to our ideas and etiquette page for more.
“Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and social media are gold mines for inspiration and shopping,” says Bella Belle co-founder Veronyca Kwan. “We’re always an email away for personalized shoe consultations.”
Create an 'Inspiration' BoardIf you have glue, scissors and poster board, create a physical vision board (or a virtual one on the platform of your choosing). Look at this time of self-quarantine as a gift of focused time and energy that you can use toward doing the proper research to dream up the perfect event, from florals to centerpieces to invitation designs.
Even though it may be tough to be patient with the overwhelming number of mini-deadlines and tasks that come with the wedding planning journey, staying calm and utilizing this time will ultimately be helpful to the overall planning process of your big day.
Technology and social media apps have made it much easier to get planning accomplished from a distance. If you’re still in search of vendors, check out The Knot Marketplace for a comprehensive overview of wedding pros, ranging from planners to caterers and top-tier florists across the country.
Couples who’ve previously hired these same vendors have left reviews about their own experiences. The research is also in one place: you can scan their websites, scroll through their social media pages for past weddings, and review what others have said about these businesses.
Another part of the process is having actual one-on-one conversations with potential members of your wedding team. By using tools like FaceTime, Google Hangouts and Skype, interviewing DJs, live bands, photographers and videographers is no problem. They can walk you through presentations of their past work and you’ll still be able to capture their work style over video.
“You can really get a sense of their personality and if they will be the right fit for you," says Marina Birch, owner of Birch Events in Chicago. From there, keep in touch with your chosen vendors digitally to progress through your to-do list. And, of course, for the comfort of knowing that like you, they’re also busy planning from their ends.
Find Alternative Ways to Shop for Your GownStart by researching local salons in your area to see what designers they carry within your budget range. This will help you narrow down the ideal boutiques you'd like to visit once group gathering restrictions are no longer enacted by the CDC. Plus, your loved ones can look forward to a fun date where you model dresses, sip bubbly, and catch up—together.
Go Online for Your Suits and Tuxes TooFor grooms, ask your partner to get out a measuring tape to work through your measurements. A quick YouTube search will let you know what measurements are crucial to know for suit sizes (this sizing guide from The Black Tux is a great place to start!). There are a good number of tux rental and sales sites where you can then opt to shop. Tell your groomsmen to do the same.
If you’re concerned about your color palette, turn to brands like The Tie Bar and Birdy Grey for groomsmen accessories (bowties and neckties) in a range of hues that'll match the bridesmaid dresses.
Design Your Wedding BandsMany jewelry shops remain closed due to group gathering measures, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get started on designing your wedding band. (Or, for some, the engagement ring!)
Talk to your jeweler about how you’d like your band to rest against your engagement ring or what you'd like your partner’s ring to look like as well. If you're designing an engagement ring, digital technology has advanced to allow for real life simulations of ring shapes and sizes against hands. There are plenty of options out there. Brands like Ritani and Blue Nile are also great places to envision possible jewelry pieces online. See how your rings potentially stack and whether solid gold or platinum looks best on your partner’s hand.
Build Your RegistryYou might have been putting it off, but now is a good time to sit down with your partner and seek out registry products and other types of newlywed experiences to enhance your life in marriage. After all, there’s no better way to identify what your household needs might be than to, well, be at home all day.
Most retailers have online shops where you can peruse items from the comfort of your couch, including Crate & Barrel and trendy sibling CB2. Other traditional retailers like Williams-Sonoma, Target and Bed Bath & Beyond also have e-commerce experiences where you can easily add items to your bigger registry. More specialty shops like REI, Anthropologie and Traveler's Joy also have extensive offerings online (sometimes even more than what they can carry in stores!), so take this opportunity to get creative and start intentionally building your registry online.
MINTEDIf there’s a time to lean into purchasing items for the wedding day, it’s now. Companies like Elli are offering free reprints for change-the-dates, while other brands like Minted and The Knot Shop offer a range of personalized products. With favors and décor, our current advice is to leave off your wedding date (for now) and instead, lean into your wedding insignia or custom emblem.
