As many of us are aware many of the recent brides are on very tight budgets. So the brides have been turning to DIY to save money. Now I am a huge fan of DIY for those who have the time and are creative. But most brides don't realize the time and money that goes into DIY. Especially when mistakes are made.
As vendors what can we do to either embrace this movement or convice the brides they can get what they need with a professional. My initial idea is to encourage couples to review their guest lists. Suddenly a budget of $5,000 can go a lot further when the list goes from 150 to 75.

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Good idea, it was excessive but was funny too
The best DIY wedding I've yet to photograph still had a photographer, a dj, a wedding dress, rental tuxes, two large tents, a caterer, two cakes, and enough decorations to keep Michael's and Hobby Lobby in business for a Summer. The bride's parents bought the house with a backyard wedding in mind, 20+ years in the future!
I feel that for weddings there are some elements that can be DIY and some that should left to the professionals. Cutting the guests list can be a solution, however sometimes the number that you currently have is the adjusted guests list. All of the guests represented on that list cannot be negotiated.

I agree with Phyllis that we should work with couples to offer them viable solutions and alternatives to create their perfect day. Without leaving them feeling that they compromised to the point that they can't recognize their day.
I have nothing against DIY cause i did my own wedding before this business. Well since this last bride didn't like my price of $170.00 for 50 invites with Big sliver hearts entwine with each other And they lettering embossed in a pool(blue) color. She went to Party City and got her invitation there for 10. .00 dollars She is telling all our friends and others I'm a rip off. I get my invitations from Staples- Party City- and the Dollar store. I cant't believe that someone would even think That i do that. All my invitations have all the bells and whistles. I put everything together and mailed out for them. I have only been in business a few years and it takes time to get a great name out there. She is using my web site using fake name saying bad service junk invites etc. I got her's in the mail. And it felt like a letter head. With only 1 envelop and it had rained and got wet so the computer lettering was washed out.. We were good friends And i had no problem if you are on a budget . But when you say ur future husband makes $125,000.00 a year now I dont think 170 bucks is much then. Im just so upset that she is spreading rumors at 32 yrs old and there lies. Om Goodness I'm going nuts over this. What or how should i handle this. Any help would be great.
I am so sorry to hear that, Simply Creative Services! And you are not the only one and either the last one that this is and will happen! If you want to keep the relationship, give her a call and try to see what is going on. If not, forget it and try to rebuild your name and business - it is hard, but not impossible! Good luck to you... :)
Our friendship is over because of this She thought that since i offered to do them i would only charge her like 20 bucks for everything And what she wanted was professional I cant even come close to 20 bucks to do what i do. Like i told her she will get all the bells and whistles with it But when u do a pain invites with just some blue ink Its not the same. I even asked her if she wanted to do a different invite Nope was the answer. And she just gave me the total head count and wanted a price the next day. So i did my best and she or should i say her MOM didn't like it. I told her let me take care of everything and don;t worry about a thing Just everything else. I even bought for her The old fashioned wax and stamper to seal her invites and a present to her and cocktail napkins Now what to do with the napkins LOL
Simply Creative, you have to move on. People who know you will know that your former friend's allegations are baseless. And the people who received the invitations will know they were cheap. And everyone else won't care because they don't know her.

And if it's your website, just remove all of her postings especially if they are really derogatory.

If you can prove that you lost business because of things she has said you can always sue her for libel. Or maybe you just want to send her a letter and ask her to cease and desist defaming your good name or you will sue her. That will probably shut her up.

From now on, treat friends and relatives like stranger. Give a formal proposal and get a signed contract before you do anything. As I mentioned to you before you learned an expensive lesson but it's one I'm sure you'll never forget.

Hang in there. This too shall pass.

Phyllis Cambria
I agree with Phylis, Simply creative, she gave you the best advice ...treat friends and relatives like stranger... it is so right!!!! and move on.
I just wanted to say thank-you to all that has come forward and helped me thro this. I was stressing about this really bad. Maybe in the future we will be friends but just not at this point in time.
Good girl! I'm proud of you! :)

I'm sure you will get through this sooner than you think and move on to bigger and better clients (and hopefully friends). :)

Phyllis Cambria
DIY projects can be great for the very crafty bride who has a lot of time on her hands to complete each project. One thing I've noticed, however, is that many brides feel that they can take on these projects, then later down the line, they realize how time consuming and stressful it can be as their wedding date approaches. I often hear "if I had the chance to do it all over again, I would have just paid someone to do it". I do not discourage anyone from taking the DIY approach, but I do caution that the options are weighed carefully. What a lot of brides fail to realize is that hiring an experienced and professional wedding planner/coordinator can help to save them a considerable amount of money, as they usually have access to special discounts that may not be available otherwise. Often times wedding planners are looked at as an extra expense, but usually it's quite the opposite when you consider the time and money that a wedding planner can help you to save.

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I've tried relentlessly to educate the DIY bride or the tight budget bride - to no avail.

Some suggesions I've made have been similar or the same as the other comments.

#1 is reduce the guest count.

Why do couples feel they must have a 6 hour event? Cocktails, Buffet or Dinner, After Dinner Wow Dessert Buffet? Is it because the venues rent out their space for 10 hours?

As a former Interior Designer I know where you can get the most "look" for your dollars. I use examples of a simple inexpensive black dress with a killer belt or a razzle dazzle necklace as an example.

Beer and Wine and a Specialty Cocktail is less expensive.

Even having a an artisan beer bar is less expensive.

I've recommended days that can be less expensve - Monday is such a back to work day - Why not have a chic party on Monday Evening. The corporate and fundraising world has chic events Monday through Thursday.

Off days doesn't mean Labor Day or New Year's Eve or Memorial Day. It reaks cutting corners.

I've recommended a wow brunch.

I've suggested several ways to reduce the cost of expensive rentals.

I've suggested an all H/D menu starting from light to heavy finger food.

I've suggested themes which creates anticipation and cost cutting.

I've even sugessted elopment and then have a grand party.

Unfortunately the DIY bride only looks at the bottom line cost of the proposal.

How can one caterer charge $9000 and another caterer charge $4000 for a similar menu? Do you think the budget bride is aware of the differernce? Of course not - not until after the wedding when it is too late.

Does the DIY bride know the difference between watered down Vodka, food for 75 when the guest list is 100, H/D
that are frozen and pre-made, produce that is not fresh.

I ask every bride what did they like about the last wedding they attended and what did they not like. The answer is - it was boring, formula like.

Just my 2 cents about the DIY bride.


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