Monday, 28 February 2011

Royal Vintage

Following the trend for all things vintage in wedding design, tomorrow I shall be posting some lovely vintage inspired Wedding Invitations and some Royal Wedding inspired Invitations... watch this space....


Saturday, 26 February 2011

Have been feeling poorly today so not much to report, just trying to switch computer on has been a bit of an effort.

Found out today that my lovely friend Kirsty from The Studio Hair Salon is going to be having a nails and cocktails evening at her shop which sounds real fun. Will keep you updated so that you can go and see her.
Kirsty is a real gem of a find; she does bridal hair and fabulous nails for all sorts of occasions. I am hoping to get an interview with her and some pictures of the lovely creations that she does so that you can book her before anyone else does!
Now I’m going to find the lemsips and go back to bed!

Friday, 25 February 2011

Another busy Day

There are simply not enough hours in the day to get through the things that I need to at the moment. I don’t know where today has gone! I was going to post some photo’s of some lovely Wedding Favours for an Easter Wedding but my camera has died!
I promise to get it sorted asap so that I can show you these original favours for bride Jennie’s Wedding.
Till next time

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

World Wide Web

Busy day today. Lots of admin tasks to get through and I met with the lovely Nick Collins from Zebra Web Design regarding a new website for Trousseau Weddings & Stationary and Twenty Three Event Management.
I was kind of dreading it because my experience of “techie” people is that they speak a completely different language to the rest of us!
However, I was pleasantly surprised, I just about understood
(most of ) what he was saying! A complete first for me.
The best thing about it, no hard sell, just good advice and realistic prices; I am impressed.
So if you are looking for a Web Design company who can speak plain English and who will listen to what you have to say. Check them out.
Till next time

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

High Street Bargain

I had a lovely e: mail today from a lady called Kate, on the subject of cost cutting tips that I posted last week.
She wrote
“... had just about given up hope of finding a Wedding dress that was in my price range. I had always dismissed the high street dresses as I thought they were all too plain or the fabrics were cheap and horrible. However, after taking a look at the BHS link you posted I found a lovely tea length dress that I fell in love with. I am going to have it customised with some gorgeous lace and pearl trimmings that I found online and wear it with a fabulous antique stole that I found in a charity shop years ago. It seems that I will have the dress of my dreams at a fraction of the cost I would pay in a boutique, and from the store where my Mum used to buy my school uniform from years ago. Who would have thought it?
I had never even thought about customising a high street dress until I read your post, so thank you for the idea.
PS Just off to persuade my Mum to take up flower arranging! ”

Thnak you Kate. I’m glad you found the post useful and that you have managed to get a unique dress that is right for you and your budget. Please send me a photo (after the Wedding of course) so we can see your creation.
If there are any areas that you would like me cover, please feel free to drop me a line and I’ll see what I can do. Till next time

Monday, 21 February 2011

Flash, Bang Wallop, what a picture!

Following on from my entry from Friday I have had a request about how to find a cheap photographer.
Now I have to say that when it comes to some things you get what you pay for, and scrimping on photography is never a good idea.
Remember you want to look back on a wonderful day, looking fabulous with the man or woman that you love. You do not want to look back at a clutch of unprofessional snaps that you got because they were cheap. Believe me, you WILL regret it!! Selecting a photographer based solely on price is a sure fire route to disaster in my book.
My own Wedding photographs are hideous. Although we used a “professional” he was recommended to my Dad on price alone (something I found out later) and the results really show. Pictures out of focus, things sticking out the top of people’s heads, people with their eyes shut... I could go on and on!
They have been banished to the back of the wardrobe as even after 22 years I still cry every time I look at them. I have a few snapshots taken by friends that I treasure and I would never want someone else to be in that position. It’s horrible.
So, although I don’t recommend cutting costs on professional photographers I think there are a few steps you can take to make sure that you choose the right one for you.
·       Set your budget. Work out exactly how much you have to spend on your photographer and then research at least three in your price bracket.
·       Does their style of photography inspire you? It’s no good choosing someone who is cheap but doesn’t deliver the type of look your after.
·       Are they happy to listen to your suggestions? If you have a definite idea about how you want your photo’s to look,  are they happy to discuss your idea
·       Have a look at their previous work. Ask if you can talk to some of their previous customers. Where they happy with their work? If not why not. Don’t just assume that it's the Photographer at fault; sometimes people have unreasonably high expectations. Talk to the photographer too and get both sides of the story.
·       Do you like them? Remember this person is going to be following you around all day. If you aren’t comfortable, it’s going to show in the pictures!
·       Ask if they offer a package that includes Engagement Shots. This will allow you and your partner the opportunity to get a feel for his/ her approach and see how the pictures will turn out before the big day. If you’re not happy you can discuss it before your Wedding Day arrives!
·       Ask if they have “just the disc” packages available. Unlike traditional Wedding photography packages where you got a set of prints in an album, these deals deliver a disc of photo’s that you can print out whenever you like. They are still the same high quality, but you have to print them yourself and buy an album.

