First Things First: This Week’s Questions

Questions, I get questions…

We want to have our marriage license delivered to us on our wedding day, but there isn’t time to get it done before the ceremony. Can we have it delivered and take care of the paperwork after the ceremony?

In order to legally get married in California, you have to have a marriage license first. You sign the license when it is issued to you, and then your officiant signs it after the ceremony. Plus, there will be even less free time after your ceremony than there will be before it!  If your license is delivered to you, give that at least an hour to finish. If you go the county recorder’s office, I tell my couples to give it two hours. Lines, you know.  Either option requires that you be together when you get your license. If you need to get it delivered, and your wedding day won’t work, schedule it for the day before, or even a couple of days before, whatever is more convenient and means less of a scramble/rush.

I got my rental proposal and the cost is insane. I need at least $1000 cut off. What do I do?

First, no fear: The first rule of figuring out how to save money is to ask how you can save money.  Your caterer and rental company can and will help you. Downgrade everything you can. Dark chiavaris to dark wood foldout chairs. Specialty linens to standard (a note on this one: get white linens and tablecloths, you can play more stuff and colors off of them). One type of fork as opposed to two. Ask your rental company where you can use all standard water glasses instead of cocktail glasses and wine glasses and shot glasses. Ask your caterer what the minimum backup of plates, knives, forks etc is that they recommend, and slash those accordingly.

Do you have questions about your wedding? Let’s talk – Complete the contact form below to schedule a consultation, or click the button on this page to chat live with me now.

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith

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Asking Liz: Venue Questions This Week

Questions, I get questions from my couples every week. Some of them might help you out, so here we go:

  1. My venue manager says that I need to buy insurance. Why do they need insurance if I already gave them a deposit? Will it cover cancellation or postponement of my wedding?
  2. This is standard with many venues, to require that you purchase at least $1 million dollars worth of insurance, with them being the beneficiary. It will cover extreme damage to the venue, like, for instance if you burn the place down (I don’t know). It’s basically a back up to the deposit you gave them. “If you mess up the venue, we’re keeping the deposit. If you REALLY mess up the venue, we’re keeping the deposit and making an insurance claim.” Insurance here in California, depending on the amount that’s required, is between $100 – 200, so not too steep. There’s an additional charge (usually around $100) if you want to purchase cancellation or postponement that covers your costs, but not all insurance companies offer that. Ask.

Our wedding is in the outside patio, and then everyone will move inside for the cocktail hour and reception. We want our guests to use and enjoy the outdoor space during the reception, too, but how do we get them to go back out there?

Universal Wedding Rule – Guests go where you go. The patio is a great spot for the photo booth, a dessert bar, a couple of cocktail tables, anything that can be set up easily during the cocktail hour or the first few minutes of the reception. Grab a couple of friends and head out there to talk, or take pictures, and just hang. Bonus points if you bring something back inside with you, like a donut or a photo booth print. Everyone is going to be looking for you, constantly (sorry), “Oh, where are they? They’re outside. We can go outside?” Yeah, you can.

We’re getting married at one place and having our reception at another. The problem is there are tight delivery and pickup windows at both locations, and we’re working with three different rental companies. What can we do to make sure this doesn’t cost a fortune?

First, figure out exactly how much of a fortune it’s going to  cost you. You have one hour after the ceremony to get all the chairs, decor, cocktail tables out. You have to get all the rentals out of the reception venue that night, because there’s another wedding there the next day. How much is the total delivery cost for that, on top of the rentals? Okay. Consolidate the rentals: You’re renting from three different companies, is there a way to chose items from just one or two so you’re not paying three delivery fees? Work on the timing: How much would it cost to buy more load-out time at the ceremony site? Compare that to the cost of picking it up at the designated time.

What questions do you have right now about your wedding? Complete the form below to schedule a consultation, or click the chat box to talk with me now.

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith

Are you following me on Instagram @lizcharm? You should be.

