The ‘W’ word

Garden Path wedding invitation

Every year, a news outlet will bring out a story about unsuspecting brides being charged more for weddings than they would if it were another kind of celebration. Invariably, it involves ‘mystery shoppers’ lying to vendors to gain pricing based on false information. I came across one such article today, based on a Choice study.

First up, a note that this doesn’t actually apply to my business (but, as you’ll find out, it still really gets me fired up!). My prices are my prices, no matter if it’s your wedding or your dog’s birthday party. It takes same amount of time to design and my printer and envelope company don’t charge me less because it’s just Fido’s birthday. In fact, this is part of the reason why I only do weddings now, some people would see the price and react with, ‘Geez, it’s not like it’s a wedding‘. (Apparently the double-standard pricing was a-okay if it suited them?). So now I spend my time focusing on providing the best product and service for my amazing couples.

The Choice article glossed over – and the follow-up completely omitted – any mention of the good proportion of suppliers who provided identical quotes. I can’t say I’m surprised by this alarmist reporting but it’s still disappointing for the vast majority of ethical businesses.

While I’ve never charged more on mention of the ‘W’ word, there are some that do (gasp – it’s true!). There are two reasons why this may be the case:

One – They don’t charge more for the same product/service, they are simply recommending what they think will be most suitable for the event.

When I was doing all-occasion stationery, if a prospective client came to me for party invitations, I’m not going to suggest the custom designed, three-colour letterpress package with a hand illustrated map. I’ll recommend an off-the-shelf flat printed design because in my professional experience that is what they’ll be happy to pay for. If that client was looking for wedding invitations but told me she was planning a 30th, she’d be doing herself a disservice because she’ll wind up disappointed that the product was not up to her expectations for a wedding.

Two – Yes, they may actually charge more for a wedding.

Before you go calling Today Tonight, there are legitimate reasons why this would be the case. For example, your chauffeur missed his kid’s soccer game to clean every nook and cranny of the cars, decorate them, make sure there were umbrellas and bottles of water in the boot and arrived half an hour early because he knows how important this day is. You wouldn’t get all these hidden extras that cost him a lot of time (read: money) if you simply asked him to drive you to the airport.

Perhaps your baker includes the price of tastings, delivery and an extra ‘anniversary’ tier in her wedding quotes but not for parties. Maybe for a wedding your photographer brings a second shooter, expensive hired lenses and spends twice as long processing your precious memories to make sure they are perfect.

And that really is the moral of the story: If you have a question about their pricing, simply ask them. Anyone worth working with will be happy to explain all the inclusions and differences between their services.

I know hundreds of wedding vendors and I can tell you that not one of us is in this for the money. We are passionate about what we do and pour everything into creating beautiful weddings for our clients. But of course like any business we need to do this in a way that is financially viable in order to keep servicing our clients for many years to come.

Your wedding suppliers are there to help you. Not only does being dishonest prevent them from best serving you, it also prevents a trusting relationship, without which it is hard to enjoy your wedding planning and pull off the kind of spectacular event you’re dreaming of.

Photo credit: Jennifer Sando Photography

Big news + lucky dips

Akimbo at Bowerbird Bazaar

Today I’m sharing the bittersweet news that Akimbo will no longer be producing any off-the-shelf stationery. Yep, no more greeting cards, art prints or pre-made stationery.

Why? Akimbo is just me; one person trying to wear all the hats involved in running a small business. Custom wedding invitations have always been Akimbo’s focus but I couldn’t give it the attention it deserved while juggling wholesale accounts, production, markets, packaging and everything else that goes along with having retail products.

It may not be goodbye to Akimbo retail products for good. Perhaps there will be a time in future when I have staff or a collaborative opportunity makes it possible by handling all of the production and distribution.

But for now while this is still a solo operation, I am excited to be focussing on Akimbo’s specialty: wedding stationery.

This is great news for my lovely brides and grooms, who can expect bigger and better things as I throw myself completely into design for weddings! So you can expect lots more wedding goodness from me, including a bunch of new designs to launch this Spring.

