Last year I was able to work with this amazing family by planning their 20+ event, multi-day wedding. From finding the venues to directing where the last string of Jasmine was to be placed… all the hours of planning was more than worth it. We are so honored to be featured on Maharani Weddings Films.
Check it out!!!
Finally, we’re done with our Design & Production webpage. Check our some of our favorite ideas that have been transformed for real life events. We have everything from hanging cakes to Indian doorways… built by yours truly. We also have unique floor plans and before and after photos. This is one of our favorite processes of the planning venture – DESIGN!!! We hope you enjoy and contact us for your next wedding or event.
You want a black wedding cake? Of course you can have one, but do you know the pros vs. cons? Actually any dark color cake finish can be very elegant and posh. Here are some we love.
If you have a dark color palette for your wedding, pairing the cake in the same colors can be done. The chalkboard trend was really big recently, so many weddings had a cake that mimicked the chalkboard style. We love the pearls on the navy cake and the fondant saree on the maroon cake. Both have amazing contrast between the light piping accents and pearls on the dark frosting/fondant.
Now for the pros and cons:
You can match or partner the dark color with the rest of the décor
The contrast between dark and light or metallics is stunning
You can get dark colors in fondant, marzipan, or buttercream
They are beautiful
If you have a dark color buttercream, the buttercream bleeds down the knife when you cut the cake and it looks like the actual cake is black, red, navy, etc.
Your guests will have the same color lips, teeth, and mouth as the cake. Not so attractive, especially for the bride and groom taking that photo of the cake cutting and feeding each other.
If you have kids at the wedding eating cake, it’s going to be a big mess
If you’re scared of the con’s dark color cake presents, consider these alternatives:
Make one of the smaller tied of the cake the darkest color
Use an ombré cake, keeping the darkest color the smallest coverage
Make the flowers or other décor the dark colors. Weather you have sugar flowers or real flowers, they never are plated with a piece of cake
Pipe or paint on the design with the dark color.
Have your baker make the dark cake or tier a faux one and the real cake other or lighter finishes. Then you can supplement the faux with backup cake.
Use dark colors with ribbon applications.
Get a naked cake. Naked cakes are un-frosted cakes. Red velvet or chocolate naked cakes are good options to have vs. red or brown frosting/finishes.
Here are some dark color alternative cakes that we love, using the above suggestions.
One last note to you Brides: Don’t let your photographer take a photo of you holding the cake. Cake is heavy and it’s just asking for trouble if you have a dark color cake with a white dress. If you’re the Bride and you happen to drop the cake, how are you going to replace it on a moments notice?
Remember when Queen Victoria was the first to wear a white wedding dress? Well, you know she had to have white shoes too.
We see it all the time – the photo of the bride hiking up her dress so we can see her shoes.
OK Brides – let’s snap the trend and go for something different. I know there have been strides over the years, but I still see SO many brides wearing the white shoe with their white wedding dress. Here’s a few of the white bridal shoes throughout the years.
Unless you’re walking on a sandy white beach, you’re going to need bridal shoes. They can be bought before or after the wedding dress. Some brides will choose to match the dress to the shoes and some the shoes to the dress. Regardless of which order you purchase the dress and shoes – think outside the trend.
DO try on shoes and make sure you can walk in them. DON’T buy shoes that are not comfortable
DO purchase a shoe with a heel height you can manage. Flats are super cute and you can wear them your entire wedding day. DON’T purchase a shoe with a heel height you’ve never worn before. Your wedding day is not the time to practice walking in 4” high heels if you have only worn sneakers your entire life.
DO get a shoe that is easy to slip on (or take off) DON’T get a shoe that takes you 45 minutes to put on (like those old boots you need the button hook to close them up)
DO purchase a shoe that reflects your style and/or personality. We love bold prints and colors.
DON’T sacrifice getting a shoe style/pattern you don’t love. You’ll regret it in 5-10+ years when you look back at your photos.
DO practice wearing your shoes. Wear them around the house and practice walking on carpet, hard floors, and up and down stairs. DON’T think you’re going to slip on your shoes for the first time on your wedding day. Can you say BLISTERS?!
