My friend is my day-of coordinator class on 4/20

Register for this class by clicking here

Sunday, March 2, 2014 from 2pm to 4pm
Your Dream Day Cafe (Learning Center)
$39 per couple, includes light refreshments

Your friend will be your wedding planner or point of contact on the day of your wedding.

However, she has never 'planned' or worked behind the scenes as a real wedding planner before. She may have done other events like corporate, birthdays, or church events though, so that qualifies her to execute your wedding day to perfection, right? GUESS AGAIN!!

This two-hour class, taught by award-winning wedding planner Kathy Piech-Lukas, will help the couple and their friend prepare the timeline, things they need to do and accomplish, how to handle curve balls that they never expected, how to coordinate a rehearsal and what they need to know to jump into this role and be prepared for the big day. As a ten year veteran having planned more than 160 weddings in southwest Ohio, she can tell you exactly what to expect from your vendor team, bridal party, family members and guests. One person can only be in so many places at one time!

Both the bride and the friend should come to this class so that both parties can properly communicate with each other on the tasks, rehearsal coordination pointers, the timeline and expectations of the day. The cost includes admission for two people (likely the bride and her helper).

One-on-one private consultations may be booked with Kathy for $125 if you still don't quite feel prepred, or a classroom environment is not your style. Contact Kathy at 937-746-4617 with questions.

Bridal Events in Dayton, Cincinnati in February 2013

There are a lot of exciting bridal events and promotions scheduled this February. Here are just a few:

February 7 & 8 -- Diamond and Bridal event at James Free Jewelers. James Free Jewelers has a location in Dayton on Far Hills Avenue in Kettering, near our Oakwood location (Dayton) and on Main Street in Montgomery (Cincinnati). You can buy direct and save 20% from world-class jewelry designers and their latest designs for 2014. Great giveaways for the bride, groom and bridal party. Will you win the Mikimoto pearl stud earrings?

February 9 -- Bridal Open House at Dayton Racquet Club. The Dayton Racquet Club is located in downtown Dayton in the Kettering Tower, and is a great option for a rehearsal dinner or small wedding. It also has a fabulous panoramic view of downtown Dayton!

February 9 -- Cincinnati Bridal Spectacular at Horseshoe Casino, produced by Ohio Bridal Expos. Get discount tickets online for this event!

February 9 -- A Bridal Affair at Holiday Inn Fairborn. 11am to 3pm. See YDDC preferred wedding professionals All Sounds Unlimited and The Cakery at this event!

February 15 & 16 -- BridalRama. This is a big big show, so come prepared! Lots and lots and lots of wedding professionals. Be prepared to pay for downtown parking. Tickets are $10 per person and may be purchased in advance on the website or at the door.

February 20 -- Newport Aquarium Bridal Show. $7 per person at the door. Come see Everlasting Sounds and Your Dream Day (Cafe) at this wonderful event!

February 21 to 23 -- Monique Lhuillier Trunk Show at Bridal & Formal

February 23 -- Dayton Bridal Expo, produced by Ohio Bridal Expos. Come visit many preferred members of Your Dream Day Cafe, including Floral V Designs, All the Right Tunes, Prime Time Party Rental, Bernstein's Catering, Country Club of the North, All Sounds Unlimited, Entertainment Unlimited, Shaker Run Golf Club, and of course, Your Dream Day Cafe!

February 28 -- Dress designer Madeline Gardner wll be at Bridal and Formal for the Mon Lee Trunk Show

Matthew Christopher event at Bridal and Formal

This weekend, celebrity wedding dress designer Matthew Christopher will be having a trunk show at Bridal and Formal in Cincinnati, Ohio. Sunday morning begins at 10am with a cocktail style breakfast at Bridal and Formal, located on Benson Street in the Reading Bridal District, followed by the opportunity to view and try on his 2014 dress collection. Be sure to say hi to me (Kathy) when you stop by!

 I had the chance to meet the man who has designed dresses for Kristin Chenoweth (LOVE her!) and Debra Messing. At noon, Matthew Christopher appeared on on WDTN's "Living Dayton." Later that day, he mingled with me, a few select wedding professionals, the staff from Bridal and Formal, and Debra Moreland of Paris Tiaras, at a VIP party hosted at STIR in Montgomery. (STIR is an amazing venue that is very contemporary and chic, in case you are looking for a different type of wedding reception!)

