Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Happy Holidays!

We are heading to Ft. Lauderdale tomorrow for out last wedding of the year! We can't believe its almost 2013. We are very excited to finish the year with a bang with our dear friends Ravi and Kajal.

We also want to take this time to thank all the clients and vendors that we have had the pleasure to work with this year. Without you none of our events would turn out as flawless as they do. We wish you all a Happy Holiday Season and a Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Reading your BEO

Other than your venue contract, your BEO will be the second most important document you go through during your wedding process. BEO stands for Banquet Event Order and this will note every detail that your venue is in charge or for your wedding. Once you sign off on this document (which should be at least 2 weeks prior to the big day) the venue needs to follow through with everything that is noted on it.

Important things to look for on your BEO:

1. Pricing: make sure all the pricing matches what you agreed on in your contract. From room rental fees to per person charges.

2. Bar and Menu: make sure the menu matches to what you have selected. Keep a good eye on the bar portion. Make sure they list every single liquor you are supposed to be getting.

3. Make sure the set up notes match with your decor contract. For example, if you have 20 tables for the reception from the venue, you should be getting 20 centerpieces from your decorator.

4. It's also good to provide the hotel with specific instructions on how you want things placed. For example if you are providing a menu card, do you want this inside the napkin or on top? How do you want your napkin folded?

 Some of these details might seem minor but they make a big difference when they are discussed and noted so that everyone is on the same page.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Wedding Items to Save

Your big day can get quite hectic. From hair and makeup, to family members stopping by to say hello there are a lot of things happening at once. In the blink of an eye the day will come and go and all you will be left with are the memories and mementos from the day. We tell all our brides to provide us with a list of things they want us to save for them and give back. You would be surprised the number of times that a bride doesn't even get to try her own wedding cake! Here is a list of things to ask your planner to pack and return to you at the end of the day:

1. Printed Items: Weddings programs, coasters, special signage, menus. These are all great keepsakes and you should at least keep one of each.

2. Food Items: Some people don't like the extra food to go to waste and you might be able to get your caterer to pack it for you. You can either donate it to a shelter or take with you for a week of yummy leftovers.

3. Cake: We always try to save the top tier of the cake for our couples. But if this is not an option at least ask to have a few slices sent up to your bridal suite.

4. Specialty Items: Favors, Guest Book, Card Box, Bridal Bouquet, Cake Topper, Toasting Flutes, Cake Cutting Knife; these are all items that you will most likely provide to your planner and you want to ensure to get back, as some might be family heirlooms and hold special value while others will be great memories of your big day.

 We suggest compiling a list little by little and every time you remember something just add it to the list. Hand this over to your coordinator no later than a week prior to the wedding so that there is no confusion as to what needs to be returned to you.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Indian Welcome Bag Snacks

Welcome Bags are one of the most fun portions of any destination wedding. Guests always look forward to see what goodies they will find when they check into their hotel. Recently we have found some great Indian items that can be added which are sure to put a smile on all your guests faces.


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Importance of RSVP's

Invitations as the best way to let your guests know about your upcoming nuptials. One of the most important components to your invites will be your RSVP card.

The card will allow you to know who is attending and who is not, their meal preference and in the case of a destination wedding their travel details. It's important to give your guests a clear date by when they need to RSVP. We suggest no later than 2 months prior to the big day. This will give you enough time to reach out to unanswered RSVP's and create your sitting charts. Make sure to track your RSVP's carefully as last minute cancellations due occur. Your final count will determine many things from food and beverage bill to number of tables and chair you will need therefore affecting your decor bill as well.

Trick of the trade: Make sure to number the back of your RSVP cards, this way if a guest forgets to write their name you can always reference back to your guest list and figure out who it is.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Dancing Shoes

It seems like every shoe made for a special occasion is designed to cause the maximum amount of pain. Maybe it’s just the style, but those killer heels that are absolutely to die for may feel like they’re actually going to kill you only halfway through the cocktail hour.

Let’s be honest. The best part about a wedding is the reception and the best part about the reception is the dancing. It’s when family and friends of all ages can come together and express themselves and be silly.

A great idea for Brides, is to set out a cute bucket or wicker basket filled with flip-flops or chinese slippers for your guests. You can have colors that match the colors of the wedding so guests still feel festive. Make sure to tie each pair together so your guests don’t have to go hunting for the complimentary shoe. And at the end of the day, guests can take the flip-flops home as a wedding favor!

Reading Contracts

One of the biggest hassles when planning a wedding are all the contracts you will have to sign. At the same time this is the most important process to ensure that your wedding is a success. When getting ready to commit to a vendor, it is very important to read everything very carefully. From payment terms, to deadlines, to what exactly they are including in your package, you want to make sure everything is included and noted, especially when spending a large amount of money,

Here are some things to look out for:

1. Parking: Is their parking included in their total or is this extra? How many cars will require parking? 

2. Meals: Do they require a meal? How many team members will require a meal? Do they have any dietary restrictions?

3. Travel: What is the travel cost? Do they charge per day or by distance?

4. Expenses: Are these included in their contract? Other than parking, travel, and meals what other expenses would you need to cover?

