Monthly Archives: January 2014

Gloves in Love: A Winter Wedding Budget

Ugl, wedding budgets. We pulled our wedding budget out of thin air- mostly, our parents each offered an amount of support they were comfortable with, and we did some figuring and figured out how much we were comfortable adding to that, and settled at about $15,000. We aimed to stay near that number, but weren’t glued to it, so we knew we had some wiggle room. We also knew that we could get more wedding for that price than usual, since we were getting married in January in the Midwest- not exactly high season. We set a mission statement: a formal, Catholic wedding, jam packed with loves ones, sharing a ridiculous amount of joy. Thanks to some serious negotiating on McGlovin’s part, some deal watching on my part, and more than a few times of talking ourselves down (no, seriously, we did not need a $200 cake topper) we not only came in on budget, but we even had a little left over!

Gloves Columbus Winter Wedding St Joseph Cathedral

  • Number of Guests: ~ 110
  • Location: Columbus, Ohio
  • Date: January 5, 2013
  • Type: Cathedral wedding, semi-formal urban evening reception with family style dinner

Gloves Winter Wedding Columbus Ohio Statehouse

Attire $1185

  • Dress, Wendy’s Bridal $885
  • Alterations, Zip Alterations $150
  • I believe this included bringing the dress in and adding some darts, and steaming the entire thing and my veil…as well as some much needed moral support and kind advice in a stressful time 🙂
  • Shoes, DSW $30
  • Veil, megsveils on Etsy $50 (this was actually two veils, a blusher and cathedral length)
  • Jewelry, $50
  • Tux, Mens Wearhouse: free since everyone else got theirs there
  • Tie clip and cuff links, $20

Wedding Party Gifts $265

  • Tie Clips and Cuff links, $100
  • Ladies Gifts, $90 (Anthro mugs and sparkly Target earrings)
  • Parents, $75 (double frame with invitation and promise of a wedding print)

Gloves Winter Wedding Columbus Ohio MakeupArtistryByMeg

Makeup, Makeup Artistry by Meg $160

This included my makeup application, with airbrushed makeup and false eyelashes. It seems like a lot of money, yes, but my makeup was amazing and it lasted all day and looks great in the photos, and I would gladly shell it out again.

Hair, Wedding Hair of Ohio $460

This included a trial run, and day of hair for me, my five bridesmaids and my mom. They came to my house and did a mix of updos and loose curls on a group of ladies with A LOT of hair.

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Photographer, Barefeet Studios $1950

This included two shooters for 10 hours, plus our engagement session and the rights to all of our photos. I’ll definitely discuss them more in my reviews, but Lauren and Andy went so incredibly above and beyond what was called for- we had so many conversations, and met with them at least a half a dozen times before the wedding, and I’m certain they were at our wedding for at least 12 hours. The rate we paid was incredibly conservative compared to the service we received, and maybe because they’d only officially shot one wedding when we booked them. I’m sure their rates have gone up, but only in the most deserving capacity.

Paper Products, $200

We did our invitations through Vista Print, using Groupons, so the groupon prices are included here and accounted for the save the dates, invitations, rsvp cards and enclosures. We also bought cardstock to mount the invites, different envelopes, and so. much. postage.

Gloves Wedding, Columbus Ohio

Church, St Joseph Cathedral $650

This is the parishioners’ rate, and included the use of the church for the rehearsal and the wedding, the cantor, the priest, and the organist. The going rate is above $1000, I believe. I have a lot to say about our wedding at this church, so please check the reviews, if you’re interested!

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Flowers, Sams Club $550

This included two bridal bouquets, six bridesmaid’s bouquets, 8 boutonnieres, 6 corsages, 2 boxes of rose petals, 1 toss bouquet and 2 sets of clippers. I combined the two bridal bouquets into one glorious one, and I’m not sure what anyone did with the rose petals or extra corsages. We didn’t use flowers for any decoration, so this was a great deal for us.

Gloves Winter Wedding Columbus Ohio Rings

Rings, Andrews Jeweler $890

This included my white gold band with tiny diamonds going about halfway around ($500) and McGlovin’s rather wide tungsten band.

Gloves Winter Wedding Columbus Ohio Statehouse

Photo Permit, Ohio Statehouse $40

Winter in Columbus results in not many choices regarding where to take formal photos. The Statehouse is gorgeous and proved to be a great location, but the official policy required that we pay for a permit to take photos there. Um, no…no one ever asked for our permit. I guess better safe than sorry?

