Rowdy Rieland’s Bachelorette

My best friend is GETTING MARRIED!!! With this, obviously comes a Bachelorette party! Dani picked Pittsburgh, PA as her location, but other than that, she had no idea about anything! Leading up to the party, we all tried to throw … Continue reading

THE big move

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It is officially official! In just one short week, I will be moving to Charlotte, NC! As most of you know, Drew moved there back in February for a job with the Charlotte Knights, and in October was hired on full-time as their Assistant Director of Video Production.

Since graduation, I have been working at David’s Bridal here in Harrisburg, still looking for a full-time job in event coordination.  At the beginning of the summer, I went on a few interviews here and there.  Nothing worked out but I know I am able to come to terms that that’s how it was supposed to happen.  Later in the summer, I began looking more towards the long-term.  Drew and I talked a lot about staying in Charlotte or coming home, or moving to a different city, but one thing we knew for sure is that we wanted to be together.  Since he was hired on full-time, I began to search for jobs in Charlotte more seriously.  There are endless opportunities down there (much more than Central PA has to offer) and that’s a really exciting thing for me as a 23-year old.  The city of Charlotte is absolutely beautiful and there are constantly events and things happening around the city to experience .  I’ve only been there twice, but I’m so excited to call it my future home.

For the time being, I will be transferring stores to a local David’s Bridal in Charlotte.  I struggled with this for a while, because I really wanted to have a full-time job lined up, but it just wasn’t happening.  I realized I needed to just take the leap and go down there so I can interview in person and make connections in Charlotte.  I have been in contact with a few people who want to meet up once I get settled, so that is always something to look forward to!

I am really excited to see what a new jobs, friends, and a new city will bring in 2016!

10 Wedding Traditions Explained

Have you ever wondered why every wedding you’ve attended has similar traditions or where they come from? Why do bridesmaids all wear the same dress? Why is there a garter toss? Why must the bride and groom feed each other cake? This is just what we expect at weddings, but have you ever thought of the origins of these customs? Here are 10 traditional wedding customs explained by me:

  1. Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue: It is customary for a bride to have a trinket of each of these descriptions on her person while getting married. They each symbolize something the bride and groom hope for for their marriage together. The something old represents the past, while the something new represents their future as a couple. A bride is supposed to borrow a special token from someone who is happily married in hopes that their good luck will rub off onto them. A blue something represents fidelity and love.
  2. Rain on your wedding day: Rain on your wedding day can represent fertility and cleansing
  3. Wearing a Veil: In ancient Rome, a bride would wear a veil over her face in order to confuse spirits who were jealous of her glee
  4. Not seeing each other before the ceremony: This custom is changing. Some couples choose to have a “first look” photography session before the wedding, but some people stay tried and true to this custom dating back from the time of arranged marriages. It was believed that the couple should not see each other before marrying so they couldn’t change their mind. Sounds an awful lot like the show, Married at First Sight.
  5. The “Ring Finger”: Wedding and engagement rings are worn on the fourth finger of the left hand because it was once believed that that finger had a vein run directly to the heart.
  6. Bouquet and Garter Toss: This tradition comes from across the pond in England. Wedding guests used to try to rip pieces of the dress and bouquet from the bride in order to gain some of her good luck. Brides started tossing their bouquets in order to get away from the crowd. Now this has become a tradition at most weddings in which a single woman catches the bouquet and then is believed to be the next to marry.
  7. Bridesmaids: Bridesmaids at one point were to dress exactly as the bride on the wedding day to confuse evil spirits.
  8. Giving away the bride: This tradition also comes from the days of arranged marriages. It was believed that a daughter was property of her father until she was literally given away to the man she was to marry.
  9. Feeding of the cake: In Christian weddings, feeding each other wedding cake represents giving everything they have and caring for one another.
  10. Throwing rice: This common practice represents the guests showering the newlyweds with abundance and fertility.