If you really can’t find a photographer you like for the budget you have then consider cutting back elsewhere. Do you really have to have those expensive favours? It’s unlikely that guests will remember what favours you chose in 5 years time, but you will always regret not paying the few extra pounds for a good photographer, trust me I know this.
There is never any harm in asking if you can negotiate on the price with your photographer. The worst that they can say is no!
However, please remember that these people are talented professionals who have often trained and developed their skills for years, and those skills and experience come at a cost.
If you really can’t afford a professional then there are a couple of ways to still have some good photo’s of your special day.
·       Ask a talented friend. Do you have a friend who you can trust who has a talent for taking pictures? Ask them to snap away on the day instead.
·       Speak to the local photography club. There may well be talented amateurs who are looking to break through into the professional market and although it’s unlikely that you will be able to secure their services for free, you may well get a really good price.
·       Check out local colleges for photography students who are in their last year, they may well be looking to gain experience.
You may get a great set of professional pics and they get to expand their portfolio. This may be especially good if you are looking for something a bit quirky and out of the ordinary. You just may spot the next David Baily or Mario Testino!

Really think hard before you decide upon a Photographer for your Wedding, you will never be able to do it again, so chose right first time.
Good Luck. Trish x

Friday, 18 February 2011

I spent today being asked about the best ways to cut the cash and not corners when planning a wedding. Who doesn’t want to save themselves some cash in today’s economic climate, right?
Unless you are a celebrity, or a lottery winner, it’s unlikely that you will have pots of money to spend on your big day. So the question today was can I get married for less than three thousand pounds?
Well of course you can. There are lots of ways to save money when planning your wedding. It just depends on what you are prepared to compromise on and where savings can be made....
Some of these dresses start at £80.00! Don’t forget that these dresses can be customised for you by a good seamstress giving you a unique gown that won’t cost you a fortune.
This is one area where you may decide to cut costs. Favours for guests can take up a large part of your budget, and most of the time the guests forget to take them home, leaving you with very expensive keepsakes!
One way to cut costs is to not have them at all. However, you could also try making favours yourself with a few friends. They aren’t difficult and there are loads of tutorials on the internet to help you.
Flowers are expensive, you can cut costs by choosing ones that are in season when you marry, this will save you a considerable amount of money than if a florist has to ship them in specially.
You could pick flowers from your garden and have them made into a hand tied bouquet by your florist, or if you are feeling particularly creative, make your own. The trend for brooch bouquets is huge at the money, try making your own with some cheap trinkets collected on the run up to your wedding.
You don’t need to buy flowers for everyone attending the wedding, the immediate wedding party is sufficient.

Although the cakes you see in magazines are truly stunning, do you really have £800 upwards to spend on a cake? You could try getting a friend or a relative to bake a cake (Mums always make the best cakes!) or alternatively you could buy three plain cakes from ASDA put some dowels through them for support, stack them on top of each other, wrap some co-ordinating satin ribbon around each of the tiers to cover the joins and finish with a sparkly brooch and voila! A designer looking cake for less than £50.00!

These are just a few ideas to get you started. Tune in next time for more cost cutting tips.


Gypsy Weddings

Today the conversation has been filled with talk of My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding that ended on Tuesday (15th Feb)
Everyone from Grandmothers to the local postman has an opinion of the travelling community and boy they don't mind sharing it! Everything from the elaborate dresses, and cakes, to the customs of "grabbing" and removing young girls from schooling so that they can clean their "vans" and look after the younger children has been talked about in the office, the hairdressers and the playground for the last five weeks.

I can't remember the amount of times that I have been asked "If a traveller came to you, and wanted you to organise their wedding, would you?" My answer is always the same. If I get on with the couple and I can give them what they want then of course I would. The fact that they are travellers wouldn't come into it.