Reception Venue, Dock 580 $6120

This included 5 hours of time in the two story venue, 2 bartenders, appetizer stations stations (antipasti and bruschetta), delicious Italian meal served family style, and all of the cleanup post-reception. It also included a tasting and several meetings with our coordinator. At the reception, I think this included everything we could need: linens, chiavari chairs, glassware for wine and beer, cake cutting and plating, the cake stand. The only things we brought in were decorations, dessert and booze.

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Reception Décor, $200

We had about 400 candles at the reception and maybe fifteen strands of tulle twinkle lights. The taller pillar candles were a gift, with the vases, and the smaller candles and glass votives were purchased from candles.com, or similar. We bought the lights after Christmas, on a discount, and tulle from JoAnns. We used lace table runners, which my mom made and gifted us, and wine bottles for table numbers (I counted those in the alcohol section, since we also used them as table wine). The only other décor we really used was signage and photos, which were in spray painted dollar store frames.

DJ, Encore Entertainment $550

This included 5 hours of DJ services, timeline creation, a few pre-wedding meetings and playlist compilation…maybe some simple lighting?

Booze, $975

Oh, booze. We collected from a variety of sources. Our wine came from a distributor (30 bottles of red, 30 bottles of white, and 12 magnums of champagne), our beer came from another distributor (10 cases) and our booze came from duty free, since my sister lives in Niagara Falls (6 bottles of Crown and 6 bottles of Tanqueray). We had 5 hours of drinking with about 110 people, and we had plenty left over. We’re still working on the wine, champagne and liquor, over a year later.

Gloves Winter Wedding Columbus Ohio Scrumptious Crumb Cake

Cake, Scrumptious Crumbs $375

This included two tastings, a three tiered cake with basic flavors, and an anniversary cake so we wouldn’t have to save the top layer- I thought that was a nice touch!

Topper, CherryonToppers on Etsy $40

This cake topper was the perfect simple and modern topper. We had considered an elaborate topper made to look like us (with McGlovin as a firefighter, etc for over $200) and then we went the opposite direction and were thinking about scrapping a topper altogether, and then we found this one.

Hotel, The Lofts at Crown Plaza $120

This hotel was the site of our wedding block, and our rate paid for a ridiculously luxurious corner suite with Jacuzzi tub, along with a thoughtful placement of rose petals and champagne. More in the reviews, but we got much more than what we paid for!

Winter Wedding Columbus Ohio Pie Bar

Things we didn’t pay for:

  • Favors: my sister and sister-in-law and I made pizzelles, and used bags and labels I already owned
  • Transportation: My sister and brother-in-law kindly drove us, and it was so fun!
  • Church Decoration: We got married in the 12 days of Christmas, so all the decorations were still up
  • Day of Coordinator: We have a friend who is breaking into the wedding industry, and offered to coordinate our wedding for the experience. They did amazing, and I’m not just saying that- wait til you read our review!
  • Pie Bar: I still have mixed feelings on asking people to bring dessert to my wedding, but the people that volunteered seemed happy to do it, and the par bar was such a success! I kind of wish we would have scrapped the cake, entirely!

Total $14,730

So, we came in $270 below our budget. Let’s be honest- I’m sure that is accounted for somewhere, in all of the ‘other’ things that you buy as you go along. I’m still pretty pleased that we stayed in, or around, our budget. I think that getting married in the winter enabled us to get a much better bang for our buck- I bet if we had the same wedding in June, it would easily have run us $5000 more, and we wouldn’t necessarily have had access to all of the amazing vendors that we were able to work with. I also know, though, that we also saved a lot of money and headache by being thoughtful about where we were spending money, and rational about where spending was just ‘because it’s a wedding’ and not because it really added anything to the party (for us, one example would be decorating with flowers, which we didn’t think were necessary, and using candles instead, which added to the ambiance). Everyone warned me that, as the wedding got closer, I would start to get looser with the budget and just spend money to answer questions. They were right, but since we were a little more thoughtful up front, that didn’t really mess with our budget too much.

So that’s that. I’ll post reviews of our vendors next. If you have any questions, though, ask away! I’m an open book at this point 🙂

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Gloves in Love: Why, Yes…The After Party

My last post finished with the end of our reception and, you know- that’s when I really thought our wedding would end. McGlovin and I are usually a staying in, snuggling-on-the-couch couple. I figured that on our wedding day, jam packed with activities and all kinds of emotional drainage, I would laugh and wave our guests on to an after party, and quietly shut things down with my newly minted husband.

Well, hive…it was not to be.

