Charlotte Balbier

the big debate: should you allow your single guests to bring a plus one to your wedding?

February 27th, 2015 | Julia Braime

found on etsy.com, by RachelCarl

via etsy.com, by RachelCarl

In this brand new Friday morning feature on the wedding blog, we’ll be debating all the most difficult wedding planning topics. Today we tackle a sensitive subject and ask: Should you allow your single guests to bring a plus one to your wedding?

Found on weddingchicks.com

via weddingchicks.com

julia says YES:

Smug marrieds. Annoying, aren’t they?

Think back to your own single days. Chances are, you weren’t sitting at home every Saturday night drinking vodka and singing to Chaka Khan on your lonesome, but equally, it’s very likely that as fabulous as singledom can be (all the duvet, no wet towels on the bathroom floor, no awkward lunches with the in laws) you didn’t much like being reminded of your solitary status during notable romantic occasions such as Valentine’s Day, Christmas and weddings.

Your single friends? They don’t like that either.

Ok, so your best mate might have just met the “love of her life” in a club last Saturday night, but if she’s hoping he’ll hold her hand during your wedding ceremony, do you really want to deny her that happiness?

To me, the success of a wedding isn’t down to the colour of the centrepieces or the cost of your frock. It’s the people who make the party. Ok, if the budget, or space, really is very tight, then I’d always advise just asking your very favourite people and perhaps having a quiet word about why you can’t allow for any more. But if there’s some flexibility there, why not make someone’s day and allow them to bring a plus one to your wedding?

Have you ever been a guest at a drinks reception where you only know the bride and groom? Have you ever been seated at the “children’s table”? Have you ever danced awkwardly with the bride’s teenage brother? You can save your friend from all of that. What a hero.

Happier guests make for a better wedding day, even if you never see a few of them ever again. And who knows? It might be that you’re buying your hat for that plus one’s wedding in the not so distant future…

MOD

via MODwedding.com

rachel says NO:

A best friend of mine who is in the wedding planning process is currently in meltdown over her ever-growing guest list – and she’s not alone, it’s a task dreaded by most to-be-wed couples.

The pressure goes far beyond simply drawing up a list of the friends and relatives you want present to share your special day as issues such as inviting children, pushy parents and plus ones come into play. As I see it ruling out plus ones from the off is the easiest way to lighten the load and means one less thing to worry about.

Weddings are expensive affairs and every extra body can add more than £100 to the bill, so couples can be forgiven for not wanting extras dining out on their big day. In most cases these would be people you don’t know anyway, essentially strangers at your wedding and allowing some friends and relatives plus ones could mean not inviting somebody else you would actually want at your wedding – someone that you would actually recognise in the congregation.

I get it, you might have a single friend who wouldn’t really know anybody at the wedding – but aren’t weddings meant to be a place where single people meet? I say mix them all in together and hope for a Cilla Black/Paddy McGuinness result.

Chances are some of your friends and relatives will meet on the hen and stag dos which breaks the ice and gives them a friendly face to look for on the big day. Also be clever with your seating plan and try to plant the singletons with others who are in the same boat and also with chatty/friendly people who are likely to make them feel at ease.

I know I’m making it sound easier than perhaps it is but if you’re planning an intimate wedding or your budget is stretched, saying no to plus ones is the way to go. Of course you have to be sensible and fair with it though – make it a one rule for all and don’t just pick who can and can’t have a plus one. I’m not suggesting you don’t invite people’s partners who they have been with for a considerable amount of time but if your mate has now been to the cinema with that guy she met on a night out he still doesn’t constitute a partner and therefore shouldn’t be given the honour of an invite. When all said and done that’s what it is, an honour.

via ruffledblogvia ruffledblog.com

what you said on Facebook:

Nic: “I gave everyone a plus one, including my single friends. Some of them just brought a friend. I just wanted every one to enjoy themselves as much as possible and worried they wouldn’t as much if they felt a bit left out especially as the meal is so formal.”

