The 15 Biggest Wedding Trends for 2015 Courtesy of Bridal Guide

It’s your wedding day–are you ready to celebrate?  Be sure to check out these great ideas courtesy of Deborah Witt at Bridal Guide:

The 15 Biggest Wedding Trends For 2015

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Highlands Country Club Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Kimberly Coccagnia

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Highlands Country Club Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Kimberly Coccagnia

(#13 is my personal favorite–who doesn’t need some smooth yacht rock grooves now and then?)

For more great ideas about how to express your unique style on your wedding day, visit my blog, Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding.

Congratulations,

Bri

__________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style
Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email:   briswatek@gmail.com
Phone:   845.235.0080
Online:   www.djbriswatek.com

9 Tricks to Keep the Dance Floor Packed at Your Wedding Courtesy of MSN Lifestyle

It’s your wedding day!  Ready to celebrate?  To “keep the dance floor packed all night,” be sure to check out these great ideas courtesy of Elizabeth Mitchell at MSN Lifestyle:

9 Tricks to Keep the Dance Floor Packed at Your Wedding

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Mills Mansion Courtesy of Lori O'Toole Images Music and Uplighting by DJ Bri Swatek

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Mills Mansion Courtesy of Lori O’Toole Images Music and Uplighting by DJ Bri Swatek

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Mills Mansion Courtesy of Lori O'Toole Images Music and Uplighting by DJ Bri Swatek

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Mills Mansion Courtesy of Lori O’Toole Images Music and Uplighting by DJ Bri Swatek

(I would also add #10:  Make sure to select music for your Must Play and Do Not Play Lists the reflects your unique style as a couple!  There’s nothing better than celebrating with your family and friends to all the music you love–and none that you don’t!)

For more great ideas about how to express your unique style on your wedding day, visit my blog, Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding.

Congratulations,

Bri

__________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style
Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email:   briswatek@gmail.com
Phone:   845.235.0080
Online:   www.djbriswatek.com

How to Get Your Wedding Guests on the Dance Floor Courtesy of Borrowed & Blue

It’s your wedding day–it’s time to celebrate!  To set the right tone at your Hudson Valley wedding, check out these great ideas courtesy of Maribeth Grant at Borrowed & Blue:

5 Tips to Get Wedding Guests on the Dance Floor
http://www.borrowedandblue.com/all/wedding-blog/5-tips-to-get-wedding-guests-on-the-dance-floor

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek Dance Party Locust Grove Allan E Levine Photography

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek Dance Party Locust Grove Allan E Levine Photography

For more great ideas about how to express your unique style on your wedding day, visit my blog, Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding:  Your Style–What Does Fun Mean to You?

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek Dance Party Bride and Groom Grandview Owl's Eye Studios

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek Dance Party Bride and Groom Grandview Owl’s Eye Studios

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding,
DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style

________________________________________________________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style

Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email: briswatek@gmail.com
Phone: 845.235.0080
Online: www.djbriswatek.com

Top First Dance Songs for 2014 Courtesy of Borrowed & Blue

Looking for a unique First Dance song choice for your upcoming Hudson Valley wedding?  Be sure to check out these great ideas courtesy of Audra Jones at Borrowed & Blue:

Top 10 First Dance Songs
http://www.borrowedandblue.com/all/wedding-blog/top-10-first-dance-songs

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek First Dance Villa Borghese Majestic Studios

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek First Dance Villa Borghese Majestic Studios

For more great First Dance and Parent Dance ideas, visit my blog, Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding:

Popular First Dance and Parent Dance Songs for Your Unique Wedding
https://djbriswatek.wordpress.com/popular-first-dance-and-parent-dance-songs-for-your-unique-wedding/

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek First Dance Grandview Owl's Eye Studios

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek First Dance Grandview Owl’s Eye Studios

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding,
DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style

________________________________________________________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style

Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email: briswatek@gmail.com
Phone: 845.235.0080
Online: www.djbriswatek.com

How to Hire Vendors for Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding

While all couples should have a firm budget in mind for their wedding that they are comfortable with and that they can work within effectively, it’s also important to consider this question when planning your wedding: Who are my wedding vendors?