Here’s the thing- our wedding was a blast! I was having a great time, and my friends were having a great time, and it’s really the only time you’ll get to be surrounded by all of your favorite people in the best mood ever! How could you shut that down? So, we didn’t. We finished our last dance, and announced to that we were headed to our favorite local bar. {Then my dad stepped out to announce that all the grown folks could congregate on the concierge floor of the hotel…what can I say, we’re a partying family!}

You can ignore my crazy face, but yes! I'm totally playing ski ball!

You can ignore my crazy face, but yes! I’m totally playing ski ball! And, oddly, collecting roses like an awkward Bachelor/bride…merp.

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Very few photos of the afterparty…which is really a blessing!

McGlovin hailed a cab and we set off. People seemed a little skeptical seeing me in my gown in the slushy streets of Columbus, but I wasn’t too concerned- when would I wear it again? Plus, it feels so weird to be in such a normal, everyday place in something as special and out-of-the-ordinary as a wedding dress. It was only an added bonus that everyone wants to send drinks to a bride 🙂 A few hours passed in a very hazy heartbeat, and McGlovin and I made our way back to the hotel.

Here’s where things get real. When I was still in my planning stages, I could not possibly fathom how people manage…everything…on their wedding night. According to the very scientific surveying I did in my last post on this topic, lots of couples choose to wait til the next day in engage in after partying, and that’s definitely an option! But I am here to tell you- it can be done! Lol. I’m not providing details because, who needs details? But several ladies made suggestions and recommendations in my previous post, and some of them really worked out! So I’ll pass those on:

  1. Really do have a shower or bath or rinse or something. It’s relaxing, and everyone feels better when they’re clean. It’s your wedding night- take those few minutes, if you want them!
  2. Yep, your new spouse will probs have to help you out of your dress. So you wore spanx? No worries, you’re married now! Nothing to hide 🙂 After everything that’s gone on that day, he’ll forgot he ever saw them.
  3. Wedding lingerie? Ain’t nobody got time for that! My favorite, favorite piece of wedding advice (yes, out of all the wedding advice, this is what I always pass on) is that the best wedding night lingerie is your veil. Unzip/button, shower, spritz o’ perfume if you’re feeling bold, and come on back out in your veil…that’s really all you need!

Not required, but always recommended is ordering pizza immediately upon checking into your room. I was ravenous by the end of the evening! Yep, McGlovin and I were the definition of romantic at the end of the day, all snuggled into our kingsized bed, inhaling pizza as we read through our wedding cards 🙂

So, much like everything else I was concerned about, our after party and then our after party both managed to work themselves out nicely. How did everyone else handle the after portions of their wedding? I was kind of surprised we had any after portion at all- like I mentioned, I was sure we would be in bed, asleep by midnight!

Gloves in Love: A Crazy in Love Dance Party

WARNING: this post is full of photos of people you don’t know, having a great time. My feelings won’t be hurt if you skip this one 🙂

After the bouquet toss, our wedding guests flooded the dance floor for the rest of the evening. I know that some brides struggle to make a dance party happen, and I think that we were just fortunate to have worked up a situation that was begging for a party. First, we had a playlist that was slowly compiled over a few months by many people- we put a google doc together and gave anyone access that wanted to add things, which we finally pared down in our final meeting with our DJ. McGlovin added some polka music, which is a tradition in his family, and our DJ thought we were joking. When it was played, though, so many of the “adults” hopped onto the dance floor. McGlovin and I split up and used the polka to bring other friends onto the floor, and by the time it was over, nearly every person was dancing. Odd, yes, but also hilariously winning.

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Second, our wedding was set on a Saturday, in the evening. Like many weddings, we had a somewhat formal vibe going, so everyone was already dressed up and feeling fun. And, I mean…we’d been serving alcohol for a few hours, at that point.

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I also think that the physical setting was conducive to everyone dancing- everyone who was on the first floor, which is where you needed to be if you wanted to access the bar, was pretty well in the middle of the party. The first floor was pretty cozy, so even if you weren’t necessarily dancing, you were still mere feet from the dancers…who were likely to pull you in at any time. And, it was dark. I don’t know if I’d ever really noticed it before I went to a few summer weddings, but it’s so much easier to dance in the dark! There were a few spot lights at the bar, but other than that we used candles and twinkle lights on the first floor, to keep everything feeling romantic and cozy.