Beth: “If we’ve both met them and it’s a long term relationship, they’re invited. But if it’s a new relationship and nobody has met them… I’m not paying for their dinner!”

Rachel: “If they are married/living together and we know them then they’re invited if not, they’re not. Luckily a lot of our friends are mutual and we all go out as couples but we’re applying it to family as well as friends.”

We’d love to hear your side?

 

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Attention To Detail. Supplier Showcase: Amoretto Wedding

February 24th, 2014 | Julia Braime

Amoretto Wedding

Girl’s Best Friend

We LIKE sparkle around these parts, whether glinting from a newly adorned ring finger, the sheen of sequins on tulle or a dusting of Swarovski across a kitten heel. It’s all good.  That said, we were always going to love the bespoke designs of Harriet of Amoretto Wedding then, weren’t we?

Not content with dazzling your guests on the day, Harriet’s beautiful designs give them a little taste of what’s in store, whether that’s elegant sparkle (our favourite), lashings of lace and pearls or laid back rustic romance.

I LOVE.  Just check our her pretty website to see why. 

Harriet is kindly offering a 10% discount for any couples ordering their stationery in 2014.  Just quote Brides Up North when booking. 

Images by Lake Creative Studio.  

Amoretto Wedding

Bow

What’s the story behind Amoretto Wedding?

Amoretto has been running for two years now. As a trained Graphic Designer with a love of packaging and ‘hands on’ creativity the idea to start my own wedding stationery business came to me when planning my own wedding. Like so many others before me that, ‘I could do this’ moment suddenly hit me and it all went from there!

Amoretto Wedding

Tree

Who is an Amoretto Wedding bride?

An Amoretto bride is someone who will appreciate quality design, products and service. Over the last two years I have provided stationery to a wide range of ages and budgets but the common factor is their appreciation of the care and attention to detail spent on each and every client, from the moment pen goes to paper until their beautifully wrapped parcel arrives at the door.

Amoretto Wedding

Candyfloss

Where are you based?  Do you work by appointment or online?

I am based in Lancaster, Lancashire but have clients from all over the Country. I meet with around 80% of my clients but offer a fully bespoke service as standard to clients who approach and order via e mail or telephone as well.

Amoretto Wedding

Snowflake Save The Date

Are all your designs completely bespoke then?

I offer a bespoke service as standard at no additional cost. Couples are welcome to either choose an existing design, making any necessary alterations or benefit from my design experience creating something new and unique.

Amoretto Wedding

Lace & Peal Pocket

What products are available in each design?

All designs have matching items as follows;

Save the Date, Day Invitation, Evening Invitation, RSVP and information card.

Order of Service, Order of the Day, Place Name, Menu, Personalised Menu, Table Plan, Guest Book.

Favour Box, Memory Box, Thank you Card.

Amoretto Wedding

Lace & Pearl

What stationery designs do you think will be popular for next season?

I am seeing a huge demand for my Lace and Pearl designs, but this timeless fabric will never go out of fashion for weddings. The Shabby Chic, Great Gatsby and Rustic Country Garden looks will all remain popular in 2014 with a breakthrough trend for bright colourful florals.

Amoretto Wedding

Rustic

Amoretto Wedding

What would be your top five tips for Brides Up North when choosing their wedding stationery?

Take a good look around on blogs, in magazines, and at wedding fairs for designs and ideas.

If you are struggling to choose a style, arrange a consultation with a local designer who offers this service for free to chat through ideas. They should be happy to listen to your thoughts and make suggestions that will suit your needs and requirements. There are so many angles to how the stationery contributes to the process, it’s not just about the invitations. I love hearing about my clients ‘on the day’ plans and making sure my wedding day items are going to suit their venue, flowers, table arrangements and vision for the whole day.

Don’t get too caught up in trends and what you think you should have, go with what represents you as a couple and your Big Day.

Never order anything without seeing a sample, online images can be deceiving, you need to feel and see the quality in your hands before committing to an order.

Always ask for proofs and a sample and make sure you get a second pair of eyes to check them over. The last thing you want is all your invitations with the wrong name, date or address on them.