If you think some of these are weird traditions we’ve carried on for years, wait until you see what some traditions from other cultures are:

Easy Etiquette Tips for Guests

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This summer while interning at a wedding & special events venue I had the opportunity to work tons of events and interact with tons of guests. Some of these guests were the nicest most considerate people and others were not. I was surprised to see how many people didn’t understand the common etiquettes of being a guest at someone’s wedding. Here are some helpful tips for anyone whose recently sent in that response card.

  • Don’t wear white. This is pretty obvious but still some people just don’t get it.
  • Don’t assume you can bring a plus one. If the invitation doesn’t state your name and “guest”, but you feel uncomfortable attending the wedding alone, reach out to the couple and ask if you can bring someone. This is a better alternative than just showing up with someone the bride and groom did not invite.
  • Don’t assume kids are invited. Unless the invitation has the children’s names or says “and family” hire a babysitter and enjoy your night out alone.
  • Don’t bring a large gift. The last thing the couple wants to be doing after the wedding reception is wrangling a bunch of gifts into the back of their car to deal with before the honeymoon. Save yourself and them the trouble, ship the gift directly to their home.
  • Do be on time. Plan ahead. The couple invited you to their wedding so you could witness their ceremony. If some unforeseeable incident occurs that causes you to be late, don’t interrupt. Wait until they’re done and then join in for the rest of the party.
  • Do turn off your cell phone. Nobody wants to be that person who ruins the most memorable moment of someone’s life. Just turn it off.
  • Do congratulate the family. Even if you’ve never met them or don’t know them very well, introduce yourself. A simple congratulations, a thank you and compliment about the day can go a long way in the eyes of a parent.
  • Do keep conversations short. You want to say hello and talk to the bride and groom on their special day, but don’t talk forever. There will be lots of people they need to get around to as well.
  • Do take your favor. The bridal party and family put a lot of time and thought into those parting gifts so make sure you don’t leave yours behind.
  • Don’t get wasted. Once again, don’t be that person. Just because there’s an open bar does not mean that you need to drink the whole bar.

In addition to these ceremony and reception do’s and don’t’s, there are etiquette rules for social media.

  • Don’t post a photo of bride until she’s officially married
  • Don’t use your cellphone during the ceremony, leave these photos to the professional photographer they hired. Cellphones and photos can be distracting to the couple as well as other guests
  • Don’t congratulate the couple on social media until they’ve personally announced their marriage on that social media platform

Bachelor and Bachelorettes Wed

Every Monday night over 5 million viewers sit down in front of their television with their glass of Pinot Grigio to watch what is one of America’s favorite and longest reality television shows. The Bachelor and the spin-off The Bachelorette has created many invested fans (both women and men). At the end of every season, viewers expect a ring and engagement and are seriously disappointed when it doesn’t happen (I’m talking to you, Juan Pablo!). Since fans see the entire relationship unfold from their first meeting to their happy engagement, some couples have chosen to televise their wedding.

Trista-Ryan-wedding_400 Trista Rehn was the runner up from Season 1 of The Bachelor and was named the first Bachelorette. She married Ryan Sutter on television on December 6, 2003. This was broadcast over a three episode series called Trista & Ryan’s Wedding. According to sources, they were paid 1 million dollars by ABC for allowing them to televise the anticipated event. The mini-series drew over 26 million viewers, making it one of the most viewed reality episodes of all time.

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Most recently, Sean Lowe and Catherine Giudici tied the knot at the beginning of 2014. Sean became fan favorite during the eighth season of The Bachelorette and won the spot of The Bachelor by a landslide for season 17. Their wedding was also televised, but this time ABC put a new spin on it: their wedding would be shown LIVE. Lowe says, “The Bachelor is such a cool experience because people at home feel like they know us and they’re invested in our relationship. We have no problem sharing the actual wedding with everyone who has been with us so far.”

Because these couples from the past have chosen to publicize their wedding on television for fans, currently engaged Bachelor/Bachelorette couples are feeling the pressure to do the same. Currently all eyes are on engaged couples, Desiree Hartsock and Chris Siegfried and Andi Dorfman and Josh Murray. They were both seen at New York Bridal Fashion Week last weekend so of course wedding buzz is following them. My main question for this blog post is: Where do they draw the line? Are they going to let ABC start filming the birth of their children? Are there going to be spinoff shows to follow them around in their life?