With local artisans also practicing social distancing, those who are able to help decorate and embellish your venue with beautiful pieces are also on standby. Go to platforms like Etsy and more.
Take a Breath (You’ve Got This!)Wedding planning is a big undertaking in and of itself, and the added uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic can make even the calmest bride feel anxious about her big day. But one of the best ways to move forward is to do so knowing that you’ve got a team of supportive loved ones who have your back, and that this, too, shall pass.
“Take the time to rejuvenate and reach out to your friends and family whom you have not had the time to talk to,” says Kwan. “Do a bit of spring cleaning or watch old movies. Share positivity in these challenging times.”
After all, if there were ever a time to lean into the process of thinking about why you’re hosting a wedding in the first place—to bring all your loved ones together in one place to celebrate your new life chapter—that time is now. Focusing on gratitude and community are key to navigating the chaos.
Article originally posted on The Knot.com
One significant consequence of the coronavirus pandemic has been the mass postponement of spring, and now summer 2020 weddings, as couples are currently in search of future dates. Updated group gathering guidelines from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and the federal government have prompted both couples and vendors to reschedule their upcoming nuptials in the months ahead. As one planner has said, “It is a giant game of chess."
As the situation continues to evolve in the U.S., most couples are now concerned about summer weddings and beyond. “I feel for couples: this is supposed to be the happiest time,” says Jung Lee, founder and event architect of Fête Events New York. “With that said, people more than ever need to see hope, celebration and togetherness in a place where they feel safe.”
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The most important advice for all couples who’ve set 2020 wedding dates is to be informed and proactive with next steps. “You must plan and move forward,” Lee advises. “Set a date [if it applies to you] and tell your guest list. Everyone will understand and it’ll help them better prepare.” Many pros are currently encouraging couples who still want to marry in 2020 to consider Monday weddings. The reasons for this are straightforward: the majority of your chosen vendors will be available on a Monday over, say, a Saturday. The day also falls right off the tail of a weekend, so your guests will have the flexibility of enjoying the welcome dinner and other festivities prior to the nuptials.
We spoke to multiple planners about prioritizing your checklist now, based on your original wedding date. As you navigate this tricky time, let this advice guide you to making a decision that works best for you and your loved ones.
In this article:
Original March/April Dates, What to DoThe Move: Postpone
Most couples with spring 2020 weddings have undergone the process of rescheduling their weddings or have since secured a new date. “We’ve told them to postpone as the situation with the virus changes rapidly, and the length of time [for social distancing] keeps getting extended,” says event planner JoAnn Gregoli. “We are encouraging these couples to move their weddings to the fall or spring of 2021.”
Even then, planners are offering backup-backup dates due to the nature of COVID-19. “I’ve secured two to four backups options for my couples,” says Lee.
After postponing or making that decision, you must notify your guests with a change-the-date alert. "You'll need to communicate a change in date and location to all your guests, which should be clear and thoughtful,” says the Mavinhouse Events team. “If you are downsizing or postponing, say it in a respectful way and thank them for the efforts they've made already to be a part of your celebration. Include as much information about cancellations for flights and contact info for accommodations.”
Going digital, the planners say, is “the most effective way to” pass along any relevant information.
Finally, here’s how to address vendors at this time. We encourage couples to exercise flexibility and patience as many small businesses have been impacted by the health crisis, as well. "Couples with wedding insurance should closely review their policies for verbiage that includes Act of God, Force Majeure, or Other unforeseen and unavoidable circumstances beyond the two parties control,” says the Mavinhouse team. “All contracts are different and may include variations of the above verbiage, but looking closely for those types of words. It’ll help you see if changes to your wedding plans as a result of the coronavirus would be covered by your insurance policy.”
With insurance, the planners have tangible items for you to follow. “We recommend, should you have to utilize your wedding insurance in some capacity, to gather all of your vendor contracts, make a list of the deposits you’ve already made, as well as a list of the remaining money you have outstanding to vendors,” they advise. “The more information you have to provide your insurance agent, the easier the process will be for you."
