Sunday, September 16, 2012

Lesson I Learned From Planning a Wedding

(warning, long post ahead, but worth the trip)

Let me begin by saying how thankful I am that I am NOT planning a big event this Fall.
 I am so looking forward to enjoying this Fall season without all the pressure.

Last year, about this time, I was running around, half crazy, planning my oldest daughter's wedding.
Now, don't get me wrong,
I loved every minute of it, but I have found new respect for the people who plan weddings for a living!
With that said,  
I learned quite a bit about saving money, making memories, and creating a beautiful setting for my daughter to celebrate marrying the love of her life.

To start, I must give credit where it is due...
 I am blessed with a close friend who just exudes "good taste". She is the one I give the most credit  for reminding me of the basics and for helping me to know that I could do this. 

Thank you Tiffany for sharing your gift with me!
Before we get into anything, know this...
Wedding planning is a huge Industry.
You know what that means...

It is expensive and everyone wants to make money on your event!
Since we didn't want to spend a lot of money, we had to get creative.


Lesson #1: Enjoy All of It.
 Don't over stress in the details. Remember, even though this is a very important day,
 in the big scheme of things it is only one or two hours out of a lifetime.
 Learn to laugh at the things that aren't perfect and appreciate the things that do go as planned.
This will help in every aspect from planning to the actual event.

When we began, I called a friend just to inquire about a venue she had used for her daughter's wedding. This person (who is a very detailed OCD person) went on for about 30 minutes about everything that had gone wrong at her daughter's wedding. As much as I appreciated the warning, it made me realize that she didn't have wonderful sweet memories of her daughter's wedding, just regrets and wishes of perfection.
After hanging up the phone, I made my daughter make a promise... no matter what happened at her wedding, even if the cake fell on the floor, we would laugh about it and have wonderful memories of her special day!
This is a promise we both kept!
(and no, the cake did not fall on the floor)
Lesson #2: Use what you have
 Our church, like most churches, have an abundance of dishware,
 table clothes, and urns that are just sitting in storage waiting to be used.
Take advantage of anything and everything you can find that is free.
 That is exactly what we did.
 I would guess that we saved at least $1000 just by doing this.

The table, table cloths, chairs, and chargers all belong to our church. We only had to add the clear plastic plates and personalized napkins.
To quote the
  "The Nester"
"It doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful" 

Lesson #3: Less is more and Natural is always better than fake

In the sanctuary, we let the room stand on it's own. We simply added a few ferns on stage and Hydrangea with ribbon on the pews.
I love that is was a Fall wedding. It made it so much easier for me. 
I think everything in the Fall is beautiful, but we didn't want to go with the usual orange and red color scheme.
We chose burlap, white pumpkins and ferns for our decor.
Simple and clean with lots of texture.
Pair those textures with classic silver platters and servers
 and it gives a very formal feel.
We borrowed most of the silver but did have to rent a few pieces.

I love the garden burlap from Lowe's garden department.
 It was a lot cheaper, and has a larger weave.

Sometimes when dealing with a church venue, there are those things that are "church things" that just won't fit in with your decor....Bulletin Boards.
 Most of the time, the church won't allow you to remove them so,
 here is how we handled this problem with minimal cost.
In our church we had several boards, so instead of fabric, we used brown paper and book pages cut in leaf patterns.

Inexpensive and beautiful!

I borrowed this idea from the Nester...

I Just  love her stuff!!

We also incorporated it into the back drop for the cake.

Now, my sister gets full credit for this next one!
In most church fellowship halls there are not Basketball goals,
 but there are in our church.
 We really wanted to cover them, but I didn't have clue how to do it.
Here is what my sister came up with and it
  was pure Genius!
 She covered the two basketball goals in brown paper and burlap.
 She added a fern and there you have it. 
I loved it! 
Simple, I know,  but it worked for us and we have wonderful memories of a
 very special day!  


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