Post wedding review
I cannot say that it was the perfect wedding reception as there was definitely much room for improvement.
I have learnt from a few on how to make my wedding better. I would also like to share what we did to make the wedding smoother.
1. Reserve at least 20 tables
Reserve this seats so that close relatives can sit there without other people sitting at the best seats.
2. Have ushers who "actually" know the crowd
So you should have representatives of different groups of people that you are inviting to usher them in.
Work place-2 couples, Family from both sides-3 couples, Housing area friends- 5 couples, VIP-2 couples.
Their job isnt just to usher in but to also entertain the guests as the groom's parents will not have time to do so.
3. Walkie talkies
A very very useful mode of communication. One held by the MC to know what's going on in front and another by the main coordinator stationed at the entrance.
4. Hire a seasoned MC
Ah, I simply can't stress this enough. Do NOT hire someone because their charges are cheap, or because she is your good friend or because he is a celebrity.
Hire someone who knows the local crowd well so he/she can announce the arrival of the VIPs spontaneously, one who can change intermittently the program if there is a problem, who can also direct the slideshow and the band people to make sure the reception runs smoothly.
5. Thank everyone for coming
If the hosts are busy, especially the parents, the children should go around and talk to the guests who have come to show your appreciation of their presence.
Most people think that the guestbook is a waste of time because people have to stop to write down things.
At the end of the day it is actually important, because during the 'chaos' nobody actually knows all who came and those who couldn't make it. More often than not, friends of the newly weds might have showed up and left (due to reasons best known to them) before the couple even arrived, and they wouldnt have given presence to mark attendance.
The most important part of all. Do not try to save money here. Select an established caterer so he can give you the best food and service around. Yes, the bill comes in later but the most important thing is so that everybody has a good time. Nobody really that much attention to the music/bride/groom/pelamin/cake. They are waiting for the food.
Some people up it a notch by providing 'teh tarik' or 'cendol' at the wedding. In a way, it is also one of the options to stall the guests so that they continue to sit while waiting for the bride and groom to arrive.
If you have guests who are vegetarian, put the tables by the lanes, so that they can easily find their way there.
If you also have Hindu or Buddhist friends, take beef out of the menu. So that they can sit anywhere and mingle around. And make it known to them that it is not beef. Of course you cannot announce it on stage.
Print out a menu list for each table to inform them, then there is no beef. It would be more appropriate for all that way.
I find it very important that you include this into the reception, because you wouldnt want to only have pics, but you also want certain live moments captured.
The main characters are the bride and groom, but not to forget the atmosphere at the hall should also be captured. Our mistake was not hiring enough photographers. Both the photographer and the videographer were following the bride and groom during their make up session and were only planning to arrive once the bride and groom arrive. At the very least, a photographer should be standing by at the hall to capture pictures of guests, the band, the cake, the food, etc.
10. Do not panic!
No matter how vast the difference is the ongoing reception from planned. Just go with it. When you panic, you will not be able to think on how to change from plan A to plan C. Be prepared for possibilities of things not going as planned. Think ahead of further alternatives for future mishaps.
My conclusion is, execution will not be a problem if the planning was extensive. Planning includes thinking of further alternatives should something go wrong.