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The Daily Design™ by Koyal Wholesale®

Valentine’s Day DIY : Gift Boxes!

Valentines-DIY-Design-(BlogPost-Hero)

Everyone wants to feel loved on this very special holiday, so heres a quick and easy DIY tutorial to make your Valentine’s Day gifts unique and adorable! Whether you need to come up with gifts for 5 close friends or 50 co-workers, we have a fun way to satisfy your small gift giving needs while not breaking the bank. Scroll below for a simple walkthrough of our favor box DIY.

The Supplies you’ll need : 1) Favor Boxes (assorted)  2) Heart Kraft Hangtags 3)  Valentines Washi Tape 4) Bakers Twine or Ribbon 5) Assorted Candy

Step 1) Assemble your favor boxes.

Step 2) Mix favor boxes to make interesting color combinations.

Step 3) Add washi tape to your boxes.

Step 4) Fill up your box with your favorite candy.

Step 5) Cut 3 feet of bakers twine or ribbon and lay it over the top of your box so that it is centered.

Step 6) Wrap twine over your box once. When it intersects at the center of the bottom of your box, cross over and wrap in the other direction.

Step 7) Now that you are back at the top center of your box, tie a tight knot to keep your candy in place.

Step 8 ) Now tie a bow over the knot you just tied.

Step 9) Run a single heart kraft tag through the end of either side of your loose string. Now secure tie the kraft tag in place with a knot.

Step 10) Finally cut off excess string and you’re done! Heres a few boxes we made, we hope they inspire you!

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The Ultimate Wedding Emergency Kit: Secrets of the Pros

The wedding emergency kit is the life-saving, tears-averting kit that many vendors bring with them on-site during a wedding to help battle any type of emergency, from torn veils and stained dresses, to bee stings and hysterical ring bearers.

Have you ever wondered about how to prepare your wedding emergency kit? Worried that you are missing out on crucial items that could make or break your big day? Are you a wedding planner seeking to ensure that you’ve covered every essential item on the list? Koyal Wholesale has surveyed the top wedding vendors to prepare the following list of must-have items for any wedding emergency kit. Consisting of over 150 items, this ultimate wedding emergency kit has been carefully crafted, drawing on decades of wedding experience. Now, you too can prepare your kit like the pros do. Pack these items, sit back, and enjoy the big day.

{ Just some of the 150 items in the Ultimate Wedding Emergency Kit }

 

The Ultimate Wedding Emergency Kit by Koyal Wholesale
Pack these items and be prepared for any wedding emergency

