"...your marriage will start strong and be supported by so many more than just those who are in the room...this is all part of your love story and we're all rooting for you!!! " -The Covenant at Murray Mansion
A note from Olivia: We know this is a trying time. Some of you are replanning, and others are just starting to plan. Either way, our hearts are hurting with yours. So let's make things a little easier, shall we? A handful of some caring small business wedding vendors have put their heads together with some brilliant tips and plans, so that you don't have to worry a thing about planning your wedding!
Grab a tall cup of cold brew and keep plannin'! We've all got your back! Why? Because all of us are so excited for you, whether it's in a few months or next year, you GET TO MARRY your true love!
1. Venue: Don't Stop Planning!
“You’re engaged!! And right now, life is filled with uncertainty, but don’t let the “what ifs” stop you from enjoying this wonderful time in your life!
As a wedding venue, we are booking dates 12-18 months in advance so even though the world is on “lockdown” for the next two months, don’t let that stop you from researching, touring, and booking your wedding vendors!
Here at The Covenant at Murray Mansion, we are adapting our business to serve our clients during times like this. Not comfortable leaving the house? No worries – we now offer virtual tours! We can also schedule skype/facetime meetings to discuss details. While the wedding planning may not be exactly what you envisioned, we encourage you to keep planning because this storm will pass! And no matter what, we PROMISE that your marriage will start strong and be supported by so many more than just those who are in the room...this is all part of your love story and we're all rooting for you!!!”
- The Covenant at Murray Mansion | Wedding Venue located in Racine, WI | thecovenantatmurraymansion.com
2. Wedding Planner: Walk through your guest experience from start to finish
"I find couples are thinking about guest experience just as much as their own. They want their event to leave a lasting impression. To put it simply- they want to throw a good party. So, start thinking of ways your guests can have a stellar time from start to finish. Here are some key areas to consider without breaking the budget:
•Providing clear communication. Clear communication keeps your event flow smoothly and allows guests to enjoy the party without wondering where they should go next or what they’re supposed to do.
•Take the time to review your catering and bar contracts and consider adding extra staff. Give your guests the gift of short lines, quick service, and clean tables. It is 100% worth it! •Pick out a fun little extra.This is a great way for you and your partner to add a personal touch that shows off your personalities while also giving guests a one-of-a-kind memory.
- Distinctly Yours Weddings & Events | Wedding Planning and Coordination | stevenspointweddingplanner.com
3.Wedding Dress: Check-in with your vendors
"If you haven't finished purchasing your wedding attire, right now is a great time to touch base with your entourage (shopping mates!) to finalize dates for your bridal, bridesmaid, and menswear appointments. Charlotte's Bridal recommends scheduling appointments for late April and on. They expect a flurry of brides once they are able to re-open, so give yourself an edge and lock in your reservations before others.
If you've already finalized all of your attire, the team at Charlotte's encourages you to check-in with your vendors. Yes, this seems like a small, obvious thing, but communication is key—especially during times like this. Ensure that any small details that may be missed leading up to the big day are tended to now so nothing is forgotten. Also, the stylists wanted to add that hearing from their brides just makes them happy. Right now a lot of wedding vendors are not able to interact in-person with brides, and that is the thing they love most about their jobs. "
- Charlotte's Bridal & Formal Wear | La Crosse, Wisconsin | charlottesbridal.net
4. Rentals: Custom Mockup's Are A Game Changer
"With warehouse visits being cancelled, ask your rental company to help you select pieces that go well together and to send you a mockup of a setup. Tell them what color scheme and style you are thinking about and they can create a mockup of a lounge space or a sitting area given your style. This way, you can picture what an area will look like without having to go in person to the rental warehouse." Take a look at some of the incredible mockup's that Velvet Rentals sent us below. Those mustard velvet chairs are giving us LIFE!
- Velvet Rentals | Wedding and Event Rentals | Based in Madison, WI and traveling Southern and Eastern WI | velveteclecticrentals.com
5. Florals: Buy Local
"Source local flowers! Supporting our local businesses is good for every community- but when it comes to buying flowers there are so many other reasons to buy local. Almost 80 percent of fresh flowers sold in the US are imported. With the borders closing due to this health scare, getting certain flowers may not be an option. Talk to your florist and ask them what kinds of flowers they can source locally. Be open minded; you may end up with even more memorable and fragrant flowers than you were originally planning." - Green's Flower Farm | Fresh and Local Florist | Wausau, WI | greensflowerfarm.com
6. Wedding Bands: Virtually try on your rings!
Don't have your wedding bands yet? "Find a custom jeweler who can create CAD drawings of bands onto a photo of your hand, with your engagement ring! This is something we offer all the time! Most of the time, depending on where you go, a bespoke band doesn't cost any more than getting one out of a showcase. "
-Alyssa & Anna Fine Jewelry | Handcrafted Fine Jewelry | Oshkosh, WI | alyssaanna.com
7. Wedding Makeup: Sanitizing Should Already Be a Regular for Your Makeup Artist
"When researching a makeup artist for your wedding, they should already be sanitizing everything. Thats what we specialize in. So the fact that a client would even have to ask a makeup artist means they probably shouldn’t hire that person.
