Category Archives: Party and Wedding Etiquette

The Stylish Soiree Featured in Glamour!

We’ve been getting some really exciting press lately, including a recent feature in Glamour magazine. The lovely Rosemary Brennan, writer for Glamour, interviewed me about ways that couples are taking the nontraditional route on their wedding day.  The tip that appeared in the article was about couples opting to forgo the traditional champagne toast during dinner. Instead of spending extra money by purchasing enough champagne for a quick toast (which many guests take one sip of before returning to their original cocktail or glass of wine), more and more couples are simply letting guests toast with whatever is already at their table. Here is the blurb that appeared in Glamour:

I know the text is tiny, so I’ve copied and pasted the content below. Or, you can go to Glamour’s website and read the full article.

Champagne isn’t essential.

When it’s time to make toasts, the champagne doesn’t need to flow freely—or at all. “A champagne toast is a long-standing tradition that budget-conscious couples sometimes skip on their wedding day,” says Yelena Johnson, wedding planner and creative director of the Stylish Soiree in Beverly Hills. “Guests tend to stick to their drink of preference, so much of the champagne purchased for the toast is wasted after only one sip. For couples paying an additional fee for the toasting champagne, it often makes sense for guests to raise a glass of whatever they are already drinking.”

A huge thank you to Rosemary for featuring our advice and for being such a great interviewer… and best wishes to her on her own upcoming wedding in May!

XO, Yelena Johnson | Creative Director & Principal Wedding Planner | The Stylish Soiree | @StylishSoireeYJ

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The Stylish Soiree Featured in the San Diego Union Tribune

The Stylish Soiree has been out and about in the press lately, including this little feature on guest etiquette from the San Diego Union Tribune. I grew up in San Diego my entire life, so even though we’ve already been featured on bigger news outlets like AOL Living and Extra, seeing my name in print in the Lifestyle section was still pretty darn exciting.  🙂

The article was about proper hosting and guest etiquette for guests who have overstayed their welcome at a party, and how to kindly encourage them to go home. Here is the blurb with my advice:

” Yelena Johnson, creative director and principal planner for The Stylish Soiree, an event-planning company, says it’s acceptable to put a start and end time on your party’s invitation.

Another option that Johnson recommends is to plan an after-party at a nearby restaurant or bar. As she puts it: “If they know that the party is moving on, party animals will follow suit.”

You can read the rest of the article at Sign On San Diego. If you’ve ever wondered how to get your lingering guests to move on, here is more etiquette advice from yours truly:

Gracious Guest Tip 1: Guests should first and foremost remember to be considerate of their hosts, whether the event is a grand wedding or a low-key family birthday party. One of the best ways to be a gracious guest is to be respectful of the host and hostess’ time. Never arrive more than ten minutes early to a party (since that’s when the host will be running around wrapping up last minute details) and try to never arrive more than fifteen minutes late.  If the event is a wedding, be sure to arrive early – there is nothing worse than a late comer interrupting the ceremony with their shuffling footsteps in the back of a church or synagogue.

Gracious Guest Tip 2: Always read and adhere to the timing of the event, which should be printed on the invitation. With the growing prevalence of online party invitations it’s easy to take a lax attitude towards the start and end time, but the host or hostess picked out that particular timing for a reason – ensure that you’ll be invited back by respecting the timing they chose.

Gracious Guest Tip 3: When the crowd at a wedding or party begins thinning out, the only people who should stick around until the very end are those closest to the host and hostess (or bride and groom). Overstaying your welcome not only displays poor etiquette, it can also become awkward when the hosts are ready to call it a night and you’re lingering around.

Etiquette Tips for Hosts:

Party animal who just won’t leave? Consider using the following tricks to ensure guests don’t take advantage of your hospitality:

Hosting Tip 1: Always, always, always include both a start time and an end time for your party.  The vast majority of guests will take heed and you will dramatically reduce the chance of perpetual partyers sticking around.

Hosting Tip 2:
Sometimes well-intentioned guests just won’t leave. For a daytime event, a tactful way to encourage their departure is to wrap up the conversation by saying something to the extent of, “Well, I’ve had so much fun seeing you today! I wish we could chat longer but I have to get ready for {insert other appointment/meeting/excuse here}. Thank you so much for coming, let’s grab lunch soon so we can finish catching up.”

Hosting Tip 3: For evening wedding stragglers who want to keep the party going, create an ‘after party’ plan at a popular local bar or lounge. Add the plan to your wedding’s website or let guests know by word of mouth that they can continue the festivities elsewhere. Then, print out nice cards with the name of the after party location and directions so guests can pick them up on their way out of your reception venue, along with the phone number of a local cab company. If they know that the party is moving on, party animals will follow suit.  This way the bride and groom are spared having to kick them out of the reception, and they can head to bed if they are too tired to continue the party without feeling like bad hosts.

Have you ever had guests who just wouldn’t leave the party? What are your favorite tips for getting stragglers to hit the road?

XO, Yelena

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