 

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Wedding Wise Wednesday: Flying High

Every Wednesday, I bring you the best wedding stories, deals and events in Los Angeles and from around the web. And we call it Wedding Wise Wednesday. Welcome!

Cool Wedding Thing of the Week:

Photo: Jose Villa

Martha Stewart Weddings – I LOVE great escort displays. A pilot marries a pilot, and this is the awesomeness that happens. Everyone gets wings, you guys!

The Deals

Wedding Paper Divas – If you’re getting married early next year, it’s time to order those invites. Get 20% off invitations if you use the code AugWS40.

The Events

Saturday, August 12

10:00am-5:00pm
The RNEP Destination Bridal Showcase

Sheraton Park Hotel at the Anaheim Resort
1855 South Harbor Boulevard
Anaheim, California 92802
Admission: $5 at the door, free if you register online

Sunday, August 13

11:00am – 4:00pm
Kiss the Bride Show
Pala Casino Spa & Resort
11154 Hwy 76
East Pala, California 92059

What else do you need for your wedding right now? Complete the form below, or click on chat box to talk live with me now.

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith

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Asking Liz: Wedding Timelines

Clock Houdini Estate

Don’t run late on your VERY important date. Photo: Liz Coopersmith

I’m planning and officiating four weddings in the next six weeks, so I’m having a  lot of discussions about wedding timelines, and how to swing them. Here are some of my most popular past posts on the topic:

Tuesday Tip: People Moving on Your Wedding Day

Ask Liz: Reception Time = Money

Five Ways to Fix Your Fake Ceremony Time

What You Don’t Know About Your Wedding: Venues

My blog is practically a wedding encyclopedia – go to the search box and look for any subject you need help with right now. If you want to talk with me directly about your wedding, complete the contact form below, or click the chat box to talk with me live.

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith

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Wedding Wise Wednesday: Puppy >Flowers

Every Wednesday, I bring you the best wedding stories, deals and events in Los Angeles, and from around the web. And we call it Wedding Wise Wednesday. Welcome!

Cool Wedding Thing of the Week

Puppy Bouquets

All the Winning. Photo: Caroline Morris Photography

@Bridal_Vogue – Puppies as bridesmaid bouquets. This speaks for it’s own wonderfulness. You can see the entire blog post by Caroline Moss Photography here.

The Deals

Lovella Bridal – Sample Sale on Sunday, August 6th, from 10am – 4pm. Hundreds of gowns at an amazing discount. Sold as-is, on  a first come, first serve basis. GO.

The Events
Sunday, August 6

11:00am-3:00pm
Bridal Premiere
Hyatt Regency Westlake
880 South Westlake Boulevard
Westlake Village, California 91361

11:00am – 4:00pm
Bridal Showplace
The Queen Mary
1126 Queens Hwy
Long Beach, California 90802

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith

Let’s talk about your wedding! Complete the form below to schedule a consultation, or click the Live chat box to talk with me now.

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Three Things to Tell Your Friend The Wedding Officiant

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Photo: Liz Coopersmith

Many couples love the idea of having a relative or close friend perform their ceremony. Officiants have to be legally registered with the state, in one way or another, but the process is very simple, and in most cases, free – Ask me how! Performing a wedding ceremony looks very easy, but with most easy things, the devil is in the details. And, like with your DJ, managing everyone’s expectations, including your own, is important. There are three things you need to tell your friend who is marrying you:

  1. 1. Stick to the script. The agreed-upon script. Ask them to not go any more personal than has been pre-approved. I’ve witnessed one too many tell assembled guests that the bride/groom wanted to marry THEM once, or vice versa. I’m not kidding, we’re talking multiple occurrences of this. Or, about how much of a player/slut they were before they met their future spouse. No. There is a time and place for that stuff, but the end of the aisle is not it. You may think your friend would never do that, but ask anyway.

