You've got the dress, the rings, and decided a day for your event. But now comes the most challenging part: planning an unforgettable wedding reception that will leave your guests talking about it for years to come.
Planning a wedding reception can be stressful with so many details to think about – from cocktail hour appetizers to centerpieces on the table. How will you keep your guests entertained? What type of food should you serve? Who will host it? But don't let wedding preparation stress get you down—after all, it's your big day!
So instead of worrying about what to do for your wedding day, use this no-stress guide and have the perfect event.
From choosing a venue and catering team to set up a DIY photo booth, we'll help you easily plan every detail.
The best way to get ready for your wedding is to grab some friends and go on vacation.
You'll find that you have a ton of fun, meet new people, and will be able to relax and focus on the big day without having to worry about how much you've been stressing about it.
Choose the Right Venue
Whether you decide to host your wedding reception at a restaurant or hotel, you first have to go through many options. But before you make your final decision, there are a few essential factors to remember.
First, decide whether you want to host your reception during the day or in the evening. Daytime receptions are typically less expensive, as you don't have to pay for utilities like extra lighting, heating, and air conditioning.
On the other hand, evening receptions can be more expensive and complicated, especially if you live in a city or have a ton of out-of-town guests. Secondly, decide how many guests you want to invite to your wedding reception. This will help you figure out how much space you'll need.
Also, remember that couples should sit at the head table, even if they're not hosting the whole reception.
The Perfect Music
We all know that the most fun thing at a wedding is the music—not just because it makes you feel good when dancing around with your loved one.
It's also important because it sets the tone for your reception, so if you want people to have fun and enjoy themselves, choosing songs that fit the vibe of your wedding is a must.
Hire a Catering Company
If you're planning to hire a catering company for your wedding reception, you're in luck – there are tons of great options to choose from, like Asian-inspired fare, barbecue, and even pizza!
But before you pick a catering company, make sure you've considered all the details, such as their hours of service, the types of food they serve, and whether they offer custom menus.
When hiring a catering company, ensure they have the proper safety certifications and a stock of disposable plates or plastic dinner plates, cutlery, and glasses. You should also check to see if they're licensed to serve alcohol and if they offer a wedding coordinator.
Decide on the Menu
Are you craving Italian food or steaks and seafood? Or do you have a craving for something totally different?
The sky is the limit as long as your caterer can fulfill your craving. Still, you should keep a few things in mind when deciding on your wedding reception menu.
First, consider your guests' dietary needs and preferences, such as vegan, gluten-free, and allergies. Next, consider your budget and timeline – how long will it take to serve each course? Finally, once you've picked a menu, ensure it's something your guests will love.
Which Formal Dinner Course To Serve?
You might already know if you want to serve a plated or a buffet-style meal, but if you're not sure which formal dinner course to be served on your plastic plates is suitable for your wedding reception, here's a breakdown of each one. Also, if you're serving a plated meal, take note of the order in which each course is served. This will help keep things running smoothly and ensure your guests get the right food at the right time.
Choosing an Entree
So now you've decided on your menu, but you're not sure which entree to choose. It can be a tough decision, but don't stress – there are many great options. Still, before picking an entree, consider the following: - How many people will you be serving? You don't want to serve a dish that isn't large enough to feed your guests. - What will your caterer be able to cook in an appropriate amount of time?
If you pick something that takes a long time to cook, your guests might not get fed in time. - What kind of food do you want to serve? You don't want to pick a dish that's too heavy or doesn't fit the rest of your menu.
Dessert and Snack Options
While appetizers and entrees are great, ensure you have a selection of desserts and snacks for your guests to munch on between courses.
Sweet table favors, like mini cupcakes, cookies, and mini pies, are perfect for guests to enjoy while waiting for dessert and coffee.
And don't forget to consider coffee and tea beverages, like coffee-flavored mini pies, coffee-flavored mini cupcakes, and iced coffee drinks.
The Final Decision
If you've been stressing out during this planning process, don't worry – you're allowed to change your mind. For example, maybe you were leaning towards a buffet-style reception, but now you've decided a plated meal is best. That's totally normal, and changing your mind is okay if you want to.
Your wedding day is about you, so make sure every detail is something you're happy with. After all, you only get to celebrate your wedding once – so make it memorable!