  1. $20 cash
  2. AA Batteries/AAA Batteries/9V Batteries
  3. Ace bandage
  4. Allergy pills
  5. Aspirin (Not everyone can take Tylenol/Advil)
  6. Baby powder (Good for lipstick stains)
  7. Baby wipes
  8. Backup Silk Bouquet
  9. Band-aids
  10. Batteries in all sizes
  11. Benedryl (allergies and allergic reactions make this quite handy)
  12. Bible
  13. Black bow tie
  14. Black chalk
  15. Black Gorilla tape
  16. Blank envelopes (big and small)
  17. Bobby pins & pony tail holders
  18. Bottle of White-Out (used for emergency coverage of scuffed white shoes)
  19. Boutonniere pins
  20. Breath mints
  21. Bug repellant
  22. Buttoneer (look it up – fastest way to replace a button on a shirt)
  23. Cell phone charger (iPhone charger)
  24. Clear earring backs
  25. Clear nail polish
  26. Clear tape
  27. Clothespins
  28. Copies of universally likable readings (for officiant or minister)
  29. Copies of vows
  30. Cord covers
  31. Cork screw
  32. Corsage pins
  33. Cotton Balls/swabs
  34. Crayons, coloring books for kids who get bored
  35. Curling Iron Deodorant (men’s and women’s)
  36. Diaper pins (sturdy enough for fixing broken bustles)
  37. Digital camera
  38. Disposable Camera
  39. Double stick tape
  40. Elastic wrist bands
  41. Emergency buttons
  42. Emery boards
  43. Energy bars
  44. Excedrine
  45. Extra brush and combs
  46. Extra extension cords
  47. Extra flower baskets
  48. Extra timelines & wedding schedule
  49. Extra votive candles (for power outages)
  50. Eye drops
  51. Face wipes
  52. Fake Rings (they do get used!)
  53. Feminine Hygiene products
  54. First Aid Kit
  55. Fishing wire (monofilament)
  56. Flat back gaffers tape
  57. Flat shoes (if it’s a long day)
  58. Floral tape
  59. Floral wire
  60. Floss
  61. Foam double stick tape
  62. Garbage bags
  63. Garter(s)
  64. Glue dots
  65. Goo Gone
  66. Guest book pen set
  67. Hair pins
  68. Hairdryer
  69. Hairspray
  70. Hand Mirror
  71. Handfasting cords
  72. Hankerchiefs
  73. Hot Glue Gun with a few glue sticks
  74. Japanese Washi decorative tape (for making pretty fixes)
  75. Jewelry pliers and a few spare supplies
  76. Lighters (preferably those with the extended ends for lighting candles)
  77. Lint brush
  78. Lip gloss
  79. List of emergency telephone numbers (of vendors, family, etc.)
  80. Lotion
  81. Lots of singles for tips
  82. Makeup remover
  83. Makeup sponges for deodorant white marks
  84. Markers (Sharpies)
  85. Mens black socks
  86. Midol (for cramps)
  87. Mini flashlight
  88. Mints
  89. Mouthwash
  90. Oxy stain remover (works really great)
  91. Panty hose for bride and flower girls
  92. Paper pads or notebooks
  93. Paper towels
  94. Pepto Bismol
  95. Perfume
  96. Picture frames (one or two, to make pretty signs for the buffet or dessert station)
  97. Piece of sandpaper for roughing up shoe soles so bride or groom won’t slip
  98. Portable PA system
  99. Poster size paper (to make last minute signs)
  100. Powder & lipstick
  101. Pretty printed “RESERVED” signs
  102. Razors and shaving cream
  103. Regular duct tape
  104. Ribbon Ring box
  105. Ring pillow
  106. Safety Pins (tons of them)
  107. Satin-padded white hangers (for when the photographer wants to take pictures of the wedding gown)
  108. Scissors
  109. Scotch tape (so the attendant can attach any cards that get separated from their gifts)
  110. Serving set
  111. Sewing kit (Needles + Various colors of thread)
  112. Shoe polish
  113. Silk rose petals
  114. Skittles or other candy (for a crying ring bearer or flower girl!)
  115. Small door stops
  116. Small lightweight extension cord (tri tap)
  117. Snacks
  118. Spare pen (black ink)
  119. Spare wedding music CDs & prelude CD
  120. Spot remover
  121. Static guard spray
  122. Step stool
  123. Straws (for the bride so she doesn’t ruin her lipstick)
  124. Sunglasses
  125. Super Glue
  126. Swiss Army knife
  127. T-pins
  128. Tablecloth clips (keep a half dozen or so in your bag)
  129. Tissues
  130. Toasting flutes
  131. Tons of bottled water
  132. Toothbrush (small disposable ones)
  133. Toothpaste (for bee stings)
  134. Traffic cones (for vendors or family who need to park close to the venue)
  135. Tums
  136. Tweezers
  137. Tylenol / Advil
  138. Umbrella
  139. Unity candle set with basic colors of sand
  140. Velcro – self stick and ties
  141. Vocal ease (for laryngitis)
  142. Waterproof mascara
  143. Waterproof tape
  144. White and black nail polish
  145. White chalk (good for lifting a lipstick stain)
  146. White duct tape
  147. White ribbon
  148. White spandex chair covers (at least 2)
  149. Windex (clean up sticky fingerprints, wipe down mirrors, pictures frames and other glass; also good for loosening stuck rings)
  150. Wire cutters
  151. Wrinkle Remover

Special Grooms Gifts: Tavern Signs & Cigar Humidors

Groom Place Setting Photo Courtesy of prettychicblog.dk

Finding the perfect groom’s gift was a little bit difficult for me. I wanted to incorporate his personality and treat him to a fun gift he could use beyond the wedding day. I put together a special watch that I knew he had been eyeing. I wrapped up a few other tokens to use on our big day that would be cheeky and useful. Be sure to include a note or sweet letter for your groom as a farewell to singledom and welcome to marriage. Here are some more ideas:

Grooms Gift Tavern Sign

These Groom’s Tavern Signs are perfect for a gift that he can enjoy after the wedding. Ease his pre-wedding jitters by assuring him that his man cave will still be there after he’s given his life to you. Then celebrate by giving him a Personalized Beer Mug to enjoy in his own little tavern. You can go a step further and include one of his favorite cigars for him to look forward to having after the ceremony. If he’s not much of a beer drinking, give him a special Personalized Cigar Humidor box for him to keep his special stressful day relievers in.

