And just like that – you’re engaged to the love of your life! Wedding bells are ringing, family and friends are reaching out with congratulations, and planning is on the horizon.
BVTLive! knows how overwhelming planning a wedding can be: small details, strict timelines, and everyone giving you their wedding advice. Luckily, we’ve done this a few (thousand) times and can offer newly engaged couples some insight on how to make planning your wedding in 2023 go as smoothly as possible.
The Pre-Wedding Planning
You might have been planning your wedding day your entire life, or never thought about it until now. Regardless, the wedding planning process is consuming and time-sensitive. You’ll want to keep track of your day-to-day goals and timeline to make the process seamless.
Printable Wedding Checklist
Your 2023 wedding day comes and goes quicker than you think, and we want you to be present and take in each moment. Download this Pre-Wedding Checklist to keep track of your planning here:
Determine Your Wedding Style, Theme, and Budget
Our first piece of advice would be to set a plan with your partner on exactly what you want for your wedding day. Determine your theme and style: which season do you envision walking down the aisle? Will you be married in a church or outdoor venue? Do you want a small, intimate gathering or a large party?
Unsure of your dream wedding? Why not get some inspiration from other recent weddings? Our Pinterest and Instagram are wonderful visual resources to get wedding insight on what you and your partner like or don’t like.
Whatever style and theme you decide on for your wedding in 2023, make sure it feels uniquely you. Once you have an idea of how you want your wedding day to look and feel, the next best thing is to determine your budget. Keep in mind that the way you choose to allocate your 2023 wedding budget will be different for every couple depending on your personal priorities.
Wedding Pro Tip: The largest portion of your budget will go to your venue/caterer and the second-largest portion is typically put toward your entertainment. Your choice in band or DJ can really make or break the wedding as they will be the ones running the night, packing the dance floor and creating those magical moments for your photographer and videographer to capture.
Lock Down Your Wedding Venue and Wedding Entertainment
In today’s wedding and event atmosphere, weddings are booking out further than they ever have before. If you want to get your first choice of wedding professionals, our biggest Wedding Pro Tip for your timeline is to lock your most important wedding vendors down right away, starting with your wedding venue and wedding entertainment. These two pieces should be at the top of your priority list, and are the two segments that book the fastest. The industry recommendation is to commit to your wedding dance band or DJ as well as your venue 12–14 months in advance of your wedding date. This gives wedding vendors as well as band leaders an ample timeline to plan your day exactly as you want it. Once you book these two very important components, look into other wedding services as well: photographers, videographers, florists, decorators, lighting production etc.
Planning the Wedding Entertainment
Hiring your wedding entertainment should be at the top of your priority list. There are many options to choose from when looking into your wedding music: large wedding dance bands, live DJ, or even DJ Fusion, a combination of live music with a DJ. In addition to music, there are specialty acts that you can hire to really elevate your wedding and create unique wedding memories for you and your guests. Speaking of guests, during the planning process, you will need to create the wedding guest list. We’ll cover that all below!
Choose the Wedding Music
When planning your 2023 wedding, there’s some popular wedding trends in 2023 you can consider: hiring both a full live band and a DJ, having live music elements for your ceremony and cocktail hour, or even a DJ fusion (a DJ with live musicians). You can research different bands through promo videos and highlight reels, but our wedding music recommendation would be attending a live showcase to see your future wedding bands in action.
BVTLive! provides live wedding band showcases every month, allowing guests to experience a 25-minute set from three to five of our 12 award-winning dance bands. The showcase experience is the best way to see your band perform for an audience and hear their sound. As you and your partner find music bands for weddings that suits your needs, remember to lock in the right fit.
Research Specialty Acts
Specialty Acts are a great way to bring a sophisticated ambience to your ceremony and cocktail hour. They are a great way to make the ‘in between’ parts of your wedding day memorable to you and your guests. Specialty Act offerings include jazz trios, string ensembles, acoustic acts, and much more.
Create Your Guest List
Guest lists may be the most challenging part of your wedding. Our suggestion: start large and edit down. If you are having trouble choosing how many guests you would like to have at your wedding, ask your venue what their maximum and recommended capacities are and this may help guide you.
Whomever you choose to invite, make sure they’re an enjoyable group who are truly supportive of you and your partner’s journey. In addition, we recommend creating a wedding website. Here you can house your wedding registry, a timeline of your day, hotel information, and even allow your guests to RSVP! Wedding websites streamline all wedding communication and help to keep things in one consolidated place. You can even customize your wedding website and add engagement photos, vendor information, and your love story. Our favorite wedding websites are the Knot and WeddingWire.
Plan Your Post-Wedding Celebration
In the hustle and bustle of wedding planning in 2023, the honeymoon is often put on the back burner. We are here to say the honeymoon is NECESSARY and should be prioritized! As a newlywed couple, you need time to focus and prioritize the new union you’ve created. Think of it as the launch of your new life. It also provides the first batch of new memories as a newlywed couple. We recommend planning your honeymoon 8–10 months before your 2023 wedding date.
As fresh newlyweds you deserve the downtime. Some couples choose to hold off a few months on their honeymoon instead of flying out right after their wedding. For some, it’s better to wait, and there is nothing wrong with that! This is a celebration for JUST you and your new life partner, so plan it at a time that will really let you relax and enjoy it.
Wedding Event Consultant Services by BVTLive!
From the initial phone call or meeting with BVTLive!, you immediately create a relationship with one of our event specialists. As you coordinate your dream wedding in 2024, our experienced event specialists will ask questions to understand your goals. Our staff will help you from start to finish as you book the wedding entertainment, creating a custom package that will make your vision come true. They are there for you throughout the process to answer your questions and assist you at our free, live wedding band showcase.
Once you’ve booked your Philadelphia wedding band, DJ, or specialty act, you will receive an invitation to create an account on our website 90 days before your wedding date. In your online portal you will find a digital wedding planning form that outlines every detail that your band or DJ will need to run your wedding – from first dance songs, to wedding party names, to a social media questionnaire, we cover it all. Once you have finished filling this out, your band leader or DJ will be in touch with you to plan your consultations to go over all the details of your wedding day.
Throughout your planning process, BVTLive! will be involved the entire time. We will handle your contract and itinerary, and your bandleader will help put together your own personal song list. By the time your day arrives, you will have no doubt that your night is going to be everything you could imagine and more.
Contact us today to book your 2024 Wedding entertainment through Philadelphia’s Top Entertainment Company.
BVTLive! will make your wedding day dreams come true!
Blog Contributed by: Jackie Marshall