Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Pressing the Easy Button

Planning a wedding is hard work. With all that hard work, comes a slew of really difficult choices to make. When it came time to choosing out photographer however; I kind of feel like I pressed the easy button.

{Thank you Staples for this fictitious button}

Well ok, not literally, but choosing our photographer was the easiest planning decision I have made so far. I spent hours searching the Internet for someone who fit the look and feel I had in mind. Even our planner suggested a couple photographers that she had worked with in the past, but when I saw their portfolio, I wasn't wowed. They were nice, but I wasn't looking for nice, I was looking for take my breath away.

"Now wait a minute", you say, "searching for hours on the Internet doesn't sound that easy."

You're right, it wasn't. The whole process of looking left me feeling frustrated. I felt like I was never going to find the photographic Yin to my wedding Yang.

Then I saw this post over at Style me Pretty, and I knew I had found them. (this is the point where it got easy. See? I was going somewhere with the easy button)

Sigh. . . Pictures just don't get any better than this

{All of the above breathtaking images are from Joey and Jessica Photography}

After seeing these pictures, I knew they were going to be our photographers. I called Joey up and hit it off instantly. They were quite a bit more than we had originally budgeted for, but I took one look at our priority list and knew that splurging on photography was worth it to us to have the day captured perfectly.

On a side note: I just have to gush a minute and say that Joey and Jessica are seriously the coolest couple. They are great to talk to, have such an excitement for life, and it definitely shows in their work. So imagine my delight when their photo shoot was chosen to be on the cover of Southern Weddings Magazine!

{Way to go you guys! Head HERE for more of this adorable shoot}
 O.k. gush over. I was just so excited for them! One of the reasons we chose them was because Joey and Jessica shoot predominately with film rather than digital. While some may argue that this reduces the number of quality pictures, I think it is a testament to the skill of the photographer. If a photographer can take tons of amazing photos and not have the luxury of instant view and delete as is the case with digital, then that says something to me. Plus, I absolutely love the rich color and sharp quality of good old fashioned film.

Decision. Made. Easy.

How easy (or hard) was it to choose your photographer? Was there another time in your wedding planning where you pressed the easy button?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Making good on my priority list

I'm not rich. There, I said it. Lest any long lost relatives come to me hoping for a piece of the pie, I am here to inform you it is a very small pie indeed.


What does this have to do with our wedding? Well if you are like me, spending hours on end drooling over stunning images of weddings that had a limitless budget will tend to give you that "I must have the best of EVERYTHING!" feeling.

Yeah, back to the not being rich thing. As much as I would love to, I simply cannot have everything my little greedy heart desires. So I had to prioritize.

Prioritizing our wedding meant that I needed to identify what was most important to us as a couple, and what things could fall a little further down the list and that we would be ok if they weren't completely perfect.

Here is a list of our priorities, and a list of things that aren't so important:

1) An amazing photographer - when the wedding day if over, the cake has been devoured, the dance floor has been torn up (by the guests' amazing dancing skills) and the guests are gone, the only thing you have left are the memories. . and the photos. So for the love of all that is good about weddings, we needed a photographer that could capture our day perfectly.

{Love it! Source}

2) Southern food at its best - We are NOT, by any stretch of the imagination, a caviar and lobster kind of family. When I think of good wedding food, I think of finger licking, savory, stick to your ribs kind of food. More importantly, 90% of our guests simply will not eat fancy food (more than 3 ingredients? you can forget that!) So we needed to find a caterer who could bring us the best the south has to offer, and serve simple food. . artfully.

{Shrimp & Grits, you are my B*tch lover!}
 * 10 points for any one who can name the above referenced movie. hilarious!

3) Location - I am of the firm belief that if you pick a venue that jives with how you want your wedding to feel, it makes everything else (setting the mood with decor, lighting, and music) so much easier. We needed to find a place that oozed with southern charm. And we did!

And now for the things that are not so vitally important to us:

1) The flowers - Yes, of course I want our flowers to look pretty. Beyond that, I'm not worried about it. I know the general color scheme that I want, but I'm not obsessing over specific flowers that MUST  be included or how big my bouquet should be. I picked our vendors because I felt that I could trust them, so once I convey my vision to them, I back off and let them do what they do best. If the flowers don't turn out exactly like I pictured, I certainly won't lose any sleep over it.

{Yeah, I have no idea what most of these are called}

2) The attire - I love my dress and I will tell you all about it in a separate post. Beyond that, I chose the bridesmaids dresses after minimal searching, am giving the groom and his men full reign on their look, and am letting my maids choose their own accessories and shoes. Why? Because I want everyone to look good, and know they look good. If they are comfortable, I will be comfortable. I'm not going to pull my micro-management card on this one. Let's be honest, I have waaaayyy more important things to obsess over.

{O.k. well maybe the guys can't wear ANYTHING they want}

3) The Paper goods - Photoshop? Gocco? Yudu? Illustrator? ummm, yeah I have no idea how to operate or use any of these. Nor do I want to learn. Here are some of the amazing paper creations that I see in the blogosphere.


Say it with me. . .ooooo, ahhhhhh. Gorgeous paper goods at every turn. Do I have the skills to produce said gorgeous paper goods? No freakin way. So I will resign myself to having minimally pretty designs that I can somehow scrap together on Microsoft word, and call it a day. It would be nice to have pretty paper things and I envy those brides that posses skill in this department. Ultimately though, it won't matter one cent and our wedding day will still be fabulous. I'm doing all the paper goods myself (Except for the invites, more on those later!!), so let's KISS (keep it simple stupid!).

I have to give myself a pat on the back here, because despite my tendencies to want everything at its finest. I have really stuck to my priority list and given those things on the "must have" list the bulk of the budget. It means we will be sure to get what's most important to us before we run out of money to pay for it!!

Have you had to prioritize (and perhaps re-prioritize) your "must haves" for your wedding? What would be your must haves if you aren't planning right now?