Advice from Chicago Wedding Pros #2

Here’s more great advice to help you plan your dream event in Chicagoland while avoiding some common mistakes many first-time planners make. Our contributors this month are Jolie Images and Tasty Catering.

 Leslie Pai, Jolie Images

  • Start searching for your wedding photographer as soon as you set your wedding date. You’ll be able to lock down your date, and lock in your photography pricing and protect yourself from future price increases. Besides, you can check it off your list so you don’t have to rush as your date approaches (and trust me, it will come fast). Jolie images requires only a small down payment to hold your date.
  • If you choose an independent photographer, make sure he or she has good references, and they can guarantee you a backup in the event they will not be able to photograph your wedding. Choosing a reputable, insured, established company like Jolie Images ensure that you will have a photographer, no matter what happens between your wedding planning and your wedding date.
  • Shop ahead! Don’t procrastinate. Book early and do your research before you have over any money. It is well worth the price and the peace of mind that you will get from doing so.
    Choose a venue that allows for a worry and hassle-free day by offering all-inclusive and easy-to-understand package pricing, with no surprises along the way.

Tasty Catering

  • Make a list (or find one online) to help you get the entire planning process started.  For example, this wedding guide or picnic checklist makes for an easy start to your list.
  • Utilize social media as much as you can.  Pinterest is a wonderful tool to use when party planning.  Just create a board for your event (and make it secret if you don’t want to spoil the surprise), and invite others to your board so that they can also post their event ideas.  This is great for planning committees who struggle to organize their ideas or meet on a consistent basis.
  • Cater your event with a professional that you trust.  Through them, you can hire staff to greet guests, serve your menu items and clean up when the event is over. You will be so thankful that you get the opportunity to enjoy the event.
  • Preplan as much as you possibly can.  That includes planning for weather emergencies (for outdoor events), parking restrictions, restrooms, alternative timelines, etc.  Cut down on the surprises and uncertainties by having a meeting with a representative from each one of your vendors prior to the event to figure out all of the details—and to get everyone on the same page.  This includes times of arrival, number of staff, loading dock schedules and more.

© Fourth Estate Audio, 2014 – Jay Congdon is president of Fourth Estate Audio, a professional Chicago DJ and Chicago Wedding DJ company.

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