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

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Hudson Valley Bridal Show at The Links at Union Vale on Sunday, February 24, 2013

Planning your wedding in the Hudson Valley of New York?  Here’s information about a great upcoming Hudson Valley Wedding Expo, courtesy of my good friend Teri Stellato at The Links at Union Vale:

Bride & Groom’s Dance, Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek, Image Courtesy of Cheryl Bolton-Reuter Photography

Bride and Groom’s Dance, Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek, Image Courtesy of Cheryl Bolton-Reuter Photography

“Join over 30 wedding experts for an afternoon of food, fun and entertainment in our elegant ballroom! The Links at Union Vale Bridal Show will feature cake samplings and delicious food prepared by our chef, as well as door prizes, special offers and gifts for the Bride-to-Be.

10th Annual Bridal Expo
Sunday, February 24, 2013
Noon to 4pm
Admission is FREE for brides and two guests.
(Additional guests welcome at $5 per person.)”

“As one of the Hudson Valley’s premier wedding facilities, we think every bride deserves a distinguished reception site and individualized attention, regardless of your budget. That’s why we’ve assembled a variety of the best wedding professionals in the area who will ensure your special day is perfect in every way.

If you’re engaged, you can’t afford to miss this year’s show!

Pre-register by calling (845) 223-1002 today or email us: events@thelinksatunionvale.com
Visit www.TheLinksAtUnionVale.com for more information and directions.”

Looking to make the most of the show? As the owner of DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style, I highly recommend that you read these articles before attending a wedding expo:

Making the Most of Bridal Shows in the Hudson Valley
https://djbriswatek.wordpress.com/making-the-most-of-bridal-shows-in-the-hudson-valley/

How to Hire Vendors for Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding
https://djbriswatek.wordpress.com/how-to-hire-vendors-for-your-unique-hudson-valley-wedding/

Looking forward to seeing you at the show,

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

Bear Mountain Inn

Blu Pointe

The Chateau

Christo’s Catering

Diamond Mills

Valley Restaurant at The Garrison

The Grandview

The Links at Union Vale

The Rhinecliff

The Roundhouse at Beacon Falls

Shadows on the Hudson

Terrapin

The Villa Borghese

Villa Venezia

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

Elegant Events Hudson Valley Bridal Show at The Mansion at Colonial Terrace on Sunday, June 3, 2012

One of the Hudson Valley’s premier wedding planning companies, Elegant Events, will be hosting a Bridal Show on Sunday, June 3, 2012 at The Mansion at Colonial Terrace.

Here’s more information about this great Hudson Valley wedding expo, courtesy of my good friend Karen Villanova at Elegant Events:

“Attending an Elegant Events Hudson Valley bridal show can be very helpful in planning your wedding. Come meet and ask questions of our pre-approved wedding professionals. Learn about the latest trends, gather information on upscale facilities, sample delicious foods & win fabulous prizes. Its a day of fashion, advice, innovation, and fun, all under one roof!”

The Mansion at Colonial Terrace
119 Oregon Road Cortlandt Manor NY 10567
Sunday June 3rd, 2012
12-5pm
$5.00 at the door

If you’re engaged, you can’t afford to miss this show!

Pre-register http://www.eleganteventshv.com.

Looking to make the most of the show? As the owner of DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style, I highly recommend that you read these articles before attending a wedding expo:

Making the Most of Bridal Shows in the Hudson Valley
https://djbriswatek.wordpress.com/making-the-most-of-bridal-shows-in-the-hudson-valley/

How to Hire Vendors for Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding
https://djbriswatek.wordpress.com/how-to-hire-vendors-for-your-unique-hudson-valley-wedding/

Looking forward to seeing you at the show,

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

Hudson Valley Bridal Show at The Links at Union Vale on Sunday, February 26, 2012

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

One of the Hudson Valley’s premier wedding venues, The Links at Union Vale, will be hosting its annual Bridal Show on Sunday, February 26, 2012.

Here’s more information about this great Hudson Valley Wedding Expo, courtesy of my good friend Teri Stellato at The Links at Union Vale:

“Join over 30 wedding experts for an afternoon of food, fun and entertainment in our elegant ballroom! The Links at Union Vale Bridal Show will feature cake samplings and delicious food prepared by our chef, as well as door prizes, special offers and gifts for the Bride-to-Be.

9th Annual Bridal Expo
Sunday, February 26, 2011
Noon to 4pm
Admission is FREE for brides and two guests.
(Additional guests welcome at $5 per person.)

As one of the Hudson Valley’s premier wedding facilities, we think every bride deserves a distinguished reception site and individualized attention, regardless of your budget. That’s why we’ve assembled a variety of the best wedding professionals in the area who will ensure your special day is perfect in every way.

If you’re engaged, you can’t afford to miss this year’s show!

Pre-register by calling (845)223-1002 today or email us: events@thelinksatunionvale.com
Visit www.TheLinksAtUnionVale.com for more information and directions.”

Looking to make the most of the show? As the owner of DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style, I highly recommend that you read these articles before attending a wedding expo:

Making the Most of Bridal Shows in the Hudson Valley
https://djbriswatek.wordpress.com/making-the-most-of-bridal-shows-in-the-hudson-valley/

How to Hire Vendors for Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding
https://djbriswatek.wordpress.com/how-to-hire-vendors-for-your-unique-hudson-valley-wedding/

Looking forward to seeing you at the show,

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

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