Original May Dates, What to DoThe Move: Postpone
If you haven’t already, postpone your May wedding too. Most couples have already shifted their weddings through May as the pandemic continues to spread. “The few weddings moving forward at the end of May also now have a backup date for this fall,” says Lee.
"Just like everyone else, venues and vendors are navigating a fluid and unprecedented situation right now. Your venue and your vendors will always want to put their clients first, while maintaining the integrity of their business,” the planners at Mavinhouse Events explain. “If your wedding is before the end of May, you should reach out to your venue and vendor team to discuss your options. Ask about their specific cancellation and postponement policies, alternate dates that are available, and any policies in regards to switching your date to a different season.”
Fall is the preeminent wedding season, far from the case a decade ago when summer weddings ruled. “Remember, fall dates may still be available, but they are considered peak season for venues and vendors. Be sure to ask if you’ll have to pay any sort of premium to switch your date to a peak season time,” the Mavinhouse team notes. This also means you’ll have to be flexible about specific openings if you want to marry in 2020, including possible weekday and holiday wedding postponement options.
Finally, follow the steps in the March/April monthly breakdown above for both contracts, insurance policies and vendor relations.
Original Early June Dates, What to DoThe Move: Postpone
With social distancing measures enacted through the end of April, many couples are now questioning what to do with their June weddings. In short, this month is on the cusp of the eight-week guidance provided by the CDC’s bulletin about limiting group gatherings. "I have advised our clients to consider postponements through the end of June, and at this point, they have all acted on it, moving their weddings and celebrations to October and beyond," says Amy Shey Jacobs of Chandelier Events in New York. "The internal thinking was also, 'Even if business was allowed to resume, would guests even be able to travel or feel comfortable gathering in large groups?' Overall, the sentiment was that June we will still be in some sort of crisis mode."
"While things are still fluid and ever-changing, we are advising our June clients to do what feels most comfortable for them,” says Mavinhouse. “[By] early-April, a client should make a decision on their June wedding. That is our first recommendation. At that time we may have more insight into what the next few months will look like for wedding celebrations and gathering sizes. Being prepared is the most important step.”
Do your homework first. “Today, a client getting married in June can go through their existing contracts to identify any important information on changing the date,” the Mavinhouse team recommends. “And reach out to your vendors about what your options may be."
Continue marking off your checklist items. Check with your respective attire companies (dress boutiques, tuxedo rentals and bespoke services) to see if they will still meet all deadlines for delivery or pickup. If you’re finalizing décor and more, we recommend withholding date stamps from favors and other insignia that could possibly be obsolete.
Original Late June Dates, What to DoThe Move: Postpone; If your wedding is the last weekend of June, make a decision in April.
While the pandemic continues to unfold, it's likely guests and other loved ones might have levels of discomfort regarding travel, group gatherings and more even by late June. "No one has a crystal ball, but based on our clientele, we moved all June events through June 20 to the fall," says Jacobs.
She adds, "Right now, the national ban on gatherings has been extended through April 30, 2020, with state-by-state gatherings and wedding bans in effect for 'the foreseeable future.' We have seen that venues are following suit with their governmental guidelines but many event venues and vendors have been allowing postponements with no penalty well into June. In fact, all of our events at Chandelier Events in June have currently been postponed to the fall in the New York and New Jersey areas."
Add financial volatility, paired with importing and exporting limitations, and Jacobs says something as simple as flowers remain a question mark. "Could they even be imported from abroad [by then]?" she speculates. "That was part of our thinking."
The sooner you move, the better odds you have with securing an ideal date this fall. "As you know, my advice has always been 'the early bird catches the worm,'" Jacobs says. "There are already so many taken dates for weddings in the fall months that were previously schedule. To ensure that a couple would get a good replacement date, we acted very early to work out those dates."
Again, we encourage couples to consider Monday weddings as most of your vendors are currently available on that particular day of the week and it falls right off a weekend.
Original July/August Dates, What to DoThe Move: Monitor in May; Postpone if you’re concerned
The best step a couple marrying this summer can take is to first reach out to the venue to see what’s next. Then, send a note to your vendors to ask which possible dates they have available. By the end of May, most couples marrying in July and August should make a decision.
