Fort Worth Wedding Venue

The 3 “D’s” to Consider Before Booking the Big Vendors

There’s so much to do before the big ‘I Do!’ Once you’ve chosen those big ticket items, like the venue and photographer, getting the rest of the details in order tends to fall into place. But what about before? Knowing just where to start is where most get stuck, so here are the 3 “D’s” to consider before booking the big vendors…

1) The Date

Most weddings take between six months to a year to plan, so it’s important to give yourself and your fiancee some time to get everything together. Many venues don’t even take reservations before a year out and the same is true for ordering a wedding dress– it can take up to six months or more. Case and point, wedding planning takes time. If you know you want a Spring wedding, with plenty of florals and a light palette, but your beau popped the question in late January, it’ll be a tight squeeze to get hitched right away.

It’s also important to consider what time of year will work best for your dream wedding based on your region. Weather is a very important factor in deciding if you want a Winter Wonderland or Spring Fling. If you know you want a Mountain backdrop, for example, it’s best to check weather warnings before putting down a  deposit on what will be a snow bank.

Finally, you should consider if there’s a very special date that means a lot to you and your soon-be-spouse. Maybe it’s your dating anniversary that you’d love to use as your wedding date or perhaps your first date. What better way to start your new lives together than to celebrate when your relationship began! Whatever your hopes for the timing of the big day, remember that choosing a date is the first step.

2) The Dress

You might think it is counter-intuitive to get the dress before the venue, but believe me when I say the dress dictates more than you can imagine! As I said, dresses can take up to six months or more to order, not to mention tailoring. If you have always dreamed of that big, beautiful ball gown that makes you look and feel like a princess, remember that they take up quite a bit of space– you’ll need a spacious aisle (and a large bathroom stall!)

Remember too that wedding gowns are HOT, figuratively and literally. Layers upon layers of gorgeous lace or satin will make you sweat, so before you book your venue, you’ll want to check that it’s cool enough for you to enjoy your prince charming and all your guests. Let’s say you want a gorgeous slimming sheath-style dress; if you’ve already booked a cathedral, you might seem a bit underwhelming in the space, not to mention cold.

The dress also dictates the veil, accessories, and shoes. If you need a gorgeous heel, your beach wedding with have to be sans the sand. If you know you need to wear your grandmother’s necklace, you’ll have to pick a dress that showcases it. Choose the dress that makes you feel like a goddess and pick then pick the space that can accommodate and compliment your magnificent frame.

3) The Design

The design of your wedding includes the atmosphere you hope to create along with any family traditions you know you want to participate in. The best way to choose a design or theme for your wedding is to choose three specific adjectives that you want to describe your wedding day. Your words might be ‘Fun, Whimsical, and Classy’ but these words are too broad; they won’t help you choose the vendors that will bring your dream wedding to life. Be specific. One great example of a set of design words is  “Woodsy, quaint, and simple” which helps you choose a color palette, venue, the number of guests, and the style of your details.

Choosing a design also means deciding on what family or religious traditions you want in your wedding. If you want a Bahamian Junkanoo band to play at your wedding, you’ll need a space that will accommodate it. If you plan on having a traditional Orthodox wedding, you’ll need a church that will suit your vision.

Similarly, if you only want a small number of friends and family, you’ll want to create a design for your wedding that makes the ceremony and reception feel cozy, but comfortable, without looking empty. Or if you plan on a larger guest list you will need to make sure the venue can accommodate for parking, seating, and feeding your desired guest list. At The Orchard, we have venues for all guest list sizes. Our Arbor and Pavilion is perfect for under 75 guests while our Reception Hall can host up to 400 guests.

Knowing your wedding budget and your guest size is the most important part of the design of your wedding. Once you’ve chosen the type of atmosphere you want to create and any special traditions that are essential to your big day, you’re ready to go shopping for vendors.

The date, dress, and design are all you need before booking the big ticket items, like the photographer and venue. Now that you know where to start, enjoy the journey!

For more wedding planning tips and help on staying organized check out Wedding Wire’s Wedding Checklists

Traditional Wedding Cake Alternatives – Four Creative Desserts That Will Make Your Celebration Special

If you are planning an upcoming wedding, your dessert options aren’t necessarily limited to traditional wedding cakes. Unique desserts are becoming more popular and there are many other desserts that might be more in line with the bride and groom’s tastes or background. Here are four creative spins on wedding desserts that can replace the need for a traditional wedding cake.

