Ashley & Blake were truly the most relaxed, joyful, smile-y couple from start to finish on their wedding day and while we know that some of that is just the kind of people they are, we can’t help but think that some of their day-of attitude was also by design. Christy was Ashley and Blake’s wedding planner at their wedding a month ago in Dallas, and we wanted them on the podcast today to share their advice and hindsight about their wedding day...and specifically how they both stayed so darn happy all day long. What they did, and didn’t do, that led to such a positive experience: We present to you, a retrospective, from Ashley and Blake, the happiest couple ever.
When Ashley and Blake started to plan their traditional wedding, the biggest hurdle was figuring out the venue, which in turn, informed the budget. When both families are contributing financially to the wedding, but not equally, it can be tricky figuring out exactly who is paying for what, and where to draw the line. In the end, this couple decided that they weren’t going to ask any more from one set of parents, and figuring that out got a little sticky. Expectations needed to be adjusted, and Ashley and Blake worked together to figure it out, and to communicate well with their parents.
Negotiating sometimes falls into your lap - when the hotel underwent some renovations, Ashley and Blake went with the flow. For a price. They managed to get a few extras thrown in because there were a few elements that were TBD, depending on the construction completion. This kind of negotiation is typical with hotel venues because they are dealing with much more, everyday, than just one wedding. When the hotel needed Ashley and Blake to adjust their wedding date by a week - they accepted the new terms, and got a few upgrades added in due to the inconvenience.
Advice from Ashley and Blake:
Hiring a planner is key! Ashley and her mom did the majority of the planning, but they knew they didn’t want to deal with logistics the weekend of the wedding. They listened to good advice from recently married friends who told them to hire a day-of coordinator at minimum. Then, as they planned the wedding, they could rest easy knowing that all of the details they were planning would be handled by a professional.
Hiring a photographer that they instantly clicked with (puns!) was a big part of Ashley and Blake’s wedding planning success. They felt like they were in good hands from start to finish between their planner and photographer, and that allowed them to really relax and enjoy their wedding day.
Priorities! Blake and Ashley talked about the things that were really important to them when they started to plan their wedding and when things would get overwhelming or when decisions became tough, they went back to their list of priorities and stayed the course. In the end, their wedding was everything they wanted it to be because it focused on the initial list: Food, Booze, Music, People.
By booking some vendors early - like their DJ - Ashley and Blake got great deals!
Trust your vendors. This was easy for Ashley and Blake because they trusted their planner - who recommended these vendors.
Keep your eye on the prize! Blake and Ashley never lost sight of the fact that the wedding day is supposed to be about getting married! They knew that was going to happen...and everything else was bonus-awesome.
Invite people you know are going to celebrate YOU. If you have some judge-y, toxic friends or family members - maybe they don’t need to come to your wedding.
Planning all the events at one hotel made the scheduling a lot easier for Ashley and Blake, their parents and their wedding party.
Don’t skip the grand entrance! It’s once in a lifetime!
Links we referenced
Other TBWPP episode that relates to Ashley and Blake:
Trish Dove, photographer: http://www.thebigweddingplanningpodcast.com/fall-in-love-with-your-wedding-photographer
Other vendors that Blake and Ashley hired (that we talked about on the ep)
Lizzie Bees Flower Shoppe: https://www.lizziebees.net
Trish Dove - Beatbox Portraits: https://www.beatboxportraits.com
LeForce Entertainment: http://leforceentertainment.com
The Adolphus Hotel: http://www.adolphus.com
“There was a steady infusion of alcohol throughout the day.” Blake, on the key to his happiness. Kidding! (Kind of.)
“When I go to a wedding I remember these things: The Food, the booze, the music and the people. So as long as we have those things...those are the things that people really remember. At the end of the day, it was going to be a fun day, if we had those things taken care of.” - Blake, on priorities
“I knew it was going to fly by and so I kinda wanted to soak in every moment and I didn’t want to waste those moments stressing about things.” - Blake, infinite wisdom
“I asked for advice throughout the planning process from my friends and coworkers and most of them said, ‘Ashley, no one is going to remember all these little things!’ So, that was comforting.” - Ashley, seeking advice
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