I made the decision to change my wedding planning forms

DJ Ricky B

DJ Extraordinaire
Mar 9, 2015
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With many traditions being left in the past these days, and the trend over the past 5 years to be more simple in terms of time line, and things going on during the reception I have decided to change my planning form. The planning form is going to be shorter.

I havenoticed that Garter Tosses don't happen any more in my service area. Generally speaking, I think I have witnessed 5 garter removal and tosses in the last 5 years. About 1 per year is what it comes out to, and talking with today's brides/grooms, it seems they all hate that tradition more than any of the others. Also, bouquet toss is being left in the past by the overwhelming majority of brides as well. They don't want to single out the single ladies on the dance floor is what I am hearing. It's defenitely a Millinial idea to not bother with a bouquet toss at their wedding.

I also have other questions such as wether they want to do a Dollar or "Apron" Dance. ...This is more of a family/regional/ethnic tradition. ...Last year I did 1 single dollar dance. The year before that...I think I did 1 as well. Year before that may have been 2. ...It really only seems to be if one or both of the families were either Polish, or of Phillipino decent that I get couples wanting to do the dollar/apron dance. I figure that if my clients want a dollar dance done, they will just let me know. No need to ask the question on my form any more.

Another question I am considering gettig rid of: Cake Cutting Song Selection. ....I have noticed that in the last 3 years, I have had TWO client choose a song for thier cake cutting. Also, only about 70% of the weddings I am doing seem to even have a cake cutting any more. Most still do, but It seems some couples are throwing the cake cutting out the door as well and I am seeing this becoming the next trend. Some just have cup cakes, or another alternate instead of a cake. I will still leave the Cake Cutting question on my form, but take away their ability to choose a song for this. If they want to have a specific song for it, I feel they will just let me know.

Basically, my planning form is becoming shorter.
 
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djtaso

DJ Extraordinaire
Apr 4, 2017
4,834
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NJ
www.djtaso.com
With many traditions being left in the past these days, and the trend over the past 5 years to be more simple in terms of time line, and things going on during the reception I have decided to change my planning form. The planning form is going to be shorter.

I havenoticed that Garter Tosses don't happen any more in my service area. Generally speaking, I think I have witnessed 5 garter removal and tosses in the last 5 years. About 1 per year is what it comes out to, and talking with today's brides/grooms, it seems they all hate that tradition more than any of the others. Also, bouquet toss is being left in the past by the overwhelming majority of brides as well. They don't want to single out the single ladies on the dance floor is what I am hearing. It's defenitely a Millinial idea to not bother with a bouquet toss at their wedding.

I also have other questions such as wether they want to do a Dollar or "Apron" Dance. ...This is more of a family/regional/ethnic tradition. ...Last year I did 1 single dollar dance. The year before that...I think I did 1 as well. Year before that may have been 2. ...It really only seems to be if one or both of the families were either Polish, or of Phillipino decent that I get couples wanting to do the dollar/apron dance. I figure that if my clients want a dollar dance done, they will just let me know. No need to ask the question on my form any more.

Another question I am considering gettig rid of: Cake Cutting Song Selection. ....I have noticed that in the last 3 years, I have had TWO client choose a song for thier cake cutting. Also, only about 70% of the weddings I am doing seem to even have a cake cutting any more. Most still do, but It seems some couples are throwing the cake cutting out the door as well and I am seeing this becoming the next trend. Some just have cup cakes, or another alternate instead of a cake. I will still leave the Cake Cutting question on my form, but take away their ability to choose a song for this. If they want to have a specific song for it, I feel they will just let me know.

Basically, my planning form is becoming shorter.
Often the more elegant the wedding the more formal it is and with that come formalities. The more “party” focused weddings cut down as much as possible.
 
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DJ Ricky B

DJ Extraordinaire
Mar 9, 2015
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Often the more elegant the wedding the more formal it is and with that come formalities. The more “party” focused weddings cut down as much as possible.
People are becoming less and less Formal. Even talking with the wedding planner for this Sunday's wedding, she told me that she did away with all the questions regarding bouquet, and garter toss about 4 years ago. She said she has had 1 wedding in the last 2 years where they did a bouquet toss, and she can't even remember the last time she had a wedding with a garter toss in it.

My wedding on June 1st is at a expensive downtown D.C. venue. ...There is not even a first dance! Bride and Groom do not want to do a first dance. They are cutting their cake during the cocktail hour. I am not even announcing them in since they are joining the party during cocktail hour themselves. There is nothing involved during the reception. They just want a fun dance party.

I noticed that the only weddings I have done with a garter toss involved in the last 5 years were essentially weddings where the majority of the audience were more Country folk, and I ended up playing a good amount of country music OR they were way more ethnic involved. I did a brazilian wedding a couple years ago where they wanted the garter toss for examply.

The Urban/Suburban weddings have generally done away with most of the "formalities" ...It seems there are still speeches, and toasts, and 95% of the time a bridal party introduction.
 
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steve149

Veni, Vidi, Lusi
Staff member
Sep 26, 2011
34,530
Prospect, CT
Maybe leave a line for "Special Dances / Activities" so it becomes a simple conversation .. otherwise you might get some who want it but "forget" about until the day before. No need for separate lines, but one "other" heap (throws, shoe game, dollar dance, etc, etc) might still make sense.
 

DJ Ricky B

DJ Extraordinaire
Mar 9, 2015
3,945
37
Maybe leave a line for "Special Dances / Activities" so it becomes a simple conversation .. otherwise you might get some who want it but "forget" about until the day before. No need for separate lines, but one "other" heap (throws, shoe game, dollar dance, etc, etc) might still make sense.
Good suggestion Steve. I will add a line "Any other activities you would like to do?
 

djcrazychris

DJ Extraordinaire
Jun 12, 2018
3,410
46
Maybe leave a line for "Special Dances / Activities" so it becomes a simple conversation .. otherwise you might get some who want it but "forget" about until the day before. No need for separate lines, but one "other" heap (throws, shoe game, dollar dance, etc, etc) might still make sense.
yeah...this is what i do...i leave ample space...several lines open for any Activities/skits/Games and ask for a short description so that i make sure we are on the same page and thinking of the same thing...i always follow up with a more in depth convo about the chosen activities later... but its nice to have them in writing to transfer to the final Time line

if you choose their activities for them... they may just assume you are going to do them and not officially let you know...which could lead to confusion...

allowing them to specifically choose and describe their choices insures that everyone is on the same page

cc
 

Cap Capello

Always @ Ur Service
Dec 14, 2006
3,146
75
Saratoga, NY
www.imadj.com
My personal opinion is to keep your wedding planner as in-depth and comprehensive as possible for several reasons.

1) By having the couple fill-in the blanks, circle the YES's and NO's, including way old crap like a Dollar Dance, etc, it will act as a blindside and pooh shield when some higher up family member asks you to do something the B&G have clearly indicated as a NO (e.g. bride's sister insists you do a dollar dance when they've already said no.) Show her the form. Done.

2) The more comprehensive the form, the fewer questions you might be asked before the event, or worse yet, to hear during or after the event,
Them. "You never told me about that!"

3) Some questions on the Planner, if discussed at an initial pre-contract meeting, can clearly demonstrate your experience, concern, and forethought.

a) One example on my form is asking for the cell number of their limo or transport driver. Not the business number... the cell phone number of the actual person driving. Why? If the couple should be at the venue at 5:00, it's now 5:30 and they haven't arrived yet, I'd be calling that cell phone number and finding out what the delay is. Then I'd tell the banquet people the results so they don't overcook the friggin chicken.
Them. "You really do all that?"
Me. "Yes, I do. It's all about your day and keeping it perfect."

b) Another is what is their favorite alcoholic beverage. A chance for levity.
Me. "If I see you both coming into the venue totally stressed, I'll get you both your favorite toddy and make you down it in front of me."
Us. "Ha ha ha," and so on.

My Planner is 7 pages long, with 2 more pages of instruction and suggestion. What's the cost of emailing a .pdf?

So if you're looking for separation from the local herd of humdrum jocks, your insightful and comprehensive planner can clearly exemplify just how crafty and professional you are without having to boast. It's in writing. Oh, and it's a GREAT selling point during that pre-contract opportunity to shine like a beacon of intelligence and customer service exemplified.
 
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Bob Kreider

DJ Extraordinaire
Feb 12, 2016
149
Kennewick WA
In my servicing area, the traditional bouquet and garter are still most common and the cake cutting has never dwindled. I have a place to check for a money dance and anniversary dance. The money dance is becoming less frequent.

But it is easier to allow the client to choose to or not do by using a simple check. I probably wouldn't remove these.

I have a line to note the bride/groom dance and any parent dances they may be doing.

I've never had a space to designate any activities/shoe game etc. These items are seldom and my experience is the couple will just tell me and I'll prepare for them.

My planner sheet is only two pages long.....I can't envision needing seven pages.
 

Cap Capello

Always @ Ur Service
Dec 14, 2006
3,146
75
Saratoga, NY
www.imadj.com
Let me see if I can't help your vision, although I do recognize it is lengthy.

Before you might decide to get a little critical, allow me to add that when a woman decides to marry and begins making plans for her day, it is engulphing her very being and she loves the attention from anyone who will listen but most importantly by her chosen vendors. The more questions asked, the deeper the emotional connection and the trust level rises accordingly.

How much of the information will be used? That all depends on the creativity of the one possessing that information.
 

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DJ Ricky B

DJ Extraordinaire
Mar 9, 2015
3,945
37
One thing I noticed is that once I was working in the $1,000+ price range with weddings, the instances where a garter toss occured at a wedding decreased dramatically. Now that could be because of the change in trends, but it could also be at least in part because the higher paying clientelle generally frowns upon the tradition of the Garter Toss. ...The last wedding I did that had a garter toss involved was a low price local booking at an Elks Lodge 6 minutes from my house.

When it comes to DC area weddings, the last garter toss I saw at a wedding was at a wedding where the groom's family was from Argentina or Brazil (Can't remember)...And it was a big tradition in his family so they did the garter. That was a $1,250 wedding in DC. I think with all the other's booked above $1,000 I think I may have had 1 other garter toss. Back when I was booking $450 to $800 weddings YEARS ago, I generally The Garter toss occured more than half the time...but that was also before these new trends of doing away with wedding traditions came about too.

With the Dollar Dance, I don't recommend that people do that unless their families do it out of tradition at weddings (Polish, and Philippino). I did a couple dollar dances that were complete failures. None of their guests wanted to participate and pay to dance with the bride/groom. It was cut short, and I"m pretty sure because A. Their guets were cheap, and B. It was not a tradition in their families. Brde/groom were just trying to get some more honey moon money.

I don't even like dollar dances to be honest...unless they have some Polka involved and the elder guests but out with some serious dance moves and put on a show!

In my area, I am beginning to believe that the clientelle I serve generally wants no part of a dollar dance, or garter toss. Bouquet toss is still possible and totally legit to do in my book, but it's become unlikely that my couples want to do it with the under 34 age crowd wanting to throw traditions in the gutter.
 
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Jas

DJ Extraordinaire
May 22, 2013
1,822
Yes, I need to add more to mine because there are several questions I always end up with at the final meeting. From my experience younger couples are more apt to go for Bouquet/garter or dollar dance. Couples in the upper 20s/30s have been to more weddings and are more likely to cut out that stuff so they can get to general dancing sooner.

Anyway, those filling out planners can always leave some questions blank or circle No.

Hats off to Cap (pun just happened). That's the most comprehensive questionaire I've seen for a reception planner. Great way to really get to know your clients with usable info.
 

Jeff Romard

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 4, 2006
12,717
49
Sydney, Nova Scotia
In my area, I am beginning to believe that the clientelle I serve generally wants no part of a dollar dance, or garter toss. Bouquet toss is still possible and totally legit to do in my book, but it's become unlikely that my couples want to do it with the under 34 age crowd wanting to throw traditions in the gutter.
While that may be true why take the option away. Being comprehensive creates an image of excellence
 

DJ Ricky B

DJ Extraordinaire
Mar 9, 2015
3,945
37
While that may be true why take the option away. Being comprehensive creates an image of excellence
I'm not taking the option away. I'm simply consolidating the form, and cutting down on those questions. It will be one single question for additional activities (Bouquet Toss, Garter Toss, Dollar Dance, etc. ) with some space for them to go into any details. I would just discuss it with them after that.
 

sawdust123

DJ Extraordinaire
Nov 10, 2006
317
56
Ventura County, CA
Every bride wants their special day to be unique. Perhaps many are realizing that you can't be that unique by following a cookie-cutter format. It is like the law of entropy a work. A system left on its own will move towards greater randomness.

Pomp and circumstance has definitely taken a back seat in today's society. This may be due partly to the economy. Formality seems to appeal to the more affluent and young couples today are dealing with crushing student debt and low starting wages. They probably don't feel too affluent. Mind you, this is only a hypothesis.
 

djtaso

DJ Extraordinaire
Apr 4, 2017
4,834
32
NJ
www.djtaso.com
use dj event planner... i also "tried" intelligence... but this was about 4 yrs ago, and at that time i really did not like many of its features, or what i considered lack-thereof compared to event planner... again this was in 2015... not sure if intelligence has changed. Eventplanner has had significant upgrades, especially in the reports aspect, which is extremely important to me as it helps me set and reach my goals year after year.
 
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