Bridin’ on a Budget

Bridin’ on a Budget

We’ve all heard of the term ballin’ on a budget, but have you heard about bridin’ on a budget? Check out these tricks to keeping costs down-or at least in check, when it comes to planning out your wedding. I bet you didn’t even think of some! Skip signature drinks. There are a lot of additional costs when having these served at your reception. If your signature drink includes alcohol that is already in your package, you will end up paying double for that type of alcohol. It seems like it should already be included, but that’s not normally the case. If you plan on doing a signature drink, we suggest using liquor that isn’t already included in your package, not technically having a signature drink, but suggesting to guests what to order from already supplied ingredients or taking advantage of using a complimentary champagne toast and adding a fun garnish, like raspberries. Check the chairs. Sometimes banquet chairs can be downright ugly; examine the chairs while you’re taking your venue tour to see what is included. If you have to end up ordering chairs or covers, this could cost you. Tax and gratuity-per guest. Something couples fail to factor in is guest tax and gratuity on dinner and bar services. Sure, $30 per person seems like a steal, but chances are you haven’t received the true total per guest. This will come as a surprise when your total balance is due. Leave out custom linens. Look into what your caterer or venue offers as a linen package. Many vendors have this included into the contract and this will...

Superstition or Tradition?

We always touch base on certain details when going through our wrap ups with brides. Are you doing a bouquet toss? Cake cutting? Toasts? When it comes to your wedding, there are tons of traditions to follow. Every little “tradition” has a rhyme or reason to it. You’ll be even more surprised to find out that many of the reasons boil down to superstition. Check out some of my favorite and most surprising reasons behind traditions we see in weddings-maybe it’ll make sense as to why so many people are skipping or changing tradition! Diamond Rings: This may be my favorite tradition debunked-while I’ve seen some brides dangling other jewels on their ring fingers, diamonds still reign supreme. But it started out as an advertising scheme! Diamonds are indeed a luxury, but their popularity came to the well known De Beers needed to revamp their image and sell their product to the rich, the poor and everyone in between. “A Diamond Is Forever” was born and a tradition was formed. Bridesmaids Dresses: These days, you’d drop dead if you showed up at an event matching another guest (perhaps I’m taking that too far, but I know I’d prefer to have my own style) While some people are horrified, to Romans you were to be cursed with bad luck if ten of your guests weren’t wearing matching attire to your wedding, hence, bridesmaids playing the matching game. We’ve come a long ways from the scary maids’ fashions from the 80s, and mixing and matching is now a popular trend. I vote to keep the trend over the tradition-I love when...

Keep Calm & Call Your Mom

There must definitely be something in the water because lately I haven’t been able to log into Facebook without seeing a new engagement on my home feed, but no complaints here- congrats to all of the lucky couples out there that I have the privilege of knowing! SO you got engaged-NOW WHAT? After calming down from the initial shock, excitement, tears, et cetera, there are a few things you should really do to kick start the planning process. Take a few tips from the pros and do these things first (after calling your mom that is!) 1. Create a list of the items which rank most important to you It is important to me to have good food and good music alongside my good company. What is most important to you on your big day? Do you have a dream venue? Do you want your tables flowing with flowers? Will open bar be your biggest expenditure? Write it down, it will come in handy when you are cutting costs on your budget, which trust me-will happen. 2. Book your photographer Photographers book up quickly, especially during prime season. Checking your photographer off your list is one of the first steps to being prepared for your big day. Be prepared to be turned down, while some vendors can technically duplicate themselves, photographers unfortunately cannot; have a list of your top three photographers to inquire with. 3. Follow your vendors on Social Media Namely your photographer, florist and planner. You are going to become close with them throughout the entirety of the planning process. Get to know their style, find out...

