Monday, November 15, 2010

Handmade Weddings

So, I've got this blog, and I've got all of these ideas, I just have to sit down and write! I am currently fascinated with multimedia jewelry design, but just learning what I am doing, so there are far more knowledgeable bloggers out there. So, I was listening to my Introvert Entrepreneur podcast – and I am just supposed to do it. "Doesn't matter if you're not good enough, or if anyone else might hear…" So here goes:

Weddings – specifically handmade weddings. When I got married, five years ago, I had a horrible time finding anything online about simple, handmade weddings. Apparently the market is glutted with wedding vendors that think you have twenty grand to blow on a dream, fairytale extravaganza. We didn't have that kind of a budget at all, but I did have dreams of a beautiful wedding. My Mom and I had been planning these events, shindigs, parties for family and friends for years. Luaus, birthday parties, sweet 16 parties and three weddings and wedding receptions. I knew we could do it on a bit of a shoestring. I know that the complete cost on my wedding for 150 guests was around $5000. That was a bit over budget, but it included everything from my dress to food, invitations, bridesmaid gifts, the venue, and the most expensive part – photography. That was my splurge, and it came in at around $2K when all was said and done. But I felt the most important thing I could spend money on was preserving the memories of our big day to look back on 20 years from now. Because anyone who's had a large wedding will tell you that it's all a blur.

How'd we do it? Well, with A LOT of help from our friends. We were not afraid to ask for help, and accept gifts. We have a friend that owns a rental company, her very generous gift to us was the use of tablecloths and dishes. For another wedding we planned, the groom had a friend who what a photographer who shot their wedding as a gift. My brother's wedding was catered by a good friend, Tom supplied the food and Jeremy and Kenny from New Century Catering came out and cooked it for his 170 guests. The other aspect – good old creativity, and thinking outside of the box.

I hope to be able to share some of the tips we've learned, the only hitch is, you do have to be crafty. I come from a long line of crafters, so it's in the genes. I remember being about eight and helping tie these little pipe cleaner bride and groom figures on favors for my aunt's wedding with my grandmother and great grandmother….three Jordan almonds, a circle of tulle and this cute little pair. Grandma Peters was a florist in her younger days, my Great Gram made these incredible ceramic Christmas trees out of upcycled costume jewelry; she also sewed like a dream. My Mom sews, knits, crochets, gardens, designs furniture and makes a wicked bow. My sister can draw, paint and arrange flowers. My Dad is a genius. A carpenter, woodworker, an electrician, plumber, he can build or fix anything. I am a paper crafter at heart, I love paint, scissors, tools, glue, beads, baubles and glitter.

So, if you're not crafty, grab a crafty friend and give it a try – you can do it!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Red River Paper Giveaway at Everything Etsy!

It's s super week of giveaways at Everything Etsy this week - Red River Paper giving away a pair of printers and eight $50 gift certificates.  They have beautiful papers to print cards and photos on.  Including great panoramic cards - for those long skinny panoramic photos.  I have some great shots of Joshua Tree National Park that would look incredible printed on these.
Check it out!
Red River Paper giveaway on Everything Etsy