  1. Keep it in the Family

If there is a dessert that your family cherishes or has been handed down for generations, you might want to incorporate this into your wedding reception. If you and your fiancé come from different backgrounds or traditions, you can to include desserts from both of your cultures. Having a relative that is an excellent baker can be an asset if they are up to the challenge of providing a heartfelt dessert for your reception.

  1. Local Flavor

If you and your soon-to-be spouse live in a location famous for a certain type of dessert, it can be a nice treat for out-of-towners to get a taste of the local flavor. This might be a dessert that your favorite restaurant offers that you would like to share with friends and family. Whether this is local ice cream, beignets, or creme brulee, if you have a special local dessert that you love, this can be celebrated with others. 

  1. Donuts for Dessert

Who says a sweet breakfast item can’t double for dessert at your wedding? Donuts are a fun, grab and go snack that will enable folks can get back to dancing and mingling. If you don’t want to waste time sitting down for dessert at your wedding, donuts can be a great way to keep your guests mobile throughout in the reception. You can even special order a large donut for the bride and groom to fill in for cake pictures.

  1. Dessert-Themed Carts

With food trucks and carts gaining popularity, you can work off of this theme when it comes to desserts. If you just can’t decide on one dessert, bring in food carts or stations with various desserts, from ice cream, pies, cupcakes, or cookies. This way, people can sample a few different desserts or pick what they like the most. This buffet-style option can keep the night going and folks can get desserts when they are ready.

While traditional wedding cakes might still be the number one option for some, trying something new is always an option. If you would like a fresh spin on your wedding dessert, there are plenty of creative and special sweets that might be perfect for your big day. If you still would like a smaller wedding cake for the bride and groom to share, this can be accommodated along with other creative desserts for guests.

Photo by: Lightly Photography

Join Us for our Summer Open House on August 17th!

We are hosting our Summer Open House Thursday, August 17th. The complimentary event will be from 5 PM in the evening till 8 PM at night.


At the Open House you will be able to tour the entire venue, visit with a variety of vendors, and meet our staff to have an idea how we can manage your event. Complete access to the kitchen, bar, all event spaces, bridal suite, groom’s cabin, as well as the  cabins and lodge accommodations will be granted. To add to the excitement of the night, there will be a variety of raffle prizes and contests to enter to win discounts and free items towards the planning of your wedding.

In addition to touring the venue and meeting the vendors and staff, you can also explore some of the great tablescapes, enjoy the cocktails with friends and family, and taste a selection of hors d’ oeuvres from our preferred caterers.

The Orchard Open House is a one-stop wedding planning shop, so stop waiting and start gathering friends and family to plan a visit to The Orchard Event Venue & Retreat on Thursday, August 17th, 2017.

RSVP to:

For more information about The Orchard Event Venue & Retreat, please visit: or “Like” us on Facebook. 

Inspiration Through Wedding Photographer Blogs

At The Orchard Event Venue & Retreat we are very fortunate to be able to work with so many amazing vendors. From wedding planners, caterers, photographers, and entertainers, we’ve formed special relationships working together to put together a special wedding day for our couples.

Many of the vendors we work with have blogs where they post photos of events they have done at The Orchard. Whether you’re planning a sophisticated black tie wedding or casual country wedding, photographer’s blogs are a great place to get ideas and inspiration for your own event!

Here are a few features of wedding events that took place at The Orchard Event Venue & Retreat.


Monica Salazar Photography Blog

Brett & Kara’s wedding photographed by Monica Salazar Photography


Lightly Photography Blog

Chadler & Nic’s Wedding Photographed by Lightly Photography


BeatBox Portraits Blog

Emily & Logun’s wedding photographed by BeatBox Portraits

5 Ideas to Make Your Wedding Unique

Weddings are, by nature, events that will have similar elements and themes. These can be the aspects that make weddings recognizable from place to place, and are aspects that you won’t want to change. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t have a unique wedding. Because each bride and groom is different, with different situations and a unique history, each wedding will be just that little bit altered. However, should that not be enough, here are five ideas on how to make your wedding uniquely you.

