Want an Epically Fun Wedding? Get an Epic DJ

Far too many couples have suffered from uttering one of the most devastating sentences in wedding planning: “Let’s just ask [insert hipster name here] to DJ, she/he has great taste in music.” While this statement seems simple and sensical, be warned; allowing this idea to come to fruition may result in a serious reduction in the ‘epically fun level’ of your wedding.

Best Gay WEdding Blog EverNow, no offense to your music-afficionado friends. They are probably the best people to ask about your iTunes investment or where in the city to finally debut the twerking you’ve been practicing in the bathroom mirror. But a love of the best music does not automatically make someone a DJ. A talented disc jockey is a true artist, thoughtfully sampling from the immense world of music to masterfully intertwine epic bass lines, hip-thrashing beats, and soulful anthems to lead a crowded dance floor through a stereophonic experience.

If dancing and partying are an important part of your perfect reception, do not underestimate the significance of having an experienced DJ. Using your personal music tastes, favorite songs, and intended tone for the wedding, a talented DJ will be able to create a soundscape that allows your guests to get lost in the evening. Don’t rely on your tween nieces or your former-ballroom dancer relatives to keep the dance floor pumping. Be sure that the auditory experience of your guests compliments the story and setting you intend to convey with all the other sensory elements.

Best Gay Wedding Blog EverNow I’m sure you’re thinking, “Aren’t DJs expensive?” True, many DJ packages may seem like a big investment. But if it is a priority that your guests really ‘dance the night away,’ then you may want to seriously consider a package like this so you can throw the ‘biggest party of the year’ (plus many DJ packages include lighting, which is also an important element to you wedding, as described in this post). However, if this is an area where you cannot devote as much of your budget, take the time to find someone who actually has DJ experience.

So let’s do a quick check: If your cousin says, “I’ll be your DJ, I have all the best songs in my iPhone,” what is your response? If you would change the subject by saying, “Wow, you really look great, have you lost weight?,” congratulations! You’re one step closer to ensuring every sensory detail contributes to your dream wedding. (And if you even thought about saying, “Sure, at least I can check that off the planning list,” I urge you to seek counseling as soon as possible. Change starts with you. But I digress…)

How to Create a Seating Chart with Minimal Injury

Picture it: Sicily 1942, a soon-to-be married sap sits in front of an oversized floorplan of a his reception space with small circles spattered throughout. He sits with a pile of pins in one hand, and a whiskey on the rocks in the other. You start off feeling brave but soon your exasperation becomes evident as you watch your fiance move one person after another with such fierceness your head begins to spin. The next thing you know a pin of epic proportion is seen flying through the air just before it pierces your hand! Well we do not want to hear of anyone suffering an unintentional acupuncture nightmare, so let’s set some ground rules that will make planning your seating chart a fun experience for you, and most importantly set your guests up to have an amazing time at your wedding.

Best Gay Wedding Blog EverThis first one is the MOST important: Plan your seating chart with your guests in mind! I know you want to do everything according to what your Aunt Pam says was at every wedding she’s been to, but put that aside for a minute. Think about your friends an

d family carefully, and decide who they should be surrounded with in order to have a great time. Just because you have two uncles does not mean they have to sit at the same table; if your boo has a coworker that you know would have your uncle is stitches, be the loving matchmaker and put those two together! By bringing the right mix of personalities together at your tables, you’ll ensure that everyone is having a great time throughout your wedding.

Best Gay Wedding Blog Ever

Also, start with the obvious and work backwards. Most seating charts will begin with your wedding party, so get that settled first before moving on to other tables. If you have certain friends or family that need to be sitting in a particular location, get those in place next. And then consider the rest of your floorplan. If you are having a bar, think about putting those who won’t be drinking away from that area, and add some convenience for those spending most of their time ordering drinks anyways. Think about areas with high traffic, like the dance floor, and consider having guests who may need a little more time to move around a haven away from too many passing guests.

Finally, leave some breathing room for last minute changes. We all know that people can be flakes, and you have to account for some last minute additions from missing RSVPs. Fight the urge to just have an ‘overflow’ table: You’ll end up with an awkward table with people who may not enjoy sitting together… and you for sure don’t want a table full of people glaring at you from the back of the room. Instead, try and leave a couple spots open throughout the space for that last minute shuffling. That way, you can ensure that family and friends can be placed in an area that will be more fun for everyone. And if there happens to be extra space at a few tables, those guests will certainly appreciate having space to stretch out after a full meal and hard dancing!

Whether you find it nostalgic to pull out the pinboard, or use a speadsheet to plan out your seating chart, keeping your purpose in mind will help you to create an experience for your guests that will be fun and memorable.

How to Add Drama with Lighting

When it comes to wedding decor, most people will first think about colors, linens, flowers, and other important elements. However, there is one element to decor that many may not think about, and yet can prove to be the element that can have the biggest effect on a space… and no, the answer is not whether the drapes match the carpet! The correct answer is: lighting! You want your wedding to be visually appealing, and light is the only way you’re actually going to see any of the other beautiful elements in place (unless you’re having a reception completely in pitch black… and if so, send us an invite because that sounds crazy!). Here are some things to keep in mind when considering options for lighting:

Best Gay Wedding Blog EverUse mood lighting to create a luxurious effect. Your space should already have built-in lighting that will allow the space to function (so people can actually see what they are doing). Your job is to add to the space with additional lighting. Start with the architecture in the space. What can you draw attention to with light? Look at walls with different textures, the window surroundings, or columns. Uplighting can add drama to these elements, or purposefully-directed overhead lighting can draw focus to the best elements in your space. If your events are during the day, take advantage of natural lighting where you can, but look for any areas that may be hidden or lost in the ambient lighting. Find a way to add that drama.

Best Gay Wedding Blog EverHighlight focus areas with light. You want your guests’ attention towards all of the details and not your brother’s unibrow. So ditch the florescent lighting and get creative. Here are a couple great lighting ideas: Flank your ceremony location with lighting to add drama to photos and add visual appeal to your vows. If your cake or dessert table is a masterpiece, make sure it’s lit like art in a gallery. Or if you want your sweetheart table to be the center of the action, make sure that’s apparent with special lighting that draws the eye to you throughout the evening.

Choose your colors carefully. Imagine for a minute that you are highlighting a gorgeous navy blue in your wedding decor. If a wash of blue lighting is used in your space, the color will actually be lost, as a blue light will effectively black-out your blue elements making everything too dark. Instead, be sure that the color of lighting will complement and bring out the colors of your decor. That’s not to say that you can’t use the same colors in lighting, but a better option is to incorporate blue uplighting around the perimeter for effect and use soft ivory pinspot lighting on the table. This will insure that the navy blue is apparent in your design while not losing the details. Speaking of lost details, this reminds me of that time I got carried away with a tweezer. Talk about details getting lost – tell that to what’s left of my eyebrows. Yikes! But I digress…

Best Gay Wedding Blog EverNow think carefully before you decide to do lighting on your own. If you are confident in your skills, you can find companies that will rent you equipment. However, just like a bad high school production of Grease, poor lighting can make Sandy look fat or worse detract from your event. So it’s worth looking at professional lighting packages. Often, lighting is a part of a package provided by your DJ, so ask for photos and make sure everything is cohesive.