Although I am one of these viewers deeply invested and I completely appreciate the fact that they televise their weddings, they’re normal people too? Do they not want their privacy even a little bit?

 

Bridal Fashion Week turned Disney Princess

For a class this semester, I have to blog once again.  My topic for the blog relates to weddings and budgeting, and as it relates to the theme of my summer blog, I figured I would repost the blogs onto this blog or you can follow my Blogger for class here.

If you were in New York at all this past weekend, you were probably seeing lots and lots of white along with multiple things borrowed and blue. Last night wrapped up New York Bridal Fashion Week. With over 150 designers exhibiting their new lines for 2015, there were plenty of shows to attend. Power-house designers like Amalia Carrera and Betsey Johnson were just two designers who showed off their newest couture, but one dress specifically sent a chill down my spine.

Bridal designer, Alfred Angelo for Disney, created a wedding gown inspired by Elsa from Disney’s movie Frozen. There is no doubt that the movie Frozen has a large fan base. Last year it became the highest-grossing animated film of all time with over $400,000,000 in box office sales, not to mention all DVD, soundtrack, and licensed products. Millions of people love Frozen but would you want to represent that on your wedding day? I guess we will see come January 2015 when the dress goes on sale. In addition to the Elsa dress, Angelo is debuting eight other dresses inspired by Disney princesses including Princess Tiana and Snow White.

Jersey Shore Fist Pumping!

Saturday night I worked yet another wedding.  This time I was able to follow the banquet manager the entire time, so I was able to see what to do from start to finish of an event.  When I got there I helped Daniella, the event coordinator, set up the bridal room. Before every event, we stock the mini fridge with bottles of water for the bridal party and put out chilled champagne and champagne glasses.  We also have to put out chilled water bottles in the lobby or study for the groom and groomsmen.  After I set all that stuff up, I had to organize the place cards.  Usually we request that the bride give us the place cards already in alphabetical order, but this time they weren’t.  Therefore, I had to go through the whole stack of place cards and put them in alphabetical order.  Seems like an easy task, but they were done in calligraphy so I couldn’t even figure out what some of the letters were, so I had to use the printed guest lists to figure out their names and put them in order.  Then I placed them all in One Atlantic’s sand boxes for display.  There were no favors to set up for this wedding, instead the couple decided to make a donation to the American Heart Association in honor of the bride’s father and the groom’s grandmother.  During the ceremony, the bride had her father’s fedora with a red rose placed on what would’ve been his seat.  She also honored him with a charm on her bouquet and had part of one of his shirts sewn into her dress.  After I was finished with all of the set up, I was able to follow Paul for the remainder of the night.  I shadowed him during the server meeting.  This meeting is held at the beginning of their shift.  During it, Paul goes over the timeline of the event, the menu, guests with allergies or special needs, and any new changes One Atlantic may have.  Specifically this week there were two new items to be discussed.  The first one is that anybody under the age of 21 is not allowed to drink from glass.  This helps everyone know who is and is not of drinking age, as well as stop any hazards associated with glass wear.  The second new thing was that we were going to try to stop people from taking drinks onto the dance floor with them during the night, because glasses are often dropped or drinks spilled, which also causes hazards.  Later in the night we realized that its impossible to stop everyone, so we just supervised and made sure nobody was dancing out of control with drinks.  Daniella, Paul, and I were placing bets on which girl was going to drop her drink first.  The bride and groom wanted their reception to be like HQ and they were pretty close.  There was a lot of crazy dancing and fist pumping!  This couple had hired a Photo Booth for their wedding.  The guy operating it asked Kelsey, the other intern, and I if we wanted to be his test strip before the party started using it so we got to go in the Photo Booth and get a photo strip to take with us! For the rest of the night, I followed Paul, and saw how he managed the timeline and the food.  The toasts went much longer than anticipated so it messed up the rest of the timeline, so we had to move things around and arrange them so that we could get back on track.  The timeline is very important for the DJ, the banquet manager, and the kitchen, and they all need to make sure they are on the same page.  Another thing that the banquet manager does is make sure the bride and groom actually sit down and eat.  You would not believe how much you have to hound the couple to eat.  They are usually so busy talking to people and making their rounds that often they don’t get to eat their own wedding food!  Its really important that they get to eat, especially when they’ve been drinking all night like this couple.  This bridal party was a rowdy one! They LOVED the open bar, but I thought they were great! They were all really nice and fun.  The bride was so beautiful and not just because she had her hair and makeup done for her day, but you could tell how truly happy she was and that made her that much more beautiful.