Hudson Valley Wedding First Dance at Villa Borghese with DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Owl's Eye Studios

Hudson Valley Wedding First Dance at Villa Borghese with DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Owl’s Eye Studios

It sounds like a simple question, but the truth–as always–can be a bit more complicated. In fact, this question actually answers a second question which all couples do consider at some point: Why are all of these wedding vendors’ prices so different?

Here’s the truth: full-time, professional wedding vendors set prices that are a reflection of the time, effort, quality, and service that they will provide for your once-in-a-lifetime event.

First, are your wedding vendors full-time wedding professionals? If they are, chances are you’re going to have a vendor who is responsive to your emails and calls, and treats your wedding as the most important event on their calendar that day. If your vendor is not a full-time wedding professional, it’s good to find out if a) they’re a wedding vendor first with a related sideline second to bring in a little extra income outside of the wedding season, or b) it’s the opposite: being a wedding vendor is really a part-time job for them and they have another career that takes up the majority of their time and energy. Imagine doing your own job as a part-time, weekend sideline–would you be able to do it effectively?

Second, who is actually coming to work at your wedding? If you signed a contract with a company that has several staff members, who is the actual person who will be working at your wedding? Make certain you know *who* your vendor is going to be on your big day.

Hudson Valley Wedding Cake Cutting at Patriot Hills Set to Music and Uplighting by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Custom by Nicole

Hudson Valley Wedding Cake Cutting at Patriot Hills Set to Music and Uplighting by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Custom by Nicole

There are many great companies in the Hudson Valley that offer multiple DJs, photographers, etc. for you to choose from for your event. They offer the opportunity for you to see samples of their work and meet with your personal vendor before the big day. However, there are also a number of services in the tri-state area that offer “too good to be true” prices for “someone” to come work at your wedding.

I’ve said this many times in my career as a DJ, MC, and event host: the words “surprise” and “wedding” rarely go together well. You should know exactly who your wedding vendors are and you should have the opportunity to be totally comfortable with them well in advance of the big day. Anything less than that feeling of complete confidence is not worth it.

Hudson Valley Wedding First Dance at the Villa Borghese Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Majestic Studios

Hudson Valley Wedding First Dance at the Villa Borghese Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Majestic Studios

Here’s an example from a bride named Lauren who confesses that she “made a mistake” and “took the cheap photographer route,” only to regret it after her wedding:

Lauren’s Wedding Story: “I Took the Cheap Photographer Route”
You can hear it in Lauren’s voice as she tells her story: she regrets her decision to not hire a wedding professional.

In addition, consider what professional Hudson Valley wedding photographer Autumn Thomes has to say on why

“Hiring Professional Hudson Valley and CT Wedding Vendors Matters!”
Clearly, Autumn has had the privilege of working with some great Hudson Valley wedding vendors, but she has also seen some vendor horror stories that could really ruin your big day.

Madison, Wisconsin photographers Primavera Studios further highlight the importance of paying for the time and effort that goes into quality wedding photography when they answer the question,

Why Does Good Wedding Photography Cost What It Does?
Most of this article could really apply to any of the Hudson Valley wedding vendors you are considering for your big day.

At I Found The Place, Stacie Tamaki asks the question

How Much Should Your Wedding DJ Cost?
and encourages couples to raise their expectations when it comes to a wedding DJ’s level of professional service at your once-in-a-lifetime event.

Taking her own personal “horror stories and success stories” as a bride “into account,” Jill Tooley at Best Hudson Valley Wedding Ever offers “seven red flags to watch for when you’re interviewing/researching wedding vendors”:

7 Signs It May Be Time to Find a New Wedding Vendor

Moral of the story: “It’s your wedding, not anyone else’s.”