Personalized Cigar Box

Once you’ve picked out your main gift, combine it with some socks and breath mints. Try using cute tags such as “Breathmints: for a fresh kiss”, or “Socks: to ward off cold feet”. There are plenty of small things he may need through out the day, especially depending on your venue and personalities. Try an assortment of cute gift ideas and useful gifts he can reuse over and over.

 

Top 10 Hair Mistakes a Bride Makes

No, I get it, you want to look your best. You’re the bride and the center of attention but there are a lot of things that can go wrong with your hair. Don’t shoot the messenger I’m merely just telling you what  my hairdresser and Google have taught me. I’ve been working on accomplishing my wedding hair for six months already and my wedding is still two months out… trust me, there’s a lot involved when you’re a blonde bride.

1. Amateur Hour Is Over. Stick with a professional hairdresser! The last thing you want is to be stuck with someone unprofessional and unaware of how wedding makeup needs to be applied.

2. Someone Didn’t Check their Wedding Checklist. Don’t be the bride who forgot their veil or headpiece. Always keep a back up, even if you can’t afford duplicates of all your accessories keep extras on hand. There are lots of affordable options for wedding tiaras, veils and headpieces, no need to break the budget.

3. Stay Away From the Scissors. Especially if you’re using a new stylist, avoid cutting your hair days before the wedding. If you are planning to alter your hair before the wedding day, plan at least a week ahead so that your stylist has time to fix it before the big day.

4. Caught Red-Headed. Same advice goes for coloring. Bleaching your hair can cause serious damage and not waiting the proper amount of time in between session can cause breakage. So if you’re going to color your hair plan at to have adequate time between the big day in case you have to recolor it.

5. Brainstorm In Abundance. Your wedding hair is unlike any other updo you may have had done in the past. Your hair has to stay beautiful for the whole day and the photos will last the rest of your life. Your stylist is not responsible for picking your hairstyle– you are. So be sure to bring ideas and inspiration to assure that your stylist has the right vision of your style. If you don’t you might end up with wedding hair that you can’t stand and no time to change it.

6. In Case of Emergency. Even if you can’t afford the all day stylist, be sure to factor in touch ups and blunders. If the wind picks up and you find yourself without enough clips there may not be time to have someone run to the store. Ask your stylist ahead of time to put together a touch up emergency kit. Most professional wedding stylists offer or include an emergency kit for your big day. Some ideas: wedding garters, ballet flats, extra wedding jewelry all put together in a nice personalized wedding bag.

7. Test Your Options. You probably didn’t buy the first wedding dress you tried on so why would you stick with the first hairstyle? There are a lot of options for wedding hair styling and it’s a good bet you’ll like more than one. Try different options so you know which one works best. If you wake up on your wedding day and you have a unfortunate event (there’s always that one zit) you might consider changing your mind again!

8. Remember the Dress. The last thing you want is your hair to distract attention from your dress. If you’re wearing a strapless wedding gown try wearing your hair down in loose curls. If you’re going for a retro 50′s look then wearing your hair up with a pomp might work best. Just remember, use your hair to complement your dress not hide or cover it.

9. Add a Little Extra. Regretting the Pixie cut? Just because you got irritated with your longer do and cut it off days before the engagement, doesn’t mean that you can’t have it long for the wedding. Talk to your stylist about your different length options. A lot of brides add extensions to add length or volume to their wedding hairstyle.

10. Make Room for the Groom. The most important part of your day is standing in front of your groom exchanging vows. He’ll be looking at you at all and the sweetest thing you can do is keep in mind when planning your look. If he likes your hair up with a veil, consider it. You can wear your hair up for the ceremony and release the back part for a casual reception look. If it’s important to him it’s crucial that you consider it.

