A non-traditional venue can range from a historical site to a private home and anywhere else there isn’t a designated staff for special events & weddings. Choosing a non-traditional venue definitely has its pros and cons. Pros: freedom to do whatever you want, usually at a lower cost. Cons: having to start from scratch, meaning bringing in all necessary rentals and staff.
We chose a non-traditional venue because having a beachfront venue was high on our priority list. Trying to book a hotel or wedding facility on the beach was going to be quite pricey. My dream venue was the Hotel Del Coronado. We discovered the Cabrillo Beach Bathhouse in my hometown of San Pedro, CA and fell in love with it’s Mediterranean architecture and its historical charm.
One huge factor that plays into choosing a non-traditional venue is the catering options. Some sites will ask you to choose from a list of pre-approved caterers, others let you have complete freedom. Also take note if there’s an onsite kitchen. We had our favorite local Peruvian restaurant cater and deliver everything to the venue. Not only did it save us a ton, but we got to enjoy some of our favorite foods! Traditional venues and hotels usually have a set menu and don’t allow an alternative caterer at the site. They are great when you need an all-inclusive type package but not if you need flexibility for your budget.
A few often overlooked factors are electrical capacity (esp. for the DJ), permits, air conditioning/heat and accessibility. Having a beach or park wedding means applying for permits from the city or county. Definitely take care of this as soon as you’re ready to book or reserve a venue. Make sure your guests will be comfortable with either air or heat and ensure that it is working properly. And if you have any elderly guests or heavy equipment in a two story venue, check for elevators.
If the venue staff aren’t wedding professionals, hire a planner or day-of-coordinator. Trust me. You don’t want a bunch of inexperienced people as the only staff at your wedding. Your caterer or rental company should provide additional staff to help set-up and clean-up. You can ask a couple of family friends to be volunteers to handle your personal decorations.
Choosing a non-traditional venue definitely adds a lot more items to your to do list. If you love the venue, it fits your budget and gives the flexibility you need to customize your day then go for it! Stay super organized and get a coordinator.
I’d love to hear if you’r thinking about or had a non-traditional venue for your wedding!
Happy Friday! It’s been an awesome week and I’m excited to celebrate this weekend. My husband and I have a surprise in store for our dads for Father’s Day. They really have no idea what we’re doing this Saturday!
In case you missed it last week, I posted a super easy DIY on Crane & Canopy last week. They are starting a new weekly DIY series and I created the first post! It’s now hanging proudly in my living room. And they are definitely looking for more DIYers so if you’re interested shoot me an email :)
While browsing through my Bloglovin feed I found this great post by Emily Henderson. I’m in the midst of buying a rug and these are really helpful tips. Everything you need to know about choosing the right sized rug. Gosh, what doesn’t Emily know how to do!
And this was great feature on Glitter Guide this week: how to throw a beer tasting party! Special shout out to Kate from Striped Cat Studio for designing the printables! A beer tasting party is such a fun summer entertaining idea. Remember my old Superbowl post? Don’t laugh :)
Paint color is Skylight 205 by Farrow & Ball
When I finally do have the chance to paint my home I will definitely consult this article from Elle Decor. It lists all the favorite paint colors chosen by top designers! Skylight 205 is my favorite!
And this is probably my next technology investment because my wrists are starting to die! I’ve heard great things about the Wacom Bamboo tablet especially for Photoshop. Sometimes there are little details and movements I just can’t do with my Macbook’s touchpad.
More shopping has ensued in my life (no surprise there) and I’m here to share my favorite purchases! Last month I shared my new favorite watch that’s practically glued to my arm and Warby Parker glasses. This month I’ve started gathering pieces for Alt SF which is coming up really fast!
The first is the adorable ring holder that I keep on my nightstand. I actually don’t use it for rings, but for earrings instead. Anthropologie has a few other famous landmarks like the Golden Gate Bridge ring holder to choose from.
The polka dot blazer is my new favorite jacket for summer! I usually wear bright colored dresses so this is a perfect alternative to a cardigan. It’s lightweight and easy to carry around when I’m not wearing.
Those shoes! I was wandering around the Nordstroms half yearly sale when I spotted a gorgeous blue shoe. I knew I had to buy! They are very comfortable and have a cute tailored look. The mint trim sealed the deal!
On a day when I wasn’t planning to shop, I wandered into Anthropologie (isn’t that how it always starts). I found their new ice cream shop display and became overwhelmed with joy. Ice cream is my favorite treat and these ceramic cones are perfect! I bought two, one for me and one for my dear husband. Perfect for date night at home!
And yes, I finally invested in a DSLR camera after debating whether or not to just dive in. I highly recommend this Nikon or a Canon t3i or t4i (I think there may be a t5i now too). It’s great for beginner photographers and much more affordable than other models. Time to buy a couple lenses next.
