Friday, May 3, 2013

3 Stylish Ways to Save

One Stop Shopping is Key  

Think…. Ceremony, Reception, Equipment.  We all have the picture perfect day laid out in our heads, but with a little flexibility we can land the perfect day with decreasing about a third of the cost per guest.  Selecting a venue that can accommodate your guests for the ceremony and that can easily be transformed in to the after party is certainly ideal on a limited budget.  If you select a venue that can provide the majority of the equipment needed for the reception that is another significant decrease in expense. Event expert, Bernadette Coveney Smith, and owner of 14 Stories, an event company in New York City offers phenomenal advice. 

"Look for a spot that can accommodate both your ceremony and reception.  By doing so, you'll save on decorations and guest transportation costs, not to mention a second venue-rental fee."  
Terri Says:  “The biggest benefit…meeting the minimum on food and drink guarantees a delectable menu and eliminates the expense of a room rental. “

"Not only does it completely eliminate the need for rentals, but once you meet the food and beverage minimum, there typically isn't a room fee," says Coveney Smith.

Cake by:  Penny Stankiewicz of Sugar Couture

½ Faux, ½ Fabulous

I said it.  Fake the cake; it’s one of the best tips I have ever retained. (Thanks, Martha!)  Everybody knows a memorable tiered piece of perfection is a must have on the big day, but what happens to all of the grand tastiness when the big day comes to a close?  Make it easy, have your confectionary artist create a memorable masterpiece that is half foam and half cake.  No one will eat the entire cake anyways.   Wendy Kromer, owner of Wendy Kromer Confections in Sandusky, Ohio, and a Martha Stewart Weddings contributing editor even suggests only having one real tier and a sheet cake for guests.  She says they will never know the difference. 
Terri Says: “ The biggest benefit…your cake will still look fabulous after the cake cutting ends and the dance party begins and it costs less!”

A Signature Drink + Savvy Sipping = A Fabulous Party
Signature Drink By:  The La "T" Da by:  Richard Hirtreiter

I know….I know, we all think the number one way to save is “Out with the open bar and serve up the beer and wine”  I can tell you after planning events for enormous amounts of guests, there is more than one way to save on sipping.  supplying mass amounts of beer & wine is not always the less expensive route.  Consider sitting with your planner or Maid of Honor and evaluate your audience, season trends and remember to remain flexible.

Why not have a Brew Garden with the grooms top10 beers to taste, after all… Microbrews are the new wine! You can pair that up with a signature drink designed by you and the groom and give each guest a cocktail recipe card as sassy wedding swag.  

Just think, 750 ml is equal to around 17 shots.  If each drink has one shot in it,  you can almost serve 17 drinks from one bottle of choice liquor.  In comparison, a 750mL bottle of wine yields roughly 5.625 drinks. That comes out to about serving 4 people from 1 bottle of wine. 

Lets Do The Math

While you can see there is a significant savings in selecting a signature drink, don’t completely do away with variety.  Purchase a few cases of about three different wines, serve a glass of champagne (brut is okay on a budget) to each guest, have a versatile beer tasting and perhaps budget for a limited bar menu that closes an hour prior to the reception ending.    
Terri Says:  “The biggest benefit…your signature drink will always be remembered, you’ll kill two birds with one stone (swag and a savvy memorable wedding element) and most importantly, you won’t break the bank.”


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