How much Alcohol do I need?

Alcohol is a big expense at a wedding. Do you have to have it? No, however we see it at most of our weddings. It is very rare to have a dry wedding, and usually our dry weddings do it for religious purposes or for personal reasons rather than to save money.

We do see couples choosing to only serve beer and wine, or only serve a signature drink to help them save some money.

Your typical venue will have alcohol packages, so you don’t get the option of bringing in your own alcohol. But every now and then we have a venue (barn, museum, park) or backyard wedding where our couples get to bring in their own, and this is where they can save some extra cash.

A question we hear all the time is “how much do I buy?” I found on www.apraticalwedding.com a breakdown of how many servings are in each type of alcohol bottles.

1 bottle of wine = 5 servings
1 case = 12 bottles
750ml bottle of liquor = 18 servings (1.5 oz servings)
1 bottle = 1 serving of beer
1 full sized keg = 165 beers

So how much should you buy? A easy way to figure this out is 1 drink per person per hour of drinking time. This is a good estimate, even count in the people that aren’t going to drink because your going to have guests who will drink more than the one drink per hour.

Another idea is using an online tool to calculate how much you should buy. A good example of this is www.thealcoholcalculator.com.

Also make sure to factor in the guests who will be attending. Do you all like to hang out and drink wine on the weekend, or is it more of a beer crowd? It is smart to over-purchase where you think there could be some heavier consumption, because going out on an alcohol run does take some time and it takes our team away from your event! Cheers to you as you plan your special day!

 

 

 

Wedding Trends 2014

The new year is here, and as we are helping our 2014 couples plan their weddings we are starting to see the trends and predictions for 2014 in wedding magazines and blogs. Huffington Post named some of the top wedding trends. A few have stuck around from last year, and some are repeating past trends.

Pink! This makes me happy, and what I love even more is that it isn’t a hot, bold pink. It’s a nice shade of blush, nude, or pale pink.

The Great Gatsby theme seems to be here to stay. Big bands, white gloves, and gold rimmed china isn’t going anywhere.

Patterns. Chevron was very popular last year for patterns, this year make way for the floral and stripes!

Flowers! The Peony is the popular flower this season. However, I think this is a popular one every year!

Food: Family Style is gaining popularity at weddings. We have noticed this one, with two family style weddings coming up!

Cakes, yum! Add some shine to your cake with dusting glitter

Favors. A new idea is the Pillow Favor that you leave for your guests at the hotel in their rooms for when the come back at the end of the night. Examples are cookies and milk, chocolate covered strawberries, or scones and jam.

Have fun planning your wedding! We can’t wait to see what trends you add to your day.

Melanie King – TwoFoot Creative, Ann Arbor

 

Why Barn Weddings are Here to Stay!

In the beginning of 2013 many blogs and wedding websites were posting that barn weddings were one of the top trends for weddings. We saw a big increase in our couples searching for barn venues this past year. And luckily for us a few new barns popped up in our local area to help us out with the demand, so in our opinion barns are definitely here to stay!

Why you may ask? I think couples are looking for more unique venues, and they are wanting something that is different than the past weddings they have been to.

When I show barn venues to my couples, they are for couples who are looking for that rustic charm. I am probably not going to show a couple a barn venue and then a ballroom venue!

With a barn venue most likely you are starting with a blank canvas and building from there. You can go from the basics to very upscale and all look great. It’s easy to do farmer’s market flowers and basic linens, but you can just as easily (as long as the budget allows) have chandeliers and chivari chairs!

One thing I must say is that barn weddings DO NOT equal cheaper weddings, there are a few venues out there where an extreme budget will get you something but at most you are bringing everything in which does make things add up.

Things to ask or think about: do they have tables, flatware, bathrooms, linen, heating or air conditioning, chairs, and the lighting you may want. You will also most likely need to check out caterers, and factor in costs not seen at banquet halls like staffing and rentals.

You also don’t have to love mason jars, cowboy boots, and lawn games to have a barn wedding. Rental companies have some amazing items that you can rent to create a gorgeous wedding without the stereotypical barn decor.

