Thursday, September 29, 2016

The Roles of Your Wedding Party

One part of planning a wedding is choosing the family and friends that you will include in your wedding party. They can be extremely helpful in taking a bit of the pressure off of the bride and groom by taking on a few of the planning tasks, as well as making sure that everything goes smoothly on the wedding day. 


Today we are highlighting a few of the traditional roles that the people in your Country Jewell wedding party will play. These are not strict, set in stone rules, but guidelines pointing towards areas where you can expect a little help. 

Bride & Groom
You two are the stars of the show! This entire day is about celebrating the love you share as you become husband and wife. All of the final decisions to be made during the wedding planning are yours, so your roles stretch far and wide. 

In relation to your wedding party, an important thing for you to do is to convey your wishes for the to the people that will be assisting you. Stay true to who you are as a couple, and do your very best to stick to the budget you have set for yourself. Oh, and above all, have fun!


Maid/Matron of Honor
This is the bride's right-hand-woman. She will be your closest backup during the planning and on the wedding day. She will be the person in charge of corralling the other bridesmaids, and also the one that needs to make sure other major events, like the bridal shower and bachelorette party, get planned. This is an excellent person to ask for opinions on the wedding fashions that you choose too.  

On the wedding day, her job is to make sure you have everything that you need, get where you are going on time, hold your bouquet during the ceremony, and make sure your train is straightened and beautiful after you come down the aisle. The maid/matron of honor will also sign the marriage license as a witness, and may be asked to make a toast to the couple.
   
Bridesmaids
These girls also have your back and can help to take care of the things that your maid/matron of honor doesn't get to. They will help with the planning and executing of wedding-related parties. At the reception, they can take on a hostess role and offer answers and assistance to guests. They are also great for making sure the dance floor stays full.  


Best Man
This is the groom's right-hand-man. He needs to make sure that the groom is ready for the big day, and help him to get to the ceremony on time. The best man  is in charge of keeping the groomsmen in line, and is often entrusted with holding on to couple's wedding rings until the officiant asks for them. 

He will be the second witness to sign the marriage license, offer a toast at the reception, and is generally the one to plan the groom's bachelor party. If the men's formalwear needs to be returned after the wedding, he is a good person to be in charge of this.   

Groomsmen
These fellows are there to offer the groom any support he may need and assist the best man. They usually don't need much coaxing to help out with planning the bachelor party, and at the reception they can help the bridesmaids keep the wedding guests entertained and having fun. If you do not have people assigned in the role of usher, the groomsmen can step in and take care of that duty.

Ring Bearer & Flower Girl
You can have any person of any age take over these duties, but it is usually left to some adorable young children. They should attend the wedding rehearsal to get used to the rest of the wedding party, which will hopefully put them at ease enough to perform their duties on the actual day. 

Ushers
These helpers need to dress the part and show up early enough before the ceremony so that they will be there to guide all of the wedding guests to their seats. They can also point out the location of the restrooms, and help to let guests know where to go for the reception. Ushers also release the guests from their seats in an orderly fashion after the new Mr. & Mrs. leave the ceremony.



Letting everyone in your wedding party know what is expected of them before they agree to join you is the best way to make sure everything goes as smoothly as possible. If they are willing and able to help with other tasks, like picking up rental items or putting up decorations, accept their assistance. The more you allow them to do, the less stress you will have to endure. 

We offer wedding planning assistance at our rustic Knoxville wedding venue too. Let us know what you have in mind and the type of help you are needing, and if we don't provide it, we can help you to find the vendors that do. Many of our Country Jewell wedding packages already include things like catering, DJ services, reception decorating, and more. Our team, along with your wedding party, will make sure that this is a very special, very memorable day.  


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

7 Tips To Help You Plan A Successful Destination Wedding

You don't have to live in Tennessee to get married at our scenic rustic wedding venue near Knoxville. Many couples fall in love with Country Jewell from the photos that they have seen online and choose to host a destination wedding with us. 


We are conveniently located less than ten minutes off of I-75, putting us very close to Knoxville, Norris Lake, Pigeon Forge, and Gatlinburg. That means there are plenty of places for your guests to stay that are only a short distance away from us. If you do choose to host a destination wedding far from where you live, here are a few tips to help you pull it off successfully. 

Send Save-The-Dates Early

Usually, save-the-dates should be sent to guests about 6 months before the wedding date. In the case of a destination wedding, move this timeline up to 9-12 months before the wedding date. Your guests will need the extra time to ask off of work, make childcare arrangements, and arrange their travel plans. The sooner they know the wedding information, the more likely they will be able to join you.