5. Delivery: for Photo and Video, when will they delivery your proofs? What is the timeline for post production?

These are just a few of a multitude ofl questions that should be discussed prior to signing any contract. Remember that all contracts are legally binding and you wouldn't want any surprises on the day of your wedding.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Photography List

Once everything is said and done, you have said your i do's and danced the night away all you are left with are the photos and video that will last you a lifetime. Even though the best pictures will be those candid moments there are some that you want to make sure the photographer remembers to capture. This is why its important to give your photographer a list of photos you want taken, or if there are any special moments during the ceremony or reception that are important to you.

Here is a list of some must have photos!

Prep Shots – Bride & Groom
The Dress – Hanging or Draped
Brides Shoes
Wedding Rings
Bride looking out (window or door)
Maid of Honor & Bride
Mother of the Bride – Zipping Dress
Bride Applying Make Up
Groom Fixing Hair
Groom Checking the Time
Groom with Grooms Men & Fathers
Bride with Bridesmaids & Mothers
Bride with Mother & Father (also grandparents)
Groom with Mother & Father (also grandparents)
Bride  – Exiting Limo (Bride being helped out)
Groom waiting at altar Church Wide Shot (with & without guests)
Bride walking down aisle ( Side Profile & Front )
Father giving away bride
Groom over the shoulder shot of bride ( & Vis Versa)
Bride & Groom Kiss
Bride & Groom Leaving Church/Ceremony
Reception/Banquet Hall Outside shot
Food Shots (Cocktail Hour, Drinks, Signature Drinks, Specialty Napkins, Signs, etc.)
Reception Decor Shots: Centerpieces, Cake, Guest Book, Place Card Table, Menus, Escort Cards
First Dance Bride & Father Dance Groom & Mother Dance
Bouquet Toss
Guarder Belt Toss
Cake Cutting
Bride and Groom Feeding each other
Guests Dancing
Bride & Groom Eating
Best Man & Maid of Honor Toast/Speeches
Bride & Groom Toast/Speeches
Bride & Groom’s Parents Dancing (Plus Grandparents)
Venetian Hour/Dessert Display Photos (Coffee, Ice Cream, Etc)
Bride & Groom “Just Married” Vehicle – Driving Away

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Let Your Napkin Do The Talking

We are always looking for new fun and unique details to share with our brides for their big days. One our current favorites if writing cute and funny messages on your napkins, coasters and dessert signage.

Your napkins are a great way to share fun facts about you and your groom to be, they can also serve as great ice breakers for guests that don't know each other with suggested conversation starters.

Coasters can be used the same way, or just do give a cute message to put a smile on your guests like "Drinks are on Us".

Another fun detail can be using signage for your dessert bar. From little flags on your mini desserts like "Bite Me" and "Sweet Thing" to larger signs for your stations like "Dip Me in Chocolate and Call Me Dessert".

Whatever you choose your guest will be sure to get a kick out of it.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Midnight Snacks

What's the perfect way to end a wedding reception? Surprise guests with a delicious treat served in a stylish way. Check out these trendsetting late-night wedding food ideas.

1. Mini Mac and Cheese

2. Sliders

3. Fast Food Fries 

4. Milk and Doughnuts 

5. Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup 

6. Pop Corn Balls 

7. Milkshakes 

8. Sorbet Cones 

9. Chocolate Mousse Shooters 

10. Mini Pancakes

Monday, December 3, 2012

Keeping Healthy Through the Wedding Process

Everybody knows that while your wedding day is the most momentous day in your life for all the right reasons it can also be very stressful. Preparation for your special day can prove to be draining both physically and mentally and with all that to say it is very important to keep your energy up and not let the stress get your immune system down.

Maintaining a healthy immune system in the run up to your big day is quintessential and at the same time incredibly facile. Here are some of the most effective vitamins that you can take to maintain a healthy immune system.

Vitamin A
Vitamin A is the defensive line of the immune system and it keeps viruses, infections and other germs from getting into our bodies.

Vitamin C
Vitamin C, unlike Vitamin A, is not a part of the defensive line for the immune system instead it takes the offensive line against germs and helps to boost your immune system overall.

Vitamin E
Vitamin E has also been known to boost the immune system. Vitamin E boosts the immune system by producing interleukin-2, an immune protein that kills bacteria.

B-vitamins are energy-boosting vitamins that also boost the immune system. Vitamin B6 especially, has been shown in studies to boost the immune system by increasing white blood cell count in the body. 

Zinc is the most important mineral to add to your diet when you want to boost the immune system. Zinc reduces the symptoms of colds and flu when given within 24 hours of the first signs of these illnesses. 

So to ensure energy levels are at an all-time high on your big day it may be worthwhile to restock your vitamin supplies to ensure a healthy immune system and to bypass any stress related illnesses which as you can see are easily avoidable. One less thing to worry about!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Vendor Spotlight: AZ Pops

When planning a destination wedding or an outside wedding for that matter one of the most important things to keep in mind is your guests comfort in the hot weather. Many of our clients choose to pass a refreshing snack during the ceremony to keep the guests cool!