  1. Transportation. Every wedding will require transportation of some sort. For the guests to the and from the reception, to hotels or even if it’s just for the bridal couple at the end of the night. This is your chance to choose transportation that fits your style. A stretch hummer, a vintage car, an old school bus. There are plenty of ways to make your transportation stand out and make the trip just part of the party.
  1. Favors. Though favors are no longer considered to be required at a wedding, they are an excellent way to thank your guests and be thoughtful. Favors can be anything from a personalized trinket to handy reception necessities. Flip flops for those guests whose shoes are uncomfortable, hangover kits for the next morning, or tiny tambourines for the reception are all examples of ways you can make your favors reflect you.
  1. Guestbook. Guestbooks are the perfect way to remember who shared your day with you as well as the perfect opportunity for your guests to share a message with you. But you don’t need to use a traditional guestbook. Buy a coffee table book and have your guests write inside or leave a Polaroid camera at the table for guests to take a picture and sign the back of. Some couples ask for advice or baby names for the future. This can be a special manner of communication between the bridal couple and the guests to take advantage of it!
  1. Entertainment. This is where your wedding can really shine. For your cocktail hour, hire a jazz band or a barbershop quartet. Ask friends and relatives to perform at your reception. Instead of a photo booth, have a video booth where your guests can leave you a message.
  1. Style. Add your own style. Orchestrate a big entrance with a confetti shower or a dance number. Hire an old fashioned event announcer to conduct your evening. You and your groom can do a costume change after the ceremony, for added comfort and style. Make your first dance something nobody could forget.

Your wedding is a celebration of your relationship. Let it reflect that with added personalized touches. It will make the day feel more special for you and your guests when you can see yourself in every aspect of the day.

Bridal Bouquet with Seasonal Flowers at a Fort Worth Event Venue

10 Great Reasons to Use Seasonal Flowers for Your Wedding Bouquet

Whether you are planning a classic June wedding, a vibrant spring wedding, a stylish fall wedding or an elegant winter wedding, the flowers you choose for the wedding bouquet will set the tone. From helping you create the perfect mood on the biggest day of your life to building on the color theme you have so carefully chosen, the flowers that make up your wedding bouquet have a lot of work to do.

No matter when your wedding is scheduled or where the ceremony will be taking place, there are solid reasons to incorporate seasonal flowers into your floral bouquet.

Here are 10 great reasons to make your wedding bouquet a seasonal delight.

1.   Seasonal flowers will be fresher and more fragrant. Instead of shipping the flowers for your wedding bouquet halfway around the world, your chosen florist can pick them up locally. That means a fresher, more beautiful, and more fragrant floral bouquet for your wedding day.

2.  Seasonal flowers will blend in perfectly with your chosen color theme. Decorating the church and reception hall with seasonal colors is a great idea, and a bouquet filled with seasonal flowers will top it off perfectly.

3.  Seasonal flowers are more affordable. Weddings are expensive, and shipping off-season flowers across the globe just adds to the cost. Choosing seasonal flowers can save you a lot of money – money you can use elsewhere in your wedding budget.

4. Seasonal flowers come in every color of the rainbow. No matter what your color theme, you can find seasonal flowers to fit the bill. From baby blue to vibrant red, seasonal flowers come in every shade and hue.

5. Seasonal flowers set the perfect tone. Creating the right look and feel is very important when planning your wedding, and seasonal flowers can create just the right environment.

6.   Seasonal flowers photograph well. You want your wedding photos to recreate your special day as faithfully as possible, and seasonal flowers are among the most photogenic of posies.

7.  You can make your seasonal wedding bouquet as simple or fancy as you like. Whether you are getting married at the local country club or in your own back yard, you can find seasonal flowers that will blend perfectly with the ceremony. From the simplest and most humble blossoms to the fanciest and most outlandish, you can find seasonal flowers that are perfect for your wedding bouquet.

8.  Seasonal flowers can do double duty. Those seasonal flowers can do more than create a stunning wedding bouquet – you can use them to dress up the dining tables at the reception hall, decorate the church and much more. You can even give a vase of seasonal flowers to your guests as a memento of the big day.

9. Seasonal flowers stay fresh longer. You do not have to fret if things are running a bit behind. The seasonal flowers in your wedding bouquet will look just as great hours from now as they do when they are delivered.

10.  Seasonal flowers are widely available. If you go with seasonal flowers, you can work with any florist in town, giving you a wider choice and more negotiating power. Seasonal flowers put you in control of your wedding bouquet, and the entire wedding planning process.

Planning the perfect wedding is no easy task, but choosing seasonal flowers means you have one less thing to worry about. Seasonal flowers are always fresh, always colorful, always vibrant, always available and always perfect for your big day.

Your florist can help you choose the right flowers that are in season for your wedding date!

Florists We Love:

Kate Foley Designs Kate | (817) 707-3379 |

Pam’s Ribbons & Roses Pam | (817) 271-3774 |

Vivienne & Vine Floral Design Sabrina I (682) 234-9621 |

Bumble Bee Occasions Sharon I (817) 270-4272 |

6 Helpful Tips for Reducing Stress When Planning a Wedding

Planning a wedding can be stressful because there are so many things which need to be arranged prior to the big day. It’s important that all your planning comes together perfectly on the day so you can enjoy one of the happiest moments of your life. It takes a lot of work to plan everything perfectly and it can sometimes make you feel stressed.