DO bring accessories for your shoes, such as arch inserts, heel protectors, clear nail polish (to dab on loose threads), and saran wrap to wrap around buckles that itch.
DON’T buy shoes with sharp edges or pointy bling. They can snag the inside of your dress hem.
DO bring your shoes to your wedding dress alternation fitting. You don’t want to trip on your dress cause your heels are shorter than the dress hem. DON’T get a stiletto heel if you’re walking down a grass aisle.
DO purchase a pair of shoes that you can wear again. No sense in buying a pair of shoes you wear for one day. DON’T be afraid to get shoes that aren’t shoes. Cowboys boots, sequined sneakers, and fancy slippers are great alternatives.
You sent out the invitations and have 784 people on your guest list. Start planning your group photos ASAP. You should have a good idea of some group shots before you hire a photographer. Why? This can dictate how much time you need to hire your photographer for. Adding 6-10 group shots throughout the day is very different than wanting 30-40+ group shots.
Now you’re getting close to the wedding day and the RSVP’s are flooding in. 350 guests, 410 guests, 500 and counting. Everyone attending would like to talk to you and get a photo with you. As you approach the last month prior to the wedding, you need to evaluate and finalize your wedding photo group shot list. This is a huge part of the plans for your time line, sanity, and photographer. The photographer doesn’t know your guests, not to mention – they probably wouldn’t be able to pick you out of the crowd of 600 guests. Why? The bride and groom are wearing something colorful and traditional (most of the time) like a Sari, lengha, Kurti, etc. Not like a western wedding where you can spot the bride cause she’s the ONLY one wearing a white dress.
Can you find the Bride and Groom in each photo?
To create the group shot list, start with the family. Remember who is closest and most important. A couple extended family photos are nice to have, but it can become tricky to get everyone together. I don’t suggest doing an extended family shot right after the ceremony. It’s hard to manage that many people & round them up in a timely manner, much less if you have other events scheduled right after the ceremony (pooja’s, etc). Consider doing it during the cocktail hour or after dinner, that way your Emcee of DJ can help you round up people. The next step is to write up your wedding party shot list. There are many check lists online, but you know who needs to be in your photos. Here’s a quick list of the standard group photos:
Bride + maid of honor
Bride + bridesmaids
Bride + groomsmen
Bride + flower girl and/or ring bearer
Bride + attendants (personal attendant, etc)
Groom + best man
Groom + groomsmen
Groom + bridesmaids
Groom + flower girl and/or ring bearer
Bride & Groom + bridesmaids
Bride & Groom + groomsmen
Bride & Groom + bridesmaids & groomsmen
Bride & Groom + flower girl and/or ring bearer
Bride & Groom + Brides parents
Bride & Groom + Brides parents + family
Bride & Groom + Brides siblings
Bride & Groom + Grooms parents
Bride & Groom + Grooms parents + family
Bride & Groom + Grooms siblings
Bride & Groom + both sets of parents
You all have those groups of friends that have different connections to you in life. If you want photos of any of these special groups, list them on your master photo list for your photographer. Some you may want to include are:
Fraternity or sorority groups
High school friends
Sports teams (softball, football, dance)
Just be sure that you work with your photographer (and planner) to schedule these during your wedding day. Every photo takes time to stage and get groups of people together. You could find yourself doing photos for 6 hours with just groups of people if you don’t plan carefully. Also be sure to check with your parents. We all know they will have a couple shots that are a must. Just be sure you don’t let your parents/family dictate all the photos and put a limit on how many they are allowed to list. For instance; your Dad really doesn’t need a photo of his daughter with his poker buddies that you’ve never met. If you don’t make a list, your photographer can run off and take shots throughout the day and evening and you might not know any of the people in the final edited album. Seriously, you don’t want to look through your final album and ask “who’s that?” of more than half your album. Just make sure you communicate your clear expectations and the list to your photographer and planner.
Hint: One thing I always demand during Indian wedding photos – identify one person who’s close to the family and can call out names. Indian names can be tough to pronounce + the “name caller” can help recognize people to help the photographer.