My groom told me that he prefers my hair up with a veil. While it’s not always the final decision, it’s still nice to know your groom has an opinion and cares. If you disagree but it is still important to him, compromise. What better way to start a marriage?

Bride Advice: Surviving Pre-Wedding Stress

There are a lot of steps to planning a successful wedding. Fortunately, there are a lot of tricks to coping with bridal blunders so that you can come out looking beautiful and calm on your wedding day. Pre-wedding stress is inevitable but managing your time and energy levels you can counteract any panic attacks or other negative side effects.

First of all, I’m not referring to the “is he the one for me” cold feet dilemma, I’m referring to the pre-wedding stress and jitters caused by budgeting, family members and the big one–your wedding dress. Here’s my solution for the months leading up to your wedding. Prevention is 90% of the cure, that being said, planning ahead and proper management of time and energy is essential to staying positive and centered.

Keeping track of your thoughts and appointments in a schedule or calendar is the best way to account for your activities and avoid unwanted stress. Keep lists and reminders as it’s highly unlikely you’ll be able to remember every single detail. And don’t forget your friends and family are there to help- a wedding is a coming together of families and there’s no better way to start than piling them together in a room to help tie favor bags.

Say you’ve got the planning down, you’ve settled into OCD mode and suddenly you find yourself having a panic attack, here are my tips for getting past it.

Have you ever noticed how some brides just look glowing and zen in their photo shoots? Well, the key is laughter. Laughter is known to reduce the levels of cortisol, dopamine and growth hormone. Reducing these stress levels helps to lower excess weight gain and other physical signs of stress. Laughter also helps tighten ab muscles and stretches back and shoulder muscles, which leave you feeling relaxed and comfortable. We can’t all hire a private comedian to follow us around so here’s a simple trick: Smile. It’s contagious and healthy.

When a smile doesn’t do the trick try the next best thing: Breathing. Focused deep breathing helps to calm the body by feeding the brain oxygen. Next time you’re stressed out count your breaths in your head; each time you inhale and exhale counts as a breath. Doing this five times in a row will lower your heart rate and calm you. Your body wants air and releasing bad juju from your brain will help you relax and focus on more important things.

Lastly, not every bride can afford to hide out at the spa the morning of her wedding so try a more affordable route- your girl friends. Spending more time laughing and creating memories will lessen your chances of being stressed out. The beauty of surrounding yourself with friends is that they won’t let you focus on negative thoughts or pessimistic attitudes. By surrounding yourself with people who love and care for you you’re more likely to trust their advice and rely on them for support. In doing so you’ll spend less time worrying about whether your dress will look good and more time having your nails painted bright mismatched colors.

I learned a very valuable lesson a couple years ago when one of my siblings fell sick: “don’t sweat the small stuff; if it won’t matter a year from now, it doesn’t matter now”. Chances are your bridal flowers are perfect and you don’t need to stress about if the color is the wrong shade of navy. Let it go. No one will be able to tell the difference except you and majority of the time you won’t remember any of it a year from now anyways.

If all else fails picture your future husband jumping across hot sands in a two year old swim suit on a romantic honeymoon getaway and I dare you not to laugh!

Cartoon courtesy of www.perryolsen.com

A Green Scene: Planning an Outdoor Garden Wedding

A lush green garden, the scent of flowers on a cool breeze, the sun shining down on a couple standing under a beautiful arbor – it’s the ultimate wedding dream for many. But if you’re one of those who would love to have an outdoor wedding in a garden, there are several things you should keep in mind, like the weather, the decoration, and the setup. An outdoor wedding demands a whole different kind of plan, and it’s one that needs to be flexible as well as practical.

1. Setting the Date. Although it’s impossible to predict the weather far in advance, try to choose a time of year when the days tend to be sunny and rain-free, but not unbearably hot.

2. Developing a Plan B. A garden is lovely – except when it starts to bucket down with rain. Always have an alternative place to shift the ceremony and/or reception in case there is bad weather.

3. Deciding on a Tent and Lighting. You don’t have to have a marquee, but you should consider how you will light the event and whether you’ll need extra electrical connections.

4. Choosing a Theme and Color Scheme. Take your inspiration from the beauty of Nature and pick a floral theme, a ‘green’ palette or a rustic country theme.

