To keep with our wedding clean up series this week here is part two! If you missed it, check out part one here! Use these tips to help speed up cleaning after your wedding. With all great events comes the inevitable mess that is left behind! There are few things more consistent in life! There are plenty of weddings where the grand exit takes place, friends, family, and loved ones give hugs and exit towards their car. This leaves just one or two people behind at the venue, looking around wide-eyed, asking, what are we going to do with all this stuff? That’s why we created our Clean-up Fact Sheet, grab your FREE copy! It will help you get organized and ready for your wedding day clean up and everything it entails. Here are the major clean up items to remember: the bouquet, veil, gifts and cards, guest book, anything really sentimental. Assign one person to be in charge of each so you know the job gets done!
Flowers: You can ask your family to take centerpieces home to enjoy, but make sure you aren’t giving away any rented vases when you do so. Even then, most people won’t want to take them, just FYI. You can opt to donate them to a place like Random Act of Flowers or a local nursing home, but make sure to plan this in advance and understand the process, you can’t just wing it during cleanup the night of the event. If you make no plans at all, make sure someone grabs your bouquet and go ahead and come to terms with the fact that the rest of the flowers are probably going in the trash.
Cake: There is always leftover cake, and often no cake box. First, ask your cake baker to leave plenty of boxes for you. Large enough to fit the middle tier! You can also buy individual cake boxes to send home servings as a takeaway for your guests.
Food: So much food can be leftover during an event. Talk to your caterer about what takeaway containers, if any, they will provide. Some caterers box up all the food for you, while others have regulations against you taking it at all due to food safety concerns. It honestly depends on the company and the rules of the local health department. Be informed of the process your caterer follows so you are prepared, if needed, with tons of room in your fridge or freezer.
Trash: Most full-service caterers will handle cleaning up trash during the event and taking it to the trash bin. If your catering contract doesn’t have them stay the entire time your coordinator or family may have full-service to deal with taking it to the dumpster at the end of the night. If your venue does not include trash service, then you can look into renting a temporary dumpster with pick-up from your local waste management services so you don’t have to haul it off-site.
Décor: Pile up décor first by who they belong to (the florist, the couple, the venue, etc.) and then start boxing them up by like items. I never throw away any boxes or packing material during set-up so that I can have plenty to work with during clean-up at the end of the night. As you box items up give separate table items that belong to separate people to keep boxes together and organized. So, for example, the table full of vases is boxed up for the florist or the car returning items to the florist, the couple’s boxes of décor are on a separate table, and the linens belonging to the venue are on yet another table.
Getting ready rooms: Often I see the bridal suite and groom's quarters a total mess. First, before photos start you should have the wedding party do a clean sweep and get the trash out of the way, gather personal belongings, and move items out of all the good lighting spots. This way there won’t be a bunch of clutter in the background of photos, and at the end of the night, clean-up should be a breeze since you prepped it early in the day.
Final tips: Want to know an easy way of getting out of cleaning?? Pay your wedding pros to do it for you! From coordinators to servers to florists, to rental companies, all will offer some sort of clean-up package, you just have to pay for it. Don’t forget our Clean up Fact Sheet can help you get your clean on in an organized fashion that ensures you don’t forget any details. You can download it with the link below!
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