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On a side note, before introductions the groom’s grandmother walked up to me and asked, “Is it true that Snooki got married here or is getting married here?”  I thought this was the funniest thing I’ve heard.  Not only did the grandmother know who Snooki was but the fact that this rumor was floating around was hilarious.  So I just kinda laughed it off and was like “No, not to my knowledge”.  Later on I tell Daniella about this hilarious exchange, and she informed me that Snooki and JWoww filmed an episode for season 3 at One Atlantic.  It was Daniella’s 2nd day at work and they were there filming an episode like they were venue shopping! Daniella said since it was her 2nd day, she barely knew anything about the company yet and was so nervous during the filming. So obviously I had to come home and search for the episode and watch that part. After finding this all out, it made a lot more sense that the grandmother was asking me that question. Here’s the link if you want to check it out! (Minute 2:00)

 

 

Vacations are too short

Last week I spent a wonderful 7 days in Cape May with my family.  This is a tradition we have been doing for about 40 years.  All of my dad’s cousins come and all their kids, so in total there are about 45 of us down there for the week.  We had perfect weather! Only one day it was a little cloudy and windy but it was still a nice beach day and gave our skin a break from the blistering sun. This is the first time in five years that all the Kings were down at the beach, so we decided to have a family photo taken.  In the last one we have Ava was just one year old and she will now be a freshman in high school, so we were definitely in need of a new one.  We all pulled together some white and navy outfits and it worked really well!

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The rest of the week was just as beautiful! Cape May is my favorite place in the world and its mostly due to my awesome family!

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Saturday I came back to the apartment for a few hours and then headed into Atlantic City to work at a wedding at One Atlantic.  For the first hour or so of setup I mastered napkin folding for menu cards.   The theme of the wedding was seashells and sparkles.  The bride made a lot of glitzed up seashells for decor.  They used an adirondack chair as their “guest book”.  I thought this was a really neat idea.  This couple chose not to do a first look before the ceremony, so they used their entire cocktail hour for photos.  The mother of the bride had a surprise planned for them during the photos.  She paid to have a plane fly by with a banner.  They were all really surprised and loved it!  My favorite part of this whole wedding was the Best Man speech.  The groom had a son from a previous relationship and he served as his dad’s best man.  The little boy was maybe 7 years old but gave one of the best speeches I’ve ever heard.  It was so funny and cute at the same time.  It had me tearing up but the groom was actually sobbing because it meant so much to him.  I really wish I had thought of videotaping it on my phone because it was just that cute.  There were a few bumps in the wedding.  Both were due to a lack of communication.  At One Atlantic, we provide a lighting fixture called “Starry Night”.  It is little globes filled with tealights hanging from the ceiling.  This couple chose a package that included this fixture.  After the fixture was all set up they informed the band they would be having a horah (dance).  In the Jewish religion, this is when they put the bride and groom in the air on chairs.  Due to liability they can’t do this when the Starry Night is on the ceiling.  The same thing happened later when they wanted to put the garter on a football to throw.  They did not communicate either of these things with their event planner ahead of time.  If they had communicated this, the event planner would’ve just suggested against the Starry Night fixture so they could have the other aspects of their wedding that they wanted.  This is just another reminder of how important communication is in any and all aspects of event planning.    After working a few weddings now, I’ve learned how the orchestration of a wedding works.  I am now able to just do things on my own without someone reminding me to do it.  I am really enjoying these weddings.  They go very late until the night and I’m usually very tired when I leave, but they’re rewarding for my future.  I’m learning about all types of events and I’m also making some nice friends and connections in the industry.

