Friday, August 7, 2009

Notes From the Future "Mrs." - Don't Neglect the Rehearsal Dinner

The rehearsal dinner. This is a topic that gets overlooked more often than not. But neglected or not, it is an important night for close family and friends to mingle, so make it a fun night!

My fiance's parents live on a hill over-looking the river. The view is beautiful to say the least. So immediately I said, "That is where we are going to have our rehearsal dinner!" I know this choice will allow my family and friends to really have a good time. Having your guests feel relaxed and comfortable is key. However, putting in a little extra effort to jazz it up will make it special and unique. And it is easier than you think...

My tips for planning the rehearsal dinner:
- Pull in colors from your wedding, just switch up the style. For example, my wedding will be preppy with some antique accents, but my rehearsal dinner will be a mix of modern and rustic. But for both events, navy and white will be used to act as the common denominator.
- Pick out a fun dinner menu. Why serve them filet mignon if they are going to eat it the very next night at your reception? Pick out something different that you know everyone will love!
- Forgo the liquor. It cuts back on costs and besides that, you don't need your key players showing up on your big day with hangovers.
- Add linens and flowers. Since rehearsal dinners are generally small, getting table linens can be relatively inexpensive. Same goes for flowers. You will not need a lot of flowers but they add a lot to the tables (go for something simple and full, like a hydrangea, to get more bang for your buck)
- Coordinate your dinner invitations with your rehearsal dinner style. Start with step 1 to really make this dinner fantastic. And actually, a general rule for any party you throw is to make sure all the elements flow with one another. So keep this in mind from start to finish.

If you go by these simple guidelines, you will have success! Also, in case you were curious, here are some details I have brewing in my head for my own rehearsal dinner...
- Navy and white color scheme
- Beautiful linens (color TBD)
- White rustic lanterns from Jamali Garden
- White folding chairs
- Old fashioned sodas in galvanized tubs
- Brown wicker chargers
- Roses pizza
- Local beer and wine
- Simple blue and white hydrangea arrangements from Modern Day Floral

So remember, don't neglect your rehearsal dinner. Take time to think beyond the wedding!

~ Jillian