August 2014 Archive

Featured on Style Me Pretty | Greensboro NC Wedding Planner

I am so excited to finally be sharing Erin and Andrew’s amazing day!  It was not only one of my all time favorite designs, but SO much fun to plan. Erin and I had a million and one awesome ideas that all beautifully came together. I will be posting my full recap of the day soon, but for now, hop over to Style Me Pretty to see the full feature!!

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Featured on Every Last Detail! | Winston-Salem NC Wedding Planner

I absolutely adore Lauren over at Every Last Detail. She has this amazing ability to share information for brides that, in my opinion, other wedding publications do not do. She gets down to the nitty gritty and is honest about what really will help you plan your wedding. She asked for some advice recently on how wedding professionals can save you money and was so nice to share some of my thoughts! Thanks, Lauren!!! See the whole article here!

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There are endless perks to working with an event planner!

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Picking the Perfect Invitation Print |Winston-Salem NC Wedding Planner

Winston Salem Wedding Planner Brookberry Farm 8

Nancy Ray Photography | Nicole + Matt’s Brookberry Farm Wedding in Winston-Salem, North Carolina

When it comes to choosing your perfect wedding invitation, there are endless considerations which play a part in making a final decision.  After all, wedding invitations set the tone early on for your special day.  Whether you are picking out each and every detail from scratch or DIY-ing your invitations yourself, the process can prove to be quite tricky, time-consuming, and a little stressful.  One of the biggest issues that brides run into is how expensive invitations and paper products for your wedding can actually end up being.  The type of printing process you use on your invitations will make all the difference in price. So, make sure you do your research and go into your invitation selection process as educated as possible.  These tips and explanations of each of the four most popular wedding invitation printing processes are sure to take a huge chunk of the stress off your shoulders:

1. Engraving ($$$$) : Engraving is by far the most expensive printing process.  It involves a lot of hand work (lining up the invitations individually to be engraved) which is a huge factor in the reason for the high cost.  The invitations are fed through a machine one by one where a plate is pressed into the paper creating raised letters.  They are then set on racks to dry, explaining why the printing time can also typically be longer than other processes, so make sure to take this into consideration.  Engraving is most commonly used for very formal events.  The highly labor-intensive process is definitely a costly choice overall for invitations. If you are looking to decrease the amount spent on invitations from the start, this might be something you may want to consider avoiding.

2. Letterpress ($$$) : Letterpress is my personal favorite print style.  It involves stamping ink onto the paper, leaving the design imprinted or depressed rather than raised.  A metal plate, inked with a rubber roller, is pressed onto each individual invitation.  This process can prove to be very beautiful, but requires high attention-to-detail during the process and also usually requires thicker types of paper for the full effect.  Another contributing factor to the higher price for letterpress is that it is typically used on handmade or more textured papers which can end up being more costly.

3. Embossing ($$$) : With embossing, there is no ink involved.  Metal plates, etched with letters or designs, are stamped into the paper of your invitation leaving behind an impression.  This process is more commonly seen as an accent piece in invitations (borders, monograms, return address on the flap), but can also be used in the text body as well.  The process also takes a little longer to print and is an additional cost, but the unique 3-dimensional effect is simply stunning.

4. Thermography ($$) : Thermography has the look of engraved printing but at a lower price.  This is definitely a popular choice among many brides as it can still look very elegant without breaking the bank.  Heat that joins ink and a resin-like powder together creates the appearance of raised letters similar to engraving.  The paper used for thermography is usually simpler and smoother which also helps with keeping the cost down.  Colored ink is always an option with thermography and printing time is a lot quicker.  Thermography is the perfect option if you are looking to keep within your budget but still get a beautiful formal feel.

5. Flat Print or Digital Printing ($) : Flat printing involves the use of high quality xerox digital printers (which is why it is often referred to as digital printing).  This style of printing creates high quality results through the use of digital files that ensure no loss of quality in your images or text.  Almost any color can be used in digital printing which gives a lot of options and opportunities for customization.  In comparison to the other textured printing procession, the text on a digital print is completely flat.  If you love heavy, thick paper, flat printing may not be for you.  With all this in mind, flat printing is done on thin paper and is ultimately the most cost-effective option that still provides a professional look.

Traditional Wedding Budget Etiquette | Charleston SC Wedding Planner

Southern Secret Garden - bride and groom

Alexa’s Photography  | Southern Secret Garden Shoot

So you’ve just gotten engaged, began the planning process, and suddenly it’s time to address the elephant in the room…your budget.  You have a million questions racing through your mind such as will your parents have to pay for everything, what your fiance’s parents should be contributing, what you’re going to have to pay for, and so on.  Don’t stress!  You have probably never even thought about wedding budget etiquette, and most people who have not planned a wedding before are in the same boat!  This is THE most difficult aspects of the entire planning process.  But trust me, as soon as you nail your budget down everything becomes a lot easier from there on out.  So, what are the answers to all of those budget related questions?

1. Where is your budget coming from?  The first thing to consider when thinking about the budget for your wedding is who plans to contribute.  It could be that your parents wants to pay for everything, your fiance’s family have offered to be involved, or maybe you’re funding the entire event yourself.   You  may even have a combination of the three! No matter your situation, the most important thing is that you have it figured out ahead of time so you can get everyone on the same page. Sit down and decide what you want (in general) and what you realistically want to spend and then go from there.  If you know exactly how much each person contributing plans to provide, this will make your life easier.

2. Traditionally, what should the bride/bride’s parents pay for? One thing that the bride’s family is typically expected to pay for is the church or synagogue and accompanying music during the ceremony (should you be using such venue for your ceremony).    In addition to this, they are also traditionally expected to pay for the reception venue, entertainment, decor, and catering.  Other items included in the parental budget includes floral arrangements for the church or synagogue/chuppah, bouquets for bridesmaids, photography, videography, invitations, announcements, programs, and guest transportation.  The bride’s family should also pay for the bride’s dress, veil, and accessories.

3. What about the groom/groom’s parents?  As far as the ceremony, the groom’s family is traditionally expected to pay for the marriage license and officiant’s fee.  They should also plan to pay for the groom’s wedding day attire, the bride’s bouquet (in addition to mother’s and grandmother’s corsages) and the groomsmen’s boutonnieres.  The honeymoon is another bigger aspect that the groom or groom’s family should typically take care of.

4.  What does your wedding party pay for?  Typically, the wedding party should pay for all of their attire including dresses, suits, and shoes.  As far as deciding if your bridesmaids are going to get their hair and makeup done professionally, there is no set etiquette.  It’s certainly a nice gesture to offer to pay for them (after all they have paid for their attire, travel arrangements if from out of town, etc), but make your decision accordingly.  As far as pre-wedding celebrations go, either the bride or groom’s parent’s can host the engagement party and if both choose to host one, the bride’s parents’ should be held first.  The bride should plan the bridesmaid’s luncheon/dinner and the maid of honor/bridesmaids should host the bridal shower(s) and bachelorette party.  The groom’s parents traditionally pay for and plan the rehearsal dinner.  The best man/groomsmen, of course, should host/plan the bachelor party.

So what does this all mean? These rules are not the end all be all to wedding budget decisions.  It ultimately comes down to what is feasible and agreed upon with the families and other budget contributors.  Tradition and etiquette is a great guide to get started with planning your wedding budget, but you should always plan according to your own personal situation.