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Gay Weddings

Nervous and Ready

We're getting married in July of 2010 and helpfull hits are welcomed new tothe site

Re: Nervous and Ready

  • alisonzalisonz member
    100 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Welcome!Can you tell us more about yourself? Where are you getting married?

    alison + irene | 10-10-10 | Studio 450

    My Big Fat Gay Wedding

    Pro Photos
  • edited December 2011
    My husband and I had our wedding October 10, 2009 and it was the best! The most important thing to remember is that it is your wedding not anyone else's. Make the ceremony about you and not about the "fairy tale" you see in movies... unless it is what you want. We found that wedding planning can be like dominoes, you find one vendor and it can lead you to many others. Here are my 7 tips based on our experience just to start you off and not overwhelm you: 1. Go into this process with confidence. Regardless whether you are gay or not, this is about your day whether legal or not. We had our wedding in Rehoboth, DE and ended up with only one bad experience with a vendor. Evaluate gay vendors first since you want to have vendors - especially photographers and videographers - who have no issue working with gay couples in the first place. If you don't like their work, its cool but always ask them about other vendors too so you hear about new people or confirm your own feelings/information about them. Don't be afraid, you are spending money and they want that business... make them earn it but make sure they deserve it too. Also, honor yourself by talking about what you are doing with people. It makes you both feel good that you love each other enough to do this. 1. Planning is a part time job. Work with your partner to set up a budget and decide if you are going to need to hire a planner to keep it all together either through the whole process, mid-way or just the day of. The banquet manager of the location you pick may be a surrogate at least for your reception. 2. Budgeting is about tough choices but it is also about knowing what you are committed to spending and reaching that goal. Sometimes making the goal and telling your guests that its all paid for before it began is the best gift to yourself. We began formal planning of ours in October 2008 and by October 2009 we had a $30K wedding and honeymoon paid for by October 30 completely. Plan and save toward goals, the vendors will work with you, they want to get paid. Photographers will mainly have you make the last payment several months after the ceremony since they won't be done until then.3. Have your ceremony and reception in the same place. We saved so much time having it in a restaurant that had a beautiful view of the bay and a beach on the back. This saved so much time between switching between the ceremony and reception. Your guests can go right into the cocktail hour and you don't have to go far with the photos after the ceremony. Not always a keen idea but it allowed our event to be about 6 hours uninterrupted. You probably have selected the place since your mentioned a date but this is still good advice. ;-)4. Streamline your budget of things that don't really do anything but add cost. Focus on what will make they day memorable to you and your guests and those things that will remind you for 50 years later. Our vendors were the location, caterer, rehearsal dinner, DJ, photographer, videographer, and cake. The location and caterer were combined and our largest expense but this is your core expense. A wedding can sink our swim as an event on this alone so choose wisely. You don't want people moaning about how bad the food was... we still have people talking about the food wedding weekend and its already been a month! A photographer is not something to scrimp on. This should be the next highest cost. You want that wedding album and depending on a amateur photographer who is a friend is not the way to go and save money. Spend it, you want memories that sparkle not ones that look like something you wouldn't look at years from now. Flowers is something that can add huge cost. We decided on a Hawaiian/Polynesian theme for our wedding but it was subtle with only leis for us and flowers for our parents. It was appropriate and only cost about $400. I would just limit flowers to you and a close # of people like your parents or wedding party and you'll save a bundle. The videographer was our extravagance; but in the end we will have those memories to watch over and over. It is not something you must have but even though I was against it at first, I am glad in the end that we did it. 5. Plan a honeymoon or at least give yourself a few days off after the wedding to let it set in. My first thought the day after was do I shower with the ring on or take it off? LOL! Enjoy each other and continue the celebration for at least a few days more. 6. Online invitation vendors are sometimes worth the time. Ours worked with us online (PoshBetty) to come up with an invitation that was post-modern and it helped us theme the rest of our materials as we went along. The desktop publishing and FedEx Kinkos helped us save money on printing after the initial professional invitation outlay. 7. Keep your guests - once you get the list - informed. Email or a blog can really get them excited but most importantly when they ask a question its a simple referral to the site. Feel free to ask anything after this. This can and is a fun experience even though you feel exhausted after and you will fight over stupid things like favors or thank you notes.
  • edited December 2011
    Ok Its 8 tips...I got a little excited here... LOL!
  • edited December 2011
    Welcome! *McFreed* thanks for posting those tips, they were really helpful.
  • 2dBride2dBride member
    2500 Comments Fourth Anniversary 5 Love Its Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    My wedding was also very recent.  I would agree that about 99% of what you'll need to know is generic to all weddings, and only about 1% is specific to same-sex weddings.  So while you are of course welcome here, don't limit yourself to the Gay Weddings board--check out your local board (or the local boards for where you live and where you are getting married, if different), month club board, and topic boards that are of interest to you.

    We had no problems at all with vendors due to our being a same-sex couple.  And that was true even in situations in which we feared difficulties.  For example, we went to a tiny shop in Occoquan, VA to get our dresses.  It was clear that the consultant had never dealt with a same-sex couple before.  However, it took her about one second to figure out that same-sex couple=possibility of selling two wedding dresses, and then we had her full attention.  She helped us to find both dresses and veils that were coordinating.  Similarly, we ordered kippot (yarmulkes) from an Orthodox Jewish seller.  We got no grief at all when we asked that the inside be inscribed with the names of two women.

    The best advice I can give you is that whenever you find yourself asking, "Do we have to...?", assume the answer is no.  If you want the marriage to be legally recognized, you'll obviously have to go to one of the states where that is possible, and follow its rules.  However, even then, you could have anything from a huge wedding to a brief ceremony with a JOP in the other state. 

    And whether or not you're concerned about it being legally recognized, you can have whatever ceremony or party you want back home.  We ended up with a tiny ceremony for family and close friends in Massachusetts, followed by a big evening reception with food, dancing, a DIY "photobooth," and an open bar back home.  But you could do anything from cake and punch on up, depending on your tastes and your budget.

    Since I notice you are in Maryland, some specific Maryland advice:  You can get an affidavit of domestic partnership at this link.  Even though Maryland does not recognize same-sex marriage, completing this affidavit will give you at least the limited legal protections available here to same-sex couples.In addition, the Maryland Attorney General is currently preparing an opinion on whether same-sex marriage recognized elsewhere should be recognized in Maryland.  As you probably know, DC and NY have been able to recognize same-sex marriages from elsewhere, even without legislation that would allow same-sex marriages to be celebrated there.
  • edited December 2011
    Hi sorry it took so long to get back to youy congrats on your big day well I have 105days to go and yes Im going crazy. We are doing it in Washington and then we are have a huge party on the 24th 0f July. Im 38 amd myt partner she is 41 perfect age We are still trying to make and meet some new friends even though we are fron Baltimore, I have two grils 20,16, so no mo kids from me,and she has none and dont want any lmao......., well I hope to hear fron you soon and again sorry it took so lond, and there nothing wrong with being a BRIDAZELAWink  
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