If you need to stock up on your Akimbo goodies before they’re gone foreveryou can find clearance stock here while it lasts. There are also a limited number of themed Lucky Dip packs featuring a surprise assortment of paper goods:

Akimbo Lucky Dip pack

Card survival packview details and buy

Akimbo Lucky Dip pack

Sweet home pack - view details and buy

Akimbo Lucky Dip pack

Party animal pack - view details and buy

Akimbo Lucky Dip pack

Mixed bag pack - view details and buy

Akimbo Lucky Dip pack

Oh baby pack - view details and buy

Big love pack - view details and buy

Akimbo Lucky Dip pack

The Big Love pack also contains a bonus assortment of invitation samples. So if you’re not sure what type of invitations you want, this is the perfect first step.
Massive, huge, soppy thank yous for your continued support of Akimbo. It means so much to me and won’t be forgotten as I enter this new phase.

Bowerbird Bazaar 22-24 November

Woop! I’m excited to be at another Bowerbird Bazaar this weekend!

22nd-24th November
Friday 4-9pm
Saturday & Sunday 10-5pm

Stirling Angas Pavilion, Adelaide Showgrounds

I will be launching my summer collection, which includes these limited edition screenprints. I’ll also have Christmas cards, art prints, note cards, greeting cards and for the first time: tote bags and gift tags.

For more event details, head to the Bowerbird Bazaar website.

I look forward to seeing you there!

DIY no-sew wedding banner

There’s no celebration not improved by adding bunting, if you ask me. But sewing? Ugh!

Find out my no-sew technique for making bunting in my latest Polka Dot Bride tutorial.

READ THE FULL TUTORIAL ON POLKA DOT BRIDE

DIY paint-dipped succulent favour

Here’s a contemporary take on a pot plant favour for your wedding guests.

READ THE FULL TUTORIAL ON POLKA DOT BRIDE

DIY laser cut cake topper

Is there anything better than white chocolate mud cake? Yep, it’s called white chocolate mud cake with a sweet homemade cake topper.

READ THE FULL TUTORIAL ON POLKA DOT BRIDE

Cake stand kindly supplied by Little Sweet Styling.

Framed gilded table numbers

DIY gold leaf wedding table numbers

Did you like the gilt autumn leaf place cards from last week? If so, you’re going to love today’s gold leaf project.

They have just the right amount of vintage, glam and rustic.

READ THE FULL TUTORIAL ON POLKA DOT BRIDE

Introducing… One Fine Day

One Fine Day wedding invitation

I love a sweet, homespun wedding, don’t you? Throw in some retro and handcrafted touches and I’m in wedding heaven.

One Fine Day wedding invitation

The One Fine Day collection is all that and more. It features a double-layer invitation stitched together and the full suite is printed on beautiful linen-textured stock for that handcrafted feel.

One Fine Day wedding invitation

One Fine Day wedding invitation

One Fine Day wedding RSVP

The cute peony pattern is part traditional, part modern and all round lovely paired with the whimsical handwritten-style typography.

One Fine Day wedding RSVP

One Fine Day wedding RSVP

Once again huge thanks to Jennifer Sando for her beautiful photography of my new collections. I couldn’t be happier with how she’s captured the lovely details.

One Fine Day wedding gift card

One Fine Day wedding invitation

One Fine Day wedding save the date

One Fine Day wedding table number

Find out more One Fine Day product information and order online here.

Photography Jennifer Sando | Flowers Lotus Flowers 

Bouquet of the week

The White Orchid Rose and Seed Pod bouquet

Bouquet & Photography The White Orchid

Introducing… Garden Path

Garden Path wedding invitation

My favourite thing to do is creating invitations that are a bit different and printed handkerchiefs are just that!

Garden Path wedding invitation

I searched high and low for the best handkerchiefs, which was not an easy feat. I eventually found some beautiful embroidered ones from an Australian supplier. They proved perfect for screenprinting on.

Garden Path wedding RSVP

Garden Path wedding RSVP

Garden Path wedding invitation

Garden Path wedding invitation

The screenprinted handkerchief folds around the cute RSVP postcard to perfectly fit inside a regular envelope.

Garden Path wedding invitation

Garden Path wedding gift registry card

Garden Path wedding menu

Garden Path wedding place card

Garden Path wedding save the date

Garden Path wedding save the date

I designed it with a beautiful vintage-inspired spring wedding in mind. Instead of each piece matching exactly, they coordinate in a looser way, like a bunch of flowers being handpicked from a country garden.

Garden Path wedding thank you note

Garden Path wedding thank you note

Find out more Garden Path product information and order online here.

Photography Jennifer Sando | Flowers Lotus Flowers