Read these great tips to help you stay calm when planning your wedding day.

Don’t Forget Why You’re Getting Married

If things start to feel overwhelming, then stop what you’re doing and remember why you’re getting married. You are arranging the biggest day of your life with the person you love and remembering this simple fact can help you to stay focused and reduce any stressful feelings.

Get Some Exercise

Exercise can be good for relieving stress and helping you deal with stressful situations. During exercise, your body produces endorphins and these endorphins make you feel happier. Moreover, regular exercise can help you to sleep better and an improved quality of sleep is also known to reduce stress levels. If you’re planning a wedding and you feel that everything is starting to make you feel stressed, then regular exercise can help you to feel better.

Eat Healthy Food

Maintaining a healthy and balanced diet can also help to keep your body feeling good. Coupled with exercise, a healthy diet will help you to feel happier and you will have more energy which will help you to manage stress levels and feel more relaxed.

Get Some Help

If things start to get too much for you, then you should ask your friends and family for help. Delegating parts of the planning process can help you to feel less overwhelmed. On top of this, your friends will be able to give you advice and help you through the stressful times.

Take a Break

Even small weddings can be stressful to plan and if things are starting to feel overwhelming, then you should take a break and get away from anything related to your wedding. Go for a weekend away with your future husband or wife and spend some quality time together. Getting away from everything for a couple of days will help to clear your mind and keep you feeling motivated.

Professional Help

A professional wedding planner can help you plan your big day and will take some of the burden off you. Professionals are experienced and will know exactly what to do to make sure your big day is a success.  When it comes to the day of your wedding, you can focus on having a day to remember and let the wedding planner ensure everything runs exactly as planned.

Planning your perfect wedding day should be exciting and fun. However, wedding planning can become stressful. Many things can go wrong along the way and everything can sometimes start to feel overwhelming. If you feel stressed when planning your wedding, then you need to do something about it. Remembering why you’re planning a wedding is a good place to start and if you really can’t cope with the pressures of planning a large event.

Don’t forget to ask us about our day of event planning coordination services!

Open House at an Outdoor Wedding Venue in Fort Worth, Texas

Join us for our Winter Open House on January 12th!

We are hosting our Winter Open House Thursday, January 12th. The complimentary event will be from 5 PM in the evening till 8 PM at night.

At the Open House you will be able to tour the entire venue, visit with a variety of vendors, and meet our staff to have an idea how we can manage your event. Complete access to the kitchen, bar, all event spaces, bridal suite, groom’s cabin, as well as the cabins and brand new lodge will be granted. To add to the excitement of the night, there will be a variety of prizes and contests to enter to win discounts and free items towards the planning of your wedding.

In addition to touring the venue and meeting the vendors and staff, you can also explore some of the great tablescapes, enjoy the cocktails with friends and family, and taste a selection of hors d’ oeuvres from our preferred caterers.

List of Vendors at the Open House

Visit their Facebook Pages! 

A Sophisticated Affair
Brown Fox Creative
Bumble Bee Occasions
Creative Cakes by Monica
de ma fille bridal
FX Entertainment
Lip Service Makeup
Mayfield Events
Monica Salazar Photography – Dallas Fort Worth Photographer
Pam’s Ribbons & Roses
Silver West Limousines
Spec’s Wines, Spirits & Finer Foods
Steward’s Productions – Videography, DJ, Lighting Decor, and Photo Booth
sugar bee sweets bakery
Sweet Memories Cakes & Catering
Video One Productions
TCP Catering
TLC Event Staffing
Viewside Veranda
Vivienne & Vine
The Wedding Preacher
Wonderful Kakes

The Orchard Open House is a one-stop wedding planning shop, so stop waiting and start gathering friends and family to plan a visit to The Orchard Event Venue & Retreat on Thursday, January 12, 2017.

RSVP to:

For more information about The Orchard Event Venue & Retreat, please visit: or “Like” us on Facebook. 

The Orchard Event Venue Pinterest Page

How Busy Brides-To-Be Can Use Pinterest to Plan the Perfect Wedding

The hardest part about planning a wedding is knowing where to start. If you are a busy bride-to-be, chances are you already have a few great ideas of what you want your wedding to be like, but you may be getting swamped with all the options and details. One great way to put together a comprehensive wedding plan is to use Pinterest as a source of inspiration and a cohesive vision board.