Key take-away: Work with a Planner who is experience with Indian weddings and a photographer who’s shot and understands Indian weddings. Scheduling properly makes a world of difference.
Wonder why venues charge so much? We will explain some of the most common fees and where the money gets allocated.
The staff: cleaning staff, setup staff, and engineering staff. FYI: engineering staff is the people who run the boilers for heat, air conditioning, plumbing maintain everything, etc.
The space itself and everything that goes into maintaining it: cleaning products, heating fees, AC fees, electricity for lights, etc. Building upkeep such as painting, roof repairs, parking lot upkeep, and everything else to keep a venue in party order.
Outdoor Venues: mowing the lawn, leaf cleanup, landscaping, watering, etc.
MISC rooms such as bridal suites, grooms rooms, coat rooms, And so on.
The accessories: linens, napkins, silverware, glassware, etc. + everything it takes to clean & maintain such items
There are increases in fees over the years for various reason. General economic inflation will increase venue fees. If a venue has more than one space, if they underwent a remodeling update, or they upgraded all their chairs are all reasons they would increase their fees. Venues also are more busy in the peak months, especially here in Minnesota. People don’t like to deal with the winter or cold months, thus the higher demand for April through October weddings. That might make you think that the venues would charge less in the peak months, but it costs more to keep more staff on in the peak months, more turnover of events a maintained of the venue, and air conditioning a large venue on a 97 degree day. Your guest count also can determine the fee. It cost more and requires more staff to execute a 500 guest wedding vs. a 100 Guest wedding.
That’s the simple explanation of where your fee for the venue gets allocated. When looking for venues, think about your guest count, time of year, what spaces you will need for the ceremony, etc. Book as much in advance as you can – there are often venues that give you the current years pricing if you book 12-14+ months in advance as they may not have the next year’s pricing set in place yet. Always work with your planner. They often have perks and discounts for venue they work with on a regular basis. Happy venue hunting!
You’ve all seen one – the red dot on the forehead of Indian women. What does it mean? There are a few different reasons and meanings, but here are the most popular ones.
1. It’s the symbol of a married women.
2. It’s the third eye of the Hindu religion, Chakra – to help ward off bad luck
3. It retains the energy of the body
The traditional method of application is dipping your ring finger in Kumkum powder and placing the dot on your forehead. It took a lot of practice to get the perfect round dot. Now days, there are alternative bindi’s that women use. The most common is a disc that can be applied with a wax or paste. There are also bindi’s that are like a sticker with the adhesive already applied.
One the wedding day – brides will apply bindi’s that are more like a jewel or an actual piece of jewelry. They come in all different colors and sizes to suit the brides wedding colors, mood, and type of celebration. There’s are numerous places online you can order bindi’s from simple red dots to elaborate jewels. Some even get them hand painted on their forehead. Here are some beautiful ones we love.
We finally joined Instagram. Working on getting images posted, so be patient. Don’t worry, we have over a decade of images to choose from and it’s a constant work in progress. Please follow us and like our work. We think you’ll love what you see!
Congrats to Priya and Rishi and their 11 event, 4-day wedding! The couple got married in Minnesota at the Hilton Hotel downtown Minneapolis, the perfect venue to host all their events at one location. The events had a range of 350 to 540 guests at the various events. The couple’s events included:
Thursday = Mehndi party
Friday = Welcome Lunch and Sangeet
Sunday = Breakfast, Baraat, Ceremony, Lunch, Cocktails, and Dinner
Monday = Brunch (Hilton) and Pooja at the Hindu Temple in Maple Grove.
One of our favorite things they did for their guests was have the videographer construct a “same-day edit” video, thanks to Story of Us Films. We showcased this video at the reception on Saturday night. It was the perfect way to show the entire guest attendance all the events they couldn’t attend. Summer Street Photography has locations in Minneapolis and Boston, the perfect fit for this couple who lives in Boston and hosted their wedding here in Minnesota.
We can’t thank all our vendors for the amazing job they did to create a beautiful and seamless wedding for our South Indian couple! It certainly takes an experienced and talented fleet of vendors to pull of an 11 event 4-day wedding. Always a special THANKS to my amazing team!