Hire Help at the Destination

It's wise to have someone at the destination that you are in constant contact with and can trust to keep an eye on things for you. Here at Country Jewell, we can help you with things like local vendors you can count on and what the weather is truly like that time of year. It's a lot easier for someone that lives in the area to guide your wedding planning than for you to guess from a distance. If you bring vendors from your hometown, you will most likely have to pay for their travel costs. There are many talented vendors in the Knoxville area that can take care of all of your wedding day needs without that added expense.

Visit the Venue Before the Wedding
If at all possible, take a trip to your destination early in the planning process to see the venue in person. It is also nice to be able to interview any wedding vendors that you may hire in person rather than making that decision from a distance. You will feel a lot more confident about the choices you make once you have been to the area. 


Research Local Marriage Requirements
Double-check the marriage license requirements for the area that you will be getting married in well before the wedding day. Also, any special requirements for the officiant that you are allowed to use. You don't need any surprises popping up close to the ceremony that will get in the way of saying "I do."

Share Local Information With Guests
Your destination is most likely a new area to all of your guests. Gather some information to share with them about fun things to do and places to visit. A wedding website is an excellent place to post this information, or you can have it all waiting for them upon arrival in a welcome bag in their hotel room.

Travel Lightly

The less you have to take to the destination with you, the easier the trip will be. Plan for simple decorations, or rent as many as possible from a vendor in the area to be delivered. Anything that you do travel with, keep close to you. Do not put any important items in your checked luggage. If flying, make sure these things all fit into your carry-on bag. If it doesn't show up when you do, you may have to make do without it.

Try to Arrive Early in the Week
If at all possible, get to your destination a few days before the actual ceremony. This will give you time to relax and settle in, plus you will be able to check on all of the last-minute details and make adjustments where necessary.


It's not difficult to host a destination wedding at our charming country wedding venue near Knoxville, but it does require a little extra attention to detail. The sooner you get started and make decisions, the better off you will be. If Country Jewell seems like the perfect destination for you to become Mr. & Mrs., contact us to find out exactly how we can help you make this happen. 


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Friday, September 16, 2016

6 Tips To Keep Your Wedding Guest List To A Minimum

Our charming scenic wedding venue near Knoxville is idyllic for a smaller wedding of up to 100 guests. It can sometimes be difficult to keep your guest list to a minimum once everyone hears about your engagement. If you are wanting to have a small, intimate ceremony, Country Jewell has come up with a few tips that may help you to narrow down your guest list without any guilt. 



Decide on a Budget...
...and stick to it! A large guest list always means a bigger price tag for a wedding. Many people will understand the need for a small guest list if you make it clear that you are trying to stick to a budget. It's really none of their business how much you are spending, but if it quiets their complaints, it may be worth mentioning. 

Start with 4 Lists
The following people should make a list of people that they feel should be invited to the wedding: the bride, the groom, the bride's parents, and the groom's parents. It will help the process to let your parents know the number of guests you are aiming for. Each list should highlight the people that absolutely must be invited to the wedding, and the rest of the names should be listed in order of importance. These lists then go to the bride & groom for approval. (It's your wedding, so you get the final say!)

The first step is easy. Mark off any duplicate names between lists. Next, write down everyone's "must have" guests, then evaluate how much space you are left with. To begin narrowing down the rest of the names, ask yourself a few questions. The following are a great place to start.

  • How often do you see them? 
  • When was the last time that you saw them? If over a year, they can be marked off.
  • Do you see them socially outside of work or are they just office acquaintances?
  • Are they your parent's friends? Long time family friends are a possible maybe, but if you don't know them, they don't have to come.

Drop the Plus One's
If you are trying to keep your guest list small, a great place to cut your numbers down is the "plus one" option. You should invite spouses and the significant other of anyone that is in a long-term relationship. If they are only casually dating, you don't have to allow them to bring a guest. If they are worried, assure them that there will be other single guests at the wedding too. There is no reason that one of your real friends should be cut from the guest list to invite someone that may not be around next week.

Have an "Adults Only" Wedding
This can be a touchy subject for some, but this wedding is your party and it is perfectly acceptable for you to not allow guests to bring their children. The key is to give them enough advance notice so that they have plenty of time to make alternate plans for their kids on the day of your wedding. If you have a lot of people with small children, hiring a sitter to keep all of the kids during the wedding might be a wonderful option for everyone.