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Photography by: Mk Photo

A June Bride

I have gotten a little behind on my event updates due to my other job, but on Saturday I worked another wedding.  Every wedding I work is just a little different than the last.  Some couples choose to get married on-site, others prefer a church.  Some couples decided to do a first-look, others decide their first moment seeing each other should be walking down the aisle.  Some have large bridal parties, some small.  Every aspect of the wedding has to be perfectly catered to the couple and then translated to the timeline of the event. Saturday was the wedding of Dr. and Mrs. Bonner.  I arrived at 2:30 and was promptly put to work on the tables.  I had to put all the table numbers on the tables while following the floor layout.  The difficult part of that task was the fact that the ball room was not set up yet.  When a couple chooses to get married on site, approximately 1/3 of the ballroom is used for a ceremony space, then that space is flipped during cocktail hour.  For the wedding on Saturday, they had over 300 guests so it was necessary to use 1/2 of the ballroom for the ceremony.  Therefore, while setting up table numbers, I had 33 tables in half of the actual ballroom.  I had to imagine which tables would move once the partition opened and which would stay, and try to get the numbers as close to the floor layout as possible so they didn’t have to move a ton of tables during the flip.  After I was finished putting all the numbers and menu cards on the tables, the florist guys from Beautiful Blooms were able to put the centerpieces on the tables.

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2/3 of the ballroom used for the ceremony

1/2 of the ballroom used for the ceremony

After I finished the table numbers, it was time to set up the couple’s accessories brought.  This couple provided a birdcage for their cards.  The birdcages have been a big trend seen lately at weddings.  This couple didn’t have a ton of accessories, but they did have some photos of family members at their weddings. photo 1 (3) Once it was time for the ceremony to start, I was positioned at the top of the elevator to check in any guests that used the elevators and turn away any unwanted crashers.  Most of the guests use the escalators located at the front of our venue, so a lot of the elevator person’s position is telling girl scout troops and tourists that One Atlantic is a private venue that isn’t open to the public and they have to ride the elevator back down. When a couple gets married on-site, its important to hold any late guests at the door of the venue until after the bride walks down the aisle.  A lot of guests get really angry with us because they want to see the start of the ceremony and the bride, but the reason we do this is to not ruin the bride’s special moment.  After the bride enters and the guests’ eyes follow her down the aisle and continue facing forward, we slip the late guests in in the back.  While the ceremony is happening, I put out the posters that were used in replacement to placecards. photo 2 (2) photo 3 (1) All the planners were so shocked with the number of presents the couple received.  They informed me that it is against wedding etiquette to bring a gift to the wedding.  If a guest wants to give a gift, they are supposed to send it to the couple’s home so that the couple doesn’t have to deal with it at the end of the wedding.  This was something I never realized before but it makes a lot of sense.  These are the types of things that wedding planners think of that others do not. After the ceremony, there was the usual 1 hour cocktail hour.  Then it was time for the reception to start.  By this time, the planner is less involved other than timings of the blessing, toasts, and special dances.  When the reception begins, that’s when the banquet manager goes into high speed. For the rest of the night, the greeters and interns rotated from sitting near the elevator or in the study by the cigar bar.  At the cigar bar we had to make sure the lighters and cutters didn’t leave the table and remind people that they could only smoke outside. photo 2 (4) At the end of the event we have to make sure that all guests leave with their shoes on and without any alcoholic beverage or glass.  Some guests completely understand this policy and then there are others who will argue with you over their free beer for 5 minutes.  This is always a really interesting part of the night.  Overall, this wedding ran very smoothly and it was enjoyable.  As guests left we received tons of compliments from guests stating everyone did a great job and they had a really good time at the wedding.

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This was the first wedding of June, which is the most popular wedding month of the entire year!

Photography by: Marie Labbancz Photography