Taking a little cheese with that Wine…Maniacs on the River

The city of Milwaukee, as well as surrounding suburbs, has countless options for a great rehearsal dinner spots. Whether it be casual or upscale, there is a guaranteed spot for any couple. We’ve compiled a list of favorites among past clientele and ourselves-for groups big or small. Regrettably, as our list is pages long, we haven’t been to all of them-yet. We’re starting on a mission to try out some favorite Milwaukee restaurants so we can give you the tried and true details. Last weekend I decided to check out Wine Maniacs after setting up a tour for a client. Their manager, Rik, was more than accommodating and informed me of a specialty pre-fixe menu that couples have the option of doing for their dinner. (Now I’m wishing I had an invite to attend!) I recruited some friends, both ladies and gents alike, to join in on the venture. We were sat at the main level, the upper level overlooking the river is definitely a space that I would recommend to brides and grooms planning their rehearsal, and noted that it was a pretty quiet evening as there were only two other couples dining with us. I was very self-conscious at first as I’ve got a voice that carries very loudly, so I had to keep that in check. TIP: Not planning a rehearsal dinner anytime soon? This spot is great for date night! We got a bottle of wine for the table, which was so hard to choose from as their list is extensive, and shared a cheese plate as well. Something I would definitely recommend doing for...

New Kid on the Block {Lizzibeth}

When I first caught wind of Lizzibeth I remember coming across a bridal photo with these amazing accessories. Having to often come up with accessories and jewelry options for brides, I always seem to have my eyes peeled and that’s what landed Lizzibeth on my Radar. There wasn’t (and still isn’t) a picture that I have come across from her shop that I don’t want something from. Right then and there I knew I had to check it out; I looked into Lizzi’s shop and it was mobile-such a neat idea! Orders were placed online and picked up near Marquette University’s campus, which later I found out is her Alma Mater. After catching wind that she was opening a storefront located at 550 E Menomonee Street in Milwaukee’s Third Ward, I knew I needed to get in there STAT. Being granted the opportunity to meet, I remember walking into the store and being nothing short of dazzled. Right away I had to touch everything within eyesight. Even the displays were gorgeous. I was like a kid in a candy store who had already had too much sugar; I couldn’t focus on everything in front of me because it was all to die for. From brides to be, to maids, to everyday accessories, there is something for everyone there. I hate saying that as we all know one size does not fit all, but if you’re looking for something glitzy and glam, you’ll find it. The best part about Lizzibeth is the price point for the jewels doesn’t go above $40. Seriously. What you see in the magazines for hundreds...

DOiNUT the Right Way {Trending Desserts}

As wedding planners, we are always trying to come up with quirky, fun alternatives to typical wedding day traditions. Dessert bars have been trending through the years with mini cupcakes, macarons and other sweet treats. We’ve even done our fair share of ice cream sundaes and gelato cups. Lately though, we’ve been thrilled with another bakery item popping up out of the fryer. Donuts! Last season we had a few brides ahead of the trend, using donuts for dessert from Cranky Al’s and the Doughnut Vault. We couldn’t have loved it more. The thing with donuts (or doughnuts) is they are fully customizable-from strawberry champagne to s’mores. They really allow brides to go above and beyond with customizations; if you can fill it, you can at least frost it, or at the very least top it. So for the sakes of our brides to be, we teamed up with Heather and Sara from Heather Cook Elliott Photography and tried a few. And by a few, I mean 15…different…kinds…from the likes of Holey Moley, Sweet Perfections and Cranky Al’s all here in Milwaukee. We tried everything from old fashioned to long johns and everything, truly everything, in between. {Cronut, Gingerbread, Chocolate Long John, Lemon Old Fashioned, Egg Nog, Strawberry Champagne, Nutella, Black & Tan, Bourbon & Vanilla, Apple Fritter, Maple Bacon, Cranberry Orange, Hazelnut Latte, Apple Pie, White Cake} After tasting, we rated each donut in 3 categories: Taste (being the most important), Creativity/Expectation (for classics) and Presentation. A favorite all around ended up being Holey Moley’s seasonal gingerbread. The flavor was intense and the donut was perfectly cakey. It...