Tidbit I learned today from Matthew? He knew he wanted to be a dress designer when he saw the cover the cover of the Bride's Guide to Music, released in 1993.

This photo is with Debra Moreland's husband, Matthew and me at the VIP party.

Pinspiration of the Year on Your Dream Day

This gorgeous updo was Your Dream Day's pinspiration of 2013 with over 668 repinned.

Follow Your Dream Day on Pinterest!!

Tip Thursday: Read Your Contracts before you sign!

Planning weddings is an emotional time filled with excitement, laughs, smiles and highs! However, the roller coaster of emotions that couples and families experience when planning a wedding can cloud the fact that you are in fact planning a large event. Planning a large event requires deposits, contracts, and reserving a company's services for the big day.

In the wedding industry, most wedding professionals will have you sign an agreement which includes a deposit or retainer for their services. That retainer secures your wedding date on their calendar -- nothing more. Most are non refundable. That payment ensures you, the customer, that they will provide services to you on that specific date on the calendar. After that is made, final details, choices, payments and headcounts are due the week(s) leading up to the wedding. Florists tend to be four weeks (because they have to order their flowers 3-4 weeks in advance); rental companies, bakeries, venues and caterers tend to be a week to ten days. Depending on the studio, videographers and photographers may want a payment prior to the wedding and a payment when you pick up your film or proofs, or want it all prior to the wedding. DJs, bands, ministers and limos are the same as photographers -- some want the final payment at your final scheduling meeting or on the day of the event.

My point? READ YOUR CONTRACT. It is a legally binding document. But... what if you found another vendor you like better, or you called off the wedding, or you moved the date? That vendor has a legally binding contract with you, and you agreed to all of the terms (terms of service, terms of payment, terms of cancelation) that the vendor has when you signed the contract. If your deposit is non refundable in the contract, the vendor is not obligated to return your deposit to you. The reason? Brides and grooms book wedding services months or years in advance, and that vendor has likely turned away business to hold and accommodate your date. That is what your deposit is for -- nothing more. And, in most cases, wedding professionals will have nonrefundable deposits, or in some cases, your deposit may be applied to a new event or other service. But that is up to the discretion of the vendor.

I see brides come into the Cafe feeling disgruntled because they called off the wedding, or decided that they wanted a different vendor even though they are already under contract with another. The hardest one for me to watch, however, is the wedding dress disappointment. The wedding dress you bought loses about 80% of its street value the minute you leave the store -- with or without tags. Most bridal shop purchases are NON RETURNABLE --- even if you called off the wedding, never wore the dress, and the dress still has its original tags on it. That clause is also listed in the paperwork you signed when you purchased the dress.

So please .... before signing anything .... read the contract! I always tell brides DON'T SIGN A CONTRACT AT A BRIDAL SHOW. EVER! Vendors always offer 'sign up today and get $xxx off" promos. No matter how hard they push, DON'T DO IT!! The $100 savings in the long run is not worth the headache you could face losing that deposit if you discover you made a bad decision after leaving the show.

Planning your wedding is a fun chapter in your life! However, remember the wedding industry is running a business as well, and treats their businesses as such. Make smart decisions!

Dealing with 'Mother Nature' and your wedding plans

For most cities in the Midwest, Eastern and Southern United States, January 2014 has had some of the coldest temperatures, sub-zero windchills, and snow accumulations during the past 30 years. So what do you do if you have a wedding planned and the show 'can't go on' because of weather-related issues?

The solution for that is insurance. Wedding insurance. Yes, for a few hundred dollars you can insure your wedding against things that could go wrong, such as a vendor going out of business (and hence unable to deliver the product you ordered or contracted), a vendor not delivering what you contracted them to do, or for vendors' inability to deliver services because of weather related issues like flooding, ice, level 3 snow emergencies (aka "Acts of God"), or facility related problems (like a widespread power outage, no generator to provide adequate power to fulfill your contract, etc.)

We recommend, but you can also ask your home or auto provider if you can add an umbrella to your existing policy.

