WW: How to Pick the Perfect Wedding Venue

Hey guys!

First off, why is it that when we get a free day off like we did this past weekend it makes going back to work even worse?! Okay back to wedding talk- It  has astounded me the amount of planning that goes into a wedding. I literally knew nothing when I started, thankfully I have a great sister and some good friends and family  that have helped tremendously along the way! If you are in the Kansas City area I can’t wait to share all my do’s and don’ts of places to check out! So without further ado, here is my rundown of how to pick the perfect wedding venue.

Shoes (designer dupes & under $30!) | Jeans | Similar Blouse | Jean Jacket | Sunnies

How to Find the Perfect Venue

First and foremost make it fun! Plan a date or some fun activity after venue hunting, you will be drained after! And as always, wear something you can walk around in! I can’t tell you how many times we failed to do this and it did not go so great 😉

Get on the knot.com, I recommended this to anyone and everyone bc there is a reason they are so known for wedding resources! It provides you with a checklist, a free website (which can also come from stationary sites like minted), and thousands of reviews of local vendors! This can be key if your wedding happens to not be in the area you live in!  As much as i’d love to say that wedding venue shopping is all sunshine and rainbows, its not! You HAVE to do your research before hand or you risk not getting what you want and overpaying! Wedding Wire is also another great resource and some vendors prefer to only work with one or the other.

Originally we were going to have a destination wedding and I requested soo much info from soo many places through the knot! It was great because I could see pictures, get directed to their contact information, and read reviews from past brides on their experience with those places. Finally, we landed on a Wedding in KC after realizing we didn’t want to have a wedding somewhere that we’d never been and with the holidays and our timeline we just didn’t foresee the ability to go and check out all the places we wanted!

Tips for what to do before & during your search

#1 Do your research on the place BEFORE you get there. Look at all the pictures you can, google, Instagram, and Facebook the venue. If you don’t do this, you will be overwhelmed and will not be able to evaluate the venue properly.

#2 Get a price sheet BEFORE you get there. Do not go and see somewhere out of your price range, it’s like going and trying on a $400-dollar dress when all you can afford is a $150-dollar dress. Chances are your brain will tell you the more expensive one is better bc it cost more. You’ll end up loving it and will be crushed when you can’t get it. (TRUST ME 😉 )

#3 DO NOT sign a contract the first visit. Go home sleep on it and discuss with your partner.

#4 take pictures/a video, if allowed. This will come in handy when you go home and want to review and compare.

#5 Come prepared with questions:

  • Can you have candles? (easy cheap decorating!)
  • A/C – heating- temperature control- options
  • Speaker options (do they have their own sound system etc.)
  • Typical floor layouts?
  • Can you have your ceremony there? What is the fee for that (ask about rehearsal and fees too!!!)
  • Who is the main contact person- what is the best way to get ahold of them?
  • Outdoor spaces – inclement weather plan B’s?
  • Bathroom options?
  • Do they provide tables, chairs, or linen?
  • Wheel chair accessible (grandma wants to come too!)
  • Venue time (typically 5 hours or more)
  • Set up time (typically 4 hours or more)
  • Do they charge extra for overnight deliveries? – are overnight deliveries and option?
  • Is there a service fee? (this can be up to an extra 25% and while that doesn’t seem like much, it can be thousands of dollars!!!!)
  • Can you bring in your own caterer?
  • Rental Fee- ask if some months are less expensive than others
  • Can you bring in your own alcohol?
  • If not- what are their bar prices per person?
  • If so – do they have agreements with any local bartenders? What are the fees with those? Also look up how much alcohol you will need.
  • This site can help you calculate http://www.thealcoholcalculator.com/

 

Here are my reviews of some Kansas City Venues

The Brass on Baltimore 

                Amazing rooftop views- hefty services fees

                14k & up for reception only

                We LOVED this venue but couldn’t get over the 4k in just fees 🙁

Feast of Fancy – The Hobbs Building 

                Cool Westbottom vibe – in house catering only

                20% service fee

                Liked the venue but felt too big for our wedding size

Californios 

                Minimal Parking for guest, in the heart of Westport

                In house catering and alcohol

                Price Per person – this was great as the price went down per person the more people you had!

                Wasn’t sold on the set up- better for groups of 120 or less

Uppside Venue Downtown KC 

Don’t let their pretty website fool you! This is a cool space, but what you see is NOT what you get.