With the barn weddings we have done, I can look back through our real wedding blogs and see the same venue but a totally different look. It all depends on what you as a couple imagine your wedding looking like. Thanks to Pinterest and couples wanting to do more DIY we never know what will be used to create your very own personal wedding.

So if you are looking for something different, but don’t have the backyard or barn to do it, check out some of the great Michigan Barns. Because barn venues are so popular make sure you look into booking one right away; a few of the barns are totally booked for 2014 and in the process of being booked for 2015 as well!

Written by Melanie King – TwoFoot Creative, Ann Arbor

 

Don’t forget these things!

Some items for weddings slip through the crack when it comes to planning. Or they are things you know you need to do but get forgotten. Here are a few things I have seen happen to my past couples.

1 – Guest Book and Pens: This gets left out a lot, and then you don’t have time to be creative and end up running to the store. I have seen so many unique ideas when it comes to having a way for guests to leave a special note or message for you – but plan ahead!

2 – The marriage license: A very huge component to your wedding day that you definitely need if you want the marriage to be legal! I have seen this forgotten more than once, so make sure you give this to someone who won’t forget this! If you are having a commitment ceremony instead, it is still nice to put a document together that you can both sign as a symbol of the vows you are making.

3 – Vendor Meals: Nothing will make your vendors more happy then to have a meal ready for them after they have worked all day. Don’t forget to add anyone staying through the night for a meal. Most kitchens will provide less expensive options for vendors – but a hot meal goes a long way and I’ve heard horror stories about how long vendor sandwiches sit out at room temperature before being consumed…

4 – The Rings: The morning of your wedding you are going to have a lot going on. Something so simple and small can easily left behind. My suggestion would be to hand these off to the most reliable person in your bridal party.

5 – Cake server and Toasting Flutes: This is always on our timeline because it does get forgotten. Sometimes you get this as a shower gift. If this is something that is not important to you then most venues or even your caterer will have a cake knife you can use.

6 – Most importantly don’t forget to enjoy your wedding day! Don’t get lost in all of the to do’s or the timeline of the night. You have spent a lot of time planning your wedding day and you and your partner deserve the night of your life! This is when we take over the logistics so you can enjoy!

Written by Melanie King – TwoFoot Creative, Ann Arbor

 

Halloween Inspirational Palette

Continue reading if you dare, because we have gone to the dark side to share with you this glamorous but spooky Halloween wedding! Who said a cemetery isn’t the perfect setting for a wedding. These photos were taken by Camilla Photography, and from Calligraphy by Jen’s blog.

To see or not see?

Are you planning on seeing each other before your ceremony? We have to say this is 50/50 with our couples. A big factor in this decision is getting the photographs done before the ceremony so couples can go straight to their cocktail hour and reception.

We still have plenty of couples who want the surprise of seeing each other for the first time as they walk down the aisle. So I thought I would look into where this tradition came from.

It all started back when marriages were arranged. Fathers wanted to help their daughters marry wealthy land owners and they didn’t want the grooms to change their mind once they saw who they were marrying. Back then weddings were more of a business transaction than about two people choosing each other because they were in love.

This was also why a veil was worn, so that the groom had no way of backing out until the deal (I mean the wedding ceremony) was over.

So if you were hoping for some romantic story, it’s the total opposite!

A huge trend that we have seen the past few years is the first look, or reveal. This is a staged scene between the couple with the photographer and videographer there to capture that special moment between the two of you and it’s a nice time that you get to spend together before the day begins.

I don’t know which one I think is more romantic, I cry at both, but I feel like it is really up to each couple. I have some couples that wouldn’t even think of doing a first look because they want to have the dramatic entrance down the aisle. Some couples are nervous about a big reveal moment and love the idea of having a quiet intimate moment where they just see one another and it makes them less nervous the rest of the day.

Which ever option you choose, make sure you comfortable and do what you want to do. Don’t let anyone talk into to doing something that you don’t really want to do!