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek at Christo's Courtesy of Cheryl Bolton-Reuter Photography

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek at Christo’s Courtesy of Cheryl Bolton-Reuter Photography

Don’t ever be afraid to ask your wedding vendors any of the following questions:

– Are you a full-time wedding professional?
– How many years of experience do you have in the wedding business?
– Why did you decide to become a wedding vendor?
– What do you enjoy most about being a wedding professional?
– How many weddings do you work per year?
– How many weddings do you (or does your company) work in one day?
– Do you ever “subcontract” your work out to other wedding vendors?
– If we hire your company, who will be working at our wedding?
– Are you registered as a legitimate business? (DBA, Inc., or LLC)
– Are you a member of a professional association?
– Are you insured for liability?
– Do you use professional equipment?
– Do you provide backup equipment at my wedding?
– What’s *your* backup plan?
– What happens if I cancel the wedding or need to change the date of the wedding?
– When will you arrive on my wedding day?
– Will you be suitably dressed for our wedding?
– Will you be willing listen to me, and follow my plans for my wedding?
– What are your pricing packages, options, and services offered?
– How much is your deposit, how do payments work, and what methods of payment do you accept?
– Do you provide a written contract?
– Can I have references and contact information from previous customers?
– Can I have references and contact information from other wedding professionals?

The American Disc Jockey Association provides questions like these, as well as things to look for in your vendors’ potential answers, online. While the ADJA article is mainly focused on hiring a DJ, these questions could easily be applied to most of the wedding vendors you are looking to hire for your big day.

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Le Chambord Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Elissa I Davidson Photography

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Le Chambord Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Elissa I Davidson Photography

Once you begin looking at true professionals as vendors for your wedding, you will find that while there are always differences in packages, options, and approaches to your big day, the price range for quality service is actually fairly consistent in the Hudson Valley. As always, you get what you pay for!

Need help looking for professional wedding vendors to make your big day the best it can be? Start with the list of true wedding professionals located on this blog: Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding, including recommended

– Venues and Locations,
– Caterers,
– Photographers,
– Videographers,
– Florists,
– Photo Booth vendors,
– and much, much more!

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding!

Bri

__________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style
Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email: briswatek@gmail.com
Phone: 845.235.0080
Online: www.djbriswatek.com

What Will Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding Look Like?

What will your wedding look like?  How will you share your unique style with your friends and family on your wedding day?

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style’s blog, Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding is now on Pinterest at http://pinterest.com/briswatek/.

Drop by for images from Hudson Valley weddings taken by some of the Poughkeepsie, New York area’s best professional photographers, including photos on the following boards:

Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding
http://pinterest.com/briswatek/your-unique-hudson-valley-wedding/

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style
http://pinterest.com/briswatek/dj-bri-swatek-spinning-with-style/

Additional Services for Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding
http://pinterest.com/briswatek/additional-services-for-your-unique-hudson-valley-/

Unique Hudson Valley Wedding Ideas
http://pinterest.com/briswatek/unique-hudson-valley-wedding-ideas/

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding,
Bri

________________________________________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style

Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email: briswatek@aol.com
Phone: 845.235.0080
Online: www.djbriswatek.com

DJ Bri Swatek’s Blog, Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding, Now on Pinterest

Bride & Groom’s First Dance at The Links at Union Vale, Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek, Image Courtesy of Cheryl Bolton-Reuter Photography

Bride & Groom’s First Dance at The Links at Union Vale, Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek, Image Courtesy of Cheryl Bolton-Reuter Photography

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style’s blog, Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding is now on Pinterest at http://pinterest.com/briswatek/.

Drop by to see images from DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style at Hudson Valley weddings including photos taken by some of the area’s best professional photographers.

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding,
Bri

________________________________________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style

Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email: briswatek@aol.com
Phone: 845.235.0080
Online: www.djbriswatek.com

Holiday Brunch in the Hudson Valley — Easter and Mother’s Day

Looking for a truly unique venue for your upcoming Hudson Valley wedding?

Hudson Valley Wedding Venues and Locations Courtesy of DJ Bri Swatek

A holiday brunch is the perfect opportunity to visit some of the Hudson Valley’s best wedding venues.