Since it's peak summer season, most planners are holding off from rescheduling these events for now. "We are advising our July clients to do what feels most comfortable for them,” says the Mavinhouse team. “We are hopeful that given the significant amounts of social distancing and self-isolation that is currently taking place throughout the nation, this will make July events go off without a hitch.”
Some planners are moving quickly and have asked their clients to firm up a decision by the end of April. “Wait and see for both July and August,” Gregoli recommends. “I have asked my clients to make a decision by May 1.”
As you monitor the ongoing pandemic, there is something you can do to get ahead, like discussing options with your vendors. “For today though, it's important to try to remain calm and excited about your wedding plans while keeping an eye on the news and this ever-changing situation," says the Mavinhouse team.
Continue marking off your checklist items. As previously mentioned, withhold from including wedding dates on your décor if they have yet to be printed and it wouldn’t hurt to touch base with your attire companies as well.
Original September Dates and On, What to DoThe Move: Proceed and monitor
The most vigilant couples are now concerned about weddings past September. There is no need to panic at this time as planners are shifting spring weddings into this time frame. If you’ve secured a weekend fall date, then know that you’re in a good place. Continue marking off those checklist items, however, because this fall already appears to be an even busier season for vendors.
Gregoli suggests couples September and on should proceed as planned. Keep in mind that the situation could shift or evolve. Before you sign contracts, review them carefully and make sure you know exactly what is required if you need to reschedule or postpone down the line.
Regardless of your original wedding date, what every couple can do in this moment is reassure themselves that a wedding will happen. “Every person is unique with what they can handle emotionally,” Lee acknowledges. “But it’s important for couples to now go with the flow, because the world has changed. Your love and togetherness is not going to change. People have to stop saying ‘canceling.’ It is about making adjustments to your wedding day. You can’t cancel love.”
11 Ways to Celebrate Your Original Wedding Date If You've Postponed
Because the day will always be special, no matter what.
originally posted on The Knot.com
by Sarah Hanlon
If you've had to postpone your wedding due to COVID-19 (or another reason out of your control), you're not alone—but that doesn't make it any easier to cope with. When your original wedding date rolls around, you might find yourself feeling sad, confused and overwhelmed. But among all the emotions you'll experience, you can (and should!) honor the day.
While the ramifications of the coronavirus outbreak have affected weddings around the world, couples are instead choosing to "take back the date" to celebrate the day they planned to get married. From hosting a virtual cocktail hour to having your first dance in your living room, there are plenty of ways to mark your wedding date from your home (while following CDC and government guidelines). Though it might not be what you originally envisioned, you'll be happy that you chose to honor the day despite the circumstances. Below, find our favorite ways to take back your own wedding date if you've postponed.
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Have a Commitment Ceremony
Even if you're postponing your wedding, you can honor your partnership by hosting a commitment ceremony. It's important to note that this is not a legal union—instead, a commitment ceremony simply marks your devotion to each other. (You can have a legal ceremony at a later date). Your commitment ceremony can take any form you want. You and your partner can get dressed up and recite your vows, or you can host a virtual gathering as you pledge your commitment to one another in front of your loved ones. Regardless of how you execute it, this will serve as a way for you to signify your wedding date without the formal ceremony.
Invite Your Loved Ones to Drive By
If social distancing guidelines have kept you apart from your friends and family, invite them to drive through your neighborhood while you and your S.O. wave to them from your porch or front lawn. They'll be thrilled to enjoy the day with you—from a safe distance, of course.
Open a Wedding Present (or Two)
If wedding presents are taking up space in your house, use your original date to open a few and put them to use. Whether you break out your brand new pasta maker or enjoy dinner on china plates, opening your wedding gifts will bring joy to the bittersweet day. (Who doesn't love opening a beautifully wrapped gift, after all?) Wedding gifts are intended to help you begin married life together—and although your wedding might not have gone according to plan, your marriage is far more important than a party. So, grab a few boxes and open them together. Plus, it never hurts to get ahead on your thank-you cards.
