As a wedding planner, I love to focus on the overall guest experience. I love to help my couples reimagine all of the pieces of their wedding day and ignite each of their guests’ five senses in every moment. How can we design your wedding day in such a way that your guests leave knowing more about you and your new spouse? How can you embrace your role as both the host to your closest family and friends, and the honoured guest on your wedding day? Creating memorable experiences is my deepest heart work and today, I want to share just a few unique wedding ideas that will leave your guests in awe of your love for each other (and the care you took to plan your wedding day).
Don’t worry, I know that this might sound overwhelming and you don’t want to do all of this alone. You can learn more about my process and my different levels of wedding planning services here. I only work with a limited amount of couples each year, and I give my whole heart to each one. If you are ready to start planning your own wedding in Ottawa or Prince Edward County, let’s connect here.
Serve Welcome Cocktails or Champagne as Guests Arrive to the Ceremony
You know that precious feeling when you arrive at a dinner party and they are ready and excited to greet you? Isn’t that the best feeling? I love encouraging my couples to serve welcome cocktails or champagne as guests start to arrive. We want them to know we have been anxiously awaiting their arrival and we appreciate them joining us to celebrate your love story. It creates an incredible first impression. As an added benefit, any time your guests taste your signature cocktail again, they will be reminded of your wedding day.
Create a Unique Cocktail Hour and Reception Layout
When you choose a more traditional venue, it’s easy to get caught up in a traditional layout. High tables for cocktail hour, and rounds of 8 for the reception. That’s often why I love to work with stunning outdoor wedding venues like private estates and mansion wedding venues. I prefer to build floor plans from scratch.
Regardless of what your floor plan looks like, I always recommend you maximize the use of the entire cocktail hour and reception space. Instead of only offering high tables at cocktail hour, set up lounge areas with comfortable furniture that encourages conversation. You can also add elements like mobile bars which not only add to the decor but also add to the experience. Mobile bars can be a great conversation starter and place for guests to linger and connect with one another.
Have Wait Staff Serve Passed Hors d’oeuvres
I love an appetizer stand as much as the next person but if you want to surprise and delight your guests, spring for passed hors d’oeuvres instead. As a wedding planner, I have seen too many appetizer tables go untouched. Or worse, left unattended for too long and left in rough shape (unappetizing!). I know that’s not what you envisioned when your caterer suggested charcuterie (or something equally luxe) during cocktail hour. When you have wait staff circulating during your cocktail hour, your guests can enjoy the food you’ve chosen for them without missing a second of delightful conversation between them.
Give each guest a welcome basket
Welcome baskets are traditionally only given to out of town guests. But, if you really want to wow your guests, why not create something special for each guest. As a Prince Edward County wedding planner, I love to recommend ways to share our beautiful destination with your guests. Prince Edward County is definitely a food and wine destination so things like local honey or jams are a great addition. Local favours give your guests a piece of the destination to take home with them.
Leave each guest a personalized thank you card and favour at their place setting
Not every special touch needs to come with a high price tag. I can’t even begin to tell you the impact of a personalized thank you card at each place setting. I always believe that some of the best moments are ones that are deeply personal. If you have spent any time reading my about page, you already know I’m a romantic at heart. I really believe that connection is at the core of everything. And as a self-proclaimed bookworm, I believe that there is something so incredibly powerful about the written word. Even if you aren’t a natural wordsmith, writing a personalized note to each guest leaves a lasting impression.
Unique Wedding Ideas from a Prince Edward County Wedding Planner
These ideas are honestly just a taste of the unique wedding ideas and incredible experiences we can create for your guests (and YOU) on your wedding day. Don’t get me wrong, you are always at the centre of every wedding day plan we create together. But after working with countless beautiful souls, I know how highly you value your family and friends. It would bring me such joy to help you plan (and bring to life) such an extraordinary and deeply personal wedding day. If you are ready to get started, let’s connect here.
Photography: Sugar and Soul Photography
Planning: Baillie-David & Company
Coordination: Prairie Sky Events
Tent: D’Lite Tent & Event
Caterer: Chew Catering
Linen and Décor: Simply Perfect Decor
Florist: Oak & Lily
Makeup: The Artist Groupe
Hair: Hair by Lisa Nicole
Furniture: The Vintage Nest Rental Co.
Dress: Stella’s Bridal
Suit: Eph Apparel
Signs: Blake Creative Co.