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Archive for April 2013

Is There a Need for a Cocktail Reception Before Dinner?

Cocktail Reception Before Dinner?Admit it: you’re struggling with an important decision about your wedding.  You want to plan the kind of wedding that your friends and family will be talking about for years to come – but you don’t want to bankrupt your savings just to do it.  That’s why you’re considering slashing the cocktail reception altogether.  After all, that single hour of an open bar and hors d’oeuvres can save you thousands of dollars – so why is there a need for a cocktail reception before dinner?

Don’t be too quick to forgo the cocktail reception – take a look at the following reasons why you may want to keep that hour sandwiched between your ceremony and reception:

  1. The cocktail reception gives you and your wedding party the chance to sneak away with the photographer for posed pictures.  This is especially important if you’re holding your ceremony and reception in the same area, as you don’t want your guests wandering around without anything to do.  The cocktail reception keeps your wedding guests happy while you and your new hubby take all the cute pictures you want together as a newly wed couple.
  2. A cocktail reception puts your guests in a happy and relaxed mood.  Remember, your wedding is as much about your guests as it is about you and your new husband.  Some of your guests may have even spent the last hour or two on the road before your ceremony.  The cocktail hour is the first chance your guests may have for a bite to eat, to relax and start getting in the party mood.
  3. A cocktail reception gives your guests the time to socialize with friends and introduce themselves to one another before they start getting seated for the reception.  Having your guests break the ice is a critical part of ensuring that your wedding is a hit.  After all, you don’t want the ice breaking to occur when you’re ready to hit the dance floor – you want your guests to jump out there as soon as the music starts playing!

As you can see, having the cocktail reception is a critical part of throwing a memorable and fun wedding.  But if you want to save money on your cocktail reception, ask your venue if they can include it with the overall price of the venue.  If not, forgo the happy hour and have a cash bar instead.  It’s a great way to enjoy the benefits of a cocktail hour without spending thousands of dollars on alcohol.

Do You Need to Have a Wedding Program?

The buzz around wedding programs often falls into two camps: those people who believe that wedding programs are indispensable for weddings, and those who think it’s pretty intuitive and unnecessary to include.  You, on the other hand, aren’t in any particular camp – and that’s exactly why you’re still wondering if you need to have a wedding program.

So when it comes down to it, do you actually need to have a wedding program?  Whether you’re having a traditional ceremony or an outdoor affair, consider these pros and cons of having a wedding program:

Pros of the Wedding Program

If you’re having a wedding that incorporates a great deal of cultural or traditional ceremonies that your guests might not understand, a wedding program is absolutely indispensable.  In fact, any traditional Catholic, Jewish, Hindi or religious ceremony that involves a great deal of prayer or cultural rituals should have a wedding program to provide guests information about what they should say, when they should stand, and explain the significance of the prayers and rituals.

Wedding programs can also provide your guests with the information they need to get to a different location.  If your reception is held at a different venue than your ceremony, a wedding program can give your guests the directions they need to arrive right on time.

Don’t forget, wedding programs are an appropriate manner in which to formally recognize your bridal party, including ushers, and everyone else who was helpful in making your big day possible.  Programs are also especially helpful to guests who want to identify and remember the names of parents from both sides, best man, maid-of-honor and the officiant, so that they don’t have to embarrass themselves if they don’t know or can’t remember the names of key people in the bridal party.

Cons of the Wedding Program

The cost of having a wedding program can be high, especially if you have to include a great deal of information about your ceremony and reception.  If you’re already on a budget, you might be tempted to reallocate the money reserved for a wedding program to another part of your big day.

Some couples are also very adamant about having “green” weddings, which is why wedding programs might be a drawback.  Throughout the course of the night, your wedding guests may be tossing around your program or leaving them behind while they tear up the dance floor.  This means your wedding could potentially produce a lot of waste, which might not fit into an environmental-friendly wedding.

So What’s the Bottom Line?

Wedding programs can provide your guests with an invaluable amount of information, including directions to different venue locations and the significance of prayers and cultural traditions.

However, make sure your budget allows for wedding programs, as you don’t want to stretch your money more than you have to. If you’d like to have a program, consider printing black & white programs to save money as B&W printing costs significantly less then color printing.  SaveTheDateForLess offers the ability to opt for a color cover with B&W insides pages so you can have a splash of color without breaking the bank.

It is also possible to have a short program on “green” paper that is FSC-certified. Look out for this logo:

FSC

FSC certified papers ensure sustainable forest management and environmentally responsible forestry. In addition to multiple FSC certified papers, SaveTheDateForLess.com also offers 100% cotton rag fine art paper isn’t made from any wood pulp, instead it uses environmentally-friendly cotton fibers.

Savethedateforless.com can print a program that you already designed, or you can even have us design one for you to match your invitations and wedding theme.