#WeddingWednesday with Saving Grace Occassions

Grace Freeman, Saving Grace Occasions
Photo Courtesy of Alex Nardulli

This wedding Wednesday we had the pleasure of interviewing Grace Freeman, founder of Saving Grace Occasions wedding planning! We asked Grace a series of questions hoping to give brides a little insight into where to begin planning their special day!

For a bride who has just gotten engaged where do you begin? How do you even start planning?

Sit down with anyone who has any financial responsibility in planning your big day and discuss budget. This is imperative when choosing vendors, finding your perfect venue/venues and organizing the tiny details along the way. Then, hire a wedding planner!

When it comes to the ceremony/reception what would you say is the most crucial part to plan out beforehand?

Hmm, can I say all of it? Having a Plan B for inclement weather is a big one. As Outkast once said, “you can plan a pretty picnic but you can't predict the weather”! And this may sound obvious, but the wedding day timeline itself is key in a smooth wedding day. Wedding vendors will work as a team to #makeithappen, but they need a mapped out plan for the day to refer to that includes timing of important formalities throughout the day as well as travel time, addresses, and any other notes deemed necessary to pass along during wedding planning.

Best timeline for planning? How soon is too soon to plan a wedding? 

This is a personal question and is really based on budget, a couple's needs and their schedules. One year is pretty typical and allows a couple to be able to break down one long to-do list into smaller sections, making planning spread out and ultimately less stressful overall because there will be less decisions to make and bills to pay all at once. However, some couples prefer to speed the process up. SGO's first bride Erinn's wedding was planned in 5 months, and because of her awesome vision and the great vendor's focus and determination, it all went very smoothly and was a beautiful event!

Any advice for the DIY brides who want to do everything themselves?

DO: Make sure you're really up to the task, and you've got a #bridesquad who's willing to get their hands dirty in glue, glitter, spray paint and anything else you've conjured up in your creative mind! 
DON'T: Plan on doing absolutely everything yourself. 

Photo Courtesy of Kara Volle 
Give tasks to family members you trust & who would want to be a part of a fun project, or hire a professional to get some of the work done. Wedding planners including myself often offer design assistance, and there are many event rental professionals in the St. Louis area who may have some inventory that would fit your vision perfectly. Ultimately keep in mind one afternoon of crafting is not likely going to be enough time for DIY wedding project. Set aside time as soon as you can in the planning process and dedicate a space in your home for completed projects rather than trying to do it all at once the month before the wedding. You do not want to be making the weeks and days leading up to your wedding...trust!

What’s in your ideal wedding day emergency kit?

Lots of water, a first aid kit, scissors, healthy snacks, a sewing kit, tissues, Solemates, the list goes on!

Wedding website opinion? Why is this good for a bride to have? Or not have?

Grace: A wedding website is great for guests to return to when they have questions about hotels nearby, addresses of ceremony and/or reception, and registry items. This is especially helpful for destination brides, but I don't see why every bride shouldn't set one up! Less answering the same question multiple times and more showing off cute couple photos :)

Booking wedding entertainment? Is there anything that you would consider too over the top?

No - guest entertainment is so important! I think it's so fun when weddings go above and beyond to create an amazing guest experience. One SGO couple hired cocktail waitresses on roller skates to serve their signature cocktail and the guests loved it. I love that TalentPlus offers fun entertainment like the Champagne Skirt, aerial performers, fire artists and more! I'd love to see more of this in weddings.

Which wedding trends do you really love this season?

Balloons! I'm loving seeing the installations and use of jumbo perfectly round balloons inspired by the amazing Geronimo Balloons. A photo backdrop, ceiling installation or drop from the dancefloor ceiling are all such fun ways to get guests excited and incorporate fun pops of color at your wedding.

What do you think about invitations?

Oh, I'm a stationery lover to the fullest extent. I'm trying to learn calligraphy, but it's not easy! I think many are doing E-Save the Dates these days, and there's nothing wrong with that! But seeing a best friend's wedding invitation on my fridge every morning brings me happiness (and they're just so beautiful)!

Overall advice for a bride:

When wedding day comes, text your sweetie once then lose the phone for the rest of the day! Most brides say their wedding day flew by - - enjoy every single moment. Soak it up and leave answering guest's questions to your wedding planner or Maid of Honor. Soak it all up - it's your day!

To learn more about Grace and Saving Grace Occasions click here.

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