Amoretto Wedding

Carnival

Amoretto Wedding

Personalised Menu

Does all the stationery have to match?

Not necessarily, a recent client of mine has chosen one of my Lace & Pearl designs for her Invitations as it matches the delicate lace on her dress. Her vision for the wedding day however is much more Shabby Chic and Country Garden so we are introducing kraft card colours, luggage tag styling and dressing props such as a set of vintage step ladders as the table plan backdrop. Two different styles but yet ones that will tie the whole wedding story together perfectly.

Amoretto Wedding

Emma

Which of your ranges would you recommend for a Bride on a budget or if money was no object?

Serendipity at £3.00 is a simple but luxurious design, double mounted on 700gram board this design can be done to incorporate any colour scheme. The modern typography is very popular with many couples and seems to appeal particularly to the Grooms!

Amoretto Wedding

Serendipity

Boxed Cupid at £7.50 is the ultimate in romantic luxury. The ivory paper heart is the centre piece of this stunning invitation, all encased in a mulberry paper wrap and organza bow then presented in box with delicate guest name tag.

BOXED CUPID

Boxed Cupid

What are your prices like?

My day time Invitations range from £3.00 right up to £8.50 for designs that comes boxed and incorporate many elements. 

Can you offer a special discount to Brides Up North readers?

Yes! I would be delighted to offer a 10% discount for any couples ordering their stationery in 2014.

BOW FAVOUR BOX

Bow Favour

How long do you take to turn around an order?

As standard I say four weeks, this includes design, proofing, samples and production. Turn around can be faster than that depending on my schedule. 

How can I get in touch to discuss my requirements or place an order?

You can call me on 01524 848744 or 07974 062 425 or visit my website at www.amorettowedding.com  where you will also find links to my Facebook & Twitter.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 by Lake Creative Studio

Amoretto Wedding is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Pressed To Perfection. Supplier Showcase: Jolovka PLUS Free UK Shipping For Wedding Blog Readers

July 23rd, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Jolovka for Brides Up North

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I’ve something a little bit lovely to share with you this afternoon. 

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Jolovka is a paper goods and gifts shop based in the North East created by husband and wife team, John & Kat Flynn.  Kat moved to the UK from Texas after meeting John whilst working at a summer camp in Dallas, Texas. After three years of having a trans-Atlantic romance, John was pleased to share everything he loved about the North of England with his beautiful bride.

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Jolovka offers custom invitations, embossers, baker’s twine, labels and vintage stamps that are both whimsical and classic. Their custom bridal shower and party invitations are designed so that you have the option to print them at home and they offer customised wedding invitations designed just for you. 

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Kat says: We are passionate about the love that can be found within the words of a hand-written letter and continue to find inspiration in celebrating the life that grows from that love.

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Jolovka for Brides Up North

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Their custom embossers are both designed and made in Great Britain and I was over the moon when they sent a very special Brides Up North embosser (as well as a little box of paper goodies) my way.  I don’t automatically share every promotional gift that I am sent here on the wedding blog – you’d soon get tired of that – but I’m a sucker for lovely stationery and these beautifully made pieces really stood out.

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I’ve been using the special Brides Up North stamp on all my correspondence, and this would be a lovely way to add a posh personal touch to your wedding stationery, and forever after as Mr and Mrs. 

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Embossers with text are £45 and embossers with images start at £75 but kind Kat and John are offering free UK shipping for Brides Up North readers with the coupon code BRIDESUPNORTH268.  This offer expires 3rd August 2013, minimum purchase £10.

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Go, go, go!  You’ll love it. 

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2013 Brides Up North/ Jolovka

This is a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Let’s Get Intri-‘cut! Supplier Showcase: Hand-Held-Designs Wedding Stationery PLUS Free Swarovski Crystals!

January 17th, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Hand-Held-Designs Wedding Stationery

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Morning all!  Let’s all give a warm its-nearly-the-weekend-and-payday-thank-goodness welcome to Brides Up North Featured Supplier, Deb of Hand-Held-Designs, who is here to tell us all about her range of beautiful cut wedding stationery. 