Written by Melanie King – TwoFoot Creative, Ann Arbor

 

 

5 Tips To Get Through The Initial Planning

Kristen Taylor Photography

Knowing where and how to start is sometimes the hardest part! Especially if you’ve never been around someone planning a wedding before. Here are some quick tips to get things started:

  • Narrow down the date – even if you’re pretty flexible, you might want to eliminate dates that fall on other major events (games, festivals etc.), holidays (4th of July weekend, Labor day, Memorial day), and conventions (plumber and pipefitters convention sells out Ann Arbor hotels every year).
  • Put your guest list together first! It will dictate so many decisions – from the per person budget to the venue to the amount of rooms you need to block.
  • Determine a realistic budget. The average wedding in Southeast Michigan is $28,000 for 150 guests. Look at your tastes, pocketbook and guest list to decide what is right for you, and stick to it!
  • Take your time when getting started. Enjoy being engaged, and think through all the millions of ideas you’ll have in the first days and weeks. This should be a fun process!
  • If you don’t have time to spare (about 400 hours) – hire a planner! We can get things done much more efficiently, cost effectively, and stress-free as professionals that do this dozens of times a year.

Unique Wedding Registries

Deciding on what to register for can be difficult, especially if you feel confined by traditional registries. Here are some ideas for unique registries that can be tailored specifically to any couple!

Sandals registries! We are Sandals Certified, and can also help put together a registry after booking your honeymoon so guests can contribute to spa treatments, excursions, golf, and even portion of your trip if you’d like them to.

Honeyfund is an awesome website that helps couples create a registry for their honeymoon! Honeyfund calculates about how much your honeymoon will cost based on the factors of travel, accommodations, dining, beverages, activities and the amount of guests attending your wedding. It’s a free website that is very easy to use!

Travelersjoy also works similarly to Honeyfund, and is recommended by The Knot and WeddingWire. Both websites break the sections of travel up into different prices, so guests can pick which part of the trip they want to give toward and how much that will be.

Home Savings

Lots of couples have recently or are soon to be moving into a new home together, so what better thing to register for than a home! On Hatch My House, couples pick their house style, color, setting, and select if they are saving for a down payment, renovation, or home décor, making it easy for any kind of home savings to be applicable. Once a page is made, a picture of the couple and potential future home are shown with a short paragraph from the couple. The house has different parts that can be clicked on by guests and show the price, allowing guests to choose which parts they want to give and for how much.

Gift cards are a great way to have guests give a gift to a certain place, but allow the couple to pick out what exactly they want from the store. At Card Avenue, couples can create a page with three steps for guests to easily follow. The first includes viewing the gift cards the couple is asking for and the requested total amount from each place they want, as well as how much they still need. The second step includes going to the website of the store and purchasing a gift card for the guest’s desired amount. Third, the guest returns to the registry and lets the couple know the price of the gift card they purchased as well as where it is from, as to update the first step of the registry. This lets other guests know, as well as the couple, what gift cards have been purchased already and for how much.

For wine lovers wanting to start, or add to, a collection, creating a wine registry is another unique option. At The Wine Cellarage, couples can fill out their basic information and then the wine bottles they have requested are listed with the number of bottles requested, fulfilled, remaining, and the price of each bottle, with a place for guests to pick how many bottles they wish to add to their cart.

Foodie Registry allows couples to pick restaurants where guests can give them gift cards for their chosen amount. Couples are able to explain why they picked each specific restaurant, or they can just list them. This is a great idea for couples that love food and to eat out at new restaurants, allowing them to have “Free Dinner Date Nights” for time to come after their wedding.

Donations:

For couples who do not wish to receive gifts, or want to also allow guests to make a donation alongside giving gifts, organizations such as the I Do Foundation and Crowdrise, which partners with The Knot are ideal. With websites such as these, guests are able to pick from whichever charities the couple puts on their registry page and donate their chosen amount. This can also be added with another registry, so that donation and gifts can be purchased, not simply one or the other.

Wishes:

Upon Our Star has the tagline “a wedding registry for wishes, not stuff.” This registry sorts the different wishes into categories such as honeymoon and travel, leisure activities, neat ideas, and even wedding items. This website allows couples to ask for gifts for their wishes, which can include items at the wedding, vacations, activities, and pretty much anything the couple can dream up!