Enjoy a Fancy Meal
Support local businesses by ordering your favorite takeout and planning a date night on your original wedding date. Make it extra special by popping a bottle of your favorite champagne, or try your hand at mixology by creating a brand new cocktail. (Take note of the ingredients and serve the drink at your future wedding reception.) While you might not have envisioned celebrating your wedding with local pizza or your favorite lo-mein dish, it'll create a special memory you'll never forget.
Plan a Virtual Cocktail Hour
In the mood to hear some wedding party speeches? Organize a virtual cocktail hour with your friends and family. Gather everyone on a Zoom call or Google Hangout and encourage them to bring their own cocktails. Either make your own or pick up to-go cocktails from your favorite local spots. While you might not be able to come together physically, having your loved ones call in to your digital reception is a great way to take back your wedding date. Make sure everyone comes prepared with a toast (or two) to keep things fun.
Order Wedding Cake or Cupcakes
What's a wedding celebration without cake? Call a local bakery and place an order for a small wedding cake or a batch of cupcakes to enjoy together. While you might not be able to do a classic cake smash in front of your guests, indulging in a sweet treat will be the icing on top of your makeshift celebration.
Say Your Vows
Even if you won't be having a formal ceremony, you can still say your vows to each other to mark your commitment. Since your original wedding date marks the day you planned to formally seal your marriage, honor the intention by reciting your vows together. Consider writing them down in special cards, like this "happy original wedding date" option from Etsy, and exchanging them. While you'll still have to legalize your union in the future, this is a sentimental way to take back your wedding date.
Get Dressed Up
Getting dressed up will make your wedding day feel much more meaningful. Wedding dresses and tuxedos aren't required—but if you want to wear your original outfit, you should! If not, dress up your outfit by wearing your veil, a wedding accessory or any shade of white if you want to. This could also be a great opportunity to wear "something blue" or to break out the white jumpsuit you've been saving for a wedding event.
Have a Photo Shoot
Though it's not what you intended, you'll want to remember how you took back the date for years to come. Savor the memories by snapping pictures of everything: your outfits, the food, your vows scrawled on paper, and even your loved ones if they're able to drive by your house. Don't sweat it if you don't have access to a professional camera—your phone or a polaroid camera will suffice. But if you do want professional help, some photographers now offer photography sessions via FaceTime. Others are available for shoots that adhere to social distancing rules and group gathering guidelines. No matter what option is best for you, don't forget to document your creative wedding party.
Host a Virtual Game Night
There are plenty of virtual games you can play with your friends and family over FaceTime, Hangouts or Zoom. Gather a group and organize an evening of Jackbox TV, Houseparty or karaoke. Or, fuel your nostalgia by playing classic favorites like trivia, Bingo or Cards Against Humanity. No matter what you choose, spending time with your loved ones is a great way to celebrate the day (even if it is virtual).
Have Your First Dance in Your Living Room
Move your furniture aside and practice your first dance in your living room. Light a candle for ambiance, and savor the privacy of this classic wedding tradition. Whether you practice your choreography or have a full-out jam session, dancing to anything will help relieve stress and take your mind off of everything else. And since your first dance song is already meaningful, enjoying it on your intended wedding date will make it much more special.
Article originally post on The Knot.com
A step by step guide on what to do, when.
In these unprecedented times, more and more couples are taking the advice of both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to limit group gatherings because of COVID-19. As a result, some couples are either postponing their weddings or considering alternative options. In an official statement from its website, the CDC states, “Officials may ask you to modify, postpone, or cancel large events for the safety and well-being of your event staff, participants, and the community. The details of your emergency operations plan should be based on the size and duration of your events, demographics of the participants, complexity of your event operations, and type of on-site services and activities your event may offer.”
National guidelines were issued March 16, requesting the public's compliance with limiting mass gatherings to no more than 10 people. The announcement was made just a day after health officials from the CDC noted it's essential in now containing the virus. “Large events and mass gatherings can contribute to the spread of COVID-19 in the United States via travelers who attend these events and introduce the virus to new communities,” CDC officials said. “Examples of large events and mass gatherings include conferences, festivals, parades, concerts, sporting events, weddings, and other types of assemblies. These events can be planned not only by organizations and communities but also by individuals.”