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The biggest explanation for our packed dance floor, though, is that we have a friend group that is really inclined to enjoy themselves. I think you can set the scene all you want, and ply people with as much booze as possible but, at the end of the day, if people want to dance, they will and if they don’t…well, then, asking people to do something they don’t want to do isn’t going to result in a good time, either yours or theirs. So, you know…keep your expectations realistic, and in line with the crowd of people who will be at your wedding 🙂

That said, our reception was overflowing with bliss- I could not have possibly hoped for anything else. Take a look:

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When it came time for a final dance, McGlovin and I had left things up in the air with the DJ; I thought I would want a quiet slow dance and, if no one else was dancing but MCGlovin and me, I wouldn’t be upset. Our DJ thought we would want a great party song to really close out the evening strong. When the time came, though, and the DJ asked what I wanted to do…he had totally called it, and I asked him to keep the party going. At that point, I knew I definitely wanted to participate in the after party, so we nixed the slow song. I cannot recall for the life of me what he played (probably something clichéd, by Journey or similar) but a circle formed. I usually hate the dance circle- for some reason, it gives me incredible anxiety when they happen- so McGlovin pulled me into the center, where we swayed around while our friends and family surrounded us, presumably serenading us drunkenly and off key, with something like “Don’t Stop Believing”. Normally, completely odd, but perfect in that moment 🙂

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And that, hive, was our reception. I’ll finish off my recapping with a post on the after party…and briefly touch on the afterparty. But for the record- it’s been suggested that your wedding will be exactly what it needs to be, and that many weddings have surprises that are perfect, even if unexpected. I know that I’ve shared a number of happy, if unanticipated, things that happened on our wedding day- what were your happy surprises?

Gloves in Love: Tossing Some Flowers

After the dance, hive, things start getting a little hazy. Why yes, it certainly could be the gin-and-cider I’d been sipping all evening, but I think it had a fair amount to do with the fact that, after dinner, the entire evening was just the most ridiculous party! Since all of the fun is jumbled together in my head, I have a hard time suggesting what order things happened in. I do know a few things for certain, though- I tossed my bouquet, and every single person I saw was having a great time. (Aside: I know that gin isn’t the most popular liquor for people of a certain age, but I really do encourage all of you lovely ladies to try it with cider- it’s delicious! Plus, my grandma has been known to consume some gin, and I always strive to be Edna-chic in my booze consumption 🙂 )

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First up, my bouquet.  In the planning stages, I was vehemently opposed to a garter toss, and not really that into a bouquet toss, either. McGlovin could get behind nixing the garter toss, but he still tried to talk me into tossing my bouquet. His argument was, it’s a wedding, and you’d never chuck flowers at your friends otherwise so…why not? And then I went to a few weddings and actually participated in the toss and realized- it all depends on how its done. One wedding was terrifying, and all. single. girls. were called to the dance floor and it felt accusatory and mildly stressful, but another wedding was a hilarious and giggly time. So I started to think of how to achieve the second atmosphere.

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What we settled on was this: after everyone had been drinking and dancing a bit, the DJ announced the toss. Rather than having all single ladies come to the floor, though, we asked all of the lovely women in my life to join me on the dance floor- sort of a ladies only dance. We played ‘What a Man’ to set the scene and after a tiny bit of dancing with my friends, moms, sisters, etc, I sashayed my way up to the front and tossed my flowers backwards. And…it was awesome. I mean, for me, anyway, and no one would ever really tell the bride that they didn’t like the wedding 🙂

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Unbeknownst to me, there was a plot to get Heather to catch the bouquet- and she swatted it away. I only realized this when I saw my photos!

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Ok, so how did you get people to participate in the garter or bouquet toss? I know they seem to be going out of fashion, and usually for good reason, so did anyone have a particularly good or bad experience? Share!

Gloves in Love: We Dance

After everyone had had their fill of wedding pie, our DJ kindly invited everyone downstairs to watch our first dance. Right, downstairs. The picture below explains a few things: first, you can see that Colin, our best man, had taken my seat next to McGlovin…because they’re adorable, and they wanted to catch up. Second, the pie line. Oh yes, Mister DJ, there is always a line for pie. And third, you can see the railing that outlined a floor cut out. Our venue is part of an old hardware factory, and the layout is completely unconventional, and the building that we were in had some space limitations. So, our dinner was on the second floor, and dancing and the bar were on the first floor. For people that weren’t really into dancing, it was nice that the cut-out was there. Every time I looked up from the dance floor, there were people crowded around watching, so it really felt like everyone was included in the fun, even if they weren’t necessarily dancing!

