That’s Amore!

Last weekend I got to come out of semi-retirement and shoot a wedding!  I still do some shoots from time to time, especially for previous clients.  I have known the members of the bride’s family for a few years now.  It was just a LOVELY day!  While I didn’t get to ask how much they spent in total, I know it was well under $10,000.  One of the things they did to stay on budget was the choice of food.  The event was catered, but they didn’t go with an elaborate spread.  They went with a simple build your own salad and pasta buffet!  I LOVED it!  It was simple and yummy!  They also had a delicious coffee bar complete with fresh whipped cream and flavored syrups.

The guests loved it and when I had a few moments I enjoyed a few bites myself 😉 You started at one end and built your salad.  All the toppings were in individual containers.  Then you moved on to the different types of pasta provided.  There was whole wheat penne, fettucini, and one more (honestly don’t remember the other option).  And then you picked from different sauces and toppings.  I went with whole wheat, Alfredo, broccoli, and chicken, YUM!  The staff was wonderful and even asked me if they could box anything up for me. I would highly recommend Proof of the Pudding!  Here’s a direct link to their site http://www.proofpudding.com/menus.php.

If you don’t want to go the caterer route this is something you can easily do as a DIY task!

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#Please note that the pasta photos are NOT from this wedding.  I didn’t get a chance to take photos of the buffet, but this gives you an idea of what you could do!

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Love Letters

By the time of our wedding my husband and I had been together for over 7 years.  So, in a way, we were already married (we were just get the paperwork to prove it).  This summer will mark our 9 year dating anniversary.  If you have been in a long-term relationship you know it takes some work sometimes.  Work, school, kids, bills, and just life in general can bog you down.  Especially in stressful times, such as planning a wedding, you need to take the time to remember what it’s all about.  Maybe he brings you flowers out of the blue.  You surprise him with his favorite meal.

To change things up recently I made a love letter board.  I took a chalk board and covered the edges in red rose trim.  Every now and then, we will write why (especially that day) we love each other.  It’s nothing too crazy, but it’s nice to come in and see a little “love letter” after all these years.

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Have a LOVEly day!

Posted in DIY

DIY Photo Booth!

While discussing a FBF wedding with one bride recently I asked about her photo booth.  I LOVE photo booths, but they can get pricy.  She had a wedding for less than $5,000, so I was sure she had gotten a great deal.  And I was right!  She shared her secret with me, and it’s called Sparkbooth.com  http://sparkbooth.com!

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All you need is a computer.  To download the program is $60.00.  You can then opt to have it set up to a printer and print on site.  Or you can have it stored online to print later.  You can even have it set up to upload all the fun to Facebook!

There are a variety of ways you can personalize your booth.  For a backdrop you can use a sheet to cut costs.  If you or a friend is handy with wood-work you can have a large board mounted, painted and styled to match your theme.  Here is a great step-by-step tutorial on how to do this http://ruffledblog.com/diy-photobooth-vintage-wallpaper-frame-wall-backdrop/

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Make sure that you place it in an area that is well lit.  You will be doing this on the computer, so the flash will be very limited and you don’t want your photos too dark!

Now all you need to do is add a few fun props!  Have fun and don’t forget to SMILE!

Posted in DIY

Kim and Jason: A Lovely Fall DIY

In October my dear friends Jason and Kim tied the knot!  Kim was up to her elbows in DIY projects for a year!  They were on a tight budget but still wanted to make it the best day of their lives.  Kim and I got to talk over some of the details to share with all you FBF lovelies out there!  Here are some of Kim’s tips.  And, of course, some photos!

 

Q:  I know a “frugal” or “low-budget” wedding could mean different things to different people.  So, what did it mean to you?

A:  Being realistic and knowing your limits.

 

Q:  How much was your PLANNED total?

A:  Take a deep breath.  No more than $5000-4000, which is still A LOT!!!!

 

Q:  How much was your ACTUAL total?

A:  $3500-$4000

 

Q:  What was your biggest budget saving tip that you can share with us?

A:  Be willing to do it yourself if you can, but know that it take up A LOT of your time and make you a bit crazy.   I recommend having a long engagement, shop sales, think outside the box, don’t be afraid to ask for help, and don’t have too many expectations.

