Monday, June 4, 2018

Lauren and Brent - Destination Wedding at Zion Springs @ Hamilton, Virginia

A month before their wedding, I have met with Chris, the bride's dad and Cara, the wedding coordinator. Jon, the venue owner, gave me a tour of his wonderful spot in the inner side of Loudon county. Zion Springs is definitely a promising venue and everybody was looking forward for the big day of Lauren and Brent's outdoor wedding.

Although weather did not cooperate with us, Jon, Cara, staff and the couple's family all managed to pull it off when the whole event was moved indoors.

When I got there, only the boys were kinda ready..

in their matching stripe orange socks :)

Then I head to the other barn where the girls are..
Lauren definitely is stunning!

We had a little break from the rain, it was still muddy but at least we got to take some photos kinda outside..

She really does not like posing.. but I love this bride " unposed " !!! and thanks to her cheerful and persuasive friends :)

And rain stayed with us but who cares?
Zion Springs indoor setup for their wedding ceremony was perfect and moody..

Now welcome the couple!!

There were special dances with special people..

Of course, they needed some laughs from their loved ones/ friends at the reception...

Congratulations Lauren and Brent! Camera-shy couple but so full of fun, sweetness and love for each other...

But wait, they are not done yet... one of the highlights of their celebration is some line dancing!

Venue:                         Zion Springs Bed and Breakfast;
Caterer:                       Zion Springs;
Wedding Coordinator: Cara Hughes;
Photography:              Jen Wright Photography and Steven Wright;
DJ:                              Jon Tigges;
Band:                          Herman, and company;
Bridesmaid dresses:   Mother of the Bride (Jean)

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Why Weddings Run Late and Suggestions on How to Avoid Them:

Some weddings don't run on time, and there are various reasons why.

What can couples do in order for things to run on schedule?

A wedding doesn't have to run late or rushed

We always work with our clients to come up with a timeline for the big day. Sadly though, sometimes that timeline becomes useless on the actual day of the wedding :(

Obviously, we don’t want our brides and grooms to be stressed at their wedding! Here are a few reasons why weddings run late and how to prevent them:

      1.) Hair/Makeup: It is one of the main reasons weddings run late.  Brides set a time for everybody in the group having hair and makeup for the next event (Photos!).  However, that doesn't leave time for putting on the dress, traveling, pre ceremony photos, late appointments, etc.

Thus, include an end time for hair/ makeup on the schedule. Set all appointments to be finished an hour before that end time. This will give a bit of time allowance and still be able to get in all the getting ready photos, as well as get to the ceremony.


If you end up with an extra time to relax and sip a drink with your bridesmaids (or groomsmen),  wouldn’t that be AWESOME

Or in some cases, after your “first look”you two have a drink,  grab a selfie,  how about a photo of your matching superhero shoes?

·       2.) Family Is Late: We all know someone in our family who is likely to be late… or just because they have been late on some other occasions ;-).  Nevertheless we love this family member/s and we want them to be there. If Aunt Susan or Uncle Jerry will be 15 minutes late then give her or him a “fake” timeline. Then assign a designated family member to keep her/him on time.

What helps too is to have a designated meeting spot for family:  such as:

  • the lobby, 

  • by the venue's entrance, 

  • groom's dressing  room or bride's getting-ready room, 

  • or that area beside the ceremony site.

·       3.) Family Portraits: We're not picking on family! It’s a given that when a photographer gets done with the list of family portraits, the mother of the groom, or your cousin, asks for more photos.

A list of groupings for family portraits is going to be helpful and most often a must to be provided to your photographer.  (and to your coordinator or to whoever is in charge of gathering/calling family members that it’s their turn for the photo).

Each family or grouping takes about 5 minutes. Those with small children take a bit longer. If you want to avoid the last minute photo requests from family, include them in your plan.

Do prioritize by cutting it down, or move the schedule around to add time as needed. 


As a result, you will still get to enjoy some of the cocktail hour, and listen to the musician you hired just for that hour :) :) :) 


What is an alternative for the schedule on family portraits? Some couples schedule family portraits during the reception (either outside, when it's warm but not hot... and also not too cold, or before sunset, or even inside the reception venue depending on the space).


·       4.) Travel: If you think getting to the ceremony site from the hotel, or from church to reception will only take 10 minutes, then you are being cute :)

Travel time is also on the top of the list of things (in no particular order) that causes the wedding day timeline off schedule. It’s a given again that, traffic happens.. most especially on weekends (and worse in downtowns!) Of course, it also takes longer with multiple people/vehicles.

If you think it'll be 10 minutes then leave a gap for 20 instead. If you think it'll be 30 mins then leave a wiggle room of 45 mins instead.   If you're hiring a service to drive you, they need to know exactly when they are expected to be where. That’s for traveling with a regular vehicle and not a limo… Limo needs a bigger space to park.  Make sure your venue has a space for your limo.  Also, ask your driver how long it takes to get you from destination A to B.



       .... and drum roll please on the next one....

    5.) Tada!!! ...... Bridal party or wedding entourage:   

    Hmm, there's really no polite way to put this.... Bridesmaids and groomsmen cause the MOST delays in wedding.   

       Photographers will show up and be ready to start the first person on time, but if a bridesmaid or the best man is still absent, then the rest of the schedule is thrown off.

It would be nice if they are given a printed copy of the schedule, and highlight their part, including any task that they are performing (picking up flowers or favors, etc.).  Let them know that even though this is your wedding, they are an important and special part of this day too :)

Of course, if delay can’t be avoided, don’t get stressed about it.  

We have a backup plan.. 

we will take photos of you and your wedding party at the end of the ceremony (yey!)