Save the Date Cards

We collected the save the date cards this morning.  The printers we used were roughly 1/3 of the average quote.  The downside was that they were situated over the other side of the city!

It was an early start,  7:45 (which is early for us).   Worth it though, they look fantastic.  We can start handing them out ASAP.

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Petticoats!

Yesterday I took delivery of my petticoat.  It’s probably the girliest thing I’ve ever / will ever purchase. 

Right now it’s in a bin bag in the back of H2B’s car.  Not the most glamorous method of transporting it,  but it does the job!  

The petticoat came from China (via eBay).  The seller was recommended to me by a friend.  It saved me around £40 – £60.  I was relieved to discover that the skirt was of excellent quality.  It even has an adjustable hoop* which I’ll play around with tonight when I try it on with the dress. 

*  To hoop or not to hoop has been the question in the run-up to buying the petticoat.  I decided on a single hoop for two reasons:  ease of walking and … den….air flow.   Not sure how toilet trips will work out! 

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A year today!!!!!

This time next year I’ll be getting ready to say “I do”.  I can’t wait, I really wish it were sooner.

I should recap on the last month or so, I’ve neglected the blog somewhat. 

We’ve booked Aceface DJ. After meeting him we liked him and his approach to weddings.  Now we have to think about any specific songs we want played.

I had the first bridesmaids get together.  We started at Mum and Dad’s to show them the dress. Then we went back to ours for a few (ahem) glasses of wine and nibbles.  Our next outing will be to see the film Bridesmaids. 

Two days I finally manged to get through to Birmingham Registry Office.  I’ve made an appointment to give notice of marriage 14th September. That was the earliest free appointment slot!!!  

Alex has designed the save the dates.  We have a few quotes from printers.  Just a case of getting them printed now.  We originally said to send them a year in advance but that deadline has been missed.  We do need to get them out ASAP as people will be planning holidays. 

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DJ & Dresses

We’ve arranged to meet up with a DJ on 23rd April.  He goes by the name of Ace Face and if he’s good we’ll book him to play the wedding.   Fingers are crossed as he seems to be one of the few DJ’s that actually let you specify the genre of music.  He’s already confirmed no DJ Casper or dance music.

Now I’m back in wedding mode (after my exam) I’ve also found a wedding dress outlet near Hinckley.  Mum, Dad and I are booked in for 4th May.  The hold around 700 styles of dresses.  Hopefully I’ll find one I love and we can cross another thing off the to-do list. 

Alex is working on Save the Date cards.  We’ve decided to send them to family asap.  After that we need to think about the remaining guest list.   

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Photographer booked!

Ooooppps!  I forgot to post that we’ve picked and booked our photographer.  We’ve gone for Paul Pope. His work is wonderful and exactly what we wanted.  He does the standard posed shots but the majority will be reportage style.  He also gives us a high-res copy of the photos on a disk.

Before getting to this point we visited one other photographer.  His work wasn’t great and the post production work was very 80’s.   We had a call with a guy who’s work was good, but as opposed to giving us a price, he asked what we expected to pay and used that figure.  Hmmmmmm.  The last guy we saw was expensive …. REALLY expensive.  Also, there were lot’s of artistic shots in his portfolio.  Not what we wanted at all! 

Now I’m on the hunt for a DJ.  We looking into hiring a Singer and a band but both options would blow the budget.  The DJ I’m after will play 60’s, mowtown, Indie, soul and old style R&B.  Any mention of DJ Casper is an instant no. 

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Registrar Booked & Photographer Hunt

“The registrar can be booked up to a year in advance from the date of your wedding”

This is the advice that every book, website and (most) wedding coordinators have given us.

The wedding coordinator at the Abbey Hotel (second choice venue) mentioned that it was being changed to up to two years in advance.  I checked the registry office websites and nothing suggested this had happened yet.

Being keen, I called the Rugby registry office for some advice as to what we need to do.  They called me back the following day, asked where and when we were planning to marry and informed me that they had 12 noon or 3pm available.  

I booked 12 noon immediately.  Our wedding breakfast needs to finish by 6:30pm so 3pm just wouldn’t work.  The deposit has been taken and we’ve received confirmation through the post.  By 12:30pm on the 7th July 2012 I’ll be a married woman! 

The booking of the registrar was a real eye opener (and butt kicker).  If we’d left the registrar until July,  we may not have got a decent time slot. Or indeed, be able to marry at all.  Now we are looking into the one other thing that could get booked up early – a decent (and affordable) photographer.

I’m adopting the same approach that I used for venue hunting.  We’ve decided that the style we like is “contemporary”.  A mix of the standard wedding shots and then non intrusive “reportage” shits.  The package must include a high resolution digital copy of the picture.  That way we can keep cost down and print our own album at leisure.  

The hunt so far: made a list of wedding photographers in the midlands region using tying the knot Midlands (a wonderful, wonderful website) and good old Google.  Most can be eliminated after looking at the galleries online or by looking at the package costs.   I’m trying to speak with the remaining photographers to see if we like them as people. Also to see what ideas they have.

So far I’ve contacted about six photographers.  Two have been booked already,  one we’ve met but he’s possibly too expensive and the albums were a little tacky.  We have two more appointments arranged.   

Whilst going through our wedding box, we found an advertisement for a photographer that was at the wedding show.  The pictures are the style we like, contain a digital copy AND album plus the price is very reasonable.   One set back is that they are based in Dorset.   We are speaking to him by phone tonight. 

On another subject, we are thinking about getting the save the dates sent out.  At some point we need to get a design down…. I wish I was creative…

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Brandon Hall Meeting

Today we went back to Brandon to meet Joy our wedding coordinator and to look at our room options.  

I was nervous on the drive to Brandon. If we really didn’t like the smaller rooms, would we cancel and go elsewhere.   If we did cancel would we have problems getting the deposit back?  On top of this, no other venue really did it for me. 

We met Joy and had a chat before looking at the rooms.  We confirmed numbers, dates name of the groom (I suggested leaving it blank just in case I had a better offer.  H2B didn’t go for that idea).

The first room we saw was The Brandon Suite.  The room was actually much larger than the picture I had in my mind.  We would use the room for the ceremony, then also for the reception.  What immediately put my mind at rest was that our wedding breakfast would be held in just the ceremony room.   The second half of the room would only be used for the evening.   Phew!  The layout would be the top table and five round tables, with 12 to a table.  We weren’t too keen on that idea so we went to look at option two; The Claranden Restaurant.

The restaurant is a beautiful room.  When we first visited the hotel I thought it was the nicest room in the building.   It’s larger than the Brandon Suite.  If our numbers creep up we have room to accommodate everyone.   We’d have the breakfast in the restaurant and then the evening in the Brandon Suite.  Perfect!  We immediately took her up on that format. 

After we’d decided on rooms we had a chat about plans.  Turns out Joy is a very experienced wedding planner.  She has given us lots of contacts and ideas.  Plus some good advice on dealing with musicians!  

I left feeling even more excited than when we originally booked the place.  I’m officially back in wedding mode.  

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