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Diary of a Wedding Planner
Posted on: 11/6/2014  by Angela

Resolutions to life experiences can often seem simple and straight to the point when you’re on the outside looking in, and it’s not any different when you’re an event planner working on your own big day, right?  So when I realized that our own Angela Smith planned her own TWO ceremonies, reception and honeymoon in the last several months I couldn’t resist the urge to get the "tea” (latest gossip).  If any of you know Angela, I’m sure you know her as the hilariously funny, pragmatic problem solver. 

Alanna: Where was the ceremony?

Angela: We celebrated our family ceremony at the property of dear friends on the James River with about 25 people total. It was very small and very meaningful. We just returned from our symbolic ceremony at a resort in the Dominican Republic called the Melia Caribe Tropicale with seven of our closest friends.

Alanna: You’re such a workaholic (I’ve accused you of secretly being a cyborg!). Did you take time off for a honeymoon?

Angela: You’re hilarious. I came back to work on the 21st, then left for Punta Cana a week later. I’m glad to be back, but I’m sure missing mai tai’s on the beach and the pure relaxation. Think it will work here if I say "drink please”?

Alanna: I’m sure people assumed that planning your own weddings was a walk in the park for you as you plan events for a living. Did your planning go smoothly? What challenges did you face before the wedding?

Angela: Boy, that’s an illusion for sure!!! It was not easy to plan the ceremonies, parties, and wedding-moon at all.  I must say, being in the business actually made it more difficult. Timing was awful due to the busy season. Then, it was so hard to choose from all of the wonderful and fabulous vendor friends I have in the industry. That’s the main reason we decided to keep the whole thing super small and go away for the wedding. I love everyone, and wish I could have invited them all, but the reality was that it wasn’t possible. I certainly would have hurt someone’s feelings as there are so many uber-talented professionals who I work with!

It doesn’t help that I have mush brain. I am so busy at work and at home with my kids in sports that it was hard to keep up with wedding plans. I felt super behind by the time the event days arrived. If it wasn’t for my BFF and Maid of Honor, Tiffani, I don’t know how I would have been able to do it all! It’s a fact – hiring a wedding planner is a necessity – not a luxury!

Alanna: What kind of last-minute details did you have to attend to?

Angela: I was tying up loose ends for both weddings until the last minute. We waited on response cards for our family dinner. We had to find dresses for our daughters for the wedding as one hated hers and the other’s got lost in the mail! We had a timeline to make and a contact list called "Call anyone but the bride!” There were a bazillion small details and I was always afraid I was missing something important. That, on top of working, caused some major stress, but I was always confident it would come together.

I was proud to avoid being Bridezilla and to stay easy going about the process. The best part is that I married my best friend and the love of my life, and that we blended our families into one.

Interview by Alanna Rivera, Assistant Event Coordinator

Classic Party Rentals of VA

Posted In Events | Tagged awards, NACE  |   Comments: 0  |   Permalink

Etiquette Alert: How to Set a Proper Table
Posted on: 10/27/2014  by Angela

You've paid for the china, the flatware, and the glassware for your next party or event, but do you know what to do with it? Where do you put those extra forks? Which wine glass goes where? Did you even know that there were rules for these things?

Don't panic. First, only the most formal of events requires all of the pictured items. Many very nice meals require no more than a salad fork, entree fork, possibly a dessert spoon, and a couple of appropriate knives. If you are just having a wine and cheese fete with the girls, you have more flexibility with your glassware. However, it pays to know what your most informed etiquette expert expects so you may avoid any embarrassing faux-pas. Here is a handy little diagram to help you set your table by the book - and if you're still confused, don't hesitate to contact your Classic Party Rentals of Virginia consultant today. We'll be happy to help you wade through the sometimes confounding rules of tradition and etiquette!

Some additional helpful tips:

1. When deciding which piece of flatware to use, start with the outside and work your way in, then, when you've exhausted those, work your way from the top down. Not every pair is a matched set - you don't need a knife for your soup course! If you are hosting a small private meal, it would be helpful for you to remove the pieces that are no longer needed as you transition from course to course for your guests.

2. Even at a formal meal, it is okay to be creative with napkin placement, an often aesthetic decision. Just make sure that when you eat, it is in your lap, and set on the table, to the left of your plate, if you leave the table.

3. That big plate under the rest of your plates is your charger - it is decorative. Please don't eat off of it! Hosts, plan to remove this plate either after the first course, or, before dessert.

Posted In Events | Tagged Party, reception, Setup, tips & hints, wedding  |   Comments: 0  |   Permalink

Classic Party Rentals of Virginia and the Greater Richmond Chapter of NACE
Posted on: 10/20/2014  by Angela

What do experienced event professionals with successful businesses do to enhance their customer relationships, grow revenue, and keep employees current in the most important trends and practices in their industry? Special event industry pros join an organization committed to relationships, education and excellence. In events, that organization is the National Association for Catering and Events (NACE).

According to NACE, it is "the oldest and largest catering association in the world," encompassing "all aspects of the catering and events industry." NACE is "dedicated to promoting career success for its members and the professionalism of the industry; offers educational programs, professional certification, chapter initiatives, networking opportunities, recognition and awards programs, a job bank, community service projects, and the industry's most prestigious annual conference. In helping its member enhance their business and careers, NACE helps the industry reach its highest potential."

Classic Party Rentals of Virginia belongs to the Greater Richmond Chapter of NACE. Our employees have served in leadership roles and we regularly contribute to the organization's events. Membership requires an investment of time, money, and effort. It's not something that we have to do. It is something that we know makes us more qualified to serve you, and is therefore well worth it. We are so honored to be part of an award-winning chapter of NACE, and look forward to all we will learn and contribute in the future!

Posted In Events | Tagged awards, NACE  |   Comments: 0  |   Permalink

Svetlana and Jason on the Borrowed & Blue Blog
Posted on: 10/14/2014  by Angela

Oh, how honored we were to be featured, recently, on the very popular local wedding blog, Borrowed and Blue, as a contributor to this gorgeous wedding. We are delighted for Svetlana and Jason, and grateful for the opportunity to work with them. Thank you to all of our colleagues who worked on this event, and especially Mike Topham Photography for sharing the images with Borrowed and Blue. View the entire post here:


Posted In Events, News | Tagged awards, events, Party Rentals, reception, richmond  |   Comments: 0  |   Permalink

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