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Wedding Etiquette & Tips

Below you will find a list of wedding tips and etiquette to help you with planning your big day in Pigeon Forge. Tips on planning, ceremony etiquette and information on the responsibilities of members of the wedding party have been included. Although planning this special day can be overwhelming, feel free to refer back to our tips and wedding etiquette to help answer any questions you may have.

Wedding Tips:

  • Start planning early... Buy a calendar or wedding planning book and map out "Your To Do" list in chronological order 12 months, 6 months, 3 months, 2 months, 1 month, 2 weeks, 1 week, 1 day, etc. Also, set aside specific times to focus solely on your wedding planning.
  • Set your budget... Make a wedding budget and stick to it. Brides and grooms realize a little too late they have overspent for their wedding. Make sure you come together early, agree on who is paying for what and how much has been allotted for the big event.
  • Work together... Your wedding day is about both of you. Communication and flexibility are necessary to ensure that you have a wedding day that you both will enjoy.
  • Share the responsibility... Enlist the help of your spouse-to-be, friends, and family to ensure that everything gets done on time.
  • Be specific... When negotiating contracts with vendors, be very specific in your details and expectations. Make sure that everything is spelled out and that you read the fine print.
  • Expect the unexpected... Last minute surprises and expenses are bound to come up. If you lay time and budget aside for these miscellaneous items, your wedding planning will go more smoothly.
  • Take breaks... Go out on a date with your fiancé or spend some time with close friends. Either way, don't talk about the wedding at all! If you take some time out of your planning to enjoy non-wedding activities, you will have more fun during the planning process.

 

Wedding Etiquette for the Ceremony & Reception:

  • Discuss budget with your parents and fiancé. Walk in with an open mind and discuss who is willing to pay for what.
  • Make sure that everyone who is invited to your shower receives a save the date card and also receives a wedding invitation.
  • Send save the date cards up to 1 year before your wedding day. This will allow family and friends to mark their calendars in advance and keep the date available.
  • Wedding invitations should be sent 8 weeks before your wedding day.
  • Make sure your wedding invitations are detailed. While the actual wording may vary depending on who is hosting the wedding, your invitation should include date, time and location information for the ceremony. A separate card should be included with information on time and location of your reception.
  • Remember that wedding invitations are typically very formal. This means you should spell out everything. Example: write 6 oclock in the evening rather than 6 pm.
  • Be sure you also are allowing enough time for guests to RSVP if necessary. You will need to have final head counts about 2 weeks before the wedding.
  • When possible, invite out-of-town family and guests to your rehearsal dinner. This way they are not left stranded in their hotel rooms.
  • The mother-of-the-bride and the mother-of-the-groom should wear dresses that compliment the bridal party and each other. Neither should wear white, off white or cream colored dresses.
  • Receptions may vary in length, especially depending on time of day.
  • A formal, evening reception make take up to four hours and typically composes of a cocktail hour, first dance, toasts/speeches, dinner, and cake cutting.
  • Shorter receptions which a usually more informal, typically last about one to one and a half hours and is typically composed of toasts/speeches and cake cutting.
  • Seating at the reception can be difficult. Some couples prefer to assign seating, while others do not. At the very least you should have a head table for the bridal party and a family table for both sets of parents, any additional sibling(s)and their spouses, and the wedding official and the officials spouse (if invited).
  • A grooms cake is typically a smaller cake made of richer ingredients - a German chocolate cake is often the choice, and a good example. While not a necessity, grooms cakes can be a fun way to your personalize your wedding. Many grooms cakes are decorated to pay homage to the grooms alma mater, hobbies, or profession.
  • Don't forget to tip your servers and vendors.
  • Thank your attendants for all of their help and participation in your wedding with some form of an attendant gift.
  • Thank your guests for their gifts. Send hand written thank you notes to everyone who attended the wedding, sent a gift, or helped plan the wedding. Typically, thank you notes should be sent within one month of your honeymoon.

 

Traditional Responsibilities of the Wedding Party:

Maid of Honor

  • Assists the bride in planning and shopping
  • Plans the bridal shower and/or bachelorette party
  • Helps dress the bride and arrange her veil and train at the ceremony and reception
  • Attend all pre-wedding events
  • Holds the grooms ring during ceremony

 

Bridesmaids

  • Assist the bride as necessary
  • Attend the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner
  • Attend all pre-wedding events

 

Best Man

  • Assists groom with all details of the wedding day
  • Plans the bachelor party
  • Transports groom to the church
  • Supervises the groomsmen during the wedding day
  • Holds the brides ring during ceremony
  • Toasts the bride and groom at the reception
  • Holds any tickets, keys, etc. for the groom and ensures their safe-keeping
  • Returns groom's tuxedo

 

Groomsmen

  • Assist the groom as necessary
  • Attend the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner
  • Escort the bridesmaids during the ceremony

 

Ushers

  • Responsible for distribution of corsages and boutonnieres to designated family members - parents, step-parents and grandparents
  • Distribute wedding programs
  • Seat guests on appropriate side of church
  • Assist elderly guests to seats

 

Coordinator

  • Oversees rehearsal, ceremony and reception details, orders, menus and deliveries doing as little as you want, depending on the terms of your agreement, your level of trust and control, and how much you are willing to pay
  • Should know all of the elements necessary for your ceremony and reception
  • Works with your schedule to set up vendor meetings if necessary
  • Conducts the rehearsal
  • Ensures all vendors and parties involved in the wedding know when and where to be for the rehearsal and the wedding