Things to Consider for your First Dance – Orange County Wedding Dance
Phew, the stress of the wedding is finally over! You’ve made it down the aisle and can finally relax and take a deep breath. Enjoy and rejoice in your first moments of marriage and the start of your new lives together. Now it’s time to celebrate and dance the night away! Have you thought about what to do or how to prepare for your first dance as a married couple?
It’s hard to know where or how to begin thinking about your first dance since planning the wedding has been such a big and exciting ordeal in the first place. However, lets highlight a few things you’ll want to consider when planning your first dance.
Do You Have a Dance Floor?
Does your venue come with a dance floor or do you have to rent one as an addition to your venue space? I know, renting a dance floor? That sounds like a very bizarre thing to worry about in the grand scheme of wedding planning, but when it comes to your wedding reception, most venues will have a space already available for dancing. However, the same cannot always be said about outdoor venues. Some outdoor venues will include an outside dance floor or have a space allocated for you to place your rented dance floor, while other outdoor venues will include a special indoor or semi covered area for your dance floor and reception area. We would definitely recommend confirming with your wedding coordinator whether your venue includes a dance floor or if you need to rent one for your special day (especially if you have an Orange County wedding venue.)
Make Sure There’s Enough Space
When it comes to sizing your dance floor, small floors are too cramped and large ones make people feel too self-conscious. A good rule of thumb is to estimate approximately 3 square feet for every two people and assume about 40% of your guests will be out on the dance floor at any one time. So, if you have 150 guests, you would need a 15’x15’ dance floor; 200 guests would be about an 18’x18’ floor; and 400 guests calls for about a 25’x25’ floor. Make sure to ask your reception site about adding extra flooring if it seems too small. And one more thing – make sure your dance floor is the focal point of the room and not tucked away into a corner. Most reception sites position guests on two to three sides of your dance floor and the DJ or band on the 4thside. By highlighting your dance floor, you send guests the message that dancing is a big part of the festivities.
First Dance Song Choice and Length
Make sure to pay careful attention to the length of your song before committing to it for your first dance. You can always ask your DJ to cut it down to a reasonable length of 2-3 minutes or have your band come up with a shortened version. Even four minutes can seem like forever when your dancing alone or just rocking back and forth. Choosing your song can seem like a huge decision, but it can be a lot easier than you think. You want to pick a song that encompasses the relationship you and your fiancé have, something special to the two of you.
Wedding DJ or Band?
You might want to skip the cheaper iPod idea even though you may have created a brilliant playlist. DJ’s and Bands are incredibly common at weddings for a reason. Not only do they know how to read the energy in the room and adjust the music throughout the evening, they’re there to ensure everyone is having an amazing time so you don’t have to. If you do your research, you can find a band or DJ that fits your price range and music style. Once you’ve decided on your musician – Make sure to give them your music cues and timing for your first dance. Have them prepared to start and end your music on time and practice a smooth transition from one song to another. Maybe even practice with them once or twice before the big day. You’ll also want to make sure they have a sound check the day before your wedding to make sure there won’t be any feedback, echo’s, or hiccups with the sound and music on your special day. It’s worth it to make sure everyone is entertained and enjoying themselves the whole evening.
Timeline of Wedding
Something that is often overlooked or forgotten – communicate with your photographer and videographer! Make sure to let them know the: angle, position, when the dance is in the timeline of the reception, what song, and tell them exactly what you want. If there are specific dips or lifts in your dance that you want captured on film, it is important to make them known. A wedding day shoot schedule complete with a list of who is supposed to be in each shot and timing of your dance is extremely helpful for your photographer and videographer to ensure all the details are perfect for your special day.
Watch Out for the Pretty Things
Bustle your dress! I cannot stress the importance of bustling your dress for your First Dance and during the rest of the evening. You’ve spent a lot of money on the perfect dress and having it tailored to fit; You don’t want anything to go wrong or have any accidents to ruin your special day. Bustling your dress will keep it up and out of the way to prevent anyone stepping on, ripping, tripping over, or god forbid, tripping you on your special day. Aside from bustling your dress, you will want to be aware of the cut and style of your dress when it comes to dancing around at your reception and especially your first dance. If you’re wearing a strapless dress, you’ll want to be careful that nothing .. falls out during a dip or a lift. Double-sided tape can be used to secure yourself into your dress and prevent any accidents while giving you the confidence to go wild while dancing.
Be cautious of your shoes, jewelry, hairstyle and veil! It is important to wear shoes that you know you’ll be comfortable walking around and dancing in all night. And, it’s equally important to practice walking and dancing in your chosen wedding shoes for a few days or weeks to break them in and ensure you don’t injure yourself on your big day. Aside from shoes, your hair, jewelry and accessories are all things to pay attention to as well. If you have lots of dips, lifts or spins in your dance, having long dangling earrings or a big wedding veil can easily get caught in your hair or get in the way of holding each other properly. It can even cover your face unexpectedly during pictures. While your hair style can do the same, it is common for brides to have their hair kept away from their face no matter the style.
Practice, Practice, Practice
Last but not least: Practice, Practice, Practice! Be sure to give yourself ample time to take some dance lessons and practice your moves until they become muscle memory. It doesn’t have to be perfect or fancy and you can forget the flaws because this is your day and your night! You are there to have fun, enjoy yourselves, and be in the moment. Don’t forget that this dance is for the two of you! The majority of couples say learning and practicing their first dance was the least stressful and most fun and relaxing part of planning the wedding. Since most people don’t know how to dance, they typically expect to see a prom sway, so when you surprise them with your fancy choreographed or semi-choreographed dance they will definitely be impressed. Don’t be surprised if your guests are loud because, let’s face it, they are excited for you two! Expect them to be hooting and hollering at you, talking, laughing and taking pictures and videos, especially during your first dance. The pressure of all that attention can be nerve racking but remember to take a deep breath and be confident in the fact that it doesn’t matter how you look, it only matters if your happy and enjoying yourself with your significant other.