5. Designing the Décor. The main advantage of holding your wedding outdoors is that Mother Nature will provide you with a beautiful backdrop. But you’ll have to decide what extra decorations, floral arrangements and tables and chairs you need.

Depending on the garden you choose, you can opt for any number of themes. Your own or your parents’ garden is always a lovely, homely choice, and you can build on that theme with rustic-inspired decorations. Hang Glass Lanterns, filling them alternately with candles and full-blown flowers. Try grouping together colored Glass Votive Holders for a really simple but pretty centerpiece. And fill jam jars or Glass Pitchers with hand cut seasonal flowers for a home-made look!

Images from Elizabeth Anne DesignsElizabeth Anne DesignsKoyal Wholesale Pink Scalloped Shaped Paper ParasolElizabeth Anne DesignsKoyal Wholesale Turquoise Damask Table RunnerKoyal Wholesale Hanging Moroccan LanternKoyal Wholesale Turquoise Votive Candle HoldersElizabeth Anne DesignsElizabeth Anne Designs

Flowers are a popular theme at weddings. One of the best contrasts with the green of a garden wedding is pretty, delicate pink. Forget cliché roses – choose the flamboyant peony as the symbol for your wedding, and fill the centerpieces, bouquets and aisle decorations with these dramatic blooms. You can extend the floral theme to smaller details like the place card holders and bottle openers, even the Favor Boxes, Invitations and Wine Bottle Labels.

Images from 100 Layer Cake, Koyal Wholesale Flower Place Card Holders, Kelly Oshiro Events100 Layer Cake, Koyal Wholesale Flower Bottle Stopper, Style Me Pretty, Koyal Wholesale Personalized Wine Bottle Labels

A really beautiful theme that is easy to create is the vintage garden tea party. Use lots of authentically old pieces like the gorgeous distressed dresser in the picture below, used to display the cake. Have your bridal party dress in twenties or fifties style outfits, invest in some retro Hair Accessories, and go wild with long beaded necklaces, feathers and cocktail rings. Other great ideas: an old-fashioned White Birdcage to hold the place cards, Vintage Crystal Drop Candleholders in the center of each table, and a Personalized Aisle Runner with a traditional scroll to walk in on.

Images from Style Me Pretty, Koyal Wholesale Personalized Aisle Runner, Koyal Wholesale White Birdcage Card HolderStyle Me Pretty, Style Me Pretty, Koyal Wholesale Miniature Teacup and TealightsStyle Me Pretty

Feeling inspired? Great. But while you’re planning your fairytale garden wedding, don’t forget to consider these essential points.

  • Summer days can be very hot, so plan to rent free-standing fans or provide guests with Hand Fans.
  • Your menu needs to be practical – don’t order things that will melt after five minutes in the sun!
  • If you’re getting married during the popular summer holidays, book everything way in advance.
  • Open grounds are susceptible to gusty winds, so avoid having open flame lamps or candles.
  • Think about whether you will need to guard against mosquitoes, bees or other insects.
  • If you’re getting married at home, work out how much parking will be available for guests.
  • Decide how you will get an electrical supply for sound systems, fans etc.
  • Work out what lighting will be needed – Paper Lanterns, Spotlights or String Lights.
  • And always, ALWAYS have a backup plan in case it rains!

Questions to Ask Florists

Filed under: Bouquets,Checklist,Floral Designs — Tags: , — Emma @ July 10, 2010 5:01 pm
Questions to Ask Florists
Florist Checklist by Koyal Wholesale

BACKGROUND

  • Will you personally be the florist for our wedding? (If not, when may I meet the florist so I that I can become comfortable with him/her?)
  • Are you a full-time florist? If part time, what do you do the rest of the week?
  • Have you received any formal training as a floral designer?
  • How long have you been a florist, and how many events have you designed?
  • Have you handled events of my type and size before? What is the largest event you have designed?
  • What makes you better or different than other florists?
  • What type of design do you specialize in (modern, traditional, romantic, etc.)?
  • What unique materials do you use in your designs?
  • Do you have your own coolers to store flowers?
  • Do you have all the necessary licenses and permits?
  • Are you properly insured?
  • Have you ever been cited or incurred any fines?