No double dipping in tube or cream products. Spraying 70% Alcohol on all powder products between each client. Cleaning brushes between each client. Professionals should wash their hands if they accidentally touch their face while in the middle of an application. These are all things that are already apart of what I do. :)
Read reviews. Look to see if the makeup artist has a website and what their credentials are. As a Licensed Esthetician, its my protocol in everything I do to have proper safety and sanitation, preventing cross-contamination." -Melody Sopa Artistry | Licensed Esthetician & On Site Professional Makeup Artist | Milwaukee WI | melodysopaartistry.com
8. Calligraphy & Design : Get The Details Out of the Way Now!
"Get to work on that Pinterest board and get in touch with your calligrapher/designer of choice! Pinterest is a great place to start gathering inspiration for your invitation suite, signage, and other day-of details like place cards, table numbers, and more.
Many artists are craving a creative outlet while they are at home and would love to start brainstorming with you and creating your vision. These slower times are great for working through the details that sometimes get overlooked between the craziness of planning and the busy-ness of (normal) everyday life. Even better, getting those details out of the way now means one less thing to worry about later on. Score!"
- Adeline Margaret | Wedding Calligraphy and Design | Milwaukee Wisconsin | adelinemargaret.com
9. Wedding Jewelry: Find Your Boho Vibe
"As someone who is currently planning a wedding (for October 2020), this quarantine is a good time to communicate with your partner and really knock out those unique, standout pieces - such as knock-out jewelry that’s also comfortable.
Weddings are usually long and most brides spend most of the day on their feet.
Finding accessories that are easy-to-wear will help you avoid any awkward mishaps on your big day. You can easily take jewelry off throughout the event, but I would much rather put something on and forget it’s there because it’s so comfy! If you’re looking for boho inspired jewelry that is sturdy for a long day, you might want to consider clay! Clay jewelry is personal and unique, because it’s made by hand. And it’s extremely easy to wear because it’s super lightweight. On top of that, it’s also customizable and on trend! Big or small, handmade clay makes a perfect, totally unique, statement on your wedding day."
-Honeymoon Clay Co | Handmade Lightweight Polymer Clay Jeweler | Based in Winter Garden, Florida with World-wide Shipping | etsy.com/shop/honeymoonclayco
10. Wedding Cake : Fact- Cake Tasting is Even More Fun When Quarantined
"I recommend asking for a to-go dessert box! This way you don’t feel behind in the process and can still experience the deliciousness with your partner! And practice social distancing ! Our to-go dessert boxes include:
•Cupcakes •Cake Bites •Scotcharoos •Cookies
-Hailey's Sweets and Treats | Award Winning Bakery | Janesville, WI | haileyssweetsandtreats.com
11. Favors: Mini Bags Of Coffee Beans - need we say more?
We're a big fan of unique ways to give your guests something to remember- and tiny bags of coffee beans have us fan girl-ing all over the place. Ruby Colorful Coffee makes this an easy thing to cross off your to-do list!
"Everyone loves coffee, and it's something that will help your guests relive the special day. Plus it shoes them a side of you that's personal and kind of intimate (like your morning routine). We create a custom label with your wedding information on it (date, names, blend name, anything really), and make guests their own tiny 4oz blend of beans!" -Ruby Colorful Coffees | Wisconsin Coffee Roaster and Shop | rubycoffeeroasters.com
So we know that we said ten tips....but we just HAD to sneak a little bonus in there!
BONUS TIP ~ Wedding Photography: Family formals and the 3 Minute Golden Rule
So why is this so important? Because your wedding photography timeline is a major player in your overall timeline. Things like sunset, golden hour, and high noon are incredibly important on your wedding day. This is the perfect time to work with your photographer to define when your ceremony should take place accordingly to the lighting, if you want your wedding party photos before or after the ceremony, and pros and cons of first look vs traditional aisle walk! So where does family formals play a role in all this? We'll let you into to a little secret that we share with our clients- it takes an average of 3 minutes per grouping for family photos. That means if you have ten different groupings, you're already at 30 minutes of family formals! Let your photographer know what your vision is for your day and we'll give you an entirely custom timeline for your wedding day.
Who said you can't plan a wedding during quarantine? - not us! With all these authentic vendors and real tips, we trust that you're off to a great start! We believe in you! We've got your back. If you have any questions, or just want to touch base for some genuine human interaction during this time, feel free to reach out to any of these amazing vendors!
Love and heathy wishes, Olivia