Our wedding was ridiculously DIY, and that’s how we wanted it. We both were all about doing it ourselves, if we thought we could. And we did many of our wedding details completely right, like our bouquets or our homemade jam favors, or our wedding cake. But some we wish we had hired a professional to do, because we couldn’t ‘DIY’ them as easily as we thought…
1. The music
We figured how how hard could it be? Just gather some songs, make a playlist, plug in an iPod, and press play. Done. Ohhhhhh that’s so, so wrong. I have so much respect for DJs and wedding entertainment… Whoever you hire sets the mood for the reception.. and we didn’t have anyone. I mean, that didn’t stop us from tearing up the dance floor. But it definitely isn’t advised to try this on your own. Hiring a professional.. and a good one at that.. it will be money well spent.
One of our favorite DJ’s we have worked with before!
We still tore it up on the dance floor, for 4 minutes at a time, then had to figure out what to play next…
2. Trying to be our own Day of Coordinator
We had been to quite a few weddings, and I am pretty detail oriented when it comes to planning.. so I figured we had it all taken care of. But hiring someone to help with planning, and hiring a person to be there to run your day, is very different. We were FOOLS to think we could handle it all on our own. We even sat down with a day of coordinator, but waited too long to book them, so they were no longer available for our date. We took that as a sign we could just do it on our own. In reality, good day of coordinators are golden. They are little fairies that run around, and put out fires, and keep everyone on schedule, and make sure everything goes as planned. You want, and need a little fairy on your wedding day. Hire a Day of Coordinator! We know some amazingggg ones, so ask if you need a recommendation!
3. Figuring out our own power
We got married on a barn that did not have any power. We toyed with renting a generator, but instead, we decided to run some really long extension cords from the building near the barn. The problem with this is we were drawing almost all of our power from one outlet box, so every strand of light we plugged in got a little dimmer than before, and left us with limited options. If you are getting married somewhere without access to plenty of electricity, look at getting a quiet generator. They are not that expensive to rent, and it will give you the flexibility of having all the lighting you want, a professional DJ, and yet wont disturb your wedding ambiance with the sound of a motor running.
4. Sound at our ceremony
If the date October 27th, 2012 doesn’t sound familiar, let me remind you of hurricane Sandy. Yes, we got married on the weekend of hurricane Sandy. And though we didn’t get hit severely, we did have a lot of wind during our outdoor ceremony. Knowing we invited over 300 people meant we would have a large crowd, and we wanted people to hear us commit ourselves to one another. We had a mic, with a small wireless portable speaker, but it just couldn’t compete with the wind, and the connection was constantly interrupted. Our officiant had to start yelling quite a bit, to make up for it.
5. The DIY photobooth
This one isn’t quiet as big, but we had a computer set up and a cute little backdrop to create our own photobooth. But I REALLY wish we had splurged for a real booth. Those big booths that print out strips of goofy photos of the most loved people in your life are my favorite thing.. and we were crazy to think we could recreate that on a budget. These booths make for the perfect guestbook, or wedding favor, and they are always a hit! We had several people use ours but the photos were quite dark without a flash, and eventually our computer ran out of juice, and as you have read above, we didn’t have a lot of access to power.
A special thanks to Katelyn James
for some of these photos of our own wedding!