Advice for Brides from Professional Wedding Vendors

Vendor Spotlights

July 4, 2021

Advice for brides comes from everyone: mom, grandma, Aunt Sally, and anyone who has ever been a bride!  Whose advice do you heed?  Whose advice do you ignore? Although all brides have their stories of the best, and worst, moments of their day, we believe you should hear the advice from your vendors.  Most professional wedding vendors take great pride in their work, and their goal is for the bride, groom, and their families and friends to enjoy a fabulous day making precious memories together. Swanson Signature Events has a team of six planners who forge excellent business relationships with all wedding vendors. We match vendors to our clients because we know our clients’ vision, personality, style, and budget. We asked a few of Savannah’s best wedding vendors to give their advice for brides getting started on planning their weddings. Read on to get advice from a venue manager, a caterer, a dj, a bar tender, a transportation company, and a photographer.

The DeSoto ~ Ann Mashburn ~ Wedding Venue ~ “Memorable Events don’t just happen; they happen to be our business!”

If you are looking for a stress-free wedding day, choosing a full-service hotel is a fantastic first step!  The DeSoto is one of Savannah’s premier full service hotels.  When you book them for your wedding, you will pay a food and beverage minimum fee that varies based upon the day of the week, season of the year, and the size of your reception space. The DeSoto has several fabulous spaces for your ceremony and reception; you need to see them to appreciate your many choices!  They have all-inclusive wedding packages and are always happy to customize a package just for your special day.

Ann Mashburn is the Catering and Conferences Services Manager for The DeSoto, and she has been in the wedding industry for more than a decade. Her advice to you is to book the DeSoto and hire a professional wedding planner!  Ann says, “Hiring a professional planner allows a stress-free, seamless experience on your wedding day. It also allows the vendors to focus on their specialties. A professional wedding planner will keep you and your wedding on schedule!”


Cape Creations Catering, Inc. ~ Cynthia Creighton Jones ~ Caterer ~ “We always strive to feed your imagination, but we hope to feed your soul too!”

Too often Brides and Grooms are so busy at their own wedding that they forget to eat, but when they hire Cape Creations, they and their guests do not go away hungry!  Cape Creations has been in the business of feeding Brides, Grooms, and their guests since 2005. Cape Creations Caterers will customize the menu to reflect your tastes, create your delicious food in house, pay great attention to every detail, and work hard to ensure that your catering funds are well spent. Cynthia highly suggests that you hire a professional wedding planner!

“A good planner provides the caterer with the client’s vision which helps us to create a menu that reflects the client’s tastes and enhances the vision for the wedding. A good planner will also share design elements with us, so our food presentation flows with the design/vision. The planner also provides a great timeline prior to the wedding day giving us an accurate understanding of the flow of the day. On the wedding day, we have someone to go to who has a complete understanding of the day. The planner is essentially the leader of TEAM BRIDE – all of your wedding partners form a cohesive team under the leadership of the planner, and we will work magic behind the scenes to ensure that your day is spectacular!”

Top Shelf Entertainment ~ Jordon Bala ~ DJ ~ “The bride and groom think about getting married and having a good time, and we ensure that this happens!”

You need a place, food, and of course entertainment! Jordon Bala of Top Shelf Entertainment has you covered! Top Shelf takes pride in their company and their services, and they promise to make your wedding “one for the books!” Being a part of a couple’s special day is both a privilege and an honor to Jordon and his team. They provide DJ and Emcee services to keep your wedding reception hopping! The DJ/MC depends upon your wedding planner to keep every aspect of your day on track and on time so that he can focus on the fun! Jordon says, “Your vendors need guidance, a point person to manage the flow of every aspect of your event. Allowing a professional planner to handle all of the extraneous details and tasks provides you and your guests with the opportunity to enjoy yourselves!”

Shaken & Stirred Mixology ~ Brendan Marc ~ Elite Beverage Catering ~ “Tell me about yourselves and your big day vision, and we will take care of the rest!”

Brendan Marc and his team at Shaken and Stirred Mixology take all of the guess work out of your bar planning. They provide absolutely everything from spirits, wines, beer, and mixers to custom cocktails and mocktails as well as all glassware and the bar itself. Brendan gets to know you and your needs for your event long before your special day. Brendan has been in the wedding industry for five years, and he provides  beverage catering, bourbon tastings, and mixology classes. He would love to create a special cocktail just for you! Brendan says that your bar service staff needs a wedding planner!

“Wedding planners are an essential part of how you experience your big day. They have answers for questions that you didn’t even know you had. The planner takes care of you, your guests, and your vendors. They afford safety, security, and peace of mind so that we can do our jobs, and you can enjoy your day!”

Silver Oak Transportation ~ Kevin Mullane ~ Wedding Transportation ~ “We are your wedding logistics experts. We get you where you need to be!”

If you’d like to be sure everyone arrives to every event on time, call Kevin of Silver Oak Transportation. He and his team will go the extra mile to take care of you and your guests. No one will need to search for a place to park for the ceremony or try to get back to the hotel after the reception. Silver Oak will take care of you. Kevin is the wedding transportation logistic expert; he will take the headache out of transportation for you and your guests.

Kevin suggests that you hire a professional wedding planner for your day, because he depends on the wedding planner! “The Wedding Planner is Chief of Events for your wedding day. To me the planner is the walking rolodex who has the contact information for every person in your wedding party and on your wedding vendor team. The planner ensures that every vendor is on time keeping all events happening like clockwork which makes my job so much easier. They are worth every penny you pay them and more!”

Bronston Photography ~ Tori Bronston ~ Wedding Photography ~ “Team work makes the dream work!” John Maxwell

Your choice of a photographer is crucial to enjoying and remembering your wedding day!  The photographer will document your precious moments while you experience each of them. Tori sets up an initial consultation to be sure she is the best fit for you. Her advice for choosing a photographer is to know the style you are looking for because every photographer has a unique style. Tori has an environmental approach; she loves to focus on the scenery of the venues you have chosen so that you will remember the beauty of the day for years to come. Don’t skip the engagement session – that is when you get to know your photographer long before the wedding day.

Tori often recommends SSE as a wedding planner for her clients because she loves the freedom to do her job!  “When a professional planner is leading your vendor team, I know that we can focus on your photography sessions because all of the other elements of the day are taken care of and will be ready when we need them to be. The bride and groom can relax knowing the planner that they trust has everything under control!”

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