Lingerie:

Cosabella is a website that allows brides to register for lingerie, placing different garments under the categories bridal shower, wedding night, honeymoon, and accessories. Although this is primarily tailored toward the bride, it can be added alongside another registry in order to allow a registry for the groom as well. This type of registry can also be done through Macy’s or a department store that has registries as well as sells lingerie.

Everything:

If one registry or type of registry is too hard to pick, websites such as Wishpot and Knack allow couples to compile a registry from all different websites into one place. This is great if a couple wants to register for all sorts of different things!

Written by Jillian Madden – TwoFoot Creative, Ann Arbor

Meet Serradella Vintage!

What/where is Serradella Vintage? Serradella Vintage is a rental company located in Howell, MI. We are a source of vintage goods to Michigan brides-to-be who want to bring a vintage vibe to their wedding or event. Our goal is to have everyone asking “Where did you find that?!”

How did you get started? I’ve had a love for all things vintage my entire life but as an adult developed both an eye for seeing potential in items and the skill set to repurpose and revive them. I began with a booth in an antique mall and after a while began selling on the flea market circuit. A bride-to-be called me one day and asked if I might have some of the items she was looking for. When I realized I had everything she wanted, a light bulb went on. I researched the vintage rental industry and found there was nothing like it here in Michigan.

Do you have a showroom? While my long term goal is to eventually inhabit a retail space, I’m currently working out of my home. I’ve taken over the garage and most of the basement but I must say, the space is easy on the eye and everything is accessible.

What kinds of items do you have? It’s important to note that I’m always adding items to my inventory. Lately I’m focusing on adding some larger furniture, but I already have chairs, tables, dressers, desks, a settee and an awesome bar. I also have whiskey barrels (can you say “Cigar Bar?), and many larger architectural pieces like doors and windows. My biggest weakness is probably china and I have over 600 eclectic pieces – everything from large plates and platters down to tea cups and saucers. Cake stands, old books, wooden crates, picture frames of all sizes, a huge bottle collection, 30+ pieces of luggage, chandeliers…

Do you have to be a creative, experienced DIYer to use your items? Definitely not! While I have no formal training as a “designer”, I’m very creative and particularly good at replicating looks from pictures. So even if a bride-to-be has never wielded a glue gun and doesn’t put power tools on her Christmas list, we can work together! I can be hired to construct or create just what the client wants, and to “stage” things as opposed to just delivering the pieces to the venue.

How does renting work? I encourage people to meet one-on-one and look through my inventory. I love to see pictures of what a client is trying to replicate and we’ll work together to figure out what pieces will work for a particular look and venue. If a client takes the time to come, I reserve their date and we operate on a first come first served basis for picking from inventory. After the initial visit and determining how much involvement the client wants from me, we usually develop an email correspondence and toss ideas back and forth until they’re ready to make final selections.

Pick up or delivery? Most clients save on cost by picking items up right from my house. I try to be as flexible as I can with dates for pickup and return and have even shipped smaller orders through the mail. Arrangements can be made for delivery and even tear down at a venue.

What about cost? Having spent time actually selling vintage things I have a really good idea of what stuff retails for. So I try to keep the cost of renting my items lower than what it would cost someone to find it and buy it themselves. Cost for “extra” services such as constructing and staging vary on the complexity of the project and cost for delivery depends on how far I have to travel. I also charge a reasonable “usage fee” as items suffer wear and tear even when they’re used carefully. A security deposit is collected and refunded when the items are returned in the condition they went out in. While I make every attempt to provide a quality product, most items are chipped, cracked, worn, stained and less than perfect. That’s what makes them vintage!

Any last comments? I am passionate about Serradella and thrilled that I’ve figured out a way to share my collection and embellish a bride’s day in such a unique way.

As a new business owner with not much to go on, feedback and suggestions are priceless. I want to grow my business in a way that best meets the needs of the client and I can only do that through open communication.

I have put together some discounts just for TwoFoot Creative clients. Contact me through my website: www.serradellavintage.com or visit my pinterest page ~ Serradella Vintage ~ or email me at kelly@serradellavintage.com

You can also reach my by calling 810.599.1899