Monday, September 17, 2012

Weddings, Wedding Planners, and Costs

Aloha!  Today there are three photos of candles on the page.  These photos will illustrate how weddings can end up costing less rather than more, and how a wedding planner is invaluable as you put together your wedding.

At the right is a simple candle in glass.  There are bits of fern from our rainforest, called uluhe, tied to the candle with a bit of raffia.  The fern fronds shield the candle flame from the eyes, and bring a perky bit of rainforest feel to the candle.  As it happens, this candle treatment is a bit work intensive.  The fern pieces need to be gathered and trimmed, as in their natural state they are too long and curly to be of much use for this.  Then they have to be tied to the candle.  Prep time for say 40 candles will be maybe 3 hours.  If you add an hourly wage of $15 for someone to put this together, this adds $45 to your wedding costs.
This is not a lot in the grand picture, but as it happens, almost every addition to a wedding carries a cost.  It can be mind boggling if you are paying for your wedding a la carte.  At Rainforest Weddings, we try not to charge a la carte prices.  Instead, we try to work within your budget.

To the left is another candle treatment.  A piece of ribbon is tied in a bow on the same candle.  The ribbon can match any color scheme.  It can tie into the orchids or other flowers for the wedding, match the bride's sash, be white...  This is not nearly as work intensive.  Although the cost to the planner is higher for the materials, the time to tie 40 pieces of ribbon to 40 candles is only about an hour.  Savings:  not $30 as there is a cost for the ribbon.  So, $25 or $20.

Are you thinking, maybe you will do this yourself?  On your wedding day?  Maybe you have a friend who will do this.  Savings:  $35 - $40!

We are not counting the costs of placing the candles, as that will be the same no matter what.  Where will they go?  If depends on your venue.  Perhaps on a railing, like this one.  Perhaps defining the edge of a swimming pool, or as part of the table decor.

At the right is choice number three.  The flame is clearly visible here.  If the candle glass was frosted, the flame would be hidden.  Maybe you like the look of the flame.  And, notice how the ribbon color matches the orchid.  And there is the uluhe in its natural form.  For this treatment the uluhe still must be gathered, and the orchid purchased, and those costs are absorbed at Rainforest Weddings into the standard package.  The placement is also absorbed in a standard package.  Savings on this treatment is $45.

The wedding planner ~ where does the wedding planner factor in?   Wherever your wedding will take place, there are things to think about.  Lighting is one of them.  When you rent a venue, you get the house lights.  Candles are more romantic.  How many candles do you need?  Where will they be?  Are they going to be an important source of light, or mainly for the mood? And how much do you want to spend on candles?

At Rainforest Weddings, when we do everything at our own venue, we include candles in the basic package price, with the orchids and ferns included.  When we go off site and have to bring everything along, the pricing is different.

If you were to go online and purchase candles like this, you might end up with votives in glass, and those are different.  They will burn out after a couple of hours. Tea lights burn out even faster, and are not good at staying lit. The candles need to be lit before the guests arrive.  We use candles with a 9 hour life.  Your chances of spending from $7 to $10 per candle are pretty good.  That is $280 to $400 for 40 candles.  And if you need 80, the costs begin to crescendo.  We will not spend your money like that.  If you are spending $280 for candles with us, maybe you are getting candles suspended in glass bubbles because in your dream wedding there is that effect.  It is costing more because having just sourced glass bubbles the best we can do for the cost of each is $11.  And that is without the candle.  You probably will not need forty bubbles.  But chances are you will need 40 candles, or like one wedding, "a million" candles.  We asked for a candle budget, and it was $200.  They had a dazzling array.

Maybe you are wondering what you are paying the wedding planner, and if it is worth it.  At Rainforest Weddings, you get a wedding planner, with every package.  You can't have a wedding here without the planner.  The cost is built in to the package.  Elsewhere, you will pay $60 an hour, or perhaps $1500 to start.  What you get is a wedding where someone else thinks through every little detail and makes sure everything is as you wish and dream.  That someone will look after you like a fairy godmother.  And when you walk into your wedding, it will be like magic.

1 comment: