9 Ways To Have a More Gender-Neutral Wedding
Looking to host a gender-inclusive wedding? Here are a few things to think of when wedding-planning – from embracing a more gender-neutral lexicon to opening up the bouquet toss to everyone!
Most couples go into the process knowing about the big-ticket items: the venue, the dress, the cake, the music and floral arrangements. However, what they often don’t account for are those pesky hidden costs that sneak up on them when they least expect it. That’s why it’s important for you to understand where every dollar of your budget will go, and be prepared for what’s to come. Here, we’ll share a few costs that often take couples by surprise – amenities that make Flora a perfect one-stop-shop for your wedding needs.
Don’t underestimate the value of having on-site security personnel. Sometimes, guests can get rowdy, uninvited wedding crashers can let themselves in, frazzled family members can turn into hellraisers. A security person can diffuse conflict, stop outsiders from coming in and simply keep things running smoothly all night long.
It’s (understandably) hard to think about what happens after the party is over when you’re still in the throes of planning the actual celebration. Weddings are fun, but they’re also messy. Don’t rely on your family members to pitch in. You’ll need a cleaning crew to come in and get the job done. Flora has this service tucked neatly into its packages, but other venues might not – and this often means shelling out extra sums that could instead go toward your honeymoon.
Does your venue require any permits? Does it have noise restrictions? Some venues may have limitations that you’re not aware of, ones that may cost you a dollar or two. For example, if you’re hosting your party outdoors, some venues will have sound ordinances they’re required to follow, which means you’ll have to bid farewell to your late-night event under the stars.
Your guests will need somewhere to sit, and if you’re opting for a bare-bones venue, you’ll have to find furnishings on your own. It might seem like a simple thing, but when you also have dozens of other tasks on your wedding to-do list, this can easily turn into a tiresome chore. Rather than anguish over availability, delays and prices, go with a venue that takes care of furnishings for you.
This might be the least “hidden” expense on the list, but it’s not uncommon for couples to underestimate just how high decor costs can pile up and how much they can vary. Decor often includes everything from flowers and centerpieces. And don’t forget the labor costs of setting everything up. Luckily, Flora’s inviting space is already dressed up with lush greenery, antique mirrors, and chandelier-like, suspended botanicals. You’ll only need minimal touches here and there to personalize it.
In addition to decor, lighting can be a great way to set a mood and create the atmosphere you’ve always wanted for your dream wedding. Unfortunately, not all venue’s lighting systems are created equal. Most of the time, you’ll have to shell out an extra sum for venue, string, gobo and marquee lights as well as uplighting if you want to add those pops of color. Find a venue that’s already decked out in lighting that you can tailor to your preferences. Flora, for example, offers colored (RGB) lighting, pin-spots and dimmable ambient lighting, and its twinkling woodland lights lend the space a dreamy, fairytale-like ambiance.
Much like private security, an on-site manager is key to a smooth, no-fuss operation. On-site managers know the venue inside and out. They are able to step in and help answer any questions, manage cleaning and security, and oversee staff and guest safety. Ask your venue of choice if it offers an on-site manager as well as day-of coordinator, whose role is to stay in contact with vendors, take care of couples’ wedding-day needs, and make sure everything goes according to plan.
Oftentimes, delivery fees are not built into the total price – another charge to watch out for when you spring for outside vendors. Florists, furniture rental companies and bakeries all often charge a delivery fee and a service fee. Note that some rental companies will charge an additional fee for a shorter delivery window or for same-day pick up. Err on the side of caution, and ask for these details well ahead of time. They’ll come in handy.
If you plan on saving by scaling back the amount of hours you’ll book these services for, you might end up scraping that idea. Don’t forget that some vendors require you to spend a minimum amount to book their offerings. For example, if you’re hiring a cleaning service, inquire about the minimum number of hours you can use their services for. The more well-versed you are – and the more questions you ask – the better your experience will shape up to be.
Thinking of sharing adorable childhood photographs? Having the person of honor give a speech? You’ll need tech to make that happen. Of course, you can rent professional audio and video equipment for extra cost, but a lot of venues offer these services as a package deal. Flora’s in-house system includes everything you need for pitch-perfect entertainment – a top-notch sound system, a projector and hide-able screen, lighting, pin spotlights and microphones for waxing poetic about the newly weds.