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Below is a guide on the steps to take when postponing your wedding due to the coronavirus.
Let Your Vendors Know Your Decision ASAPShould you and your partner decide to postpone your wedding, the first people to contact are the ones tasked with making it happen. Your pros should be understanding of your decision and can help provide additional guidance on next steps, from securing a future date to contacting guests. However, keep in mind that your vendors are small businesses and probably dealing with an influx of calls just like yours, so try to be patient. They also may be impacted by things like childcare issues as schools across the country close and figuring out how to keep their employees safe and healthy.
Review Your Wedding InsuranceIf you went the extra step and secured insurance for your day, you’ll want to consult your plan and contact your insurance agent to confirm whether something like this is covered. Unfortunately, it isn’t in most cases, but every plan is different, so it’s better to do your due diligence.
Create a Communication Plan to Inform Your GuestsThe easiest and most effective way to relay your message is via your wedding website. A simple message that’s to-the-point is best. You may also want to consider creating a list of FAQs if you think your guests will have similar questions around travel refunds, your new date, etcetera. Other communication options include sending your guests an email or splitting up the guest list between you, your partner and close friends or family so that you can start making calls.
Consider How You Can Help Your GuestsIf you have a room block, you may want to reach out to the hotel to see if you can negotiate a full or partial refund on behalf of your guests. Taking the burden off of your friends and family will go a long way for those who had made plans to be there.
Be FlexibleWhen working with your vendors to reschedule, try to keep an open mind. While your original date may have landed on a Saturday, securing another Saturday later in the year may not be possible. Consider other days of the week like a Monday, Thursday, Friday or Sunday. You'll have a better chance of securing all of your vendors, and, yes, your guests will still attend!
Let Yourself Grieve Real talk: It’s ok to feel disappointed or upset. Are there bigger issues we’re facing as a country and as a world? Yes. But it’s important to acknowledge your feelings and understand that they are valid. Voicing them to your partner or a close friend can help you start to cope.
Celebrate the Day AnywayEven if it’s not the day you had planned, the date will always hold significance. Find a small, but meaningful way to celebrate. Plan a fancy date night or enjoy your favorite bottle of wine and a movie.
You can find all these steps for postponing due to coronavirus in The Knot's Wedding Planning Checklist.
Article originally published on Brides.com
Zoom Weddings Are Now Legal!
Start sending your Zoom invites!
If you were forced to postpone your wedding due to the coronavirus pandemic, certain states are starting to make virtual wedding ceremonies legal—so you can still officially say "I do" on your original date.
New York, Colorado and Ohio are the first states to lead the charge in the changing landscape of weddings. Not only are some states recognizing virtual ceremonies, but they are also allowing residents to apply for marriage licenses online, something that typically must be done in-person.
New YorkNew York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order regarding virtual wedding ceremonies on April 18. He announced the news during his daily coronavirus press briefing and on Twitter with a tweet that read, "NEW: I am issuing an Executive Order allowing New Yorkers to obtain a marriage license remotely and allowing clerks to perform ceremonies via video conference."
Not only does the executive order allow marriage clerks to officiate wedding ceremonies via video conference, but it also allows engaged couples to apply for their marriage license online.
Typical New York law requires couples to apply for a marriage license in-person at any town or city clerk—something that proved to be impossible during quarantine since marriage bureaus across the state are currently closed.
Of course, the order is just a temporary provision to New York law. However, it is the perfect solution for couples who are eager to officially tie the knot!
ColoradoOn March 26, Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed an executive order allowing clerks to issue marriage licenses through an application by mail, instead of in-person. This allows engaged couples to follow the state's stay-at-home orders and apply for a marriage license simultaneously.
County clerks were quick to share the news with their residents via Twitter, with the Boulder County Clerk tweeting, "Hey @bouldercounty residents – Getting married soon? Don’t fret! Our offices may be closed to the public, but we can now complete a marriage license application over video chat & mail you your docs!"
article originally published on Bride.com
Event though it was cold and cloudy we managed to get some great engagement photos of Brandy and Chris at their vineyards in Halifax County, Virginia last weekend.