Hold the Wedding on a Weekday
This can be a big money-saver. Many wedding venues offer a discounted rate if you have your wedding on a non-traditional day. Weekends are a lot more convenient for people, so having your wedding on a Monday-Friday could make many unable to attend, keeping your guest list down.

Have a Destination Wedding
This is a perfect way to keep the guest list to a minimum and not feel guilty about not inviting some people. After all, you wouldn't want them to have to pay extra to make the trip. Country Jewell is an excellent spot for a destination wedding. We are conveniently located less than ten minutes off of I-75, putting us very close to Knoxville, Norris Lake, Pigeon Forge, and Gatlinburg. There are plenty of places for your guests to stay while they are in the area.


Don't let yourself feel guilty about leaving people off of your guest list. We completely understand the benefits of hosting a small wedding, and most reasonable people will understand too. If leaving some people out is really bothering you, maybe you could arrange a gathering for the ones that didn't make the cut to celebrate with you after the honeymoon. It's your special day, so in the end, make sure that you do what makes you the happiest. 




A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Friday, September 9, 2016

Thoughtful Ways to Say Thank You to Your Wedding Party

The people that you have chosen to be in your wedding party are the ones that you can lean on to make the day a success. The close friends that are there for you to make sure everything runs the way you want it to. In our opinion, and we bet you'll agree, the members of your wedding party deserve an extra special thank you. Country Jewell has a few ideas on ways that you can show your gratitude. 

Country Jewell, Knoxville wedding venue

Something Personal
First and foremost, nothing is more personal than a handwritten thank you note. These aren't just for the material gifts that you receive at the wedding, but for gifts of time too. An email, text, or pre-written card just doesn't do the trick. Put pen to paper and say something from your heart meant specifically for them.

Rather than finding one gift to give to all of your bridesmaids and groomsmen, pick out a present that pertains to something that they personally love or have an interest in. Use their job, hobbies, and favorite things for inspiration. The extra thought that you put into it will mean a lot to them.

Something Useful
Since these people have been so very useful to you over the course of planning your wedding, say thank you with something that they will be useful to them in the future. Every time that they use the item, they will be able to think fondly back to your wedding day. This can be in the form of beautiful jewelry for the ladies to wear at the wedding and beyond, or a money clip or watch for the gentlemen. A personalized tote bag can come in handy many times over. Wine carafes or whiskey decanters with a set of glasses would be nice for them to use at home and when you come over to visit. Basically, anything that you know they will enjoy using over and over. 

Something Fun
You can throw a "thank you" bash when you get back from your honeymoon for your entire wedding party. It will be lots of fun for you all to get together and have a good time without the pressures of the wedding looming over your heads. Just a night full of reminiscing about how amazing the wedding was, and all of the adventures you hope to have together in the future. You could even give everyone a memento that you picked up for them while you were on your honeymoon. They will be touched that they were still in your thoughts during the trip.

Something Memorable


A picture is worth a thousand words, and the very best way to preserve a memory is to capture it in a photograph. A wonderful gift to give everyone is to buy them a set of photos from the wedding; one of you with them (bride with bridesmaid, groom with groomsman) and a photo of the entire wedding party together. You could even go an extra step and arrange for your photographer to take a professional portrait of each person in the wedding party at some point during the day.   



Your wedding party probably knows how much you appreciate them, but it's important to make the extra effort to make sure that they know exactly how important they are to you. Everyone involved in your wedding day plays a part in making it a successful and wonderful experience. 

That includes our rustic wedding venue near Knoxville. We will do everything in our power to make sure your ceremony and reception are everything that you have been dreaming of. Thank you so very much for allowing Country Jewell to be a part of this special moment in your life.  



A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

Like us on Facebook
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Thursday, September 1, 2016

A Perfect Event Venue For All Of Your Celebrations

Our charming event venue near Knoxville has hosted many weddings over the years, but we also host all types of other events on a regular basis. The picturesque natural beauty and convenient facilities make Country Jewell the perfect place to hold all of your celebrations. 

Country Jewell, Knoxville, event venue


A Great Place For A Party
We are located in Anderson County, Tennessee, less than ten minutes off of I-75, putting us very close to Knoxville, Norris Lake, Pigeon Forge, and Gatlinburg. Your guests will be able to easily get here from any of those towns. Our chapel can accommodate up to 45 people, and the event barn can comfortably hold 100 guests.

This is a wonderful size for most types of parties. There is also a warming/serving kitchen at your disposal for all of your catering needs, plus a refrigerator, oven, and microwave. You can even use our 20 folding tables and 100 folding chairs for your guests. If you won't be doing the cooking, we can arrange to take care of the catering and other details for you.  


