Thursday, March 26, 2015

The Importance of a GREAT Wedding Film-The Brickhouse Films

Mary and Craig Beebe; owners of The Brickhouse Films are two of the most kind and patience people to work with. I have enjoyed getting to work with them on many weddings and look forward to continuing working along side them this year on several weddings and events. There was a day when wedding films were the last thing booked depending on budget when planning a wedding. Now, it has become one of the first things a bride and groom book.
Read Mary's post below to find out why! 
The Importance of a Great Wedding Film
Written by: Mary Beebe, cinematographer and editor at The Brickhouse Films
Until very recently, most couples considered wedding videography to be the least important part of their wedding day. It was something that they would "wait and see" if they had room for. Oh how the times have changed! There have been numerous blogs and articles written about how the number one regret brides have regarding their wedding day, is not hiring a videographer. Apparently the word has spread and couples are finally realizing the importance of having a beautiful wedding film! 

Why is a wedding film so important you ask? Well, it is a means of capturing the most momentous day, and what is essentially a split second, of your much longer love story. There is nothing that will preserve your memories more vividly than a wedding film. It will capture all the emotions of the day - the reactions, sounds, the little "I love yous" between camera flashes. A wedding is not just a single moment, but a live event.  Above all else, when the years pass by it is an amazing keepsake to share with your children and grandchildren! You can relive your day and share the memories in whole, not just snapshots, but the actual laughter, spoken vows, music and dancing. Take a look at one of our recent films:

Mischia + Sam from The Brickhouse Films on Vimeo.

The last five years has brought more changes to the video/film industry than anyone had thought possible. New technology has made it possible to provide not just a home movie look, but a wedding film look. The result is a very exciting time for wedding video! Everyone knows how much time, planning and money a wedding requires, so make sure to hire a professional wedding cinematographer so those memories can be preserved for a lifetime!
If you need more persuading, watch this film by Love 24fps, where real couples talk about the importance of a great wedding film! education | Why a wedding film is the best investment you'll make from Long Haul Films on Vimeo.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

It's About the Signature Drink-Xclusive Event Services

It is with great pleasure that I introduce you to our contributing guest blogger today. Crystal McDonald is co-owner of Xclusive Event Services. She and her brother Cody Lathrop have changed the mobile bartending scene here in Wichita and surrounding areas! I am honored to work along side these two and their team of hard working, dedicated hosts. They love to serve others, and give of their time and talents to ensure that their clients and guest have an exceptional, safe celebration, meeting, or special event. The bar is more than just the alcohol, it's about the passionate people behind the bar, handing a guest their drink in a way that provides comfort and great service to those receiving.

It's all about the Signature Drink
written by: Crystal McDonald

When planning your big day what comes to mind?  From your dress to your entertainment to your venue there are a lot of details and planning that is involved. Being the bartender at literally thousands of weddings I gained great insight that some Brides/Grooms seem to the BAR!!!  
Its not just a bar anymore, its another important piece of the puzzle. The bar and what's being served is a small detail that can make a big impression. 

Being the bartender at these events allows me talk to guests in a manner that most involved don't get the opportunity to. Guests share things with us that they won't tell the Bride/Groom, planner, florist, caterer, DJ, or other vendors. People seem to just open up to the bartender like women do to their hair dresser!(might be the alcohol) but we hear the good, the bad and the ugly about these events, whether we want to or not.

So what do I hear? What do guests tell us? What do they say when they think nobody else is listening? 

I will tell you that more often than not, they never mention the ceremony, or the vows you spend days or weeks worrying about. They may not remember the amazing decorations you spent endless hours working on, or even the kind of cake they ate. All of those things are equally important in pulling off an exceptional event, but offering complimentary adult beverages of some kind will be something your guest will definitely not forget about.
Think back on any event/wedding you have been to and try to recall a few things about it.  It could be lots of stuff you remember, but I bet you remember if it had an open bar or if any drinks were served complimentary. 

While open bars can be pricey, there are ways to make it work on a budget.  Offering just Beer and wine and a signature cocktail or two is one way to scale back and is what we usually suggest to our clients.  A Signature cocktail is a fun and inexpensive way to not only please your guests but add another element of "unforgettable", personalization to your wedding.  
A few things to consider about signature cocktail(s):
  • Make sure its crowd pleasing.  Not everyone likes tequila or whiskey but most people will drink vodka or rum if mixed properly.  Or offer a "his" and "hers" cocktail to please them all.
  • it makes the bar line go quicker.  Providing less options or having a signature drink already ready to grab.
  • Have it match your color(s) or theme.
  • Serve them in fun glasses that they can take home so they will never forget the night.
  • And the most important... Make sure it represents your love story.  The wedding is an expression of you as a couple, as should be the signature cocktail!
We want to enhance the fun you can have with personalizing your signature cocktails.  Step out of the wedding norm and think for yourself!  What I mean is be unique, make it special, and do something that makes an impression.

We bartended a wedding that used Swedish fish tied to a straw to make it look like a fishing pole as the garnish.  The drink was called the "Salmon Slayer" and it had lots of personal connections to the bride and groom that most would know if you knew the bride/groom. 

