Unique Wedding Venue Ideas

When you begin thinking about wedding venues, what image comes to mind? Is it a large traditional church wedding, a barefoot on the beach wedding party, walking down the staircase of your family home or something else entirely? If you don’t have a wedding venue in mind that fits your budget , read through this list. Let your imagination run wild. Think about what is in  your local area that could be utilized. Once you narrow your list down to a few locations, go visit them with your finance and discuss the pros and cons of each location.

When thinking about your wedding venue, also consider the reception venue. Can they both be held at the same place? If you can hold both the wedding and reception at the same location you will save both time and money. To help you get the creative juices flowing, here is a list of some possible types of locations that may suit your fancy. Most of these would be free or very inexpensive.

Outdoor locations

By the side of a Lake

Rooftop Garden                                                                                                        Outdoor Wedding Venue

Snow Covered Mountain At A Ski Resort

Rose Garden

At a Town Park

In A Blooming Orchard

In a Private Garden or Yard

On the Beach

In A Hot Air Balloon  (might not be the cheapest option, unless your guests are few)

Indoor Locations

A Church or Chapel

At the City Hall

At a Club House

At a Historical Monument  (could be indoors or outdoors)

At a Hotel

At a Museum

At a Ski Lodge

At a Bar or Nightclub

A Historical Home (could be a bed and breakfast inn)

These are just a few wedding venue ideas. Consider what you want the most and then try to think about what is available in your area that is most like what you want. Find out the costs and narrow down your choices from there.

Next I will be discussing the pros and cons of each of these unique and budget friendly wedding venues.

May you live happily ever after,

Maureen

Ask Your Wedding Q

Cheap Tiered Wedding Cupcake Stands

wedding cupcakes

If you’ve decided to have wedding cupcakes instead of a traditional wedding cake, you won’t want to bring them in on a beer flat covered with foil. You’ll need a beautiful tiered cupcake stand to display them on. There are lots of options here.

You can usually rent one at your local party supply place. The price will vary depending on your location.

There are lovely glass plates available for purchase but if rental fee are too high you may not wind up saving any money over ordering a traditional wedding cake.

You can get a very nice looking clear acrylic tiered cupcake stand at www.efavormart.com for $29.99 (regularly priced at $79.99 and it will hold approximately 100 cupcakes. They have a larger 6 tier cupcake stand for $34.99.

If you like the idea of a tiered cupcake stand, but want to shave a little more off the cost, you can make a beautiful one yourself. They can easily be made from cardboard cake rounds covered with foil,  fabric, or even matching scrapbook paper. Glue ribbon around the edge and stack them with covered foam cake dummies in between and glued together. You can find complete directions for this style of tiered cake stand and several others at www.allthingscupcake.com   Look for a downloadable PDF on their site to make a square tiered cupcake plate. It is made from foam board, it is a little more labor intensive than making the round one but very cheap to make and the result is very nice. Take a look at them all and see if they don’t get your creative juices flowing.

Now lets say you’ve decided on a theme wedding, like country western. You like the idea of  using a cupcake tower, but can’t imagine how to tie it in to your theme.  Instead of edging the cupcake plates with ribbon, try a small trim that resembles rope.  Instead of covering the sides of the cakeplate uprights with foil or white fabric, try some scrapbooking paper with a western theme you like, or some other fabric you like that matches your bridesmaids dresses. I recently made a tiered cupcake plate for $7 for my daughter’s birthday. I used pizza quick sauce jars in between the cardboard circles. The jars were filled with gumballs and a band of ribbon was glued around the top and bottom of each jar.

If  you are having a beach theme wedding you could fill the jars half full of sand and place a small starfish or a few shells in each one.  My very inexpensive 4 tier cupcake stand was very charming and could easily be dressed to coordinate with any wedding theme.

Even with cupcakes, there is always the option of putting a standard small 6 inch cake on the top tier to hold your top piece and stack all the cupcakes below. Buying one six inch cake pan is a lot cheaper than buying a whole set of pans.