 

Q:  What resources did you find especially helpful (i.e. websites, blogs, craft stores, etc. )

A:  Pinterest definitely!!  But definitely used coupons, watched for sales, and clearance areas for:  Michaels, Hobby Lobby, Walmart, and Target.  Also looked other places for items such as lanterns at Kirklands.   Day after Christmas sales are awesome.  Friends who just got married, use them as resources/advice.

 

Q:  What was the most important service you spent part of your budget on?

A:  Most important eh?  Most expensive was food of course, but most important was dress I would have to say.  What is a wedding without a bride?

 

Q:  What was your favorite moment of the day?

A:   The moment I was getting ready to walk down the aisle!

 

Q:  What was the most challenging aspect of the wedding planning for you?

A:  All of it!  LOL!!!   Working with other people and their schedules/inputs/opinions etc.  Secondly the money.

 

Q:  Is there anything you would have done differently?

A:  I would have cut a few things out that really didn’t matter that would have saved us money.   I would not have taken on SO MUCH!!

 

Q:  What advice would you give to a bride planning her own frugal wedding?

A:  Make a flexible budget, but stay with it.  Realize you will have to spend more on a few things, but you have to decide what is important to YOU and the groom.   Unfortunately realize that wedding planning will consume a bit if you are a frugal bride, but it is SO WORTH IT!!

 

Free For All:  Anything that I haven’t asked that you think is important to add.

A:   Remember it’s all about what you envision and realize it’s one day (yes an important day), but one day in the big scheme of things.  If you set your boundaries with family and friends (which is hard) things will work out.  If you think for a moment you won’t have this as a concern, hahaha…. get real =)

 

Just to list a FEW of Kim’s DIYs:  all the decorations, the wedding wreaths, ALL the flowers (including the bouquets), the favors, the sign in book, and much more!  Feel like you could never be as DIYey as this?!  Contact her yourself!  This journey has lead her to open her OWN Etsy store!

http://www.etsy.com/shop/ScrappyKimmy

 

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Photography:  Samantha J. Beauchamp Photography http://www.facebook.com/PhotographySJB?group_id=0

Ceremony Location:  Staghorn Chapel  http://www.staghornplantation.com/staghornchapel.htm

DIY Lace Flower Holder and Arrangement

It’s no secret that I LOVE DIY projects and that they can save you some BIG $$$$!  Looking for something a little different to put on your tables that won’t break the budget?  Try this:

I took a plain circular paper mache container (you can use whatever shape you think would look best).  Painted it pale pink (again whatever color goes with your theme).  Waited for it to dry and then painted again.  After it dried the 2nd time,  I spread a thin layer of the Mod Podge (up to where I knew the lace would stop).  Carefully applied the lace and smoothed it out.  I then carefully applied another layer of the Mod Podge of it (more like sponging it on lightly no brushing).  Then for good measure I sprayed it with clear acrylic spray.  I’ve let it sit outside for a couple of days to see how it holds up…..and it’s perfectly intact!  The lace has not moved an inch.  

Now for the flowers I took a floral styrofoam ball and let it soak in water for a few hours.  Then I took a golf tee to puncture holes to place my stems in.  For this project I used differing shades of pink Carnations.  They are very pretty, full, and inexpensive.  However feel free to use whatever flowers you like!  You can even use silk flowers if you want to make these arrangements well ahead of time.  I alternated the blooms and filled in with the mini Carnations where needed.

 

 

There are plenty of ways to adjust this to your desired theme.  Having a jewel or peacock themed event…..try painting the mache matching colors and covering with black lace.  Having a fall theme?  Paint in varying fall colors like orange and red and use a different fabric all together maybe a gingham pattern.  Tiffany’s inspired?  Paint that traditional Tiffany blue and Mod Podge a white satin trim around with a little bow.  The possibilities are ENDLESS!

To make just this one container cost me $5 at Hobby Lobby.  The flowers were an additional $12 at my local market.  Not too shabby if you ask me!

Hope this inspired some great ideas and you have fun with it!