An Interesting Trend – Part III
Adding on a Two-Day options to your original wedding day package gives you lodging in the Mimi Guest House and the vintage Farmhouse for both the night before your wedding plus the night of your wedding. It also gives you additional time at the venue. So – the questions becomes – how to utilize the extra time. In true form to the creativity of our brides, I am confident that there are many more ideas and ways to use this extra option that those that I will go over now with you….but let me give you a few.
Scenario #1 – The Rehearsal Dinner
The easiest choice is to use this package for your rehearsal dinner event. Finding another venue or restaurant that can hold your guests can be challenging. Coming to the farm is always a relaxing time so no wonder that having your rehearsal dinner event here would be a grand evening. We typically set up the tables in the dancehall instead of the main part of the barn. Part of this is to utilize the temperature controlled room but also it is to give a distinct difference in look from the rehearsal dinner event with your wedding day event.
Sometimes the “mother-in-law to be” wants to go all out with her dinner and will add on our vintage china collection which dresses up the room right off the bat. Since you still get your own caterer – it will still allow her choice for dinner which can reflect her tastes or her budget. We often though see a more fun side to dinner choices like gourmet pizzas or a Mexican buffet. This evening should be a laid back evening of closest family and friends laughing over stories and speeches.
So…the logistics. Whether it is the grooms family from out of town at the Guest House and the bride and her bridesmaids at the farmhouse, the over-night lodgers arrive at the houses, unpack, and prep for the Rehearsal Dinner Event. The barn opens up at 5 p.m. Take this time to unload your boxes of decor and drinks at the barn and stash in the back. Round everyone up for your dress rehearsal and maybe practice it twice. Have your dinner in the dancehall. It will all be set up and decorated by us prior to your arrival so it will make it an easy evening. You have from 5 to 10 p.m. which gives you plenty of time and even head out to the bonfire pit and sit by the fire telling stories and catching up with friends. The bride can hang her dress in the Bridal Suite and have all of her make up out and ready for the morning. No frets with motel check-outs and rushing back to the farm in the morning. Enjoy the night in the farmhouse upstairs – nothing like it. Something about the history of it all….knowing the many years of people who have slept in the house and love that has been in the house makes for a special night. Wedding day prepping can begin as early as you awake….or splurge with a long sleep in.
Wedding day prepping can begin and since you also have the farmhouse for lodging on wedding night – no need to pack up/vacate the farmhouse by 8 p.m. (which is the standard request). All of the extra space in the farmhouse gives plenty of room for all to set up there prep stations. Photos in the farmhouse always add a bit of charm to a picture like this one.
Scenario #2 – After Dinner Gathering
Sometimes the Groom’s family has their sights set on a certain place – a certain restaurant – that they wish to have the Rehearsal Dinner Event at and allowing them this privilege is something to be respectful about. If you agree to this alternative, then you can still manage some “chill out with our friends” time by planning on your rehearsal and an after dinner gathering to follow the rehearsal dinner event in town.
So – logistics are to have some or all of the bridal party staying at the Guest House and Farmhouse. After your rehearsal dinner event in town, have your bridal party (and others if you like,) come back to the farm and rehearse your procession. Again – take time to unload any boxes of decor, drinks, or non-perishables so that your cars are full unpacked and that chore is completed prior to wedding day. We will set out some tables, some seating, and high top tables in the horse ring area. Arrange for some pizza, a desserts smorgasbord, or an ice cream buffet….hire a musician……dance by moonlight…..and just have a good old fashion gathering by the bonfire and lounge around under the stars catching up and enjoying the conversations until 11 p.m. Those lodging retreat to the houses.
Scenario #3 – Girl-Time
Again – if the rehearsal dinner event is at another location, this provides a great opportunity for Girl-Time by having the Guest House and the Farmhouse purely for you and your bridesmaids. One last slumber party of sorts. Even more than that – use the extra time to do some of your flower arrangements for wedding day.
So – the logistics are for the bridesmaids to arrive at the farm and get settled in. Prep for the rehearsal dinner event and head into town for that. Afterwards, either do a rehearsal with the full bridal party back at the farm ….or not….whichever way you want it. Then….girl-time begins.
Unpack all of the boxes of decor items that you have brought. Bring your own flowers (or purchase them in bulk from us) and have a delightful time making flower arrangements for the following day. Though we do not recommend that you actually decorate the barn the day before (it is not feasible for us to fully close up the barn and we wouldn’t want your tables, linens, and such to get dirty from blowing wind, etc. overnight)…we can easily set up folding tables for you in the dancehall. This room is temperature controlled and “tight” so this makes a perfect location to create your table flower arrangements and have them chilling overnight. Make your chalkboard signs, seat assignments, hang pictures on the distressed door, and get much of the organizational projects completed.
Girls are so into Pinterest boards and wedding planning, so this activity can be a long awaited party of sorts. And – since it all is done the day before the wedding, then the bride too can enjoy much of this activity too. With many details laid out and ready and even a mock table set up to go by, then the helpers on wedding day will be able to transfer all of this into the barn much easier and quicker – and the bride then will know it was done her way even though she is tucked away at the farmhouse having her hair and make-up done while the work is being performed in the barn. Now back to the logistics – after the decorating party in the dancehall…..girls head back to the Guest House where it is a large enough space in the Great Room to enjoy nibbling on snacks and telling stories until late….and then enough beds at the Guest House and Farmhouse for all girls to get a good night’s sleep before the big day. One final slumber party – yeah!
and one final scenario #4 – Photos Galore
The farm has so many beautiful backdrop and photographic opportunities and with wedding day being so full that some girls want their own photo session “before” wedding day. We all know that the best light of the day comes in the early evening which tends to be after the wedding ceremony. Yes – there is some time between the ceremony and the reception to take some of these photos but then you often feel rushed through the family photos and then fear that there is just not enough time for those great intimate bride/groom photos that you long to have done.
Solution – have a photo session the day before and take the time when the light is at its best to do those great bridal shots – and without feeling guilty that your guests are waiting to eat or that your groom has had his fill of poses.
So – the logistics are to arrange to have the Rehearsal Dinner as a Brunch or early lunch the day before the wedding in town. Afterwards, head to the farm, unpack, and get all dolled up in your wedding dress then meet up with your photographer. Take your time and relish that great light that comes in the evening and capture a wealth of photos…..and if you are so inclined – even consider a wedding boudoir session in the farmhouse upstairs.
and likely there could still be enough time to do a rehearsal and some chat time around the bonfire or even a hayride with the bridal party before the day ends. Then….the lodging gets divided up in any way that suits your situation.
As you can see – there are many ways to enjoy more days at the farm…..and many ways that more days at the farm offers great solutions to making your wedding celebration truly amazing! Even consider coming another day or two earlier than that – staying at the farm….and enjoying Chattanooga with your friends. So much to see and do here in the area, it could make a great week here in town with your friends.