Wedding Guys' Wednesdays: Guests Mix and Mingle in Lounge Areas

It all begins with four simple words, “Will you marry me?” And with that question, your life is forever changed. You are no longer a “me,” but a “we.” It is no longer “my dreams, my family, my future,” but “our dreams, our family, our future.” A wedding is the beginning of a new chapter in your life.

But before you walk (or dance) down the aisle, you need to figure out a lot of details.

Enter The Wedding Guys™, Matthew Trettel and Bruce Vassar, recognized internationally as leading authorities on wedding celebrations. Their fun, energetic personalities, keen eye for detail, and passionate love for all things wedding gives couples a fresh new approach to wedding planning.

The Wedding Guys bring years of industry knowledge and trend-forward expertise to Twin Cities couples through their Signature Weddings, Twin Cities Bridal Show, and Unveiled – The Ultimate Wedding Planning Event. They associate and collaborate with leading international couture bridal gown designers—keeping a pulse on fashion trends—while actively working with trendsetting artisans, designers, couturiers, and producers who are leaders in their respective fields.

They will take you from “to-do” to “I do!” in a new eight-part series, “Wedding Guys Wednesdays.” They’ll share fashion advice, answer common questions about ceremony and reception etiquette, and provide the ‘inside track’ to planning your own signature wedding. Along the way, there will be contests and ticket giveaways to the Twin Cities Bridal Show Sept. 21 at the St. Paul RiverCentre.

Lounge Areas Set the Tone for Reception

Rather than hosting a cocktail hour with high-top tables and passed hors d’oeuvres, we suggest creating a varied landscape with a built-out bar. Rent soft sofas, loveseats, and chairs to create an inviting lounge ambiance for your guests. They’ll appreciate the chance to sit down and catch up in a more easygoing, comfortable atmosphere.

Keep your furniture pieces simple and create several seating options. People naturally like to form conversation groups, and sitting in clusters and pods allows them to do this. We like to add oversized coffee tables to display statement pieces of floral, while simultaneously providing guests a convenient place to set their drinks.

Lighting is an important element to consider when designing your lounge. Dim the overhead lighting and use uplighting to glam up the space and signal that the hurried activities of the busy wedding day have mellowed and now it’s time to kick back, relax, and enjoy a cocktail.

How you divide the space is also key. If you want to incorporate a lounge during the dance/entertainment portion of the evening, you can easily amp up the atmosphere with couches and chairs around the dance floor, creating a club vibe. Lounges can also be created in more quiet surroundings for those who wish to have intimate conversations or simply take a break from dancing. Some couples choose to mix it up with small table configurations and lounge elements (for a more organic experience), others like sheer walls between the lounge and other reception areas to provide a little separation, while still feeling like part of the group. Make sure all spaces are easily accessible.

Make the space feel warm, inviting, and interesting with throw pillows—a great way to bring in your accent color or repetition of patterns or textures. Other ways to add pops of color include floral arrangements, rugs, and draperies.

Lounge designs can be very elaborate or quite simple, it all depends on the space, your design aesthetic, and how you envision your guests enjoying the evening. In designing a lounge, keep in perspective that the main objective is to encourage relaxation and socializing. The design should encompass some, if not all, of the five senses: sight, touch, smell, hearing, and taste. 

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