2. You need to sign and mail the wedding license. Now, this is based on what I know about license protocol in California, so check with your state, if you’re not in mine. But here, the officiant is responsible for mailing your signed marriage license back to the state office, in the envelope it came in. They should use two stamps. When I officiate weddings (either on my own, or as part of Great Officiants), I scan the signed license and send it to you before I mail it. But if that’s not going to be possible with your officiant, ask them to also sign the unsigned copy that comes in that envelope, and give that to you for your records.

3. Tell me what you need at the altar. Logistics. Give them a mic, even if they say they don’t need one, and a stand. Are they reading the ceremony by memory (wince) or off of a piece of paper? What is the piece of paper going to be in or on – a clipboard, a folder, or will it be hand-held? Do they need, want a lectern? The best case scenario would be for them to come to the rehearsal. If not, have them come to the ceremony at least 30 minutes before start time, to do a soundcheck with the mic and get a heads up on how they’re entering into the ceremony. Remember, they have to sign your license after that,so figure out where that is going to happen. Even if they are a wedding guest, sign the license right after the ceremony, don’t wait. Everyone is right there, and no one is distracted. Or drunk yet, hopefully.

But, let’s talk about your wedding – what do you need right now, to create the wedding of your dreams? Complete the form below and let me know, or click the button on this page to chat with me live.

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith

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Wedding Wise Wednesday: Bright and Shiny Day

Every Wednesday, I bring you the best wedding stories, deals and event in Los Angeles and from around the web. And we call it Wedding Wise Wednesday. Welcome!

Cool Wedding Thing of the Week

As You Wish Events – A Dallas wedding presents a  new and bright take on the escort card display. I LOVE this –  jewel toned discs on a mirrored wall. Wonderful collaboration, too, between As You Wish Events, florist and designer Bella Flora and calligrapher Design Roots.

The Events
Sunday, July 30

Bride World Expo
10:00am – 4:00pm
DoubleTree Hotel Ontario
222 N Vineyard Avenue
Ontario, California 91764
$6.00 online, $12 at the door

Summit House – Bridal Open House
11:00am – 2:00pm
2000 East Bastanchury Road
Fullerton, California 92835

The Deals

The Paper Lantern Store – Now until 7/31, Use the code STYLE at Checkout for 15% OFF everything on their site.

The Original Runner Company – Is celebrating their 14th anniversary this week! Save 14% off your order when you use the code OUR14BD now until 8/3

 

What else does your wedding need right now? Complete the contact form below, or click the live chat button on this page to talk with me now.

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith

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Three Things to Tell Your Friend The DJ

  1. Calamigos picture

    Photo: Liz Coopersmith

    There is a circling debate in Wedding World about “friendors” – friends or relatives that take the place of a professional vendor at your wedding.  We all have horror stories about the aunt who catered the wedding but didn’t bring enough wait staff, or the family friend who provided the bouts but forgot the pins. Stuff like that. “You shouldn’t hire someone you can’t fire,” one pro said to me. That may be true – depending on how the day goes – but it’s beside the point.  You may be trying to save money by using a family member. You might love the idea of having your roommate from college DJ your wedding. These are valid reasons, because they’re yours. I say it a million times, and I’ll say it to your face:  It’s your wedding, and you can do whatever you want. My job is show you how to make it work. Couples sometimes take a step back, because your friend or relative is doing you a favor, so you don’t want to come off as demanding, or worse, ungrateful. However. If your Friendor is telling you that they can do as good a job as a professional could, then they should interact with you as a professional would. But it’s going to be up you to manage that experience.