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Right, so…anyone that was interested in seeing the first dances came downstairs, or found a place around the open space upstairs. McGlovin had chosen ‘Stand By Me’ as our first dance. This is our favorite version:

But that one is not particularly dance/wedding appropriate, so we used this one instead:

Here’s the thing, hive- our first dance was not at all a romantic moment with just the two of us staring into each other’s eyes. Instead, it was totally awkward! I mean, how could it not be? Everyone that we knew and loved was intently watching the two of us dance. We took a few lessons, since our song had a particular tempo that doesn’t really lend itself to swaying, but it still wasn’t like we were giving a dazzling performance.

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Either way, it happened, and it was lovely, and there were some spins.

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As our dance ended (mercifully, after about a minute and a half, as requested) my dad came to take McGlovin’s place. My dad and I danced to Tiny Dancer, by Elton John. That was the song that was playing in the delivery room when I was born, and my dad always used to serenade me when it came on 🙂

Notice anything different in the photo below?

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Yep, my veil is back. When I had my last fitting, my seamstress asked about my hair plans. I told her that I was wearing a veil for the ceremony (actually, two veils- my cathedral length, and then a blusher) and switching to a hairpiece at the reception. She suggested that I put my shorter piece back on for my dance with my dad- she said it was her favorite photo of her daughter and her husband, and so classic, and who knows what else. I didn’t really think much of it, but my mom latched onto the idea. So, one of my best friends hastily tucked it back into my hair before my dad dance. Hive, I have no idea what it was about the veil, but when I turned back to my dad, he started tearing up! Then the song started, and it was waterworks everywhere. So, no idea what that was all about (maybe I would understand if I were a parent?) but now it’s one of my dad’s favorite wedding photos. There you go.

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So those were our dances. Then McGlovin danced with his mom…

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And, with that, we invited everyone to join us on the dance floor and got the party started!

Okay, hive- I shared the completely unexpected reaction to what I call ‘the veil factor’. Did anything like that go down at your wedding? Was there something that you were not at all invested in, that someone else really reacted to?

Gloves in Love: Wedding Pie, For The Win!

So, after hearing from our gracious speakers, the Gloves settled into dinner. I know many brides say they didn’t have time to eat, but I really could not jump on that bandwagon. We’d packed the head table with our favorite people, had already greeted everyone in our receiving line, and had arranged for huge platters of food to be served family style. Suffice it to say, the Gloves enjoyed their wedding dinner 🙂

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As people were finishing, our amazing coordinator let us know it was time to cut that cake. As you may recall, I don’t love cake. McGlovin, on the other hand, loves it and said it wouldn’t be a wedding without cake. We compromised by getting a cake for him, and also having a pie bar, to satisfy me. We cut into our cake, and playfully exchanged bites…and then I high tailed it to the pie.

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Here’s what I thought was awesome, hive. In my experience, people really want to feel like a part of the celebration. So, we put out a call for pies- I talked about it with friends, my mom mentioned it in passing, and people spread the word. At first I was so nervous asking other people to bring something to my wedding (here’s your invitation, but the price of admission is a baked good!) but we had so many people call and ask if they could bring one! It really feels lovely when your friends and family come together for you. I had some extra time the day before, so I made a pie, too! It was my dad’s request, a classic apple 🙂

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Anyway, after I got my peanut butter pie (lovingly prepared by my sister and one of my bridesmaids) McGlovin and I settled back into our spot. In our pre-wedding meeting, our DJ told us that no one would want to sit and eat dessert, that no one ever does, and he planned for us to just exchange our cake bite and move directly into the first dance. I suggested that with pie, people might, but he was determined to start the dancing immediately. It was deliciously satisfying to prove him wrong, and get to relax for fifteen minutes as people devoured the pie buffet. It was such a hit!

So, who else did something mildly out of the ordinary? Were you nervous that people wouldn’t take to it? How did it end up working out for you?

Gloves in Love: Happy New Year!

Well, hive- yesterday was McGlovin and my one year anniversary! It was amazing- he reserved the hotel suite we’d had the night of our wedding, we had dinner and massages, had some anniversary cake…nothing too crazy, but it was such a lovely time to reflect on the past year of our lives 🙂

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Celebrating our anniversary also reminded me that I need to finish my recaps! So, get ready- I have a few more recaps about our reception, then some actually interesting posts about budget, vendor reviews, etc….then I’m all set with our wedding, and can move on to focus my blog on our married lives (spoiler alert: not dramatically different from our unmarried lives). Thanks for tuning in, my lovely bees, and I hope your new year has started off just as lovely as the Gloves’!

In case you’d like to catch up, here’s where we’ve been so far: