Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The nature of vendor deposits/retainers

I found this article on a caterer's blog and thought it was well written, informative and could be of interest to many brides out there. With so many vendors and venues requiring deposits and retainers, it's so important to know their policies and to have a payment schedule so that you don't miss out on securing your date! This and other great articles can be found at

Why Are Deposits Non-Refundable? by Debi Brim

A very fair question asked by many clients!

A deposit is not only to secure your booking with the vendor, but also to secure the vendor's business with you. Confusing, yes, but follow me here.

Photographers and reception sites can logically only book one wedding per day. Cake creators, caterers and many florists can only book a certain number of weddings per day, and some of these limit it to one per day. When a bride books that date, the vendor closes that date to any other bride/booking. This means we may turn down business from future inquiries for that date.

(I personally turned down over 15 brides for the date of 7/7/07 because it was booked, and I turned down over 25 brides for the popular 6-7-08 date.)

Should something happen and you change your mind, move your date, want to use another vendor, and you cancel your booking, especially close to the date, it creates a financial hardship for the vendor. As you know, not too many brides book their caterer, photographer, etc., 3 or 4 weeks before the event.

This means the vendor has no opportunity to re-book that date. The vendor has already turned down business that could have been booked except for the fact that he/she closed that date just for you. The non-refundable deposit covers the lost opportunities and the costs incurred by the vendor based on your commitment.

Moving the date is many times viewed as a cancellation. Why? A bride books 11-7-09 with me. I turn down 4 brides for this date because I've made a commitment to the booked bride. Bride decides to move her date to January, after the holidays. I have now lost those 4 potential brides because I've turned them down.

I've had a number of discussions in which I'm asked "What costs? The photographer hasn't taken any pictures yet!" You're right. And the caterer probably hasn't bought any food and the florist hasn't purchased the flowers. But these are not the only costs associated with running a business that can help you have a great event. All of these vendors require special (expensive) equipment, rent, insurance, staffing to answer the phone when you called to book the event, internet access to enable you to see our website as you planned your event, the time already spent with the client during the consultation and follow-up, cost of paper, folders and filing cabinets to create and store the client's paperwork, and much more. These costs need to be covered and overhead has to be met.

When we close that date to any other business based on a client's commitment, then we have lost the opportunity to see any income for that date that would cover this overhead when the client decides to cancel.

A deposit protects the client and assures the client that the vendor will be there. A deposit also protects the vendor when the vendor turns down other clients, so the vendor can be there for you on that date.

So when talking to vendors, ask about their cancellation and refund policies. This is especially important if the bride/groom is active military and unscheduled deployment is a real possibility.

Knowing what the rules are in advance will help reduce some of the pre-wedding stress!

Pink Eye Candy ... or is it Eye Cake?

I just HAD to share this adorable cake from Martha Stewart. It's pink, it's ruffled, and it's cake, so it pretty much doesn't get any better than this!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Pink Party for Breast Cancer Awareness: etsy Tuesday

Another week has come and gone, and here I am again with an etsy Tuesday post and nothing else to show for the last week! The "rush" of my wedding season has come to a close, and blogging daily is back at the top of my list! I can't make any promises, but at least I can try.

For those of you who've read my blog for a while may remember another feature I did on Paper and Cake. I absolutely LOVE this company, and I think it's ingenious that they sell their designs electronically and allow you to print your own party ware. It's not QUITE homemade, but at least you'll feel a bit more creative than if you had walked into a store and bought everything premade. And who doesn't like to feel a little bit Martha Stewart every once in a while?

This pink partyware is designed in honour of Breast Cancer Awareness Month which is right around the corner, but would be perfect for a bridesmaids luncheon, shower or tea party. Compliment your tablescape with gorgeous white candle holders (these ones look like they're from Ikea), some pastel blooms and pretty stands to hold your treats, and you're good to go!

