Tuesday, February 17, 2015

11 Reasons I loved (and hated) Scheana Marie's Wedding...

Good Morning lovelies! I hope everyone had a love filled Valentine's Day weekend. Today's post is all about Scheana and Shay's wedding , from the hit show Vanderpump Rules. I am an avid watcher of Bravo and a huge fan of the show. Being in my twenties, living in the LA area and working part time in a restaurant, I can relate to a lot of their struggles and celebrations.

Last year, Shay made a beautiful proposal to Scheana at Lisa Vanderpump's estate Villa Rosa. After the immediate "yes" I knew she would not be able to wait to begin planning. I immediately reached out to offer my wedding planning services. I never expected a response, but was actually contacted by Scheana's mom, Ericka, via phone. We had two phone interviews and chatted a lot about Scheana's vision and needs. I could tell Erika was a great mom and support system for her daughter, but that a wedding of this magnitude needed a professional team to make it all go smoothly. After being considered, I got the text no planner wants to hear, they hired someone else. Honestly, (although I would have done an amazing job) I wasn't that bummed because I figured with all her connections and networking that she chose someone with more experience. This being over a year ago, I was still just starting out and getting my business up and running. Now months and months later we finally got to see how everything panned out.

With my eyes glued to the screen, I literally bit off all my nails while watching the painful episodes. It was a whirlwind of drama.  After gathering my thoughts, I'm ready to share my opinions with you. There was a lot that I loved and some that I hated...

LOVED: She had a Sunday Funday Wedding. 

Photo Credit : Us Magazine

This was a great idea for two main reasons. First of all, she works at a restaurant so most of her friends and co-workers will have a hard time getting off on a Saturday. It was very kind of her to choose a day that is more accessible for the guests she is inviting.

Secondly, it is a great way to reserve an amazing venue at a mediocre venue's price. Having a wedding on any day other than Saturday will automatically save you money. Most venues cut a significant percentage off for booking your celebration on Friday or Sunday. For the ultimate discount consider really jumping out of the box and doing weekday shin dig.

LOVED: She used her resources.

Photo Credit : Twitter/Vanderpump Vodka

Scheana is a smart and savvy chick. She was not afraid to use her friends, family and collages to get the things she needed in a kind and sweet way. She got a hook up on her candy from Dylan's Candy Bar. Pandora gifted the bride and groom Vanderpump Vodka and Sangria for the bar. Her aunt helped make her dress and I'm sure there were a lot of other items and services she had gifted or discounted. I don't know for a fact, I'm speculating here, but I think I know why she was able to pull this off : She is upfront and kind at the same time. As a bride people expect you to reach out, don't feel weird about it. Be honest and nicely bring up your needs. Do you have a friend in a band, family member that sells wine or a coworker that also works at a dress shop? Give them a call. Who knows what kind of hook ups you can receive if you don't ask!

LOVED: She had a kick ass Bridal Party. 

Photo Credit : Facebook

Way to surround yourself with some positive ladies! Throughout this season you see all these amazing ladies travel to Miami for a Bachelorette Party, attend Villa Blanca for a Bridal Shower and eventually stood beside her while she married the love of her life.

Something about watching the show makes you want to be best friends with Ariana Madix. She is so supportive and selfless at each turn, she kinda deserves a big gold "best friend" trophy. It seemed like all the other ladies were sweet, fun and super supportive as well.

I really liked that the night before when all the gals got together for a good old fashion sleep over. It is very important to soothe the bride with verbal, emotional and physical support the 24 hours before the ceremony.

The night before my best friends wedding we had a blast staying up late night giddy from excitement and finally falling asleep in matching pjs at her mom's house. I later heard her comment to someone how she had not been nervous because I was there. That meant the world to me. It seemed Scheana's bridal party did a wonderful job creating that same fun night before experience for her.

HATED: She gave a second round of invites.

Photo Credit : Bravo TV

In one episode someone talks about getting a late invite and Scheana admits to sending out more invites after getting some people unable to attend. This is a huge NO NO and I do not support my brides doing this. If your venue seats 300 people then do not invite over 300 people. It is rare that all guests with come, but it does happen. Choose only the people you really want to be there and then if some can't come, don't fall into the temptation to invite more people. This is not a play that you need to fill seats at, this is a wedding. People, even if they come, are very offended when they find out they were on your second tier of invites. Choose your guest list and stand by it.

LOVED: She had a Candy Bar.

Photo Credit : The Knot

Tradition is nice, but customizing your wedding day to exactly what you like is the best part! Researching how weddings have been done and what is expected is a great way to know what the rules are. Once you know what is "suppose" to happen you can adjust and morph your event into what will make you, your groom and your guest the happiest.

Scheana opted for a Candy Bar instead of the traditional Wedding Cake because she doesn't like cake. (I believe they still had a cutting cake for pictures, but I'm not positive) Tying in her colors pink, white, gold and displaying them in large elegant jars made the display appear chic and expensive (and yummy).

LOVED: She had a live singer preform for her walk down the aisle.