At my reception we had a Margarita bar.  We were married in Mexico so thought it was only appropriate.  We had  a large variety of tequila, mixes, flavorings and garnishes that or guests could choose from.  Another fun option is a Vodka bar, same concept just with Vodka!

So all the above to say: let's have some fun, be creative. Add a fun, unique garnish, straw or stir stick. Add anything that could represent you as a couple and make the bar impressionable, because most people will remember this piece of the puzzle whether you think about it or not.

Here are some other fun cocktail ideas...  

Thursday, March 12, 2015 Creative-Invitation Etiquette 101!

We are excited to launch our blog series that features some of the best in the wedding and event industry here in Wichita and in Kansas City. As I think about the last 4 years of EBA existence I am truly blessed to be able to look back and say that I have made some of the best contacts and relationships that have developed in to life-long friendships. What an honor to serve along side some of the  most passionate people who love serving and beauty just as much or more than I do.

As the spring season is upon us so marks the time to get your invitations designed and sent out! I have asked one of the most creative, best stationers; Gretchen Postiglione, owner of Creative to give us some invitation etiquette. Hopefully this aids in answering any questions you may have as you make final design selections, wording and much more for your special invitation. This is a GREAT refresher for me as well!

Make sure you check out more of her great work by clicking on the link above! One thing I love about Gretchen and what a lot of our past brides love about her is how quickly she responds and gets in touch with her clients. Her creativity and knowledge definitely make her one of a kind!

Invitation Etiquette 101
Written by: Gretchen Postiglione
Wedding Invitations: What to Know
When planning a wedding, invitations are usually the first glimpse that guests have of your wedding. Invites are important because they set the tone for your wedding.  They should be beautiful but functional as well.  Wedding invites should accomplish the following things: address formality or feel of the wedding, give pertinent details about the wedding, and give guests a clear indication of who is invited.  Easy, right?  Well, with etiquette rules and multiple people having input, it can be a little tricky.  Hopefully these tips will help to guide you through the process and give you guidelines for wedding invitations.
What is the level of formality and feel of your wedding?
Your invites should portray the feel of your wedding ceremony and reception not only with style and color but with formality as well.  It is easy to see a design that appeals to you and just want to go with it, but it is important that it carries the feel of your event.  A bohemian invitation design might be adorable, but it gives the impression that your wedding is more laid-back. This would be an excellent choice if you are having an outdoor wedding or a casual afternoon reception. But if you are having a formal church ceremony and a black tie reception, this choice wouldn’t be as appropriate.  I always tell brides, “Imagine what kind of attire you want people to wear, then ask yourself if that’s clear in the style of invitation you selected.  It should be clear, without the need to have it in writing.”   Your invite designer should be able to help you indicate the formality to guests through design, paper choice, and wording. 
Make sure all the details are given on the invite.
This seems simple, but how many times have you received an invite that didn’t provide all the specific details?  Any information you can give your guests is helpful.  That being said, etiquette rules dictate the way this info is given to guests.  Traditionally, on the invitation itself, you should have details about the ceremony ONLY.  It should be clear who is hosting the wedding, (i.e. the bride’s parents, both parents, or the bride and groom) and should be worded accordingly.  If the reception is immediately following the ceremony, you can put that at the bottom of the invite.  All other details about the reception should be put on an extra insert card.  Other things that can be included if they are applicable to your wedding are transportation details, hotel information, map or directions, and other wedding activities.  One thing that should NOT go anywhere in the invites is registry info. It is considered improper to include this in the invite or on the extra cards. I recommend creating a website that has all the details of the wedding, including registries, and include that link instead.  It gives people the ease to find it without coming across as “buy me these presents.” RSVP cards should be included as a separate card if you want them sent back.  Make sure to include postage on the RSVP.  I LOVE the new trend of RSVP postcards as a way to save a little on postage!  
Who is invited?
This is probably the biggest concern I hear from brides.  How do I make it clear on the invite who is invited, and how do we indicate children are or aren’t invited? The best and proper way to do this is through the addressing of the envelopes.  If you want to be crystal clear, I recommend investing in the extra inner envelope.  The outer envelope should include the parents and the inner should include or exclude the children’s names.  However, many people don’t know this etiquette anymore, so they still bring their children, even if their names weren’t listed.   I am not a fan of putting “adults only” on the invite, because I think it can come off as rude and makes it awkward for children like ring bearers and flower girls to attend. That is why I LOVE this new trend to make it clear to guests:
On the RSVP card include this line:
_____ seats have been reserved in your honor
____accept with pleasure
____decline with regret

Before mailing invites to guests, you fill this in with the number of guests.  If the quantity written is two, then the parents clearly see that children are not invited, without the invite outwardly stating ‘NO KIDS.’  This also allows for some kids (like nieces and nephews) to be invited without anyone else questioning it if the invitation had stated ‘no kids.’ 

In closing, invitation etiquette can be tricky, but remember that this is your wedding, and if something above doesn’t seem like you then don’t do it!  I give each bride this same advice, but as you can see from these examples, they each add their own personality to their invites.  The most important thing is that YOU LOVE your invitations!