For $8, you get ALL of this :

Invitation + Envelope
Notecard + Envelope
Door Sign “Welcome”
Pennant Banner “Pink Party”
Napkin Rings (vase & candle wrappers)
Menu Card
Wine Glass Tags
Cupcake Wrappers
Cupcake Toppers
Party Food Labels (name tags / gift tags / place cards)
Handbag Style Favor Box
Bag Topper for Pink Lapel Ribbons
Full Sheet Patterned paper

Find the pink party printables from Paper and Cake here.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Gorgeous Papercuts: etsy find

Papercuts bu Julene

I realize I missed etsy Tuesday AGAIN...for the second week in a row! I have a feeling, however, that this delightful find will appease you! Really, I can't think of a more unique, crafty creation than this incredibly detailed papercut. It looks great on it's own, or frame it with a funky fabric or paper behind it. Use one (or many) to add a personal touch to your ceremony or reception decor!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Meet Cheree Berry

For all of you fellow Martha Stewart stalkers, you will probably be familiar with this eye-candy filled wedding. For those who aren't, meet Cheree Berry's wedding! Cheree Berry is one of my personal wedding crushes, and you can probably understand why from her wedding; her enormous attention to detail and design combined with her innovative approach to stationery makes her work unique and timeless. Formerly a stationer for Kate Spade, Berry now designs her own incredibly popular line of stationery, and her website is chock full of delectable designs sure to make you drool a bit ( ).

Beautiful Bows: Etsy... Thursday?

Silk clutch from ViaBella

Headband from the Sleepy Albatross

Bow Invitation My Lady Dye

Dress from kissedjewelry

Garter set from Woomi

Bow crystal earrings from sdvintagecollection

Dupioni silk ring bearer pillow from belles and crystals

Silver Bow Pendant Necklace from lime green modern

Bowtie Groomsmen Notecard from BeanTown Homemade

After receiving a threatening text from a friend regarding my lack of an etsy Tuesday post, I have decided better late than never! This weeks collection was inspired by my penchant for bows. Where this affection comes from I have yet to determine (Hello Kitty?), but I do know that I am drawn to anything with a bow, and can often be found (I'd say at least 60% of the time) donning one in my hair. There's just something about a bow that is at once both innocent and outrageous. You never know whether it's to be taken seriously, or whether it's supposed to be fun... I guess the appeal is all in the mystery.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


All photos from the wonderful Martha Stewart

After the post on cake stands, it only seemed fitting to follow up with a lovely collection of pretty cakes to feast your eyes on. Not to mention that designing a website for a local cake designer has also caused me to have cake on the brain!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Photographer Portrait: Reine & Jana

All above photo credit belongs to Reine and Jana

If there's one thing that comes to mind when viewing the incomparable images of Reine and Jana (silent "j"- say it "yawn-ah"), it's complete and utter astonishment. I sometimes have to remind myself that these are real people and real places, not just some imaginary world of painted perfection. Reine and Jana's photographic style ascends all conventions of typical wedding photography, and if you're a photo-junkie like me, it's well worth the investment. Heck I wish I had found out about this pair for my own wedding!

After personally watching Czech-born Jana Vackova work her magic at a recent wedding, I can say whole heartedly that I can't imagine a more up beat, enthusiastic, energetic or passionate artist than she. Jana beyond blew me away with her personality and creativity, and taking in her photos evokes a bounty of emotions. Reine, Jana's partner, shares the same creative and artistic aesthetic, making these two probably the most talented duo in the province if you ask me. Reine and Jana have become so talented in their own right that they can work separately with their own second shooters. Check out their website for loads more eye candy, and you'll see what I mean. You can even peruse the ultra-alternative photographs from Bif Naked's wedding!

Check out Jana's site here:
And for Reine site

Friday, September 11, 2009

Let them eat cake! But only on a pretty stand...

Above: Found this on a "wanted" etsy listing. Let me know if you know where these are from, because I LOVE THEM!

DIY Cake stands from Once Wed

Above: The Knot

If there's one thing I can't get enough of (really, we all know it's far more than just one thing) it would be cake stands. I'm not quite sure what it is about them, but if I see one, I buy it. Cake stands are to me as shoes are to a fashionista. I feel like they are my babies, my sacred collection, and I promise you one day they WILL be displayed on some gorgeous shelf in my office. I love single tiered ones, ones that stack in graduated sizes; I love cupcake towers, and I especially love individual glass cupcake stands. There's something about a cake or cupcake stand that completely transforms any baking, candy, or everyday item from mundane to magical. Must be the pedestal!

The collection of pretty stands above range from low to high prices, and for those of you looking for a shabby chic way to present your creations, here's a fab diy project over at Once Wed that uses terra cotta pots! Ingenious idea. Any style, any colour, and size- cake stands WILL improve you event, whether you're using for your wedding cake, or to hold cookies on a dessert table for a baby shower. And by all means, if you happen to see some pretty stands while out and about, feel free to think of me!