PRE-HIRE QUESTIONS

  • Will you work any other weddings on the same weekend, the same day, or at the same time as ours?
  • Will the person I work with in planning be present at the venue on the day of the event?
  • If the florist no longer works with the company at the time of the event, when will I be informed, and who will step in?
  • Given the time of year, colors, location of my event, what are your first thoughts about the types of flowers and designs that may look best?
  • How many days in advance do you put together the bouquets and arrangements?
  • Can you achieve the look I desire within my budget?
  • To cut costs, will you incorporate some elements of the design that I find on my own (vases, crystals, branches, etc.)?
  • Do you provide any other services such as linens, chair covers, favors, ribbons, etc?
  • Are you also able to decorate my cake with flowers, or is that the responsibility of the baker?
  • How many weeks in advance may I seek a mock-up of my bouquet and centerpiece?
  • Is there any extra charge for changing my design if I am not happy with the mock-up?
  • When do I need to give you the final table count for centerpieces?
  • Can you tell me how to preserve my bouquet?
  • Will you make a tossing bouquet for me? Is there a fee for it?
  • May I see your portfolio?
  • Can I speak to previous clients? (Get at least two references that had a similar number of guests and a similar budget.)

GREEN QUESTIONS

  • Where do you source your flowers from?
  • Do you add any chemicals to the flowers (in the shop, during transport, at the site?)
  • Can you get locally grown flowers? Extra fee?
  • Can you get organically grown flowers? Extra fee?
  • Can you provide flowers that are in season?
  • Can you supply pesticide free petals?
  • Will you agree to only use materials that can be composted (no floral wire, no green florists’ foam, etc.)?
  • Can you pick up the leftover flowers and donate them to charity? Which charity? Extra fee?
  • Can you provide baskets, vases and other non-disposable containers?
  • Do you have other rentable decor items, like topiaries, urns, arbors, wreaths, live plants, aisle runners, Christmas lights or tiki torches?
  • What other eco-friendly practices do you use?

DAY OF EVENT

  • Where will the arrangement be created? Are there on-site facilities, or do we need to make additional arrangements?
  • What equipment do you provide, and is there a fee?
  • What time do you arrive to setup your equipment?
  • What are your hours of service?
  • Do you own your own vans for delivery?
  • Have you worked with my venue before?
  • Will you bring your own crew to set the arrangements?
  • Will the main florist also oversee the floral arrangement placements on the day of the wedding?
  • Can you perform delivery and set-up within the time allotted by the venue?
  • Can you disassemble and pick up rentals in the amount of time allocated, and at the time designated by the venue?

SPECIAL CHARGES

  • Is there a special charge for including elements that I provide (crystals, branches, etc.)?
  • Is there a special charge for decorating the wedding cake with flowers?
  • Is there a fee for preserving the bouquet?
  • Is gratuity included in the price? If not, how much is gratuity?
  • What percentage are the taxes?
  • What is the overtime charge?
  • Is the set-up and clean-up included in the final price?
  • If something you provide is stolen (crystals, votives, etc.) what is the charge?
  • Are you also able to design the table setting, and what is the charge?
  • Are there any additional charges not mentioned (travel, gas, waiting time, etc.)?

PRICE, PAYMENT & POLICIES

  • How do you price your flowers? Flat fee or per item fee?
  • What is the cost of each item: bridal bouquet, bridesmaid bouquet, boutonnieres, centerpieces, etc.?
  • What is the cost of decorating the ceremony aisle?
  • What is the cost of delivery and set-up?
  • Is a deposit required? If so, how much and when is it due?
  • May I make partial payments?
  • When is the final payment due?
  • Do you provide a written contract and guarantee?
  • What is the refund and cancellation policy?
  • Package 1:
  • Cost of Package 1:
  • Package 2:
  • Cost of Package 2:
  • Package 3:
  • Cost of Package 3:

FINAL QUESTIONS

  • What is the biggest misconception couples have with regard to hiring a florist?
  • Is there anything else I should know in hiring a florist?

Questions to Ask Caterers

Filed under: Checklist,Good Information,Planning Tips — Tags: , — Emma @ July 6, 2010 2:28 pm

Questions to Ask Caterers
by Koyal Wholesale

The Office’s Jenna Fischer told People that the most important part of her upcoming wedding, besides family and friends, was food. Use Koyal Wholesale’s Caterer Checklist to ask your caterer all the right questions. Bon Appétit!