Enter AZ Pops, this Arizona based company is known for their delicious Popsicles. They produce the Popsicles in all natural unique flavors. They can even customize your wedding colors with the Popsicles colors! AZ POPS will come out with a cool bicycle cart to serve you and your guests on your special day.

If you are planning a wedding in the Arizona area make sure to check them out!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Importance of your Wedding Invites

The first glimpse your guests will get into your wedding will be your invitation. Therefore it is very important that the design, theme and overall look goes hand in hand with the overall idea that you have for your big day!

If you are having a black tie event you wouldn't send a beachy invitation, same way if you are having a casual affair you should not send a elaborate invitation.

The design of your invitation can give many clues as to what your guests can expect at your events and you don't want to give off the wrong impression. Choosing colors, designs and a theme that matches your idea will get your guests expected for what's yet to come!

Professional Staffing for Home Events

When it comes to wedding planning, many families decide to hold a small event at their home before the big day. It may be a religious ceremony, breakfast, or welcome dinner. Regardless of the type of event, it is important to consider and book professional staffing services. Many don’t think about this but when it comes to the day of, if you don’t book this service it is up to you and your family to fulfill the necessary duties such as, greeting guests, cooking, setting up, serving drinks, replenishing the food and beverages, and cleaning up. This is not another home party but part of the wedding festivities and should be planned accordingly to allow you to enjoy the event and be as stress free as possible, as well as allowing it to run smoothly.


Here is a list of staffing that you may require for your home event:

  1. Bartender
  2. Server/ Waiter
  3. Chef
  4. Clean Up
  5. Runner (To Replenish Food)


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Blow-Out Bars

Blow-out bars are the latest beauty trend to hit America and are a great way to achieve an all-round great hair day with minimal effort involved!

At each Dry Bar salon this rapidly growing beauty trend showcases a unique blow-out only service not a scissors in sight! Its quick, it’s easy and most importantly leaves you feeling happy and confident!

With great styling options such as Mai Tai (loose beachy waves), Manhattans (sleek, pin straight locks), Southern comfort (Dallas inspired volume) and other signature looks you can’t go wrong when availing of this fantastic trend! With a flat rate price of $40 and an excellent service inclusive of a complimentary glass of champagne or wine during your appointment at Dry Bar you simply cannot go wrong!

This unique beauty notion was started in LA in 2008 and now boasts a collection of over 24 salons. With salons being found nationwide from the East coast to the West and everywhere else in between it won’t be hard to find a renowned Dry Bar located near you.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Wedding Planner for the Planner

As I prepare for my brother’s wedding this week I am now put into my clients’ shoes. I am on the other end realizing the group effort and the need for a wedding planner, first hand. As the planner you keep the client on task, help deal with vendors, create the timeline and play mediator, at times, with the families. Now the client and a professional planner, I need to juggle both roles, all while enjoying this special occasion in our family’s lives. A planner, no matter who you are, is a necessity to organize the events so you can have a successful wedding as well as allowing you to enjoy this once in a lifetime day.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

From everyone at Sonal J Shah Event Consultants we wanted to wish everyone a very happy Thanksgiving. This is a time for being grateful and thankful for the things in our lives. We are grateful to have amazing clients, staff and vendors to work with each and every day. We are thankful to be allowed to share this special time in our clients’ lives and we wish them many days of happiness.
To you and your family, may this time bring love and togetherness for this year and always!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Dulhania Bazaar South Asian Bridal Expo

We had the pleasure of participating at the Dulhania Bazaar South Asian Bridal Expo this weekend in Phoenix, Arizona. It was great meeting so many great vendors in the area and getting to know so many of you potential brides out there. We are looking forward to growing out business in Phoenix and getting to work with so many of you.

We also want to thank Reene from Wendell Design Group for taking the time to decorate our booth, we go so many great compliments of the centerpieces!

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Brac Reef

The Brac Reef is an award winning resort which acts as an idyllic destination haven for any small wedding. This charming, family owned resort set on four and a half acres of sand beach front offers a romantic and quaint ambiance to their cherished guests.

Aside from its pristine beaches, turquoise waters and tranquil atmosphere the Brac Reef is renowned for it’s in depth and extensive showcase of diving amenities. As a result the Brac Reef has become world famous with thousands of intrepid divers choosing to visit the Brac Reef for this sole reason.

The Brac Reef even provides their own caterer, wedding planner and professional photographer for those who are intrigued by this option. They also offer great package deals on weddings depending on the number of guests. Their staffs have been highly commended within every review found. Particular attention being paid to their friendliness and willingness to help throughout every aspect of your stay in this tropical paradise.

With other activities readily available such as snorkelling, kayaking, exploring, bird watching, fishing, rock climbing, bicycling and hiking there is sure to never be a dull moment in this fantastic destination.