I have completed plenty of projects well before starting this blog, but I thought Jared and I’s wedding would be a PERFECT way to start off my first post! Get ready, this is a long one!
I’ve always been stereotyped as the “pageant girl,” “girly girl,” etc. which is totally fine with me and I’m sure most people think I have expensive taste! They are right…I do have expensive taste, but with price in mind. So with that I knew I wanted a wedding that would WOW people and leave them talking about it years later, but to do that, you need a lot of $$.
I knew one thing; I did not want to get married in a church. I don’t find them pretty at all, unless it’s a cathedral, and well…neither one of us are Catholic. And I don’t agree with marriage classes, which is normally required to get married in the church. Neither one of us come from a town you would refer to as “pretty” or churches you would just gasp when you walked in them. Some people might find this harsh, it’s the honest truth. I have always loved Charlevoix, MI. This town has character and not to mention this Queen got her castle! Jared and I will look back on our pictures for years and want to still be in love with them in 50+ years as we were the day they were done. With our photographer of Carrie Ferris Photography we achieved that and MORE! (Photos below are courtesy of Carrie Ferris Photography)
After getting quotes from various vendors on what flowers would be (even wholesale prices) and various other things to make it that fairytale wedding, I literally about choked! Thankfully my ceremony and reception location were located on the same property and included white linens, chairs, tables and set up! That right there saved us thousands.
It didn’t take me long to start looking at other options to save some money..and that I did! This is perfect if you are crafty and willing to take the time. Most people that love it as much as I do, don’t even look at the time because it’s something they just enjoy! If it becomes a burden to you, definitely consider not doing it yourself!
Venue – Castle Farms ; Ceremony in Queens Courtyard and reception in Kings East Garden. $3,000 (Reg. $6,000). Booked by end of Sept. 2010 = 10% off, Friday wedding = 10% off, and getting married between the months of May – October = 40% off….for a GRAND TOTAL OF 50% OFF! This included a coordinator, tables, chairs and white linens. Not to mention a BEAUTIFUL venue of this nature doesn’t need a lot of decorating! My gracious mother did purchase some royal blue table runners for some more pop of color in the reception hall for about $2.15 each.
Invitations – When the process of our invitations came about I got to thinking…your invites set the tone for what your wedding will be like. You want people to open that and think “we can’t miss this.” So I whole heartedly believed we had to have a GREAT invitation! I had a vision and a theme for my wedding..the colors in the eye of a peacock feather..royal blue and teal! Not to mention my favorite color has always been some shade of blue and I didn’t want to have Jared or our groomsmen wear some frilly color! The perfect spot for invite supplies came from Cards And Pockets and my sister’s amazing co-worker, Emily put my vision on paper since I didn’t have the program. I stamped, glittered, taped, cut, etc. everything myself. Jared even got in on the work with stuffing envelopes, labeling and sticking postage..oh and making sure they arrived to the post office safely to get out to all of our generous guests. Invites of this nature would normally cost me close to $10/invite…..NO THANKS….spending about $2o0, having a great friend and a little of my own time and dedication got us THIS!
Flowers – I wanted COLOR…I am a total COLOR person and royal blue or teal flowers are hard to find without being dyed, let alone in the Fall. For centerpieces, my bouquet, bridesmaids bouquets, corsages, boutonnieres, and ceremony decorations it would cost close to $5k!! WHAT??? I was STUCK on having pomanders at my wedding, but florists wanted around $100/ball. Thankfully both of my grandmothers have always been crafty and instilled that in me from the time I was able to start crafting because it was time to get to work and make it all myself, with the help of my best friend (besides the hubby, sister, sister in-law Jan and gf’s)..MY MOM! Thanks to PaperMart I was able to purchase two different colors of tissue paper in bulk, floral wire and styrofoam balls from Michaels (always using a 40% off coupon) to make the pomanders myself! It involved a lot of cutting, accordion folding, wiring and fluffing of tissue paper flower! I did the same thing for the girl’s bouquets but used a pearlescent champagne and white tissue with crystal strand handles and some ribbon that matched their dresses. The boutonnieres and corsages I purchased the materials from various places and made them myself as well. Just in the boutonnieres, bridesmaids pomanders and mother corsages saved me $1500….and I spent about $200 and did it myself..HA!
Groomsmen– I’m definitely not a fan of tuxedos especially for spring, summer or fall weddings unless your wedding is black tie affair or in the winter, then ok! But the vests and those goofy looking border line MC Hammer pants are just not flattering! Let’s face it…this isn’t the march of the penguins! After seeing what Jared paid just to rent a tux for a wedding in July I about choked….come on really? For one night and you have to return it? We dodged that bullet and decided on a light beige suite from Jos A. Banks. For the price of a tux rental our guys were able to keep their suits and use them in the future for interviews, weddings etc. Definitely more logical to me if you are going to spend that amount of money for one day and have to return it later!
Classy tan suits!
Bridesmaids – Every bride will say they had the best….and well, I had THE BEST! They were amazing…and that’s exactly why they were my bridesmaids! I wanted them to look just as amazing as I would look so picking out their dresses wasn’t easy, but we did get a good deal thanks to Brooklyn Bridal and Prom. My mom also purchased her dress there which allowed us a 10% or 20% discount (not sure which). Getting gifts for each lady can be costly, especially when you have 6 bridesmaids and a Jr. Bridesmaid! I did a gift bag for each of my girls filled with their jewelry for the day, rustic frames with their dress and name burnt in the wood, and cute little clutches that I embellished with some bling and a peacock feather. Each item, made by me!
THE DRESS– So my fun loving sis-in-law Jandira (one of my lovely bridesmaids..LOVER HER!) and I went dress shopping together since we lived in MD and the rest of the girls and my mom are out of state. I had in mind what I wanted to look like, tall, regal, and sophisticated! I mean after all I had to go with the setting and my style..not to mention I was getting prince charming so I had to fit the part!
I found this amazing dress and of course fell in love with it until I was told “we can sell you this one, the sample, for $3,900.”…..uumm say that again? That ended my dress shopping and I immediately took to paper, magazines and the internet and combined many things I liked into one dress and had it made for much less than half of the $3,900 by a lady I knew back home in MI. It was WELL worth it. Shelly’s work is to die for and she was so helpful and knowledgeable! So here is THE DRESS for MY PRICE!