One catch: to have the the 'Act of God,' or weather clause to be valid, most policies require that you purchase the insurance at least 15 days before the wedding. Otherwise you can exercise most clauses at any time during the process. Think of it this way -- if you buy a $100,000 home, don't you buy insurance just in case something happens? If you are spending $20,000 on a car, don't you spend premiums to insure it? Why wouldn't you insure the most important day of your life, a one-time single day event, that the average bride spends $26,000 on in the United States?

Kathy Piech-Lukas interview with television personality Vanessa Freeman

This month, I sat down with television personality Vanessa Freeman (Living Dayton) to talk about wedding planning tips, things to keep in mind when planning a wedding ceremony, and to keep wedding planning fun. Watch to learn things that you need to know for your Indian, Catholic, Christian, or other wedding ceremony traditions!

Brides Against Breast Cancer at Hilton Garden Inn, Beavercreek (Dayton) Ohio

The Brides Against Breast Cancer team brought the nationwide tour to Dayton this past weekend. More than 700 designer gowns, deeply discounted up to 85 percent off, were available for brides to try on and purchase. Some gowns are donated by bridal salons (so they are 2012 and 2013 styles new with tags), while others are donated by past brides who wore them once. 

A total of 10 dresses were sold at Hilton Garden Inn in Beavercreek, and more than a dozen wedding professionals shared information about their services with current brides planning weddings in Dayton and Cincinnati! This weekend, more than $8,000 was raised for breast cancer patients and their families. According to Brides Against Breast Cancer, every $58 raised = 1 hour of free support for cancer patients and their families.

This is the second time this event has come to Dayton. This video, produced by Take One Studio at last summer's event, offers a glimpse into the event itself.

The event was also promoted on Friday morning on ABC 22 Fox 45 in the Morning, Living Dayton and Dayton Daily News. Special thanks to The Hilton Garden Inn and Perfect Wedding Guide Magazine for making this event a huge success! To learn more about the organization, visit

Kaden’s Cove Yacht Club -- new venue open house tonight

This evening, Kaden’s Cove Yacht Club in Trenton, Ohio, will be having an open house for the public, engaged couples, and wedding professionals from 7 to 9pm. Kaden's Cove Yacht Club is located at 4983 Kennedy Camp Road has a beautiful ceremony area that overlooks the harbour, and a building that can seat up to 250 people for a wedding reception. This venue is centrally located between Hamilton and Middletown, off I-75.

Complimentary food and drinks will be served at the event. To learn more about Kaden's Cove Yacht Club, call 513-893-5585 or visit

To receive or not to receive...(Receiving Line) that is the question

Receiving lines give a bride and groom the opportunity to greet every single wedding guest that has come to celebrate their big day with them. For many couples, this may be the only chance they get to talk with all of the guests. However, receiving lines do take time.

On average, a receiving line will take 30 minutes per 100 guests. A formal receiving line happens outside the church (or other ceremony location) after the ceremony has taken place, or as guests enter into the evening wedding reception. Typically, the newlyweds, their parents, and their bridal party participate in the receiving line.

An alternate idea to a receiving line is a row dismissal. This can knock the time of 30 minutes per 100 guest to as little as 15 minutes per 100 guests. The reason -- the couple is able to control how much they speak to a guest and can set the pace for how long the greeting takes. After the processional of the newlyweds, bridal party, and parents, the bridal party is whisked away to a 'safe location,' while the bride and groom go back up to the ceremony area (altar, trellis, gazebo, etc), greet each guest by row, and dismiss them to leave. Once the guest is dismissed, they exit the church or ceremony location. If you plan to do a special exit photo with bubbles or ribbon wands, this is an excellent opportunity for your bridal party (that is in the 'safe location' to begin handing those out to guests and get them excited about the couple's grand exit.

If you have a limited amount of time at the ceremony location, AND you still have a lot of photos to do, it may be best to make a point of visiting all of the tables at your wedding reception instead of doing a receiving line. The amount of time it takes, however, is that 30 minutes per 100 guests figure. Make sure to budget your time accordingly. Your guests are genuinely happy for you and just want to say hello to you on the big day.

Upcoming Wedding Events in Dayton


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