If you still can’t quite picture just how beautiful of an option wedding cupcakes can be than take a look at this video

May you live happily ever after,
Maureen

2010 San Francisco Dream Wedding Give Away

2010 San Francisco Dream Wedding Give Away

The San Francisco Dream Wedding give Away is your chance to win the wedding of your dreams.
The contest officially opens on August 4, 2009 at 7:55 a.m. PST.
The Deam Wedding Contest winner will receive:
An upscale wedding valued at $100,000; in San Francisco, CA one of the most romantic spots in the country. The location will be the luxurious Hotel Vitale, located in the heart of San Francisco where you and 75 guests will celebrate in style. After the wedding, the winners will head to Napa for a relaxing 3 night honeymoon, filled with quiet dinners, private wine tastings, and other exclusive activities.

The 2010 San Francisco Dream Wedding Giveaway is a collaboration of more than 40 premier bay area vendors. They’ll work together as a team for almost a year, planning, coordinating and designing the most unforgettable Wedding of the Year, for one very lucky couple in love.

To enter this contest go to 2010 San Francisco Dream Wedding Give Away.

Wedding Cake Recipes

If you are thinking about making your own cake or cupcakes, there are a few things I want you to think about.

1. Cupcakes for your wedding can be a much cheaper alternative, especially if you or someone you know makes them. They can be as elegant as any wedding cake and they don’t have to look like they just came out of a baggie in a kids lunch box.

2. Even if you are a very talented cake decorator, consider having someone help you with your cake on your wedding day. You will have enough to think about on your wedding day, so delegate this task. If you decide to  bake and decorate your own cake a couple of days prior anyway,  get a friend to transport and stack the cake tiers together on the reception table. Your main job on your wedding day is to look and feel beautiful.

3. You will need a good cake recipe. There are hundreds of wedding cake recipes on the internet, but don’t over look the obvious.  I have made more beautifully decorated cakes than I can count in my life and most were not from scratch. Most of the time people assume they are made from scratch. If you choose chocolate for your wedding cupcakes, you will have no-fail results with a devils food cake mix. Get a Pillsbury or Duncan Heinz and make sure it says devils food. You can’t go wrong with a devil’s food cake mix  and on sale they can usually be found for about $.99 a box.  Packaging is everything in advertising and in a wedding, presentation is everything. It’s how you decorate and display them that will make all the difference.

The cake channel has lots of fabulous cakes pictures to give you ideas, but best of all they have a fantastic book on making your own cake.

Click here to view more details

Next I’ll be talking about Tiered Cupcake Stands for your Wedding cupcakes.

Be sure to sign up for our newsletter on the right so you won’t miss anything!

May you live happily ever after,

Maureen

Budget Wedding Cake Alternatives!

Wedding cupcakes and cheese cake

When it comes to weddings and wedding cakes  each one is individual as you are. It’s all about what you want and like. Believe it or not there are hundreds of people every day having their reception without the traditional tiered wedding cake. This is especially true with theme parties. Now you’re wondering, “What on earth would you use instead of cake?” The answer is Pie, lots of homemade pies. Cheese cake, if that’s you’re favorite desert, then why not? Cupcakes. Very fancy cupcakes stacked high on a tiered plates. (These are especially fun if there are alot of children present. It’s all about what you want. If you have a friend or family member who bakes a beautiful berry cobbler that’s to die for and you are having a county western theme wedding. A table set with checked tablecloths for in an outdoor setting would be beautiful. It could be the perfect money saving match!

Ask Your Wedding Questions Here!

Ask your most pressing wedding questions. Ask for ideas and input for any wedding related topic. If you are having a theme based wedding, remember that is my specialty!

Live Happily Ever After,
Maureen

Wedding Planning Checklist #1- Establishing Wedding Preliminaries

WEDDING PLANNING CHECKLIST – #1 – Establishing wedding planning checklistWedding Preliminaries

Setting up and establishing a wedding budget can be a daunting task if you don’t know where to begin. Our free wedding planning checklists will make your job a snap!