I get to know all potential clients before they hire me to manage their Wedding or any other event that they may planning. This is a crucial part of my role, to ensure that I know a little bit about them and they can get to know me, before they make a decision to hire me.

I ask about  their background, their jobs, how they met, how long they have been engaged, if they have been married before and what made them decide to get married. I ask a lot of questions, but most importantly I listen to their responses.

 I ask these questions so I can get to know about what kinds of things are important to them as a couple and individually, so that I can be sure to make the right suggestions and guide them through the planning process. The last thing I want is to suggest something that may not be right for them.

I ask them about what kind of event they have in mind, and if they don't have any definite ideas I can make suggestions. However, more often than not, most Brides to be have a clear vision of how their Wedding Day should be. Then it is down to me to make suggestions as to how we can make it happen and ensure that they have a day to remember.

When planning a wedding I will spend a lot of time with the couple, so it's crucial that we get on and that I fully understand their wishes. Vice versa the couple will want to ask me questions to make sure that I am the right person for the job.

The same process applies, no matter who the couple are or what background they come from. It is for me as an Event Manager to understand my client’s needs and be able to deliver the event that they have asked for. It is never about what I may or may not feel about a clients choice.

I have had people say to me “Why on earth did you let her choose that dress, or those flowers or those shoes". My answer is this. It is the Bride & Grooms Wedding and it is about their vision. Yes I will offer advice and guidance to them and if I think some other choice may be more appropriate I will make suggestions for them to consider. However, I will always take the instructions of the couple and deliver their dream not mine.

For me a successful event is one where the couple get exactly what they want. Now whether that happens to be a 25 stone wedding dresses a glass carriages or a Fluorescent orange bridesmaids dress is a different story!

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Oh Baby

Today I was asked if Baby Showers were becoming more popular here in the UK.
Well the short answer is yes. Over the years I have seen a steady increase in this type of celebration. In my experience more and more Grandmothers are choosing to host these events for their expectant Daughters / Daughters in Law as we become increasingly more "Americanised".
I know that there are some people out there who think Baby showers are just another excuse to have an excpensive party, but I think it is a lovely idea and it neededn't necessarily cost the earth.
There are lots of ways to have a baby shower without having to spend heaps of money. All it takes is a little imagination and some time. There are lots of Crafting CD's out there which will allow you to make your own Invitations, decorations and favours. All you need to do is get a group of friends over and get them involved in cutting & sticking for a few hours!
If there is someone with a particular talent for baking, you could ask them to make a cake or even better lots of cupcakes (who doesn't love cupcakes?)
It isn't about showering the expectant Mum or Baby with lots of gifts as some pople may think. Traditionally showers were only given for the first child and only women attended. They were intended to share wisdom and lessons about becoming a Mother to the expectant Mum, by other more exerienced Mothers. Who wouldn't want a bit of advice and some support?
However, over time it has becoming increasingly common for people to hold showers for every child and nowadays men are welcome too.
Interestingly, it is common for lots of faiths to hold baby showers but quite often they are known by other names for example in Northern India they are known as godbharaai and in Western India they are known as dohhaaljewan.
Ultimately a baby shower is supposed to be fun and most importantly to celebrate a pending or recent birth of a new life. It can include giving gifts, but it really needn't mean having to purchase lavish gifts. It's more important to share the gifts of knowledge, friendship and support.... and cake of course!
Till next time

Tuesday, 15 February 2011


Well here I am with a blog! How did that happen?
Twenty Three’s website will be coming very soon!

To start off we have a sweet sixteen that we are organising, so lots of work going into that at the moment. Then in a few months have some charity events that will be happening.  I will let you know about these when details are final so that you can come along if you wish.

Already I am starting to prepare for an End of Year leavers Party for one of the local schools. I am really looking forward to it. We are going to be organising something quite wonderful for the children which isn't going to be a Prom!
I know many people (me included) think it's obscene the amount of money parents have to shell out for these events that have come across the pond. By the time you have bought a dress, paid for hair and nails and then chipped in for the photographer and limo hire you virtually have to take out an overdraft!
Anyway (rant over) hopefully we are going to be organising a spectacular event that the children will help create and it and Parent's won't have to remortgage their house to pay for it.
I will keep you up to date with developments as the weeks go by.

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