  2. Three things you need to tell your Friend the  DJ:
  3. 1. “We need to schedule a consultation” – just like you would with a professional. Do it as soon as you can.  Go over the basics: When is your wedding, how many guests? What type of music do you want them to play? What is the preliminary timeline for the day? Are they DJ’ing the ceremony, or just the reception? Are they acting as MC as well, or is someone else making announcements and introductions? Are you doing a first dance, parents dances, a Hora, the money dance? Toasts? What do you expect them to do, and what will they do? When will you get them a final timeline for the day? What do they need/want from you right now and in the future? That last question is important.
  4. 2. “We need to go over your equipment list” – This can be a separate call, but make sure you schedule it at the end of your consultation.  What equipment will they be responsible for bringing? Who is paying for that? When do they need to order it?  Again, this will help manage everyone’s expectations. How many mics, how many speakers, how many stands?  This might change, so schedule another call to go over it again, at least a couple of weeks before your wedding. Put that date in your calendar while you’re sitting there. Put all follow-up dates in your calendar while you’re sitting there.

3. “I need you to contact my venue/venue manager/planner” – Give your Friendor their contact information, and set a deadline to reach out to that person. Follow up on that, too.  If your DJ  is local, ask them to visit your venue before your wedding, to check out where they’ll be setting up. Less surprises that way.

And no, you don’t have to phrase it as “I NEED.” “Can you do this for me?” works. “Let’s schedule this on this day” is good, too. Thank them often, emphasize that you want to make sure they have EVERYTHING they need to do this for you. But be clear with them about what you expect them to do, and very clear with yourself about what they can do.

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith

Let’s talk about YOUR wedding. Complete the contact form below, or click on the box on the bottom of the page to chat live with me now.

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Wedding Wise Wednesday: When We Were Young

Every Wednesday, I bring you the best wedding stories, deals and events in Los Angeles and from around the web. And we call it Wedding Wise Wednesday. Welcome!

Cool Wedding Thing of the Week

I now want ALL of my couples to do this. Photo: Woodrow and Cook Photography

Woodrow and Cook Photography: #photoface. OMG, I have not seen this enough in the States, definitely not in L.A.,  so let’s make this a thing. Let’s make this a thing NOW. I would like to see this shot just as much as I see wooden beams and flowy bouquets. Look how cute they are! It’s the ultimate selfie! Do this for me, please.

Stuff My Couples Ask Me

Heritage Square MuseumThis week, my October couples are all about rentals. I sent them this blog post I wrote, which seemed to help: Ask Liz: Rentals and How to Swing Them. 300 plates for 100 guests? Yup. Here’s Why.
And FYI, if you’re looking for information or advice at any wedding topic, start with the search box on my blog. I’ve been here for that for years.

The Events

June 22-23
10:00am – 4:00pm
Bride World Expo
L.A. Convention Center
1200 L.A. Live Way, Los Angeles, CA 90015
Tickets: $12 at the door, $6 online
I’m going to drop by this one on Sunday, let me know if you’d like to tag along.

The Deals

Modcloth-bridesmaiddressModcloth – You can save an extra 30% off sale styles this week, some of which would make some darn good bridesmaid dresses. GO.

Let’s talk about your wedding! Complete the form below to schedule a consultation, click the button on this page to chat live with me now.

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith

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Wedding Wise Wednesday: COOL OFF.

Every Wednesday I bring you the best wedding stories, deals and events in Los Angeles, and from around the world. And we call it Wedding Wise Wednesday. Welcome!

Cool Wedding Thing of the Week

Sangria-sno-cone-buzzfeed-sugarandcharm

Buzzfeed Weddings and Sugar and Charm – Sangria sno cones. SANGRIA SNO CONES. Now, please!

Martha Stewart Weddings Jewel TonesCool, Too – Martha Stewart Weddings (I know, I’m obsessed) – 14 Ways to Use Modern Jewel Tones to Color Your Big Day. Bringing the pretty, pretty inspiration, per usual.

The Deals

Oriental Trading Company Calligraphy Table numbersOriental Trading Company – They are having a big sale on wedding stuff this week, at up to 60% off. Bubbles! Table numbers! Favors! ETC! GO. Free Shipping on orders of $39 or more. That should not be a problem.

 

 

Let’s talk about your wedding – what else do you need, or need to know right now to create your vision of a wonderful day? Complete the form below, or click the big badge on this page to chat live with me now.

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith
 
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