Engagement Parties
If you are having a large wedding, host a small engagement party for close family and friends to announce the upcoming special day right here with us. The quaint atmosphere is excellent for an intimate gathering.  

"My mother booked Country Jewell as a surprise for our engagement party and we had a wonderful time! The property is beautiful and Claudia is awesome to work with.
~Katherine Fuller, Facebook review

Country Jewell, Knoxville, event venue


Birthday Parties
We've got plenty of room for outdoor games and lots of space in the barn for more activities, refreshments, and birthday cake. Hosting a birthday party at our place means that you don't have to clean up your own place before our after the celebration.   

Family Reunions 
The scenic, open setting and kitchen facilities at Country Jewell make it an ideal place to bring your extended family together. Your group can enjoy the outdoors while having access to an indoor area to cool off and get out of the weather. You will also be able to use our kitchen area for all of your catering needs to keep the crowd fed and happy.     



Anniversaries
Our rustic wedding venue is the perfect place to commemorate the day you got married, especially if Country Jewell was the site where you originally said your vows. You can even take advantage of our outdoor gazebo or charming wedding chapel to say "I do" all over again with a vow renewal.  

"I had my parents' surprise anniversary party here...it was wonderful! Claudia is so sweet and great to work with. Her venue is beautiful and clean. She directed my caterer and DJ with set-up which helped me while I set out my decorations. My family had a great experience and made a lot of memories that night!
~Lindsey DeVente Stanley, Facebook review





What will you be celebrating?  
Those are just a few ideas, but there are so many more reasons that you could invite a group of family and friends to an event at Country Jewell: class reunions, retirement ceremonies, holiday parties, and so much more! If our event venue near Knoxville sounds perfect for your next party, give us a call to set up a tour. We would love to help you host your next special celebration.



A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

Like us on Facebook
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Thursday, August 25, 2016

11 Helpful Wedding Planning Resources

If you are in the process of planning your wedding, it is very likely that you have never done this before. It's difficult to know exactly where to begin, but there are loads of resources out there that can walk you through every single bit of the process. Country Jewell has put a few of these together for you to take a look at. 




Wedding Books
In this day and age, most couples get a lot of their information online. That being said, we still believe in the power of a good book. Sometimes it's nice to have something in-hand that you can curl up with and study, making notes as you go. You will most likely find a website related to many of these books to reference also.

  • Emily Post's Wedding Etiquette: This was traditionally thought of as the bride's handbook, but it was originally written in 1922. Emily's great-great-grandchildren, Anna & Lizzie Post, have updated those ideas to fit modern-day situations. There are plenty of tips for handling your wedding in an elegant way. (www.EmilyPost.com)
  • Offbeat Bride: Creative alternatives for the independent-thinking couple fill this book. Ariel Meadows humorously recounts her own wedding-planning tale, as well as a few other examples. Reading it lets you know that if you want to do something that some may consider unconventional, it's perfectly okay! You will find tips, tricks, and friendly encouragement for having the wedding you truly desire. (www.OffbeatBride.com
  • The Knot Ultimate Wedding Planner & Organizer: Here you will find this popular wedding website's information in your own hands. There are tons of ideas, worksheets, checklists, etiquette, calendars, and more. There is even a section of answers to frequently asked questions.
  • A Practical Wedding: Here you will find creative ideas for planning an absolutely amazing wedding, but without breaking the bank. You will discover ways to host the a meaningful celebration that can fit within your budget. 
  • Bride's Thank-You Note Handbook: Thank you notes are an important but time-consuming task. This book makes it all a little easier by giving tips for writing thoughtful, prompt, hand-written thank you notes for every type of gift. You will even find examples that you can follow. It may save you lots of time and worry.



Wedding Resources Online
If you prefer to search the internet for your inspiration, the following online sites will be extremely helpful with your planning. 

