October 30, 2007

Happy Halloween!


Featured Vendor

This weeks Featured Vendor is one of my absolute favorites. Tania Lezak of Lezak Photography is one of the most gifted photographers I have ever worked with. She is a complete joy to have on-site and I look forward to all of my weddings that she shoots. She is a ton of fun, as you'll see from reading her blog, but she is also so genuine and really cares about capturing the best moments of your day. I found Tania after she shot my cousins' wedding (Check out Christine and Marks wedding in Wyndham on her blog!), as she is a close family friend. She has since worked with me on my weddings and has done another cousin of mine as well (Check out Patricia and Mike's wedding in Germany on her blog -- it's a MUST SEE!).

Tania: Thanks for all of the support you have given me as I grow into the wedding industry. You have no idea how much help you've given me in this first year!

Name: Tania Lezak

Business: Tania Lezak Photography

Website: http://www.lezakphotography.com/ And of course, the blog!: http://photosnaps.lezakphotography.com/iBlog/

Location: Philadelphia, PA area

Type of Vendor: Photographer!

How Long In Business: I’ve been shooting professionally for about 11 years now, but weddings have been my life for the past 3-4 years.

Work Style: Creative photojournalism

Training: Learned a lot about shooting, processing, and Photoshop while I was a photographer at the Daily Collegian (Penn State’s newspaper), but I’m mostly self-trained!

Favorite Color: Pink & blue (no surprise that they’re also my business colors!)

Sports Team: Red Sox -- I’ll always be a Boston girl

Languages: Spanish & a little bit of German

Favorite Food: Ice cream & burritos (but not together)

Hidden Talents or Favorite Hobbies: In the winter, when the wedding season slows down a bit, I throw pottery. I love digging in and getting my hands dirty!

Home Town: I grew up in a little town in Massachusetts, just outside of Boston.

Favorite Place: This is a tough one…..I’ve been to so many incredible places! I don’t think I could pick a favorite, but I love how the landscape in Utah feels almost alive…. I love the lushness and peace of Kauai…. I love walking the streets of Moscow at night…. I love riding my horse at sunset through the fields at home…. I love exploring the northern coasts of Spain…and there’s still so much more I have to see and do!

Pets: Jake (my horse) and Sully (our crazy blonde lab)

Favorite Holidays: Christmas!

Favorite Quote: I don’t know if I have a favorite quote, but this is one I always find inspiring… “If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right.” (Henry Ford)

Best Part Of The Job: I love watching the whole day unfold….from the hair curling and tie-tying in the morning until the last dance. I love that I get to be there for all of the smiles and emotions….through the hectic times and the sweet times….on such an amazing day! It’s a huge honor to be invited into a couple’s wedding day.

To see more of Tania's work, check our her website: www.lezakphotography.com and her blog: http://photosnaps.lezakphotography.com/iBlog/! See the post below of Joey and Erans wedding for more examples of Tania's beautiful work.

Current Weddings

Vital Statistics
Bride: Joey
Groom: Eran
Location: Kutz Camp, Warwick NY
Flowers: ZAK & Company
Photography: Lezak Photography
Catering: Bridge Creek Catering

I recently got the pleasure of working with a really great couple from St. Thomas. Kutz Camp holds a special place for the bride's family, as the Father of the Bride works at the camp and the bride and her siblings went to the camp as children. They had a gorgeous day in early September. Tania Lezak took these photos. She is PHENOMENAL and I'll be featuring her tomorrow on the blog. I can't thank her enough for sharing these pictures!

The ceremony was held in "The Willows" in between two gigantic willow trees. The guests then followed the path of lanterns to "The Theatre," where the reception was held out over the lake.

The bride and bride's sister hand made their placecards. The lanterns above were used throughout the theatre. We strung them all along the sides of the reception space to create lantern-lit windows. Guests looked through the lanterns out onto the gorgeous lake and mountains.

Their Ketubah was fabulous! It was so intricate and ornate. It was such a beautiful piece of art.

The only thing Joey really had her heart set on was the rose petal aisle. It was a beautiful touch. The guests all sat on camp provided benches, which were painted different colors. It really brightened up the space and gave the ceremony a very personal feel.

Along with the beautiful Hazelnut Genoise Wedding Cake with Chocolate Ganache Filling (yum!), they had a "candy bar" filled with candy in their wedding colors. The guests could fill mini goody bags with the candy of their choice.

All in all, it was a gorgeous day and it was so great to be a part of it.
If you have any questions about where to get anything seen in this post, email us at stacey@asyouwishwed.biz!

October 29, 2007

Reader Q & A

Q: Can you give some solid guidelines of how much to tip your vendors? I thought that all vendors were tipped, but read an article saying only certain vendors do.

A: The wedding vendors that you definitely should tip:
  • Head caterer, maitre d', banquet manager: 15-20% of the total food and drink bill
  • Waitstaff: 15% of the total food bill (should be given to banquet manager to distribute)
  • Bartenders: 15% of the total drink bill (should be given to banquet manager to distribute)
  • DJ/Musician: $30-$50 each
  • Limousine Drivers: 15-20% of the entire transportation bill
  • Hair Stylist: 15-20% of the bill
  • Makeup Artist: 15-20% of the bill
  • Bathroom and Coat Check Attendant: $1 per guest (place a sign stating that gratuities have been taken care of)
  • Valet Parking Attendant: $1 per guest (place a sign stating that gratuities have been taken care of)
  • Delivery truck drivers (catering, florist, cake baker): $10 each

The wedding vendors that you have the option of tipping:

  • Photographer: 10% of bill
  • Videographer:10% of bill
  • Wedding Planner: 15-20% of total bill
  • Organist: $20-$50
  • Soloist:$20-$50
  • Altar boys/girls: $10
  • Wedding Day Ceremony Coordinator: $20

The wedding vendors that do not get tipped:

  • Florist
  • Cake Baker
  • Stationer
  • Religious Officiant (if you'd like to tip a religious officiant, donate the money to the place of worship)

A few things to remember when tipping your wedding vendors:

  • Double check every one of your contracts before deciding on tips. Many vendors include a gratuity charge built right into the bill. If this is the case, you do not need to give any additional tip on your wedding day.
  • Tips were designed to show appreciation for a job well done. If you feel that any one of the vendors that do not typically get tipped did an outstanding job, feel free to tip them as well.
  • The bride and groom should never be in charge of tipping on your wedding day. Assign this task to a parent or responsible attendant.
  • Tips should be given towards the end of the evening. You need to make sure that there is a job well done before you hand out that reward.

October 28, 2007

Just Flat Out Cool!

Bridal magazines are stuffed with ad's for bridesmaids dresses. After awhile, you get numb to them and barely notice, because they are all so similar. Check out this website: www.lynnlugobridal.com. This designer not only offers a fresh look at the bridesmaids dress, but lets you custom make your dress with an awesome online tool. You choose the silhouette, colors, fabrics, and details.

Consider using different shades of color and complimentary colors when choosing your gowns. Having more than one color adds tons of interest and makes for great photos! It also keeps you away from everything being too "matchy-matchy" and gives you more freedom is using color throughout the rest of your wedding.