In all my other meetings I met with the event coordinator or owner, here I met with someone’s mom? She didn’t know much of the specifics, and it seemed over priced for what it was, lots of rules and regulations. I have a friend who got married here 5 months ago and is STILL waiting for their damage deposit back, not to mention they said there were so many inconsistencies in what they promised and what they actually got. DO NOT BOOK THIS PLACE

The Guild KC 

LOVED this venue, just a little too big for us.

In house bar, but reasonable prices. LOTS of parking. Cool vibe, GORGEOUS chandelier.

The coordinator I worked with was super nice and they have an amazing outdoor space for a ceremony.

If our wedding was a bit larger I would have totally gone for it! Also reasonably Priced

The Berg Event Space 

This is the one we picked!

In house bar and decent parking options.

So truth be told we went back and for the between this and the brass for about a month. We both loved the brass but couldn’t justify wasting that service fee money. Yes, you have to go through an alley way to get there, but it’s kind of like a secret members only club now that I think of it! Matt also told me he hated the venue when we were walking in. LIKE HATED and then we got inside and he changed his mind!!!

So go do your home work, take some tours, lots of pictures, ask questions, and then sleep on it! Sounds like a lot but you will be FINE and whatever venue you choose will be PERFECT!

Thanks for reading! I truly hope this has helped you!

-Julie-

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17 thoughts on “WW: How to Pick the Perfect Wedding Venue”

  1. I love your Wednesday posts Jules. Wish there were so many websites and other sources when I got married 12 years ago. But I agree, doing wedding stuff you need comfy shoes. I own those adorable sandals too and need to re-wear them this Summer. Love the light and on-trend colors in this outfit!

    I run a style linkup on Thursdays so I welcome you to visit my blog and link up your beautiful style with me, tomorrow and every Thursday. Thanks, Ada. =)

    1. Aw thank you Ada! A big thank you so much for consistently reading & stopping by, it means so much! I can’t imagine wedding planning without all the resources we have today! My sandals are from last season as well, was so happy to see them come back in stock this year!!!!

  2. Hey girl!! Love this. We loooooved the brass on Baltimore too but yes the price was heartbreaking!

    After reading I felt like I needed to say something about the uppside. This is the place we booked and I agree with what you said 100% about the previous owner. It was a nightmare. However they have changed ownership as of a month ago and the name is now magnolia event space. She has been amazing to work with and am hoping she will clean up the mess left behind. So far I am pleasantly surprised with her knowledge and promptness. Hopefully we won’t be waiting 5 month for a deposit ?

    Anywhoo I’m hoping that we won’t regret our choice to continue with this space but in case anyone else was thinking about it maybe give them a 2nd chance? I thought I should share the info I know! ??

    You will be a beautiful bride! ?

    -Hayley @kcgossipblvd

    1. Hayley- I had no idea that you guys were using the uppside! I so hope that with the new owner! I was soo wanting that place until I met them and had heard about other bad experiences. I cannot wait to see how your wedding turns out, that venue is truly amazing! And as for the Baltimore….oh man lol I debated not serving dinner just so we could have it there (crazy bride syndrome haha i’m sure you understand!
      Thanks so much for stopping by!!! Hope you had a great memorial day weekend!

    1. I can’t tell you how many brides i know that I pumped for information before I started my hunt! Definitely start saving things NOW! lol it always comes sooner than you think!

  3. Great tips!! You nailed it! I wish I had this post when I got married. Will definitely send my friends to read it. Love your shoes!!!
    Love,
    Linette
    @beautifullyhealthy_

    1. Aw i hope it helps them!!! Thanks Linette! They are designer dupes and I LOVE them! Hope you have a wonderful day!

    1. Aw . I wish I could have written it sooner for you! Isn’t it so overwhelming! Hope you have a great week!

  4. First off, I LOVE how you edit your photos! Such a gorgeous aesthetic & very whimsical. Second, such a helpful post. This can be more than just weddings but event planning as a whole. I know it may seem like a platitude to go home & sleep on it but I can’t begin to emphasize how important that is! It’s so easy to feel like you should SIGN before you lose it but you can def oversee some red flags. That list you included was also so helpful!! Such great tips & best of luck to your wedding planning, I can’t wait to see more on the blog 🙂 xx Shannon || http://champagneatshannons.com

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