  • TheKnot.com: We mentioned their organizer above. Online you will find just about everything you could possibly need to plan a wedding. Links for vendors in your area, reviews, checklists, registries, budgeting tips, ideas, real wedding spotlights, and much more. Sign up for free and start exploring. You can even build a website for your own wedding. 
  • WeddingWire.com: Here is another option for a free, one-stop website for everything "wedding." You can access planning tools, local wedding vendors, inspiration, open discussions, tons of reviews, and much more. You can also build a wedding website for your own special day for guests to access.  
  • Pinterest.com: It's the rare person that hasn't heard all about Pinterest, and there's even a good chance that you may have started a wedding board before you got engaged. Simply type in anything that you want to know about and you will immediately have all kinds of inspiration from other people that have shared pages online that they love. Save your favorites into titled boards of your own. Not only will you get visual inspiration, but the links will take you to pages that tell you how to make it happen.
  • Google Drive: This is not a website, but rather an online cloud to keep all of your thoughts, ideas, photos, and more organized in one convenient place. You can sync it to your mobile devices so that you always have access to your information. You can even invite people to share certain files if you need to work together.
  • WeddingBlogs100.com: This site claims to feature the 100 best wedding blogs in the world. No matter what your style, you are sure to find a blog here that is right up your alley. All aspects of weddings are covered within these 100 blog links. 
  • KnoxvilleWeddings.com: Here you can find local Knoxville wedding vendors, plus all kinds of helpful wedding tips for every part of your wedding, plus fun wedding facts and information. There is even a link to WhereBridesGo.com, with the tagline "Where Brides Go, For What Brides Love," full of wedding accessories and wedding party gifts. 


Those resources will help you to get the general wedding planning started. When you are ready to plan your ceremony and reception at our Knoxville rustic wedding venue, we will be happy to help you with the details. Country Jewell is a beautiful place to begin with, and with a little research and inspiration from some of the resources above, your wedding can reflect exactly who you are as a couple in a very memorable way. 




A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

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Thursday, August 18, 2016

7 of Our Favorite Rustic Wedding Ideas

Every wedding is different because each one reflects the couple that is getting married. There are innumerable directions that you can go for the look and feel you are wanting. Here at our rustic wedding barn venue near Knoxville, we get to see lots of charming, country-style weddings. We adore this type of theme and never get tired of seeing the different ways that each couple approaches it. 

If you have been considering throwing a rustic wedding, Country Jewell may be the best place for you. Here are a few of our favorite ideas from some of the rustic-themed weddings that we have witnessed. 


Burlap & Lace

The rough look of burlap against the soft, romantic look of lace creates a marvelous atmosphere for a wedding. It can be used, well, everywhere! Chair decor, table runners, wrapped around candles or vases for a centerpiece, woven into bouquets and boutonnieres, on wedding programs... the list goes on and on.  


Mason Jars

This is another very versatile rustic wedding prop that can be used in a wide variety of different ways. They are available in many sizes from large to small. We love it when a couple personalizes them and places them as a drinking glass at each place setting as a favor for guests to take home. They also make perfect vases, candle holders, utensil holders at the buffet, and so much more. 




Yard Games

Take advantage of the outdoor areas if your rustic wedding will be happen during pleasant weather. Fun games like cornhole, horseshoes, ring toss, and more can be set up to keep everyone entertained during cocktail hour and during the reception if they need a break from the dance floor.  


Homemade Desserts Table

A table full of your family's favorite recipe desserts gives off a very "homey" vibe. Homemade pies, cookies, dessert bars... the possibilities are endless. Even though everyone loves wedding cake, your guests will appreciate having other choices too. 


Hay Bales for Seating

Colorful quilts over bales of hay make for very unique seating that is perfect for an outdoor country wedding. Guests will only be seated on them for a short time during the ceremony, but they make excellent extra seating during the reception for anyone wanting to wander back outside. Those hay bales are also nice for displaying some types of wedding decor on too.


Lots of Baby's Breath

A little bit of this lovely flower goes a long way, and it's not terribly expensive compared to other floral options. It resembles the look of lace, which as we mentioned earlier, is a great accent for a rustic wedding. You can use baby's breath as filler with more expensive blooms, but big bunches of it alone look wonderful too. 


Themed Guest Books

Instead of the traditional book filled with lined pages for guests to sign, we love seeing unique guest books that fit in with the rustic theme. Pallet wall hangings with the wedding date & couple's names, a cut piece of a large tree, or even a wooden bench.   

Country Jewell, Knoxville wedding venue, rustic wedding

Our rustic wedding barn near Knoxville already has its own charming decor that really does not need anything added to it. This makes it possible for you to have a beautiful wedding without having to spend a lot of time and energy on the decorations. We will provide the memorable atmosphere for your ceremony and reception at Country Jewell, and any added elements that you decide to incorporate from your own imagination will make it extra special. If you know that a charming rustic wedding is exactly what you want, stop by and let us show you everything that Country Jewell has to offer. 


A delightfully quaint Knoxville wedding
& event venue.

6550 Hickory Valley Road
Heiskell, TN 37754
865-494-0552

Visit our website:  www.CountryJewell.com

Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter
Follow us on LinkedIn
Follow us on Google+