Photo Credit : IMDB

I'm a sucker for live music, especially at a wedding. No matter how talented a DJ is, there is something authentic and raw about having a singer physically sharing their talent with you as the groom sees the bride walk the aisle. Tina McDowelle (I believe a former Sur employee) sang a gorgeous version of "Can't help but falling in love". Wow, she has some pipes!

HATED: She let Kristin attend.

Vanderpump Rules Kristen James Break Up
Photo Credit : Hollywood Life

I'm not sure if she really believed that it would be more hassle to uninvited her, or if Kristen was required to come because of the show. Either way, she should not have been there. She was clearly a toxic person that was making two members of her Bridal Party very uncomfortable.

I understand it's an awkward conversation to have, but if you come to the crossroads of not knowing if you want someone witnessing the biggest promise you will ever make, then the answer is probably no. If they are bringing the drama then you have the right to exclude them. Simply call the person and say the following "Due to recent circumstances I feel it would be better if you did not attend my wedding. I value our relationship and hope you can respect my decision."

Do not make the same mistake Scheana did.

LOVED: Both her parents walked her down the aisle. 

Scheana Marie demands the wedding singer STOP SINGING
Photo Credit : Reality Tea

What I do know from speaking with her mom, is that Erika is a very loving, supportive and awesome mother. I'm sure her father is a great guy, but why should he get to have all the fun? Scheana broke the traditional mold of having only your male parent give you away and included both her parents. This was a really touching moment in between all the drama.

I always encourage my couples to choose someone they feel comfortable and connected with to walk with. It can be a grandparent, sibling, mentor or friend. Family structures are changing and not everyone is close to their dad. This is a tradition I definitely see changing in the coming years.

LOVED: She designed her own unique and trendy wedding dress.

Photo Credit : Us Magazine

Way to rock that wedding gown! I love anything custom and unique. This two piece dress defined not only their wedding but suggests where the bridal fashion world is heading in the next few years.

Scheana wears crop tops all the time and used her everyday style as inspiration to create a one of a kind design. She then worked with her aunt, who hand sew the entire two piece, to make her vision a reality. Using timeless pearls as embellishment, opting for a romantic/girly pink bouquet and completely the look with a simple veil allows people to be drawn to the slight tummy tease but not be over powered by it. I personally think the look came together beautifully.

HATED: Her Wedding Coordinator was horrible.

Photo Credit : Bravo TV

I really don't enjoy talking smack about other planners and I do not know this one personally, but she made some really obvious mistakes.

First of all, I did not see a rehearsal take place. I require my couples to have a minimum one hour rehearsal in the days leading up to the wedding. This allows the couple to see where they are waiting, entering, how far they are walking and lots of other details. I also encourage anyone that will be preforming, reading or praying attend to be comfortable with the set up.

When they did do the final walk through I did not see her making notes or following a guide of any kind. If your Coordinator does not provide you with a detailed Floor Plan and Itinerary then you need to ask them for one immediately.

The day of arrived and I really didn't see much of her on camera. Admittedly, I'm not always with the bride on the actually day, but you bet I have an assistant frequently guiding and checking in on her to make sure everything is going as planned. I would have had someone go pick up the Groom's Gift if it was forgotten. There was no reason the bride should be calling people, stressing out while trying to get hair and makeup done. This is where I believe the string started unraveling the gorgeous tapestry she had worked so hard to create.

Pretty much everything from this point forward seemed unorganized. Why was Scheana searching hallways to find her waiting room alone? Why was she waiting in the maintenance closet for half an hour? Why was the music cued early? Why wasn't the DJ/MC cued to do all the fun dances and rituals? These are all things that can easily be safe guarded against with careful preparation.

If I remember correctly she paid $3,000 for her services, and there have been comments about paying a discount price and receiving discount services. In the event industry there is a great spread in what professionals charge. I personally believe this was adiquit pay for the services required, considering Scheana had already done all of the planning and vendor selection beforehand. In case you are curious here are current median prices for wedding planning services:

Day of Coordination: $1,200 - $1,800
Full Wedding Planning: $2,000 - $5,000
Celebrity Wedding Planning: $15,00 - $50,000

LOVED: She said I DO to the right guy.

Photo Credit : Daily Mail

When all is said and done she married the man of her dreams. Throughout every episode that I've watched (which is almost all of them), I have never seen their relationship waiver. In a world of maybes, ifs and kindas these two have always been absolute about their love for each other. No matter how everything else turned out, the goal was met. They both said "I do".

To my loyal and lovely readers:
It was very bittersweet watching these episodes. On one hand I felt so excited to get to relive how her special day unfolded. The other half of me was angry, upset, nervous and anxious. It really disturbed me because if this was how I felt at home on my couch with my chihuaha, then I can only imagine how Scheana felt experiencing it. I pride myself personally on making sure my brides are as zen and relaxed as possible. Please take examples like these as a warning to choose your Wedding Planning, Bridal Party and Guest List carefully. They will shape your day in every way. 

To Scheana and Shay:
No matter what I think, the day is done and it is a joyous union. Congrats to you two for making a beautiful couple inside and out. You two are strong and talented induviduals that seem to only become stronger as you unite. I can't wait to follow your careers and watch you two blossom as a married couple. Thank you for letting us in on one of your most important day of your life. 

Happy Planning!
xoxo Megan


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