Gay and Lesbian Wedding Planning
First things first: Gay and Lesbian Wedding Planning is not that different from straight wedding planning! Really it's true!
Whether you are a gay couple interested in gay and lesbian wedding planning or a heterosexual couple interested in wedding planning the bottom line is still the same: you are in love, committed to one another and want to share this special occasion with the ones you know and love in some kind of ceremony. Right?
Some of you may have even been through the whole wedding planning process before because you may have been involved in another serious gay or lesbian relationship or even a heterosexual marriage at one point. This may help make things a little easier. (Remember though, if your partner has never been through the whole gay and lesbian wedding planning process, they may become even more stressed. So try to take that into consideration by giving constant reassurance.)
What kinds of things are involved in the whole gay and lesbian wedding planning process? Well just about everything you can imagine. Let's explore further.
I know this may appear to be a no-brainer to some, but you definitely NEED to know the date that you are planning on having your wedding. You have so many different people that need to be aware of this date that it's an extremely important detail.
Who needs to know? Well EVERYONE, of course. But more importantly early on the venue (location) of the ceremony, the venue for the reception, your gay wedding officiant, and the photographer.
You may want to pick a few alternative dates as well, just in case a venue, officiant, or photographer that you want to use is not available for your preferred date.
A huge part of gay and lesbian wedding planning is being
Prepared with backup dates is just one thing to keep in mind.
You most certainly need to know what you have available dollar wise to spend on this special day. Might I suggest that you also think about your honeymoon, too. Because if you're on a strict budget, you may want to splurge on the honeymoon and cut back on the wedding festivities or vice versa!
Gay and lesbian couples who went with a formalized wedding spent on average about $15,000. Of course you can spend way less than this or way more than this because after all it is YOUR day and it's all about the couple in love!
Find out how much you should budget for each category of your gay or lesbian wedding. If you are truly on a really strict budget you might want to pick-up our ebook Gay and Lesbian Wedding Planning: The Frugal Guide to Saving Thousands on Your Special Day!
In a perfect world, you are researching all of this long before you really start the gay and lesbian wedding planning process, so you KNOW exactly how much to start saving for your special day!
Let's check out where we should put all of our gay wedding budgeted dollars, regardless if you have a small or huge budget.
Ceremony and Reception Venues
After you have the budget all figured out, you want to choose a location to actually have your ceremony. Where in the world are you going to have your wedding? Where are you going to have your reception? Should they be in the same place? Should you have it at a church? We will help you answer all of these questions so don't worry. Remember, gay and lesbian wedding planning is a cinch when you have someone to guide you step by step.
Remember we talked above about how gay and lesbian wedding planning involves being prepared? Well be prepared here too by picking a few backup locations....JUST IN CASE!
Are you wondering what exactly happens during a gay or lesbian wedding ceremony? If you're ever been to any wedding before, you have an idea about what happens during a gay wedding. We will definitely give you some gay wedding ideas, plus remember, this is YOUR day so you can add or delete ideas as you see fit.
It's all about YOU and YOUR PARTNER!
The Food and the Cake
Will your event be catered or not? Should you have a sit down meal or a buffet? How do you even go about picking the right caterer for the job?
All of those questions will be answered, plus perhaps a sample menu or two will be shared with you!
And yes, even something that appears to be simple like food or beverages, is a huge part of the gay and lesbian wedding planning process.
Now you're going to have to figure out if you want to have a DJ or perhaps a musician at your reception. Hey, maybe a combination of both? What about a harpist during dinner and a DJ for the rest of the evening? We will help point you in the right direction when trying to figure out the gay wedding music aspect of your gay and lesbian wedding planning event!
You definitely want a photographer, at least I would think (you know for that lovely wedding portrait for the living room,) but do you need or want a videographer too? We'll explore both of those options and give you enough information so you can decide as a couple what would fit best for your situation. Hint: there's an affordable way to have BOTH, just in case you were wondering.
Yes, you DO need a way to get to and from the ceremony and the reception. Your guests do as well. How's a limo sound? or a Rolls Royce? Maybe you're feeling really unique and want to opt for a Hummer? Or maybe this isn't something that is that important to you and you think everyone should drive themselves! We'll go over all of those details so you can make an informed decision.
For the most part in heterosexual weddings the attire portion is pretty cut and dry, the bride wears a dress and the groom wears a tux. Of course there are couples that do their own thing, but for the most part it is a wedding dress and a tux.
With same-sex weddings, that may not always be the case. Sure a lot of times you may have 2 grooms in tuxes and 2 brides in dresses, but remember, there are all different facets of our gay and lesbian community.
There may be occasions where one of the brides would prefer a tux to a dress. That is not uncommon in some same-sex unions. (By the way, I wouldn't be caught dead in a dress!) And yeah, there may be times when a groom prefers to dress in drag for his wedding.
You have to think about this stuff for YOUR day and you have to make sure you are working with a dress or tux establishment that understands you and makes you feel comfortable with your decisions. We will help you with the entire attire issue. (Say that 100 times fast!) Get the scoop here on what exactly your gay and lesbian wedding attire can look like!
You didn't know gay and lesbian wedding planning had so many different angles involved in what seems to be a simple thing, did you?
Well you and your partner know that you're going to be wed, but you have to tell the rest of your friends and family somehow. This is where announcements come into play. Also, invitations, RSVP cards, name cards, and thank you cards you're going to need too!
We'll give you the lowdown on etiquette and wording of these important tools.
Plus, let you know some ways you can possibly cut back on costs in some of these areas. (Remember, I'm frugal as stated above! In my opinion, there really should be at least one frugal partner per couple :-)
What kind of flowers do you need? How do you pick a florist? How many flowers do you need? How much should you budget for flowers? Don't sweat the flowers....we'll help you handle all of the details (or at least help you delegate this responsibility!)
The wedding ring is a recognized symbol throughout the world that I'm sure you're going to want to include in your festivities as well.
But what about the engagement ring? I think men get ripped off in the straight world, because the women get an engagement ring AND a wedding ring, but the poor guys just get a wedding ring. But anyway this is NOT the straight world and there are no set in stone ways for you two to show your commitment together with rings. You do what feels best for you both.
Engagement rings, no engagement rings, gold wedding bands, platinum wedding bands, custom wedding bands, etc. This is your day and the rings you choose will be the everlasting symbol, that you and others see on a daily basis, which show your commitment to your partner.
We will help you figure out which way to turn when picking out your gay and lesbian wedding rings. (This is one of my favorite parts of the whole wedding and marriage process, by the way!)
Ok now THIS is my favorite part of the entire gay and lesbian wedding planning process. Why you might ask? Well maybe you're not asking, but I bet you're thinking it's my favorite part for all the wrong reasons!
The honeymoon is my favorite part because now I know that the whole planning of the wedding and the whole ceremony is over and now we have to look forward to a beautiful, wonderful, long-lasting future together. Plus, it's time to relax because all of the stress that comes with planning a wedding is now behind us!
So, where do you go for your honeymoon? How much should you spend? Where are gay friendly places to spend with your sweetie? We will help you to have the most satisfying and fantastic honeymoon EVER! (On second thought, scratch the satisfying word....we have no control over that ;-)
Now that we summarized the different areas involved in the gay and lesbian wedding planning process, be sure to visit each category in detail and take some notes. Remember, the entire gay and lesbian wedding planning process goes much more smoothly when you are