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  • Giselle Smith

Wedding Planning for the Modern Bride

Engagements galore happen over the holidays every year. We loved watching all of the proposals on social media. After the New Year and basking in some engagement bliss, wedding planning gets serious; most brides kick it into high gear. If you’re newly engaged, options may seem endless, but there are some key items you need to focus on before actually booking vendors for your big day followed by some local wedding inspiration to swoon over complete with listings of fabulous vendors to hire right here in ETown to get the look you'll love.

KEY WEDDING PLANNING ITEMS


BUDGET

The first question you need to ask yourself is how much can you afford to spend on your wedding? Consider how much you have saved, how much you can contribute each month and how much your parents will be adding in. After you know how much you can spend, you can determine how much you will spend on each element of your day. We like to divide the elements up into percentages and calculate from there. Assign a percentage to each element based on normal weddings and multiply that by your overall budget. An example percentage scale looks something like this: Ceremony & Reception Venues 17%, Photography 18%, Planning / Coordination 8%, Wedding Flowers 10%, Catering 12%, Cake 2%, Alcohol 6%, Rentals & Decor 7%, Bridal Gown 5%, Groom’s Attire 2%, Officiant 2%, Entertainment 5%, Stationery 2% and Wedding Day Hair & Makeup 4%. This doesn’t include additional events such as a rehearsal dinner, a welcome dinner, etc. and fun things like lounge areas, favors, or photo booths are nice, but they are not must-haves and are not included in this outline.


GUEST COUNT

Maybe you have always dreamed of a massive wedding and inviting everyone you know. Less is more in today’s economy, and many couples are opting for more exclusive events. Sometimes couples make the mistake of assuming that they can, or even should, invite everyone they know and interact with, have known in the past, are related to or work with to their wedding. Your day is special, and not everyone can be a part of it unless you have unlimited funds. When you think of guest count in terms of budget: Do you like this couple enough to buy them dinner? Or, more so, enough to sacrifice upgrading your own experience (or to downgrade it) to celebrate with them? Create your list accordingly keeping budget in mind considering you will be footing the bill for not only dinner but drinks, seats, tables and centerpieces; all of those items add up.


WEDDING DATE & VENUE SELECTION

Once you have your budget lined out and know how much space you need for your guest count, you can choose a venue to officially set your wedding date. Some of our fav venues are showcased over the next few pages, including The Garage, The Historic State Theater, Thurman Landing and The Brown Pusey House. Style is important when choosing a place to say your vows. Each venue is paired with inspiration to give your ideas and tips for carrying through your style. Consider budget and guest count when setting your date: Choosing an off-season date versus a peak wedding season date and potentially having a wedding on a day of the week other than Saturday are options if your budget needs a bit of help. If you have the opportunity to get married on your own property and have access to electricity and restrooms, tented weddings are IN and can save you big in terms of cost assuming temperatures permit. Our favorite for local tents is Something Borrowed Event Rentals. Weather should always play into the equation; rain plan tents are a MUST in Kentucky if you plan to wed outdoors.


WAREHOUSE VOWS THAT WOW

Choosing a warehouse venue such as The Garage will give you a blank canvas with endless options. Often spacious, these venues are excellent for large guest counts and original floor plans. For this look, we chose a bright white base with linens and chairs plus black accents. Olivia at Denizen added in a lush greenery installation with bright pops of red and orange throughout seamlessly tying in with our vision. We love all of the colors and texture.


“It is important to remember that all of the details in your wedding style create an overall look. Everything should be consistent in style.”

It is important to remember that all of the details in your wedding style create an overall look. Everything should be consistent in style: Your entrance, ceremony, personal attire and florals, stationery, catering, bartending and signature drinks, cake, reception florals, table decor, lounge areas, lighting and installations.


Photography: Morgan Worley Photography I Venue: The Garage

Gown: Modern Trousseau Louisville I Floral Design: Denizen I Decor: Emerald Oak Events


A CLASSIC MOVIE STAR ROMANCE

Perfect for the bride who always imagined a traditional wedding with an extraordinary white dress, The Historic State Theater offers spaces for both ceremony and reception. The neutral color palette of white and ivory paired with gold and grey is sure to stand the test of time when looking back through your wedding photos. One can never go wrong with florals: This table runner from Elizabethtown Florist is sure to impress guests as they swing by your head table to give you their well wishes.


“The neutral color palette of white and ivory paired with gold and grey is sure to stand the test of time when looking back through your wedding photos.”

With hydrangeas and roses draping down the table, it only makes sense for blooms to cascade around the white wedding cake. It is vital to choose the right vendors who are not only within budget but who can work together to create a design that carries through the romantic feel from your decor to your desserts.


Photography: Clagett Photography I Venue: The Historic State Theater

Gown: Modern Trousseau Louisville I Floral Design: Elizabethtown Florist

Decor: Emerald Oak Events


LAKESIDE LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT

The natural landscape of a venue can set the stage for vows that wow every time. Whether you’re looking for rustic romance or living in a bohemian dream, Thurman Landing is beautiful in every season. We planned this inspiration with a boho feel using muted brown and tan tones paired with blush, peach, mustard and pops of orange to tie in with the season. A floral headpiece and pies made the look, and we couldn’t be more in love with the berries.


“We planned this inspiration with a boho feel using muted brown and tan tones paired with blush, peach, mustard and pops of orange to tie in with the season.”

All eyes are sure to be on the bride with a whimsical, textured bouquet and a dress like this one from designer Modern Trousseau—especially in front of a lakeside arch like this one from Emerald Oak Events covered with florals and dried elements by Denizen.


Photography: Elaina Janes Photography I Venue: Thurman Landing

Gown: Modern Trousseau Louisville I Floral Design: Denizen I Decor: Emerald Oak Events


A PICTURE-PERFECT GARDEN “I DO”

The Brown Pusey House and Cunningham Gardens are located downtown; guests can enjoy dinner and dancing under the stars in this historic garden setting. For this romantic garden look, we chose a sweet buttercream cake with gold accents and stationery with torn edges. Roses, larkspur, lisianthus with textured greens pair well with the idyllic garden scene and dreamy, flowing ball gown. The pearl and jewel hairpiece finish the bride’s soft look.


"Roses, larkspur, lisianthus with textured greens pair well with the idyllic garden scene and dreamy, flowing ball gown."

These low, lush centerpieces designed by Danelle at Elizabethtown Florist are lovely whether stand-alone or combined with dreamy place settings such as gold-rimmed plates and glassware like those shown here, available for rent locally at Emerald Oak Events.


Photography: Morgan Worley Photography I Venue: The Brown Pusey House

Gown: Modern Trousseau Louisville I Floral Design: Elizabethtown Florist

Decor: Emerald Oak Events


Little did you know, if you read this far down, you just read my favorite blog post/magazine feature of this issue. Before magazine making became my full time gig, I was a wedding planner/florist for a decade and will always be wedding industry at heart. Weddings are my favorite, so always, ALWAYS tag us in your wedding posts at #elizabethtownlifestyle.


If you don't already, check us out on Facebook and Instagram to stay up-to-date on the latest happenings with Elizabethtown Lifestyle and local community events.


Wishing all of the brides out there HAPPY PLANNING!!



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