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What is the story behind Hand-Held-Designs?

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My love of card design was re-awakened, whilst studying for a degree in Textiles and Surface Design at CCAD.  I had spent the previous 20+ years in the Hair and Beauty Industry, mostly running my own hairdressing business.  As a hobby I had made cards over the years and sold them at craft fairs, and I had always sold out, but it wasn’t until the card and gift assignment at University that I realised how exciting it was working with paper again. I love having a flat piece of paper, and a craft knife, and cutting out a design I’ve created, and how magical it is seeing it appear little by little, and how beautiful the shadows are when the light catches the design.  I knew then that my heart was with card and paper design, and paper-cut design, and I knew that I wanted to create beautiful stationery, that would be something special and different for a couple’s special day.

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Who is a Hand-Held-Designs bride?

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A bride who wants a beautiful, contemporary, striking design and loves to add a splash of colour.

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Hand-Held-Designs Wedding Stationery

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Where are you based? Do you work by appointment /online?

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I am based in Darlington, Co. Durham, and currently work from my small studio based in my home. I work online, via email, and by telephone, and exhibit my stationery collections at selected wedding fairs, where it’s always nice to speak to people face to face.

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Who is a Hand-Held-Designs dream client?

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My dream client is any couple who falls a little in love with my designs, I have a passion for what I do, and if clients ’feel’ the design as I do, that’s just perfect.

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Hand-Held-Designs Wedding Stationery

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Tell us more about your Intri’cut service. Are your designs all bespoke?

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All the designs are created by myself, and are ‘Intri’cut’ – I call it this as the products are intricate in design and nature, starting with a design that I sketch and develop, then turn into a digital outline that is then sent to my cutting machine for the design to be cut out. It’s not laser cut, it is cut with a fine-detail blade, so has no burnt or scorched edges to it.  I have a ‘core’ range of designs, which I am always working on adding to. These can be adapted to make them more personal to each couple, by adding their chosen coloured inserts to match their theme, and, if required, choosing a coordinating/contrasting foil, which comes in a large range of colours, (metallic and matt). If the bride wishes, some of the designs can have text of choice added to the invitation front, and though I suggest fonts that compliment each other, with an extensive range of commercial fonts and pantone colours available to print with, I’m sure the couple will find something to make their chosen design unique to them.

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What products are available in each design?

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Most of the designs start with ‘Save the Date’, and go through to all of the wedding day stationery, including table plans and post-wedding ‘Thank You’ cards. Anything I haven’t covered I am working on, so please ask, I don’t want to take a single design and put it on everything. I try to mix it up to make it more unique.

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Hand-Held-Designs Wedding Stationery

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What stationery designs do you think will be popular for next season?

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Print and patterned stationery will feature with geometric patterns, chevrons and stripes proving popular.
Stationery can be mixed and matched within this theme, providing there is a common colour running throughout and this can look stunning with a real contemporary edge. The ‘Gemini’ range of invitations offers a geometric pattern, that is proving a real favourite and depending on which colours are chosen, it can look contemporary or classic.

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1920’s glamour, and the ‘roaring 20’s’ theme will influence a lot of design. Art Deco stationery looks amazing, and ties in with the geometric prints and patterns. I have been looking at 1920’s architecture for inspiration for new designs, so watch this space! 

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Cut wedding stationery will grow in popularity; it is stylish and detailed, it works with any colour scheme and offers something different to the usual printed stationery.

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Hand-Held-Designs Wedding Stationery

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What would be your top five tips for Brides up North when choosing their wedding stationery?

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The wedding day is all about the happy couple, and the stationery should be a reflection of the couple’s taste.

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The stationery gives the first impression, and sets the tone of your big day, so invitations are very importation. Think carefully if you are planning on having co-ordinating wedding-day stationery, it’s worth thinking about this in the first stages, so everything looks gorgeous on the day. Mention it to your stationer, even if you don’t need it now, ordering it in advance avoids possible disappointment later.