Easter Brunch and Mother’s Day Brunch are the perfect opportunities to find out more about the food, service, and overall style of some of the Hudson Valley’s best wedding venues and locations.  As the owner of DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style, I would recommend a few of my favorite venues to visit with my family and friends for a holiday brunch:

Anthony’s Pier 9

Blu Pointe

Buttermilk Falls Inn & Spa

The Chateau

Diamond Mills

The Grandview

The Links at Union Vale

Shadows on the Hudson

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding,
Bri

__________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style

Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email: briswatek@gmail.com
Phone: 845.235.0080
Online: http://www.djbriswatek.com

The Truth about iPod Weddings and DIY or Family Friend Wedding DJs

Considering asking a friend or family member to provide music at your wedding?  Has a friend or family member offered to DJ your wedding for little or no cost as their gift to you?  Or, are you considering the prospect of DJing your own wedding?

Are you concerned that no DJ can provide the music you truly want at your wedding?  Are you thinking of renting equipment, using your computer, iPad, or iPod, and becoming your own DIY DJ on your wedding day?

iPod Wedding

If your friend or family member truly is a professional wedding DJ, you will most likely have a fantastic wedding with them.  Asking a few simple questions (found on numerous “How to Hire a DJ” websites) will help you to determine whether or not this is the case.

However, if he or she is simply someone who “has a lot of music” on their computer with little or no experience as a professional wedding vendor, you could be headed for a real problem on your wedding day.  Trying to direct the people and events and attempting to coordinate the music on your wedding day can be a very challenging task for someone who is not a trained, professional DJ.  Wedding ceremony and reception timelines move very quickly and your other vendors will expect to be working with a trained professional who can keep pace with them on your big day.

DJing your own wedding is next to impossible.  With the multiple demands placed on your time during your wedding day–visiting with your guests, taking photos, simply *being* a bride or a groom–there’s little time to add in being your own DJ as well.  As the owner of DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style I always tell my couples that their main jobs on their wedding day should be to eat, drink, dance, and celebrate.  Hire experienced vendors, create a plan with them in advance that reflects your unique style as a couple, and you can leave the worry and the work to the professionals.

Here are three big reasons why you should hire a professional wedding DJ to play music and MC your once-in-a-lifetime event:

1. Organization

While many couples are looking for less “talk” or crowd motivation from their DJ, these are concerns that can be easily addressed with a professional wedding DJ.  An experienced DJ will listen to your ideas and tailor their MC work to fit the overall style of your event.

However, there are times when you do need a professional DJ to act as your MC at your wedding.  Who will make introductions?  Who will announce events?  How will your guests know that you are transitioning from dinner to dancing?  Who will coordinate with your other vendors?

With the amount of time and money you’re investing in your wedding day, you want to make sure that your carefully planned event comes together with perfection.  A highly trained wedding DJ will serve as your MC, coordinating with your team of vendors, organizing your wedding party, and directing you and your guests from one event to the next–all while playing the right songs at the right time!  From your first dance to your toasts and from dinner to your last dance, a professional wedding DJ will use your timeline, input from your vendor team, and his or her own training as a public speaker to create a natural flow of events for you and your guests.

2.  Reading the Crowd

Certainly, wanting to avoid typical wedding music and looking to have a “non-cheesy wedding DJ” experience is very important.  However, it doesn’t mean that you have to try to Do It Yourself or ask a family friend to be your DJ or MC.  In fact, you could end up having an even worse experience on your wedding day by trying to take on too much yourself.

Having a solid Must Play List and Do Not Play List the reflect your personal style is a great first step to a successful party on the day of your wedding.  However, an experienced DJ will also be able to “read the crowd,” paying attention to what is going on both on and off of the dance floor.  Sometimes your guests need one extra song–or one less.  Sometimes the mood on the dance floor changes and a planned song request needs to be moved up, moved back, or switched out for a different one.  Years of training and experience lead a DJ to knowing when to play the perfect song that fits that moment on your big day.

3.  The Back-Up Plan

Most couples either have or have access to a computer, iPad, or iPod full of music. Renting a speaker system and a microphone (or using equipment provided by a venue) is relatively easy as well. However, when it comes to DJ gear, having the equipment is only half the battle. Knowing how to use it and what to do when something goes wrong is where hiring an experienced DJ makes all the difference.

Each venue space is unique and requires a professional sound check and constant adjustments throughout your wedding to make sure the that music isn’t too loud and that the microphone is crystal clear.

In addition, having back-up gear and a back-up plan is a must on your wedding day. DJ equipment can fail for a number of reasons and there is little to no time during a wedding to try to figure out what went wrong and how to fix it. A professional wedding DJ will bring a complete back-up system to your weddding and have multiple “what-if” back-up plans (built on years of experience) to keep the music going at your once-in-a-lifetime event.

Hudson Valley Wedding DJ Bri Swatek in the Mix Courtesy of Owl's Eye Studios

Asking a friend or family member to help you with a Do It Yourself / iPod Wedding could end up costing you much more than the little bit of money you might be saving–there’s no reason to ruin your big day over concerns about the playlist or customizing the music to fit your style as a couple.  In fact, any truly professional wedding DJ will agree that your Must Play and Do Not Play Lists should reflect your personal style and the type of wedding you want your guests to enjoy.  A truly professional DJ will make these lists of songs an essential part of your unique wedding day, using professional MCing to keep a careful balance between food, photos, dancing, special moments, and everything in between!

Congratulations,

Bri

__________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style
Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email:   briswatek@gmail.com
Phone:   845.235.0080
Online:   www.djbriswatek.com

Black Friday? Try White Friday for Hudson Valley Wedding Planning!

Black Friday? Try White Friday for Hudson Valley Wedding Planning!

Whether you’re already engaged or thinking of getting engaged over the Holiday season, the weekend after Thanksgiving is more than just a great time to shop–it’s also a great time to do some wedding planning.  Why now?  Besides the fact that you may have a bit additional time off of work, there are two reasons why late November is a great time to dive into your planning process for your Hudson Valley wedding.

Black Friday? Try White Friday for Hudson Valley Wedding Planning!

#1. Let’s Get Together!

Many of your friends and family may also have some time off of work this weekend.  Now’s a chance to get together, talk, share, or even go out looking for the vendors, products, and services you will need for your Hudson Valley wedding.  You know that everyone in your life has an opinion on your upcoming wedding.  Take this opportunity to ask friends and family to help you with your wedding planning process, before everyone gets overly busy with their Holiday plans.

#2. Buy Now!

January and February are traditionally packed with winter Hudson Valley bridal shows.  In the Hudson Valley, there will be over a dozen bridal expos in these two months.  However, as the owner of Spinning with Style, a wedding DJ service in the Hudson Valley, I, DJ Bri Swatek, can tell you firsthand that more often than not, by February, key dates on that same year’s schedule for wedding vendors are already filled.  Many Hudson Valley wedding vendors actually set up booths at these winter Hudson Valley bridal shows and expos looking to book weddings for the following year, as that current new year is already almost completely booked.  Your wedding date is like a piece of real estate.  Just like a house, you’re building something incredibly special on that particular day on the calendar–a once in a lifetime event for your family and friends.  Many professional Hudson Valley wedding vendors can (or choose to) only work at one wedding per day, and by mid-Winter, your date could already be booked.  Consider signing contracts and paying retainers now–especially with your Hudson Valley wedding venue–before you miss out on that great service or vendor you had your eye on.

Where to begin?

An Internet search for Hudson Valley wedding venues, products, services, and other vendors can be more than a little overwhelming.  There are tons of Hudson Valley wedding vendors out there, and the level of quality and professionalism varies widely.  As the owner of Spinning with Style, I, DJ Bri Swatek, would recommend that you combine all those great referrals that you have (and will get) from your family and friends with some of the great services highlighted on this blog.  On Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding, you will find links to lots of great

– Caterers,
– Florists,
– Photo Booth Vendors,
– Photographers,
– Wedding Planners,
– Limos and Transportation,
– Wedding Venues, and
– Videographers,
– and more!

Each one of these Hudson Valley wedding vendors is a high quality wedding professional that I have worked with on numerous occasions and I can personally recommend as someone who wants nothing but the best for their brides and grooms on your wedding day!

Congratulations,

Bri

________________________________________________________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style
Your Professional Disc Jockey and MC Service
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email:   briswatek@aol.com
Phone:   845.235.0080
Online:   www.djbriswatek.com