Here’s where you can find all my favorite buys:
- Landmark ring dish from Anthropologie, $12
- Caslon roll sleeve knit blazer from Nordstroms, $35 on sale!
- Isaac Mizrahi Smoking Flats from Nordstroms or Macys, $69 on sale!
- Ceramic ice cream cone from Anthropologie, $6
- Nikon D3100 with 18-55mm lens from Target, $450 on sale!
I’m pretty happy with these recent purchases and I hope some of you can enjoy too!
If you remember my first post of the year back in January you’ll remember my goal to visit Seattle this year. Prior to moving to the bay area, I didn’t hear much about the “Emerald city”. Now, I hear all the time how great it to visit! Thanks to a friend’s wedding, I have the perfect excuse to take a vacation to Seattle.
My husband and I are going in September, which I hear is a great time to visit. I have a lot of research to do before we decide where we want to stay. I know Public Market is a must see and the Space Needle, but I would love to hear suggestions! If you’re from Seattle or have visited the city, where are your favorite places to go or neighborhoods?
Wedding season is in full swing and I even have a couple of weddings to attend this summer. I’m sure a few of you are attending, planning or even having your weddings in the next couple of months too!
I attended Unveiled SF a couple of weeks ago and discovered so many great vendors. Here’s my quick video from the Vera Wang fashion show highlighting the Spring 2014 collection. Absolutely stunning! I loved the black accents with the beautiful gowns. Sort of made me want to get married again…
One of my favorite wedding vendors at Unveiled was Beyond Buttercream. As a former bakery girl, I truly appreciated the gorgeous cake details and decor. And bonus they provided samples for the cake & champagne after party. Delicious! So if you’re in the bay area and searching for a wedding cake, I highly recommend Beyond Buttercream.
Gorgeous cake from Beyond Buttercream
Ideas Events provided beautiful decor for the event and specialize in event decor and production. Also a bay area company, Ideas will help create and execute the entire design scheme for your wedding or special event. Again I have so many ideas for my wedding part two :)
Lovely tree display at Ideas Events’ booth
And since we’re chatting about weddings, I thought I’d share a few more of my own wedding photos! We’re coming up on our one year anniversary really fast (August) and I have no idea how the time flew by. My husband and I started dating seven years ago, got engaged almost three years ago and can’t wait to celebrate our first anniversary.
So, I’m thinking of starting a series on Planning Pretty dedicated to weddings! I learned so much planning my own wedding and reading wedding blogs. We had a great time, got everything we wanted and stayed within our budget. I have so many little tips and tricks that I don’t want to forget or hog to myself! What do you think?!??
Wedding Photos by Sun & Sparrow Photography
Happy Friday everyone! Father’s day is just around the corner and I’m sure a few of you are still looking for great gifts. I wanted to share a quick post of some wonderful little ideas that I’ve found to help with shopping this weekend!
- For the dad who loves to BBQ Indirect Smoking Platform from Sur La Table, on sale $30
- For the dad who’s perfectly groomed Art of Shaving Kit from Sephora, $60
- For the dad that loves style Sperry topsider boat shoes, $70
- For the geeky dad Planisphere Watch from Uncommon Goods, $64
- For the dad who loves to cook I Love Bacon Cookbook from Crate & Barrel, $20
- For the tech-loving dad Artisan leather iPad case from Restoration Hardware, on sale $70
Experiences are great gifts too! Sporting events, concerts, or even brewery tours are great ideas for spending time with your pop.
For the early birds who’ve already shopped, what are you getting your dads or husbands?
Have a wonderful weekend!
This post is part of a promotion with FamilySearch.
Okay time to be honest. I do exactly what this quote advises against all the time. I think it started back in elementary school, when teachers would rank the students in each class. Add on almost 20 years and it evolved into comparing not just with peers but those far more established. I mean ridiculous right?!
As much as this may seem to be common sense, but so many of us sit up criticizing our work. How many times have you look at an executive at your company, renowned expert or famous blogger (in my case) and beat yourself up for not being better than them. Sure it’s okay to use their accomplishments and motivation and inspiration, but never feel bad that you aren’t already there.
On Monday, I had a bit of a struggle with this exact problem but I found a way to feel better. I look at amazing sites like Camille Styles or Oh Happy Day and wish my site were on that level. To break the habit, I went back and looked at some of their older posts and realized I’m not as terrible as I thought. Before the money and fame, these women were just like us pursuing something they loved…
If these amazing women could build and grow their brand then so can I. Everyone starts somewhere. If you work hard, you’ll get there too. Keep learning, growing and most importantly Be Happy.