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Think of your budget – it’s so easy to get carried away with all the accessories and wedding-day stationery. Discuss with your stationer how much you have to spend and your requirements, they should offer advice and recommend solutions to keep within price, e.g. only putting one menu on each table, or supplying place cards left unprinted for you to hand-write.

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If the invitations you love are a little more expensive, then don’t buy ‘Save the Date’ cards as well as Invitations – just send your invitations out earlier.

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Book your stationer early – better to have time in hand, you will have plenty of other wedding topics to think about!

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Order a few extra invitations, at least 5 of each, day and evening, ( I always add in a few extra envelopes), because we all make spelling mistakes at times – particularly when we need to get it right!

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Does all of your stationery have to match?

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Not necessarily, no. Matching stationery looks beautiful, and you know everything goes together, but mixing and matching can look amazing, as long as there is a common element that ties it all together. Mixing and matching patterns or florals work well, as long as the colour theme runs throughout.

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Hand-Held-Designs Wedding Stationery

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What are your prices/ price range and are you doing any special offers?

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The range of invitations are divided into two price bands, namely £4.90 each and £5.90 each. This includes two inserts, one coloured and one white with text.  For a small additional cost they can be individually accessorized with Swarovski Crystals, which really finishes them off.

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I am offering all Brides up North readers, free Swarovski Crystals on all invitations ordered by 1st March.  Please quote Brides Up North when placing your order or enquiry. 
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Which designs are your best sellers?

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The ‘Flutterby’ range is always a popular favourite, it’s a pretty range and very romantic. The ‘Gemini’ is also proving equally as popular, it can look very classical, but then choose a strong colour behind it, and on the foil detail, and it looks totally different and has a real contemporary look.

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Hand-Held-Designs Wedding Stationery

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What sets Hand-Held-Designs apart from it’s competitors?

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All Hand-Held-Designs’ intricate collections are individually cut on a cutting machine, which cuts with a blade, producing a nice, crisp edge, without the burnished or scorched edges associated with laser cutting. Hence on the pearlescent card I use, the edges are the same crisp clean finish on the outside and the inside, making it perfect for wedding stationery. Hand-Held-Designs offer beautiful intricate stationery, which can be further enhanced with foil detailing in a range of striking complimentary or co-ordinating colours. As the designs are created by me, the range is unique and original to Hand-Held-Designs.
I offer a professional, reliable service, where customer care is paramount.

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How long does it take to turn around an order?

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I usually quote 6 weeks from receiving full payment and the final signed proof, but please contact me if you have a more urgent requirement. The insert paper is ordered especially for each order, and this can take up to 4 weeks for delivery.

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Hand-Held-Designs Wedding Stationery

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How can Brides Up North get in touch with you?

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Website: www.hand-held-designs.co.uk
Email: hello@hand-held-designs.co.uk

Telephone: 07535 707320

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Hand-Held-Designs Wedding Stationery

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  – Images © 2013 provided by Hand-Held-Designs

Hand-Held-Designs is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, and this is a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

 

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Supplier Showcase: Graphic Embers PLUS Exclusive 10% Discount For Wedding Blog Readers!

December 14th, 2012 | Julia Braime

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The funny thing about editing a blog like Brides Up North is that it has ceased to be just my blog, and whilst I source the features, curate the content and do all the writing here at Brides Up North HQ, so much of what you see before you every day depends on the fantastic Northern wedding industry who continues to support this blog and brand so wholeheartedly, and YOU my lovely readers who continue to visit each day in your thousands, send me lovely emails with your wedding queries (I can almost always point you in the direction of a wedding professional who can help) and submit your Real Weddings to feature after the event.  Whilst Brides Up North is my creation, the blog is very much your product, and I can’t thank you enough for that as our Northern Revolution picks up pace and rumbles on!

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Today we meet the lovely Angela of Graphic Embers, one of the Featured Suppliers without whose support this double daily dose of wedding inspiration and it’s related real life bridal events would cease to exist.  Let’s give Angela and her pretty, bespoke wedding stationery a warm welcome.  There’s 10% off in it for you…

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Anne

Anne

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What is the story behind Graphic Embers?