Before you can begin to set up your budget, it is vital that you and your fiancé establish and agree upon exactly what kind of wedding you are budgeting for.

Once you have established and agreed upon key components of your wedding, you can begin to put together your budget. You will first need to decide things like where you want to hold your wedding, how many guests you want to invite, how much money  you have to work with, and who is going to help with your wedding.

To make this process easier I have provided a wedding planning checklist to help you establish a framework for planning your wedding.

Sit down with your fiancé and go over this wedding planning checklist together:

Do we want to hold  our ceremony in a:

Large church
Tiny Chapel
Private Home Indoors

Private Home Outdoors

Outdoor location (park, or beach)

Historical site

Rented hall

Destination location (on a ship, Las Vegas)

Other

How many people do we estimate  we would like to invite?

1-10

10-25

25-50

50-100

100-250

250-500

Where do we want to hold the reception?

Same location as where we are married

Country Club

Hotel Banquet Room

Church Fellowship Hall

Park

Resort Location

Private home

Who is paying for our wedding and reception

Only the two of us

Bride’s parents

Groom’s parents

Rich Relative

A combination of ___________ and ____________

How much money is each party contributing to the cost of your wedding and reception?

Bride ___________________

Groom_________________

Grooms Parents __________

Brides Parents ___________

Rich relative _____________

Where will our contribution come from?

Savings

Loan

Credit cards

Our most recent paycheck

A combination of these

What tasks will we do ourselves and which ones will we hire out?

Check all the boxes that you plan to do yourself.

Plan the ceremony

Plan the reception

Decorate

Plan favors and attendants gifts

Choose the music

Plan the honeymoon

Make or buy invitations

Mail invitations

Plan transportation

Choose the music

Select & order flowers

Order cake or make it yourself

Order reception food or make it yourself

Hire a photographer or videographer

Create a wedding website (this is very popular)

Other

Where will we go on our honeymoon?

Overnight trip to a major sports event

Weekend at a Bed & Breakfast Inn

Week long cruise

Honeymoon suite at a luxurious hotel

Resort in the Bahamas or Carribean

On a camping trip

A trip around the world

Other

How much will we spend on our honeymoon?

Less than $500

$500-$1000

$$2500-$5000

Once you and your fiancé have agreed on what you want and how much money you have to work with, you have gotten over the first big hurdle.  The next step is to start allocating a percentage of your budget to each category.

Come back soon to get our Wedding Planning Checklist for budget allocation.

Budget Wedding Planning Doesn’t Mean A Cheesy Wedding

Planning your wedding on a budget doesn’t mean having a cheap or cheesy wedding.wedding planning

There are two key words to consider here – Planning and Budget.

Lets look at the first word, plan.  Here’s how Dictionary.com describes a plan:

a scheme or method of acting, doing, proceeding, or making, etc., developed in advance.

If you are to plan your wedding, you are simply going to create a method of proceeding with

your wedding and you’re going to do it in advance. Simple.

Now let’s look at the word Budget.  Dictionary.com describes a budget as:

An itemized allotment of funds, time, etc., for a given period or the total sum of money set aside

or needed for a purpose.

Your budget is simply the total sum of money you have to spend, set aside needed for a purpose.

Now lets put the two together. Planning your wedding on a budget is simply creating a method of

carrying out your wedding in conjunction with the total sum of money you set aside to carry out

each part.

Was there anything in there about cheap? No. In fact, the better you plan each segment of your wedding

and it‘s cost, the better your wedding will be and the less stress you will feel.  Your wedding is one of the

most important days of your life. You don’t need the stress that over spending on your wedding will give you.

Remember this simple equation:

Planning Wedding + On A Budget = A Stress Free & Happy Bride and Groom

Next I’ll be sharing an important checklist to help you get your wedding budget plan started on the right foot.

Wedding Decorations

married outdoors

Wedding decorations don’t get any cheaper or prettier than outdoor settings.

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