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wedding event & Venue

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Wedding Terms You Need to Know

Tips and Advice

Photo Credit: The Mill Photography 

Photo Credit: The Mill Photography 

Blusher Veil-A short veil that extends to just below the chin (so as not to interfere with the bouquet)

Bustle-A type of framework used to expand the fullness of the back of a woman’s dress. Many modern gowns contain hidden strings and buttons made for tying up the bustle after the ceremony so the bride can dance more freely at the reception

Cathedral Veil-A dramatic veil that extends at least 9 feet. Because of its volume, it demands the wide aisles of a cathedral (hence the name) and deft maneuvering on the part of the bride, as well as the assistance of at least one of her attendants

Charger-A large decorative plate that’s placed under the dinner plate to bring color and texture to the table

Chiavari Chairs-Beautiful wood chairs that come in different colors of wood and different cushion colors

Damask-An ornate pattern or medium-weight fabric. The flowery pattern typically comes in black and white or gold

Day of Coordinator-A wedding planner who assists with everything on the day of a wedding. Many times a Day of Coordinator will start working with a couple one month prior to their ceremony  and help with timelines. She or he will also be the go-to person on-site for a couple’s wedding day 

Escort Cards-These cards serve the purpose of “escorting” guests to their assigned table at the reception. They should be arranged in alphabetical order and have the name of the guest as well as the table number the guest is to be seated at

Family Style-A more relaxed style of serving dinner, food is passed on serving trays and guests help themselves as they would at a dinner table

Favors-These are small inexpensive gifts that may be given to all guests at a wedding as a thank you for their attendance, and also to serve as a souvenir

Photo Credit: Amanda Lenhardt

Photo Credit: Amanda Lenhardt

First Look-The first look takes place before the ceremony where the bride and groom are staged to see each other for the first time. This is usually done in private with just the photographers. It allows you to get all the couple and wedding party pictures done before the ceremony so that during the cocktail hour, your wedding party will be able to enjoy it and the couple may enjoy the tail-end of cocktail hour as well

First Touch-Similar to the first look, the first touch is where the couple is staged where they will not see each other before the wedding, rather just touch hands. The growing popularity of this allows the bride and groom to talk to each other, pray, or just get out their little nerves before they walk down the aisle

FOB-Father of (the) Bride

FOG-Father of (the) Groom

GOBO-A laser cut piece of acrylic or metal that is then placed on a spotlight to show off a monogram or pattern during the reception on the dance floor or projected onto the walls

Groom’s Cake-This is typically an additional cake, created using the groom’s favorite flavor cake, their hobby, sports team, inside joke, etc. Many brides want the groom’s cake at the wedding reception but do not realize how much cake that actually means there will be. A good option would be to have the groom’s cake as dessert after the rehearsal dinner

Head Table-A head table is most commonly used for the bride and groom to sit with the wedding party, but can also be used for the bride and groom to sit with their family members. There is no “rule” saying that the bride and groom must sit with their wedding party

Maid of Honor and Matron of Honor-A maid of honor is a sister or friend of the bride who stands closest to her at the altar. Although this role is traditionally given to one person, it can be given to two or even three. The maid of honor title is given to a woman who is not married, while the matron of honor title is given to one who is

MOB-Mother of (the) Bride

MOG-Mother of (the) Groom

MOH-This abbreviation stands for maid / man / matron of honor

Photo Credit: Jen Dillender Photography 

Photo Credit: Jen Dillender Photography 

Palette-A palette describes the range of colors used in work. Whether you use one color or several, the colors used in your wedding make up your palette

Place Cards-Place cards are meant to indicate to a guest the exact place at the table where they are to be seated. Place cards typically just have the guest’s name on them

Second Shooter-An additional photographer or camera person who is on site to document your day. Depending on the size of your wedding, you may have a team of one, two, three, or four photographers so that no moment is missed

Send-off-Sometimes referred to as the “Farewell”. This event creates a special moment for the couple to be “Sent off” onto their wedding night after the reception is over. It can be done as simply as a big group dance on the dance floor with the bride and groom in the center, rose petal toss, bubbles, or sparklers

Signature Cocktail-A specialty cocktail chosen by the bride and groom or caterer to be served at the cocktail hour and reception. It can be either a traditional drink that has personal sentiment to the couple or a new drink created for the couple

Stationary Suite-A term to describe all of the stationery, including the save-the-dates, invitations, reply cards, reception cards, and any other invitation enclosures

Sweetheart table-A two-person table just for the bride and groom at the reception. Often decorated to stand out from the other tables

Table Number-A table number is necessary if having assigned seating, which we highly recommend. Table numbers should be displayed prominently on a table, facing the direction that guests will be entering the reception area. In lieu of numbers and for a bit of a twist, table names can also be used

Tablescape-Another word for table arrangement or centerpiece. It’s most often used when each table has multiple components

Toss Bouquet-The toss bouquet is a smaller version of the bride’s bouquet (or sometimes a bridesmaids bouquet) that is used to “toss” during the time in the reception. All the single ladies are asked to come on the dance floor and the bride tosses the bouquet to them blindly with the hopes that whoever catches the bouquet is the next to get married

Photo Credit:  Sophie Epton Photography

Photo Credit:  Sophie Epton Photography

Uplighting-Wall lighting designed or positioned to cast its light upwards. Uplighting can either be provided by your DJ or by an event design company. They will discuss a “Color Wash” design that will transform your reception space to take on a different ambiance for the night

Usher-A man or men selected by the groom, whose main responsibility is to seat guests as they enter the ceremony. This task can also fall to the groomsmen

Vendor Meal-A meal that each vendor present at your reception receives for dinner. Most vendors require a meal in their contract. The meal they request is usually the same food as the guests are receiving. Keep in mind they have been working for at least 6 hours when it becomes dinner time and a hot meal will give them that little boost of energy to finish the night strong

Venue Coordinator-Also known as a Site Manager, this person works for the venue. Their responsibilities include providing a preferred vendors list, working with a wedding coordinator for room set up, and representing the venue on wedding day. The venue coordinator handles all tasks pertaining to the venue including turning on and off all lights and ensuring the venue is cleaned up at the end of the wedding  


What terms did you learn? Are there any terms you think should have made the list? 


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