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The idea for behind Graphic Embers came into being five and a half years ago, when I made my own wedding stationery. However, it never got any further than a vague idea for something I might do at some point in the future; after all, I was studying for my degree and had a job I loved. However, in 2008 the economic crisis began, and one of the many industries hit was construction, mine and my husband’s industry.

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In the summer of 2010 Matthew, my husband, was made redundant, then a year later, the week I had my daughter, so was I. While unfortunate, the redundancies did spur me on to begin something I had only day-dreamed of for years. I built our first website and Matthew set up the Graphic Embers business selling wedding stationery designs I’d created as a hobby in the preceding years. Graphic Embers got its very first client on October 14th 2011, and has gone from strength to strength ever since.

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In April 2012 I finally re-gained the reins of Graphic Embers after my maternity leave ended and since then I have continued to develop the brand, create a wide selection of stationery ranges and work on some truly unique bespoke work for our couples.

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It has been a tough year, starting a business from scratch with no wages to fund it and no access to business grants or loans. It has taken hard work and dedication to get us to where we are today; nominated suppliers for one of the local wedding venues and winner of The North of England Wedding Awards 2012! For all it has been tough, I wouldn’t go back to my old job now, when Graphic Embers has so much to offer. I love working with brides and grooms and helping create the dream they have for their wedding day. Winning the award made me so grateful to all the couples who have given us the opportunity to work with them over the last year and has made me more determined than ever to offer the best service we can.

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It’s nice to have access to a blog like Brides Up North that is based in the North. So many wedding blogs, or wedding media generally, are focussed in the South. It’s nice to be able to keep up with Northern suppliers and Northern brides. One of our aims for 2013 is to support the local economy and we now have both a Northern card stockist and a Northern print lab, as well as advertising in some Northern media. We’re proud to be a Northern business and it’s nice to see a blog that celebrates brides in the North.

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Bow   Catherine

Bow & Catherine

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Who is a Graphic Embers bride?

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Any bride who wants dedicated service, the ability to fully customise her stationery or have a unique design is a Graphic Embers bride. While we have quite a broad range of vintage and scrapbook inspired standard designs we have worked on everything from snow leopard print chequebook invitations to laser cut hot air balloons. Our aim is to provide every one of our couples with stationery to suit them and their big day.

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Jane

Jane

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Where are you based?  Do you work by appointment/ online?

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We are based in Lynemouth, Northumberland, but don’t currently have a public premises (one of our hopes for the future). We do however offer free at home consultations to couples in Northumberland, Tyne and Wear and County Durham. We can also work entirely online via email, much as we do for national clients. Our current designs and brochure are available to view on our website www.graphic-embers.co.uk which is regularly updated.

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Dragonflies   Elizabeth

Dragonflies & Elizabeth

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Are all your designs completely bespoke?

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We have a wide collection of standard designs which we can fully customise, however, the majority of our work is bespoke. We regularly have clients wanting something they can’t find anywhere else and we pride ourselves on being able to provide a service which allows us to work to almost any theme. We’ve even had a bride lift her leg almost onto our stand at a wedding fair to show us her snow leopard print leggings as that was the design she wanted on her invitations. Often the bespoke designs are the most fun to work on, and I think my all time favourite was a set of autumn themed stationery we did for a client who married in October. Her invitations and most of her day stationery were laser cut from rich brown and orange card, but her theme also gave us the opportunity to try a laser engraved wooden table plan which was then inlaid with mahogany. The table plan became the inspiration behind our new Signature Range of wooden stationery.

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What products are available in each design?

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We should be able to produce anything a couple wants in any design. If it doesn’t already exit we will make an item to match, right the way through from save the date cards to thank you cards, and all the invitations, table plans and on the day stationery between.

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Ever After

Ever After

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What stationery designs do you think will be popular for next season?

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Vintage designs are still proving popular. Our Country Garden design is relatively new, but is proving to be the design getting most interest for next year’s weddings. However, modern, bold printed statements are also doing well. On request we recently produced what is quite a simple design, text on white card which lists famous couples, with our clients’ names in the middle of the list in a different colour. Since producing the first design we’ve had more requests for a similar sort of thing. Print is certainly getting more attention now than it has done previously, and while handmade designs will always have a strong following it’s certainly no bad thing being able to do our own illustrations to print to suit current demand.

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What other products/ services do you offer?

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We also have the United Kingdom’s first LED lit, acrylic, laser cut wishing trees available for hire. The trees were designed by Graphic Embers and are exclusive to us. The concept is that they appear as elegant ice sculptures during the day, so as not to overpower the flowers and cake, but then in the evening when the lights go down the act as stunning beacons, drawing guests in to fill out their wishing tags. The bases have around 8000 colour options in it, so we can match the trees to almost any colour scheme or set them to cycle through a range of colours which looks really magical.

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Along with tree hire couples get the hire of our wishing tree poem, pens and decorations as well as a set of personalised tags and tag box to keep. We can match the tags and ribbons to a couples’ colour scheme as well as personalising the text on the reverse.

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We are also looking at getting items to hire next year, as we’ve had so many requests for the butterfly table number stands we use at fairs. We already have a half bird cage that can be used as a table plan with the addition of tags but we’re hoping that by mid 2013 we will also have a set of table number stands and perhaps birdcages which can be hired out.

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Laser Lace   Liza

Laser Lace & Lisa

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Who would be Graphic Embers’ dream client, and what sort of design would you envisage for them?

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That’s a hard one, but I think some rock/metal singer type who either wants to play up their character or go for something quirky like a rockabilly themed wedding. We’ve just started looking at making hand bound guest books and while searching for cover materials we’ve found so many great fabrics I would love to make a themed goth or vintage rock book. And can you imagine having something you’d made, right down to hand stitching the pages, signed by a host of celebrity guests?

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What would be your top five tips for Brides Up North when choosing their wedding stationery?

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HEARTHave a look at lots of websites, wedding blogs, magazines and moodboards before you start talking to stationers so that you have an idea what you like and what you don’t, both in terms of theme/style and basic format. Do you want a postcard or a pocketfold?

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HEARTThink about how much information you want to include early on. Stationers will be able to give you a more accurate quote if you can tell them straight away that you plan on including a list of local hotels and a map with directions.

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HEARTIf you have guests coming from a distance and need to include extra information, but have a limited budget then don’t bother with save the dates. Save your money for better, more comprehensive invitations and just send them a bit earlier.

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HEARTAsk your chosen stationer how much you can customise a design, some will limit a design to a set variety of colours, some a set number of changes. If you really want to make your mark on a design then it is worth finding out how much you can do. We will make any changes we can or design something entirely unique just for you. Also, get samples if you customise a design. It may seem like an unnecessary extra cost to buy a personalised sample, especially with print lab costs for one off prints being so high, it is worth it though to check colours as they won’t always print as they appear on screen.

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HEARTGet in touch with your chosen stationer early. We don’t like having to turn couples away and many of the most popular stationers book up six months in advance. Even as a relatively young business we can book up, and we already have an order book which goes up to December 2014! We don’t mind you booking us well in advance, in fact we’d rather book a production slot for you in nine months time than turn you away five months before your wedding.

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What would be your no-nos for Brides Up North when choosing their wedding stationery? 

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HEARTDon’t leave it to the last minute to find and book your stationer. Many of the best book up in advance and we don’t like disappointing couples.

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HEARTWhile going for the budget option may seem like a good idea, it can have consequences. Your stationery is often a guest’s first glimpse at your big day and what you are paying for is both the quality of materials used and the time and dedicated service put in by your stationer. Sometimes the cheap option doesn’t come up to scratch and the stationer can’t or won’t fix the problem. It amazes me how many people we’ve had tell us another stationer has let them down.

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Rustic

Rustic

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Does all the stationery have to match?
 

