Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Tips from Preston Bailey...A Planner for the Celebrities

The celebrity planner offers his insights on how you can create your fantasy wedding Anne Chertoff

Preston Bailey has more than a few expert tips to share with brides and grooms. He was asked how a bride should begin creating her wedding theme and palette and some of his favorite budget-friendly ideas.

His first bit of wedding wisdom: Don't call it a theme, but rather your "wedding concept." Keep reading for more of Preston Bailey's top wedding-planning tips.

Preston says, "The first step in planning a wedding is determining how much money you have to spend. Once you have settled on your budget, decide what is the most important element to you—food, flowers, etc...—and invest more in that area."

After collecting wedding ideas from all over, it's important to narrow down your favorites and to choose your wedding colors and overall concept," advises Preston.

"If you are working with an event designer it is his job to make sense of all the inspiration you have gathered." When working with a bride, Preston will take all the information she has gathered and interpret it into three concepts for the couple to choose from. If you're not working with an event designer, here are three questions Preston suggests you ask yourself to help you create your wedding's look and feel:

1. Do you want a traditional or contemporary style?
2. What are your favorite colors?
3. What flowers do you not like?

Once you have answered these simple questions you can begin to get a general idea of what your wedding's color palette and concept will be.

Saving on flowers: "Don't be afraid to use silk or paper flowers in your arrangements. These flowers can be given away or saved after the wedding is over and will be less expensive than real blooms. You may also want to discuss with your florist the idea of incorporating fruit into your centerpieces which can either be enjoyed by your guests or donated."

"Don't be afraid to create an unusual flow to the event. For example, hand out wedding favors as guests enter instead of when they leave." Preston says, "Brides shouldn't be afraid to take the rules and twist them, surprising guests throughout the night."

Here are Preston's suggestions for a few ways you can save money on your wedding:

Serve a more casual buffet instead of a formal sit-down meal. A buffet-style meal will give your guests an opportunity to walk around.

• Hire a DJ instead of a 10-piece band
• Shop around for your dress
• Work with your baker to create an inventive wedding cake

Preston advises that it's really important that your vendors share their information with you so there are no surprises at the ceremony or reception. "A bride should trust the people she is working with and not micromanage her staff. And while she should plan every detail—including rain plans!—on the big day the bride should let it all go. She should enjoy her wedding and focus on the things that matter."

Preston's last bit of advice: "A wedding is a celebration, a moment of joy—don't ruin it by focusing on things that don't matter."

{Photos courtesy of Preston Bailey}