Type in any terms relating to weddings in the Pinterest search engine and you will come up with thousands of images showcasing wedding dresses, flower arrangements, cakes and more. However, it pays to do a little bit of research before you begin to ensure that you come up with ideas and inspiration for decor and color palettes that showcase your unique personality.

For example, you may want to start by simply choosing a few colors that speak to you and then seeking out ideas for cakes, dresses and floral arrangements that fit within that theme. This can also help you determine what style of wedding you want to have. For example, if you love soft romantic hues, then you may want to opt for a traditional and classic wedding theme. On the other hand, if you are more into bold vibrant colors, then a modern wedding may be more your style.

The Knot has a has a fabulous color inspiration page featuring real wedding photo shoots, each showcasing a particular color or combination of colors. Examples include rustic Autumn weddings with plenty of rich reds and earthy brown and orange tones, seaside wedding celebrations where cool tones of purple, blue and pink prevail, and mountain weddings with bright bursts of yellow and gold. They also have a gallery featuring stunning shots of everything from cakes to shoes, flowers and rings.

Once you have a good grasp of your ideal wedding theme and have found some images and ideas that really pique your interest, you can start adding pins to your Pinterest board. You may want to organize your pins by changing the captions to remind you of why you pinned them in the first place, or create multiple boards for different elements like dresses, cakes and flowers. You may also want to make your board private so that you can keep an element of surprise for your friends and family.

One thing to keep in mind is that it is easy to get carried away when creating Pinterest boards. With so many options and ideas out there, you may find yourself getting overwhelmed and your board getting a bit too cluttered or extending beyond what is realistically possible in terms of your budget. This is why it is important to stick to your theme and to know when to stop pinning.

While you are pinning be sure to check The Orchard Event Venue & Retreat’s very own Pinterest Page for Real Orchard Wedding Ideas!

Create a Sparkling Winter Wedding with These Tips

Winter Wedding Inspiration at The Orchard Event Venue & Retreat
Photo by Feather & Twine Photography. Visit the Ruffled Blog for more Winter Wedding Inspiration from Jen Rios Weddings and her vendor team.

May and June may still be the most popular months for weddings, but the winter season is quickly catching up. More and more brides are forgoing the traditional summer wedding and opting for the unique style and beauty of the winter season.

Planning a winter wedding can provide you with a number of benefits, from lower costs and greater availability of popular venues to unique decorating options. Those winter weddings can have their challenges as well, however, and it is important to be prepared for the unexpected.

Enjoy the Beauty of the Season

Far from being drab and dreary, the winter season sparkles with brilliance at every turn. From the beauty of falling snow to the shimmering shadows cast by ice-shrouded trees, the winter season is full of beauty.

You can incorporate that winter beauty into your wedding and create memories that will last a lifetime. Plan a scouting session with your wedding photographer and look for the vistas you can use on your wedding day. Planning those shots ahead of time will reduce your stress level and help you and your wedding photographer create those lifelong memories.

Do Not Assume Lower Costs for Everything

One of the greatest things about planning a winter wedding is the money you can save. Winter brides can save a substantial amount of money when booking a venue, since those locations are generally much less busy in the colder months. The cost of catering can be lower as well – those who cater weddings and create custom wedding cakes often have less business in the winter and are therefore willing to make price accommodations to the couples they serve.

It would be wrong to assume, however, that all costs will be lower. Fresh flowers, for instance, may actually cost more in the winter months. Many varieties will be in short supply during the colder months, and the flowers that are still available may cost more due to higher shipping costs. Holding your wedding in the winter may be a great way to save money, but you still need to pay careful attention to your overall budget.

Be Prepared for Winter Weather

One significant drawback of winter weddings is the possibility of winter weather. The weather can be quite unpredictable in the winter season – and sleet, snow and ice can ruin even the most carefully planned ceremony.

That is why it is important to be flexible when planning a wedding in the winter months. You will want to check the cancellation policies of all your wedding vendors carefully – from the contract with the reception hall to the deals you struck with the wedding photographer and caterer. Knowing your options in the event of a snow storm or other major wedding event can set your mind at ease – and make the rest of your wedding planning that much easier.

If you have a lot of guests coming in from out of town, you may want to book a block of rooms at a hotel near the wedding venue. Having a place to stay will make it easier for those guests to attend the ceremony – and give them a safe place to go if the weather gets too bad. The Orchard Event Venue & Retreat makes this easy for you with on-site Cabins and The Lodge. Visit our Lodging Page for more information on our overnight accommodations.