23 August, 2008

Martha Stewart fabulousness

Martha Stewart isn't as big a deal here in South Africa as she is in the USA. Over there she seems to reign supreme, on high, as the Queen of Decor, Weddings, Entertaining, Crafts and Homemaking. And here we get one or two of her magazines and that's about it. Still, it seems that planning a wedding online (read as: stalking blogs and living on forums) I was bound to run into her sooner or later. And I did, a little while ago, when someone recommended her Wedding Planning Tools.

I had to check this out. I'd already been to two websites which promised easy-to-use guest list, RSVP and seating charts, but I was sorely disappointed with both of them. The one wouldn't let me drag my guests around to other tables, and the other didn't seem to want to let me add any more people than myself and Mr Ruby Slippers. Um, ok, NOT what I'm looking for in a gust list, thank you very much. That's more of an evening at home, not a wedding reception.

So I logged onto http://www.marthastewart.com/ and went to Weddings. And I must say I was very impressed! I'm not a technophobe, but clearly at least one of those other websites was too much for me to handle. Martha's wedding section is incredibly user friendly and fast. There are places to add your guests, divide them up into parties (families, couples etc), list who they're connected to (Bride's friends, groom's co-workers, etc), track RSVPs, and SEAT them! This was what I really wanted the website for. I needed something where I could adjust the size of the room, the number of people at each table, have varying sizes and shapes of tables, and move them around to see the layout I wanted. Martha doesn't disappoint. Here is a screenshot of my first attempt at seating my guests...most of whom have yet to RSVP, but that's another story.

This is just a rough guide of where people might sit if they actually come. Hence the big gaps. But I'm finding it an extremely useful tool! Actually, my biggest problem now is not what table to seat people at, it's where to place said tables! Not only "where do we have the dancefloor?" but "Who sits closest to the head table and who sits furthest away?" Because that's basically like grading people according to importance, which is so not cool.

Martha also lets you keep track of vendors, payments, checklists, budget and timeline.


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