Alisa Tantraphol and Sedora Tantraphol, Rose’s two sisters, arrive in Michigan on Thursday. Rose’s sisters have been her wedding strategists, advisers, cheerleaders, sanity checkers, and overall wonder women. Rose is the oldest and Sedora is the youngest, but you wouldn’t know that based on the wedding planning (or lack thereof, depending on who you ask) process.
Alisa nearly single-handedly planned her own wedding while holding down a crazy full-time job 7 years ago. Sedora got engaged this year (congrats!), and plans a 2014 wedding, but until this week — or maybe still this week — she is farther along in her wedding planning than Rose has been.
Q: Have there been any surprising aspects of helping Rose with her wedding planning?
How late everything happened, how many details were left to the 11th hour, how many questions Rose had. Ha ha…Alisa kept laughing at how different me and Rose’s work styles are — it stresses me out to not have things planned out far in advance, so the months and months of waiting for details to finalize (or for Rose to even think about things…) was frustrating. Ha ha. BUT Rose pulled through in the end and I’m so excited for the wedding!
In retrospect, no…after all, it takes you half an hour to decide on an entree at dinner. And you’re such a pleaser (probably why we get along so well ), so it shouldn’t have surprised me that you would want to defer on a lot of decisions.
But what didn’t surprise me is how quickly the important things came together — tapas and free-flowing sangria at San Chez, salsa dancing…every step of the way, you and Scott have chosen things that are meaningful for the two of you as a couple, that you want to share with the people you love. And deferring on some other decisions (like allowing us to choose our own bridesmaids dresses, and taking 10 months to explain what shade of blue is ‘ocean blue’ in your mind) is also an expression of that.
Although it wasn’t surprising, your wedding website is the best. wedding. website. ever!!! I wouldn’t have expected anything less from two journalist and social media specialists, but it’s still wicked impressive.
[EDITOR’S NOTE: “Ocean blue” should just be a standard color in any catalog, much like aubergine has become. At the time, it seemed like a pretty specific description!]
Oh yeah! Work in somewhere how much I LOVE your blog!!! It’s so awesome. I really appreciate the his/hers stories 😀 And yes, everything came together and was very you and Scott, which is so lovely to see ❤
Q: Pinterest — which is ideal for wedding planning — is a relatively recent social media phenomenon, and people who are on it seem addicted. Do you find yourself on Pinterest quite a bit? What role did Pinterest play in your personal planning for this wedding?
Yes! Everything on there is so pinteresting and pincredible! The first few months I discovered Pinterest, I was absolutely addicted — i spent hours on it every night. (I now have enough recipes to cook for a few months straight; I have most of my wedding planned, and I’ve found ridiculously cute and awesome things for no reason.) It was pinsane. I was pincorrigible. I needed a pintervention…
Alisa and I were able to post bridesmaid dresses, jewelry, decorations, etc. on a shared board instead of emailing each other links and trying to keep track of everything. It was great! And especially because Rose couldn’t see the stuff we were looking at, it was a great way to collaboratively plan a long-distance wedding.
I’m only on Pinterest when I’m planning your wedding 🙂 Unfortunately I tied my Pinterest account to an email address I don’t use regularly, so Sedora was pinning all sorts of bridesmaid dress options to our Pinterest board and I didn’t see the notifications for weeks. But the Etsy + Pinterest combination has been perfect for offering you wedding jewelry options! It definitely beats emails with endless links.
[EDITOR’S NOTE: Rose waited so long to get on Pinterest because she knew that if she got on Pinterest, the wedding planning would never be done. She has since joined the damn pinboarding community, and while she got some great ideas, she also lost lots of sleep looking at all sorts of awesome wedding programs, wishing she could go back in time to pull together something that elaborate and cool.]
Q: Wedding planing for the uninitiated can be daunting — trial by fire in terms of event planning. Not only are you naturally organized, but event planning has been part of your professional life, so you aren’t fazed by it. What advice would you give to a bride who is just starting to plan a wedding?
Wedding planning is an industry. Go to theknot.com or another established source and download their templates to get organized early (a lot of sites have budgets, checklists, tips, guides, etc.). Establish a budget. Write out all the tasks you need to accomplish. Delegate. Work backwards. Have fun! Go on Pinterest. Enjoy the process. Talk to friends who’ve done this before. Hire a flat fee coordinator. Decide early on what you want — classy, formal, fun, hybrid elements. Fill things out on theknot.com or create a Google doc. Bring in more organized people if you’re not organized.
I am *not* naturally organized (that would be our other sister), but I have done event planning for a couple of different jobs. I would give the same advice for tackling any major project – start with the big stuff: picking a date, choosing a venue, and setting a budget; that’s the stuff that has to be done a year or so in advance. After that, you have a whole year to plan, so do it in bite-size pieces. Figure out what your next priorities are – a photographer? the dress? the menu? Find inspiration – what you loved about other weddings you attended, what catches your eye at a bridal show or online or in a magazine – and if you can’t recreate it yourself, see if you can find a talented friend who can help.
The best advice I got before my wedding: 1) It’s your wedding, so do whatever you want. Even if someone is unhappy with (fill in the blank – where they are sitting, whom they are sitting with, the music, whatever), you won’t ever have to hear about it. 2) It’s only one day out of your life. It will be a happy one, but it probably won’t be the defining day of your life – so try not to sweat it too much. 3) Enjoy it! The day will go by so fast. When will you ever have all the people you love together in one place again?
Q: Do you have advice for grooms when it comes to wedding planning?
Keep it classy. Have opinions and give input but mostly, just defer and support 😀
Figure out when she wants your opinion and when she wants you to affirm hers. If it’s the former and you don’t have one, make one up. (Yes, you will probably be blamed for it later, but you will avoid being in trouble immediately.) If it’s the latter, don’t tell her whatever she wants is fine — tell her that her opinion is right. It’s the same advice I have for any man in a heterosexual relationship.
Also, even if you aren’t involved in the wedding planning at all, try to remember key details. LIke what time the wedding starts. Otherwise it’s really obvious that you haven’t helped at all, and when she realizes that, it will be all over for you.
Q: What do you like most about weddings?
How happy the couple is the whole day 😀
How happy everyone is! Even if you never thought a big wedding was for you, it’s impossible to not get swept up into the outpouring of love everyone has for the two of you. It’s magical! Afterwards, you will forget about how stressful all of the wedding planning was, and you and Scott will say to each other, “Do you want to do that again next year?” 🙂
Alisa sent the following email to Rose after she had filled out the questionnaire:
In your sister blog post, you’re going to have to mention that you asked me to send out paper invitations without a start time. And then acted like I was inflicting some grave injustice upon you by telling you I would wait until you nailed down a start time before sending out the invitations.
[EDITOR’S NOTE: OK. *This* is exactly what I’m talking about! Everyone says “it’s your wedding, do what you want.” But when you say, “OK, then I want to send out invites without an exact start time to family members who don’t live in the same state, because whether they can come or not will not be dependent on the start time,” you are shot down! There are so many unwritten rules, and you can’t just do anything you want! 🙂 ]