Unique Wedding Ideas from The Knot

Yours won’t be just another cookie-cutter wedding — here are top ideas from www.theknot.com to make your wedding a standout celebration!

A Luxe Reception Lounge

Give guests a place to mingle between dance breaks by creating a lounge area at your reception. Fill the space with couches or chairs and plenty of pillows to sink into. It’s the perfect way to keep everyone in on the party even when they’re resting. Really want to wow ’em? Close off the area with curtains to create a VIP vibe.

Reception Ushers

You may already be planning to have your ushers escort guests to their ceremony seats, but consider having reception ushers. These “live escort cards” walk guests to their tables for an upscale restaurant experience. Ask your reception venue or caterer if its waitstaff can do this double duty, or assign a few ushers to the job.

Pre Ceremony Cocktails

Your guests won’t be expecting any drinks until the reception, so give them a pleasant surprise by setting up a table of light beverages on the way into the ceremony. Just don’t serve anything too strong — think: mimosas or fruit-infused iced teas they can sip before taking their seats (and don’t forget to have nonalcoholic versions too!). Have your caterer or ushers collect any stray glasses to make sure the space is tidy before the processional begins.

 Upgraded Welcome Bags

Make your guests feel like VIPs with welcome bags that go beyond a map and a few snacks. Stuff personalized tote bags with mini bottles of bubbly or a six-pack of a local microbrew, a gift certificate to your favorite local coffee shop and an individual “Welcome!” note from you.

A DIY Flower Station

Let guests know that it’s not just the wedding party that’s special to you (it’s everyone!) by letting each one stand out with their own corsage or boutonniere. Ask your florist about setting up a make-your-own-flower station: Put out some sturdy blooms like spray roses or mums, supply lots of colorful ribbons and pins, and add labels with easy-to-follow instructions.

“To-Go” Valet Gifts

Send guests home feeling taken care of by having your valets place small favors or end-of-the-night snacks in guests’ cars before handing over the keys. No valets? Set out baskets of the gifts — such as soft eye masks with notes that say “Sleep tight!” or even hangover kits — for guests to grab on their way out of the reception venue. If you’ve arranged bus or shuttle transportation, have a favor waiting on board for guests.Knot Note: Hangover kits (if you’re sending guests home on a shuttle) should include Aspirin — not Tylenol — for safe headache-busting.

Convenient Child Care

Hire a babysitter (or two) and set her up in a room so your youngest guests have a place to go when they tucker out. If it’s possible, pick a room near your reception location so parents can stop by to check in on the tykes and then return to the party easily. Stock the room with snacks, games and a portable DVD player to keep them entertained, and make sure there’s a soft sofa and blankets for those inevitable naps.

A Bubbly Bar

Make toast time delicious by letting guests customize their champagne. Dishes full of fruit purees, lavender sprigs, citrus twists and flavored ice cubes that can be spooned into glasses of bubbly will make the toast that much more fun.

A Memorable Guest Book

Think beyond the typical guest book. One creative idea we love: Create a jigsaw puzzle of your photo and let guests sign each piece. Or put out silver trays with engraving pens so guests can carve a lasting message on a useful keepsake for you.

A (Friends and) Family Tree Seating Chart

You worked hard on figuring out that seating chart, so get the dinner conversation started by showing guests how they’re connected. Create a sign that shows the relationships between the guests who will be sitting next to each other — it’ll help break the ice for those who haven’t already met.

A First-Dance Confetti Drop

Your first dance will be one of the highlights of your wedding, so add this extra-special touch to up the entertainment factor (and make for some serious photo ops!). If your song is slow and romantic, have fresh flower petals instead of confetti dropped from the ceiling. Your rental company and florist can work together to make this happen — and don’t forget to make sure the reception waitstaff will be standing by to clean up.

A Video Confessional Booth

For a fresh twist on the hot photo booth trend, rent a video booth where guests can record a quick on-screen message for you. Ask your videographer to edit some of the best clips into your wedding video. Then, post your other favorite video “confessions” on your wedding website and encourage guests to check them out in your thank-you notes.

A Decked-Out Entryway

We’re not saying you should spend a gazillion dollars on a 20-foot-tall floral arrangement, but first impressions are important, so take time to think out the entrance to your reception. Add a couple flower arrangements to the escort card table or have your stationer create a stylish seating chart display. A table topped with your engagement photos, your parents’ wedding albums, and any other from-the-family artifacts would make meaningful additions.

Cocktails Served Differently

Grab guests’ attention as soon as they arrive at the cocktail hour by having drinks and hors d’oeuvres displayed on colorful trays or even placed along the shelves of a makeshift bookcase-turned-bar. Or, have a fleet of waiters standing at the entrance, drink trays in hand, ready to greet guests at the door. The message will be clear: It’s time to par-tay.

Killer Midnight Snacks

Just when everyone thinks the fun is winding down, liven up the party with late-night nibbles that will leave everyone ready for an after-party. Think about it: crinkle French fries, fresh chocolate chip cookies and milk shooters, a fully loaded taco bar, or even a waffle truck!

 
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For more great Wedding Ideas visit www.theknot.com today!

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