I am super excited to get to photograph this couples wedding day this coming fall!
Crystal Vandegrift is a wedding photographer based in Virginia. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
originally published on bride.com
For the most part, wedding guests are simply happy to be a part of your big day. But it turns out they've got a few pet peeves when it comes to weddings. Here are five things guests hate most about weddings, from real wedding guests.
Delayed Receptions"I have been to my fair share of weddings and love being a part of their special days. But with that said, I absolutely hate delayed receptions—the ones where you get there and no beverages or food are served for more than an hour. Especially if children are invited, there should be activities to keep them busy or else you end up with a room full of hungry guests and bored kids running around." *—Crystal *
Lack of Planning"Every wedding I've attended has been a wonderful celebration filled with laughter, love, tears, and lots of dancing, which makes for a great party every time. But even though every one has been a blast, a couple weddings I've attended have had some rough starts, and the cause usually started with the planning—or lack of planning—that went into communicating with the guests. My one piece of advice as a guest is think about the best way to stay in communication with all of your guests as the wedding progresses, because something almost always changes last minute.
We as guests want to make sure we're bringing our A-games to your big day!" *—Jessica *
No Microphones at the Ceremony"I understand that a lot of guests look forward to weddings for the free food and booze. But not me. I'm in it for the ceremony. What can I say? I'm a big sap. So my biggest pet peeve as a wedding guest is when couples don't consider whether their guests can actually hear them during the ceremony. If you don't use a microphone, chances are we won't hear anything that's happening. And instead of sharing the moment along with you, we'll just be stuck twiddling our thumbs." —Anna
The Bride Venting About Her Wedding (At the Wedding)"I just went to a wedding in which the bride sat down at our table to say hello and just launched into this very long speech about how tough wedding planning was and how she wished she had just eloped. When she got up from our table and moved to the next, I heard her give the same spiel to another guest. I get that she was probably just stressed from it all and needed to vent. But as a guest, it made me feel pretty uncomfortable. Your wedding is a happy occasion, but it's pretty difficult to see it that way when you spend the whole reception complaining about how miserable it was to get there." *—Marianne *
Cash Bar"Cash bars. I understand that not everyone has the budget for an open, full bar. That's OK. But in that case, try to offer a limited bar, such as just beer and wine. Guests will really appreciate it—especially the ones who have traveled or had significant expenses in order to come to your wedding."
Crystal’s Clear View
What it takes to be a leader
Most companies have a leader. But not all companies have great leaders. It takes a lot to be a great leader.
A great leader is not someone you must follow, but one you want to follow.
Last week I watched first hand as a leader of a company took on a dirty maintenance job.
This job could have easily been dictated to another person in the company, one or any one of the ones who were not on a "leader level."
However, I watched as this leader did the job themselves. Never once asking or expecting anyone else in the company to do the job.
Over the years, I have been both an employee and an employer, and to be a great leader, you must be willing to serve and treat those around you with respect. I witnessed that in that leader that day.
The great leaders know they are responsible for establishing the tone of the company. A great leader knows how to teach, and if done correctly, employees will follow and learn wholeheartedly.
A great leader is also a master of communication. If you are a leader of a company, remember to communicate with not only managers but your employees as well. A well-run team will take their leader far.
If you are a leader, here are some tips you can start doing today to help not only yourself but your team:
Build trust. When it comes to leading a team, you must be willing to go out on a limb for your employees to show them you have their back.
Promote an open environment for two-way feedback.
Be a coach.
Show confidence in your decisions.
Crystal Vandegrift is a wedding photographer covering Virginia, D.C. NC and Maryland.
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What Our Clients Are Saying
Crystal was a great photographer for our wedding! She's definitely LGBT friendly and has some cool rainbow umbrellas to use as props in your pictures - if that's your style. Our friends and family were all very impressed with the number of photos she took and shared with us - and they're all great shots! We would absolutely recommend her to others. - Kelsey and Shannon - Baltimore, Maryland