This post is long overdue and one I’ve been excited to write for months now…I’m of course talking about the fun-loving and talented husband-wife team at AJ’s Studio — Amy + JP! Not only are these two exceptional photographers but equally extraordinary individuals. I’ve had the opportunity to get to know them on both a professional as well as a personal level and they are just so much fun to be around! There’s always a ton of laughs whenever I’m around these two yet they are always on top of capturing the zest, personality and emotion of each wedding they photograph. They have a style and look of their very own and it’s become well-respected in Portland and beyond. Simply put…there’s just no better combination for a couple who wants a relaxed, playful team of photographers to capture their most important day. Once you meet Amy + JP they will very likely be there to document all the special times in your life from your wedding to your kids’ senior portraits and all of those priceless moments in between. Two of our all time favorite weddings were shot by Amy + JP at some of Portland’s swankiest venues and they captured both events flawlessly. These are a few shots from a wedding we coordinated with them last September at the The Nines downtown. It was such a memorable day and Genny + John are a warm and endearing couple who can’t get enough of each other. In addition to a great website gallery, AJ’s also has one of the coolest blogs out there….check out the Shutter Monkey for yourself for samples of their latest work. On a personal note, a special thank you to Amy for the wonderful one year photo shoot you did with my daughter, Emma, in June. We had such a blast and love how you captured her personality just perfectly…I couldn’t resist posting one of her photos! I look forward to our next adventure together…for more details or to see more of their work please also visit AJ’s Studio, email them at email@example.com or call them at 360-694-6684. Their slogan is the Art of Joy and it certainly characterizes them to a T…thank you Amy + JP for being you!July 28, 2010 on 5:49 am | In Uncategorized | No Comments
I am asked this question on a regular basis by my clients and until a month ago when a fellow coordinator and good friend shared an article from Inside Weddings on this very subject, I was always a bit torn when it came to offering advice. So I’ve decided to share some of the great tips (no pun intended!) that Mary Dann-McNamee, one of LA’s premier event planners, included in the article. As with any industry, tipping is extended to those individuals who have provided service above and beyond the expectation of their clients, and the same goes for wedding vendors. So often clients want to express gratitude for a job well done but are unsure which of their vendors to tip and how much is appropriate. As stated by Mary Dann herself, the following guideline is based on more than two decades of professional experience and more than 400 weddings, and taken directly from the article which can also be found at Inside Weddings.
1) In advance, estimate each gratuity and then write a check or place cash into an envelope with the recipient’s name, and/or their title on the front of the envelope. The envelopes can be distributed to the appropriate vendors during or at the conclusion of services on the wedding day. An additional envelope can carry cash to make up for discrepancies once the final bill arrives and the percentages can be tabulated.
2) Write thank-you notes to the vendors who helped you throughout the planning process. Often, a sincere note of thanks is appreciated as much as or more than a tip.
3) Give the planner cash in an envelope and have the wedding planner discreetly pass out the tips to various vendors who have surpassed expectations. Since your planner witnesses more levels of services from your vendors, in public and in private, the planner usually has a broad view of how well the vendors actually execute their services.
Transportation and catering always include gratuities (15% to 20%) in the total service fee. Gift basket delivery requires a $2 to $3 per bag or basket to have a bellman deliver to a guest room at a hotel. On occasion, hotel staff will hold a bag or basket behind the front desk and give it to the guest upon check-in, in which case it is wise to tip the front desk manager when you drop off the bags or baskets, just to ensure that your request is executed.
How Much to Give
Since all your vendors are in the service business, gratuities are a kind and generous gesture of appreciation for going the extra mile to make your wedding day perfect. The following list is of vendors that usually receive gratuities on the wedding day. Keep in mind that gratuities are customary, but not mandatory.
The following receive a gratuity/tip almost all of the time:
Banquet Captain — Oversees the servers and makes sure your guest’s food and beverage wishes are met. Often acts as the head maitre d’ for the reception and works closely with wedding coordinator. Tip: $1 – $5 per guest.
Hair and Makeup Artists — Assists with all the beauty needs of your bridal party, keeps flow of group while everyone is getting ready. Tip: 10% -15% of the total fee, whether you go to the salon or they come to you.
Bellman — Assists with loading wedding items, i.e. gifts, flowers at the end of the night, luggage, etc. to your hotel room or car. Tip: $10 – $20 each.
The following receive a gratuity/tip 60-70% of the time:
Wedding Planner & Team — Assists with all aspects of the pre-wedding planning and wedding day execution. They often serve as the designer, director, producer, therapist, seamstress, dry cleaner, touch-up makeup beauty stylist, coach, consultant, honeymoon suite decorator, bell-hop and bridal party assistant. It is impossible to categorize all the services your professional planner is capable of executing. Tip: 10% of total service fee.
Catering Manager/Director of Catering / Food and Beverage Director — Assists primarily with the pre-planning of the wedding day and occasionally oversees the Banquet Captain on the day of your wedding At the hotel, they can usually make sure your hotel suite is upgraded, amenities are given and your stay is special. At a private venue or country club, they can additionally oversee the kitchen and bars. Tip: $50 – $500.
Entertainment — Musicians. Tip: $20 – $50 each. DJ. Tip: $50 – $300.
The following receive a gratuity/tip 50% or less of the time:
Photographer & Videographer — A gratuity can be given to the “lead shooter” and/or the assistants on the wedding day or on the day you receive your finished product. Tip: $40 – $100 each.
Florist/Designer and Team — Whatever the tip, the florist/designer should divide it among the set-up and break-down team. Tip: $50 – $200.
July 15, 2010 on 4:04 am | In Uncategorized | No Comments