BACKGROUND

  • Are you a full-time caterer? If part time, what do you do the rest of the week?
  • Have you received formal training as a caterer/chef?
  • How long have you been a caterer, and how many events have you catered?
  • Have you handled events of my type and size before? What is the largest event you have catered?
  • What makes you better or different than other caterers?
  • Do you have all the necessary licenses and health permits?
  • Do you have liability insurance? Are you properly insured?
  • Do you have a liquor license?
  • Have you ever been cited by the Board of Health, or incurred any fines?

PRE-HIRE QUESTIONS

  • Will you cater any other weddings on the same weekend, the same day, or at the same time as ours?
  • Who is the main contact? Will the same person I work with when planning also oversee meal service on the day of the wedding?
  • How involved do you get at a wedding reception? Do you stay backstage or do you work like a wedding coordinator or banquet manager, cueing the band, telling the couple when to cut the cake, adjusting the schedule if guests don’t seem ready to sit down to dinner, etc.?
  • Can you handle special dietary requests (vegetarian, vegan, eggless, gluten free, Jain, halal, kosher, etc.)?
  • Are you willing to include a recipe I provide, like a special family dish, or an appetizer with some sort of sentimental significance?
  • Do you provide food tastings? Is there a fee for tastings?
  • How many people can I bring with me to the tasting?
  • How will you arrange the food on the buffet table or on plates? Can I see photos of previous work displays?
  • May I see sample menus from the last 3 weddings you catered?
  • Can I speak to previous clients? (Get at least two references that had a similar number of guests and a similar menu style.)

GREEN QUESTIONS

  • Do you use organic fruits and vegetables?
  • Do you use fresh (not frozen) produce?
  • Is your produce locally sourced?
  • Is your protein organic and free-range?
  • Can you serve only fair trade organic coffee and tea?
  • Can you provide organic cane sugar, agave, and stevia?
  • Can you donate uneaten food to a local shelter?
  • If you are not using china tableware, is the tableware recyclable or biodegradable?
  • If you are washing the tableware, will you use biodegradable detergent?
  • Can all drinks, including soda, be served in glasses?
  • Will the bar use fountain soda rather than individually packaged soda?
  • Can the water come from the tap? (ie no plastic)
  • Can you use organic and local wine, beer and juices?
  • Can you provide recycled paper napkins and biodegradable cutlery?
  • Can you recycle all cans and bottles?
  • What other eco-friendly practices do you use?

DAY OF EVENT

  • Where will the food be prepared? Are there on-site facilities, or do we need to make additional arrangements?
  • What equipment do you provide, and is there a fee?
  • What time do you arrive to setup your equipment?
  • What are your hours of service?
  • Do you bring backup equipment?
  • What is the staff to guest ratio?
  • What is the staff dress code? Formal or casual?
  • If buffet style is offered, are servers provided or will it be self-serve?
  • Is there an extra charge for buffet servers? If so, how much?
  • Is there an extra charge for bartenders? If so, how much?
  • Who is supplying the beverages, liquor, water, ice, etc.?
  • Do you provide cake cutting/serving service? Is it part of the basic package? If not, what is the additional cost?
  • Do you provide the wedding cake, or should I hire an outside baker?
  • If caterer provides the cake, is there an extra charge? If so, how much?
  • Is the champagne toasting service included or is that an extra charge? If an extra charge, how much?
  • When is the final headcount due?
  • Does the headcount include wedding professionals at the event (photographers, DJs, etc.)?
  • May I supply my own linens, chargers, to offset the cost?
  • Do you provide rentals, or are they from another company?

SPECIAL CHARGES

  • Are there special prices for children?
  • Are there special prices for feeding our DJ, band, photographer and other wedding professionals?
  • Is gratuity included in the price? If not, how much is gratuity?
  • What percentage are the taxes?
  • What is the overtime charge?
  • Is the set-up and clean-up included in the final price?
  • What are the costs for alcohol and beverages?
  • Are linens, tables, chairs, charger plates, china, glassware, silverware, serving accessories, etc. provided or is there an extra charge?
  • If something you provide is stolen (silverware, etc.) what is the charge?
  • If I supply the charger plates, place cards, favors, or other items, will you charge to set these up (ie charge for the table setting)? If so, how much?
  • Are there any additional charges not mentioned (travel, gas, waiting time, etc.)?

