A Guest Post from our Friends at Zola!

You’re engaged; congratulations! Once the initial shock has worn off, it’s time to get serious about wedding planning. There are so many things to consider – the venue, how many guests, the dress, the list goes on and on! Before you get too overwhelmed, my best piece of advice would be to hire a wedding planner.According to a survey conducted by online registry Zola, approximately 20% of couples regretted not hiring a wedding plannerEven though hiring a planner is an additional cost, it ends up saving you time and money in the long run! Something that happens all the time is that the couple is so excited that they start the process without really thinking through their budget and find themselves overspending on different aspects.

Now, how do you go about hiring a wedding planner? First, do your homework. Research prospective planners’ websites for photos of past work they’ve done and create a list from there. I’d recommend having an idea of what you’d like your wedding to look like. Are you going for simple, rustic, or full-on glam? Compare your taste with the work of the planner and you’ll find your match.

After you’ve narrowed down your list to about four planners, call each one to discuss what services they offer, their availability, and the estimate costs. If these match what you’re looking for then proceed with making appointments. Before heading out to your meetings, there are a number of questions you should prepare. Make sure your vision is being heard and feel free to take the extra step and contact their references before committing.

One of the most important aspects of wedding planning is choosing the venue. This is something couples typically overspend on if they go in without a planner. Before you even start looking at venues, have a budget set in place as wedding costs do add up. Some venues are full-service while others you’ll need to bring in your own vendors and decor. Does a venue have in-house catering? Ask if there’s a food and beverage minimum and be sure to include tax and gratuity. Talk with your planner and the venue to decide what services are included and what the price breakdown would be. If the extra expenses end up exceeding your budget, you may have to scale back on design or look for a more affordable space.

You should also discuss your budget when meeting with your planner before checking out different venues. They will be more familiar with the space, layouts, and the time you’ll need to bring your vision to life. Knowing how many guests you’re expecting to invite will also help before looking at venues. This way you can avoid the common mistake of choosing a venue too small, and having more guests RSVP than you were anticipating.

Most importantly, stay true to yourself and your vision. Just because you may have to scale back on some additional costs, it does not mean you should compromise quality.

Real Wedding: Haley and Michael featured on Style Me Pretty

The Healdsburg Country Gardens was the perfect choice for a couple looking to personalize their day and incorporate the Groom’s family background in the wine industry. This romantic vineyard garden wedding was full of beauty. The gorgeous outdoor setting married with pretty garden details by Lily & Mint made for a day as easy as it was elegant. And don’t even get us started on the Booth Bus! Get cozy with Kara Miller’s images for even more.

Velvet Wedding Shoes

Lace Wedding Dress

Real Weddings: Lisa and Casey

Lisa and Casey’s wedding was a beautiful Spring Day in Napa at Vintage Estate. Some of our favorite things about this wedding were the pretty pops of purple, lush green ceremony arbor, delicious little Bouchon Macaron favors from Thomas Keller, and most of all the fact that Lisa’s dad was the officiant!  We all had bets on whether or not he was going to be able to keep it together, but he did wonderfully. He not only got to walk his daughter down the aisle, but he also got to marry her off to the love of her life.

Following the ceremony guests enjoyed a beautiful outdoor garden cocktail hour and dinner. Once it was time to head in to the Historic Barrel Room for dancing, Lisa changed into sparkly Keds to dance the night away in. It was such a perfect evening with the sweetest couple and their families.

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Coordinator: @lvlweddings @ashleysbrand Venue & Catering: The Vintage Estate   Photography: Brooke Beasley Photo  Videography: All Because He Asked   Florist: Poppystone   DJ and Musicians: Wine Country Entertainment   Dessert: Perfect Endings Cakes   Beauty: Sisters Napa Valley   Photobooth: Giggle and Riot   Rentals: Encore Events Rentals   Favors: Macarons from Thomas Keller Bouchon Bakery 

Real Wedding: Brittany and Jerome featured on 100 Layer Cake

This sweet Texas couple wanted a fun filled weekend in their new home, Newport Beach, CA. The Resort at Pelican Hill was the perfect spot to bring their friends and family from across the country for a weekend filled with love. We brought the California theme in with the California cut out save the date by Lovely Paper Things and included the brides love of gold. Our love for gold foil everything and bringing in the feeling of a Summer day in California was born. The design and celebration was brought to life by Inviting Occasion and beautifully captured by Ashley Kelemen and Hoo films!

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Photographer: Ashley Kelemen / Videographer: Hoo Films / Venue & Cake: Resort at Pelican Hill / Wedding Planner: LVL Weddings & Events / Floral & Event Design: Inviting Occasions / Hair & Makeup: Design Visage / Stationery: Lovely Paper Things / Entertainment: West Coast Music / Cigar Bar: The Cigar Guys / Travel: Life Styled / Welcome Bags: Wedding Chicks / Welcome Gifts: Box Fox / Bride’s Dress: Oscar De La Renta from Joan Pillow Bridal / Bridesmaid Dresses: Bella Bridesmaid OC / Lounge rentals: Found Vintage RentalsSignature Party Rentals, Revelry/ Lighting & Draping: Amber Event Production / Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen

Newest Orange County Waterfront Wedding Venue: Huntington Bay Club

We are excited to introduce the newest wedding venue in Orange County, Huntington Bay Club. This new venue offers a waterfront wedding to include a private white sand beach, flexible indoor and outdoor spaces and a view of the harbor. Even better it is run and managed by our friends at 24 Carrots Catering.

Our team was lucky enough be invited to an intimate dinner hosted by 24 Carrots and experience it for ourselves. Here is a sneak peek of what’s to come and the delicious menu that was prepared!

The Menu

Amuse Bouche | crispy egg yolk, fried milk, caviar, petite chives in an abalone shell

Salad | burrata + baby heirloom tomato tart candy stripe beets, evoo, balsamic caviar, flour de sel, fresh-cracked pepper, micro-basil

By Sea | pan-seared branzino poppy seed basmati, cilantro, curried carrot broth

By land | brandt beed filet summer corn, planet carrots, cipollini onions, asparagus, baby sunburst, patty pan, chimichurri drizzle

Sweets | summer peach almond cake, praline crunch, vanilla-roasted peaches, toasted almond cream

LVL Weddings and Events Huntington Bay Club Huntington Bay Club Orange County Wedding Venue Huntington Bay Club Orange County Wedding Venue Huntington Bay Club Orange County Wedding Venue Huntington Bay Club Orange County Wedding Venue LVL Weddings and Events Huntington Bay Club LVL Weddings and Events Huntington Bay Club LVL Weddings and Events Huntington Bay Club LVL Weddings and Events Huntington Bay Club LVL Weddings and Events Huntington Bay Club LVL Weddings and Events Huntington Bay Club LVL Weddings and Events Huntington Bay Club LVL Weddings and Events Huntington Bay Club

 

Venue: Huntington Bay Club | @huntingtonbayclub Catering: 24 Carrots Catering | @24carrotscatering Furniture + Lounge: Found Rentals | @foundrentals Tabletop Rentals: Casa de Perrin | @casadeperrin Florals: Penelope Pots | @penelopepotsfloraldesign Linens: Borrowed Blu | @borrowedblu Runners and Ribbon: Tono and Co | @tonoandco Menu Design + Calligraphy: Project Watermark | @projectwatermark Photography: Lorely Meza | @lorelymeza Videography: S1 Entertainment: Luxury Entertainment Group | @luxuryentertainmentgroup Lighting: Elevated Pulse Productions | @elevatedpulse