Let them eat…anything but cake!

Let’s be honest here. Some people – including brides and grooms – just don’t like cake. Fortunately, people are getting used to the idea that a wedding cake – no matter how traditional – it no longer mandatory. Here are some great alternatives that we’ve seen. Get inspired!


Photo by Jonathunder via Wikimedia

You don’t need a campfire to make everybody’s favorite summer treat. S’mores bars are an up and coming trend, with button burners, gourmet marshmallows and a variety of chocolate-based candy so your guests can create their own unique dessert.

Breakfast Treats

No matter what time of day you marry, you can make serve your favorite breakfast confections. We’ve seen crepes, donuts, Danish, cinnamon rolls and even Rice Krispie treats stacked into tiers and crowned with a traditional cake topper.

Perfect Pies

If you’ve got a local baker who excels at pies, why not? You can select a wide variety of fruit and cream pies to please every guest.

Sweet Treats

Candy buffets are fun and completely customizable. Load up on the happy couple’s favorite sweets and provide little cups, boxes or decorative waxed paper rolled into cones for the guests to make their own cornucopias of confection.

Ethnic Delectables

Using the traditional treats from your family heritage can add a special nod to your grandparents and older relatives. Czech kolaches…Italian cannolis…African mandazi…French macarons…Japanese dangos…Filipino pitsi-pitsi…Mexican churros…There are as many options as nations!

Cake with a Twist

“Naked” cakes with minimal frosting,upscale cupcakes, gourmet petit fors, or cheesecake are good ways to have cake that isn’t exactly cake.

Whatever you decide, let your choice reflect your tastes and personalities, and you can’t go wrong.

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Sensational seating solutions

Out of everything on that long wedding to-do list, nothing seems to stress out more brides, grooms, or their parents than the dreaded reception seating arrangements.

There always seems to be the odd chair left over at one table and another one at that table. There’s the troublesome distant relative or two who can’t get along with any family members. There are the work friends who only know you and each other, and the college friends whose break-up still stings enough that they are best placed on opposite sides of the room. Then the big question: where shall the newlyweds sit?

We may not have a magic wand, but we do have some suggestions that can help you get through this with a little less hassle.

  1. Opt for family seating. Put up one long table for each of you, another for mutual friends, and two smaller tables to accommodate each of your co-workers. If your dad can’t stand your mother’s great-aunt, they can be seated far enough apart to make conversation impossible.
  2. Use a mix of tables. Most reception venues have circular, rectangular and square tables. Rectangular tables make the best use of space, but square tables allow for smaller groups (and fewer personality clashes). Meanwhile, circular tables are great for an odd number of guests because everybody can be evenly spaced without awkwardness. A combination of all of the above is much easier than forcing yourself to have ten people to a table.
  3. Assign tables but not seats. You needn’t fuss about whether Cousin Jerry should be on Grandpa’s left or Grandma’s right. Just give your guests table numbers and let them decide for themselves who sits next to whom.
  4. Skip the seating chart altogether. No, really! If you have fewer than 100 guests, just skip it. You’ve invited grown-ups – they are perfectly capable of choosing their own tables. Simply ask the reception hall to set up for ten extra seats so nobody is left looking for a place to sit.
  5. Go clubbing. If you’re not having a formal dinner or buffet, but opting for finger foods, brunch, cocktails and hors d’oeurves, etc., work with your reception hall to arrange club seating instead of traditional tables. A combination of high tables, sofas with cocktail tables, club chairs and the like make for a cozy setting where nobody has to feel tied to a chair.
  6. Mix & match your guests. If you’re really having trouble figuring out how to seat your family members without stirring up old feuds, try mixing everybody up from both sides and matching them according to common interests. Those college pals who love to hunt and fish are apt to be a good fit with family members who do the same. Your coworker and her husband who love old movies will surely find something to talk about with your TCM-addicted aunt and uncle. Just be sure to indicate their shared interests with trivia cards or other conversation starters.
  7. Center yourselves. Whether you have a sweetheart table for just the two of you or a “head” table with your wedding party, or a family table with your parents and sibling, make sure your table is in the middle of the reception room, so it’s easier for you to see as many people as possible.

    We have more reception planning ideas saved on our Reception Planning Pinterest board.

This entry was tagged ##completewedding, #assigned seating, #bride, #Complete, #Complete DJ, #Complete Music, #Complete Wedding & Events, #Complete Weddings + Event, #Complete Weddings + Events, #Complete Weddings and Events, #dance, #dj, #groom, #ideas, #Nebraska, #photography, #planning, #reception, #reception lighting, #seating arrangement, #wedding planning, #Wedding Reception. Bookmark the permalink.

It’s all about you…both of you.

Many brides start dreaming of their wedding well before they are actually engaged. Sometimes, they’ve been thinking about their wedding since they were little girls. Guys? Not so much.

In our culture, wedding planning is almost always a bride’s task. Truth be told, there are plenty of guys who are happy to stay out of it, either because he honestly has no preference about wedding details…or because he is willing to defer to his fiancé’s stronger feelings about colors, décor, themes and so on. There are also grooms who have very strong feelings about certain things – or everything! – and brides who are less than thrilled with the tasks of wedding planning.

Your wedding, however, is about you as a couple. Grooms can and should have some input. Here are a few tips for turning “my big day” into “our big day.”

1. Make a list. Each of you should identify the ten most important and five least important aspects of your wedding and reception. Almost always, what’s least important to one of you will be on the other’s most important list, and that makes it easy to let the other person make the final decision on those items. Where both of you agree on “most important” items, commit to thorough discussion and compromise. If you both agree something is “least important” – aisle runner or unity candle or tossing the bouquet and garter – maybe you should just axe those items from your wedding altogether.

2. Make a budget. Sometimes, engaged couples have differing ideas on acceptable costs for things like wedding clothing, reception food, flowers and so on. Using the priority lists you just made, set an expenditure range and total budget that is acceptable to you…and your family members who have offered to help pay for your wedding.

3. Talk about family traditions early in the process. His family might have important cultural or religious customs that he can’t imagine marrying without, but she’s never even heard of before. Her family may have always had pot luck receptions, something his family would never understand. It’s important to accommodate both families as well as both spouses-to-be.

4. Look for ways to showcase yourselves as a couple. Rather than the colors being her favorites, pick one of hers and one of his (third and fourth colors are also becoming more common). If those mason jars and burlap centerpieces are “so her,” and he’s rarely seen without a plaid shirt, add plaid ribbon to make his style part of it.

5. Commit to being politely honest. Don’t start your marriage being too afraid to say you don’t like what your spouse-to-be seems to love. But be respectful in your disagreement. If she picks a color that he can’t stand, he needs to feel comfortable saying, “Could we come up with another option than chartreuse? It’s just not a color I like.” If he is opting for the most expensive items the caterer has to offer, she should be able to say, “That would be great if we had a bigger budget, but we should choose a more balanced menu.”

This entry was tagged ##completewedding, #bride, #Complete, #Complete DJ, #Complete Music, #Complete Wedding & Events, #Complete Weddings + Event, #Complete Weddings + Events, #Complete Weddings and Events, #dance, #dj, #groom, #photography, #reception, #reception lighting, #wedding, #wedding planning, #Wedding Reception. Bookmark the permalink.