PAYMENT & POLICIES

  • May I pay in cash, by check or by credit card?
  • Is a deposit required? If so, how much and when is it due?
  • May I make partial payments?
  • When is the final payment due?
  • Do you provide a written contract and guarantee?
  • What are the refunds/cancellation terms?
  • What is your leftover policy?
  • Package 1:
  • Cost of Package 1:
  • Package 2:
  • Cost of Package 2:
  • Package 3:
  • Cost of Package 3:

FINAL QUESTIONS

  • What is the biggest misconception couples have with regard to hiring a caterer?
  • Is there anything else I should know in hiring a caterer?

{ harvard photography }

Wedding Ceremony Checklist from Budget to Bling – Checklists Part 1

The central tenet of Dr. Atul Gawande’s provocative new book, The Checklist Manifesto, is that the simplest of tools – the checklist – provides the solution to life’s complexities. The surgeon/New Yorker staff writer cites several thrilling medical cases where patients were saved because, quite simply, medical staff scrupulously followed checklists, thereby avoiding errors, reducing infections, and ultimately saving millions of dollars.

Those of us in the wedding industry know all too well the invaluable nature of the checklist. The wedding planner’s checklist. The DJ’s checklist. The caterer’s checklist. When followed, the well-crafted checklist results in a happy couple, a happy bridal party, a happy family, a happy gaggle of guests. But when rejected, tears, arguments, bridezillas and even lawsuits abound.

In the DIY era, brides (or grooms) are well-advised to compile and follow their own checklists. Our simple checklists are perfect for any bride – from budget to bling. In this first part in the Checklist Series, we focus on the Wedding Ceremony Supplies Checklist.*

Wedding Ceremony Supplies Checklist – Budget

  1. Wedding bands
  2. Wedding vows
  3. Prayers
  4. Passages to be read
  5. Unity candles
  6. Other ceremonial candles (memorial candles)
  7. Candle holders
  8. Candelabra
  9. Match or lighter
  10. Sand ceremony vase
  11. Sand ceremony sand (at least 2 colors)
  12. Flower girl baskets
  13. Silk rose petals
  14. Ring bearer pillow
  15. Bridal party bouquets
  16. Photos of couple
  17. Easels
  18. Guest book table
  19. Guest book
  20. Pen
  21. Ceremony programs
  22. Chairs or pews
  23. Pew holders
  24. Pew bows
  25. Aisle runner
  26. Religious items (chupah, glass to break, kneeling bench, etc.)
  27. Arch
  28. Backdrop
  29. Other Decorations
  30. Alter Arrangements/Decor
  31. Sound System
  32. Music
  33. Boutonnieres
  34. Corsages
  35. Marriage license
  36. Marriage certificate
  37. Special occasions permit
  38. Outdoor sign
  39. Parking
  40. Eco-friendly ricebubbles or wands
  41. Gift for officiant
  42. Honorarium for officiant
  43. Photographer
  44. Videographer
  45. Gratuities (cash to tip vendors)

Wedding Ceremony Supplies Checklist – Bling Bride

  1. All of the above plus
  2. Shepard’s Hooks
  3. Pew Chandeliers
  4. Pillars
  5. Candles in hurricane vases to line aisle
  6. Floral poms
  7. Special music for soloist
  8. Pianist, violinist, harpist or band
  9. Floral arrangement for altar
  10. Floral arrangements for pews
  11. Freeze dried rose petals
  12. Wishing tree
  13. Notecards to place on wishing tree
  14. Jewelry gifts for kids
  15. Floral bouquets/roses to mothers at end of ceremony
  16. Sparklers
  17. Limousine

{ special event chandeliers – koyal wholesale }

{ floral poms – harvard photography }

{ aisle pillars and a happy groom – harvard photography }

{ post ceremony celebration – harvard photography }

* As my high school teacher once said, opinions are like noses: Everyone’s got one, and yours is of no use to me. Use this checklist as a simple guide – our opinion, through decades of experience, of supplies to have on hand. As always, all you need is love; all else is optional. (But remembering the rings may also be a good idea.)