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A perfectly matching set of stationery can look beautiful, but as with everything in weddings you can do wonderful things by not matching as well. Much like you can have different coloured bridesmaid dresses as long as you tie them together somehow, you can do the same with stationery. We recently did a set of individual menus that alternated colours, half on pearlescent orange card and half on textured brown card for an autumn wedding. You could also have different designs or colours in the same theme, much like many do with mismatched vintage crockery. It all depends on the look you are trying to achieve.

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Margaret   My Darling

Margaret & My Darling

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Which of your ranges would you recommend for a bride on a budget/ if money was no object?

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For a bride on a budget I would go for a postcard invitation of one of our printed ranges as, this keeps cost down but still allows for memorable design. If money is no object then I would definitely advise our Signature Range which is laser engraved into wood. It’s our most expensive range, but each piece is a stunningly crafted item. The table plan especially, which is inlaid with mahogany, is a beautiful keepsake.

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Which designs are your bestsellers?

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The Simplicity handmade wallet is very popular, it’s a very elegant but cost effective design and is probably the item we’ve had most orders for so far. However, for clients we’re speaking to for next year our Country Garden pocketfold could easily compete.

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Simplicity

Simplicity

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What sets Graphic Embers apart from its competitors
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When we say bespoke design we mean it, we really can design to any theme. We’re also original, our wishing trees are something that has never before been seen and our stationery designs are exclusive to us. We offer a dedicated service and really value each and every couple who comes to us.

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What are your prices/ price range, are you doing any special offers?

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Invitation prices range between £1.85 and £8.10. Our pocketfold prices all include invitation, information insert and RSVP card as we’d rather give a full price upfront than give brides a nasty shock when they have to add on a separate information card price. However, if you don’t need the information card we are happy to deduct this.

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If you order stationery through Graphic Embers we do offer 20% off wishing tree hire too. Wishing tree hire starts at £75 + mileage.

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Can you offer a special discount to Brides Up North readers?

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We can offer 10% off our 2013 prices for any stationery booking made before 1st February 2013. This includes booking a production slot in advance.

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Victoria   Village Fayre

Victoria & Village Fayre

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How long do you take to turn around an order?

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Maximum timescales for handmade and print stationery is 31 days from full payment to shipment, though 14-21 days is more likely. For laser cut stationery the maximum time from payment to shipment is 45 days, but again we aim for less. The Signature Range is slightly different, as it can take four weeks for the materials to be delivered. Maximum timescales are eight weeks from payment to shipment, this is so we can order in the wood and produce the items. This doesn’t mean you need your table plan finalised eight weeks early, we can delay production of final design proof until four weeks after we’ve ordered the materials, as long as we know approximately how many tables you will need. As long as your details are finalised for us to start engraving that’s fine.

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How can I get in touch to discuss my requirements or place an order?

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Website: www.graphic-embers.co.uk

Email: enquiries@graphic-embers.co.uk

Phone: 07581560705

Facebook: Graphic Embers

Twitter: @GraphicEmbers

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Anything else that Brides Up North should know?

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We are running a competition with Matt McGurk Photography. Matt is going to set up a studio day in February especially for brides and grooms to come along and have couples shots taken. For just £40 couples will get an hour long photo shoot, CD of 4 to 5 images with printing rights and a large (16 x 12 inches) print. Book before Friday 18th January and one lucky couple will win 50 save the date cards (or equivalent postcard invitations) from Graphic Embers incorporating their favourite photograph taken on the day! The date for the photo shoot will be confirmed based on interest, but will be a weekend in mid February in a Newcastle-upon-Tyne studio. Pre-register your interest now to be entered into this fantastic competition! To see Matt’s previous work visit www.mattmcgurk.co.uk. Bookings should be made by contacting enquiries@graphic-embers.co.uk. Graphic Embers look forward to incorporating some beautiful photography into some completely unique stationery!

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  – Images © 2012 Matt McGurk

Graphic Embers is a Brides Up North Featured Supplier, and this is a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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