Functional versus fabulous... A real-life approach to #weddinggoals

Wedding stationery and signage includes wedding invitations, save the dates, and on the day essentials like table plans and place cards. It also includes a whole host of fancy other stuff, and no doubt a ton of ideas Pinterest and Instagram have delivered to your scrolling feed. Think hanging banners, personalised cocktail menus, glassware, neon, acrylic, ceramics... (insert all the heart eyes here). Modern calligraphy can feature across the board, from personalised wedding party thank you cards, to welcome signs.

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A little something to say thank you...

Happy New Year you guys!! 

After an actual proper break over Christmas & New Year (a whole 10 days devoid of quill and ink!) I returned to work yesterday feeling supercharged, refreshed and excited for the year ahead. It's 1am and I'm at my laptop writing this blog post, so I know I must be really bloody happy to be back!

Rather than making resolutions my husband Ben and I tend to spend the weeks leading up to New Year discussing our goals for the next year, as well as where we want to go and what we want to see. We spent a ridiculous number of hours in the car travelling the length and breadth of the country during the festive season, so we had plenty of time to discuss plans for 2018. A goal we usually share is spending less time on our phones, and my bucket list usually includes visiting Alnwick Castle (self-confessed Potterhead that I am), so I'll be rolling that over again into 2018 because we STILL haven't made the trip. Now that we've got a dog and one less salary I suspect we'll be ticking off a bucket list close to home for the foreseeable future!

2017 was pretty cool for my little business - I jacked in the 9-5 early in the year to focus all my time on this here venture and I genuinely have never looked back. I thank my lucky stars every day for the most amazingly lovely clients, a brilliant network of creative pals to lean on and collaborate with, and the chance to sell on platforms like Not on the High Street. It's been totally exhausting, exhilarating and terrifying, and I wouldn't change it for the world.

Anyway, as a little thank you for all your support so far I've created some free downloads to print at home so that you can plan (and hopefully stick to) your goals and bucket list for 2018. You'll find them here. Please don't forget to share them on social media and tag me (@kayleightarrant) so I can have a nosey! I'd love to see what plans you have for 2018!

2018 bucket list jpeg.jpg

Getting the most out of your wedding stationery & signage budget

For most couples, wedding planning and budgeting begins with the big ticket items; the dress, photography, florals, food & drink; so unless you're a stationery mega fan like me, you probably won't think too much about your 'on the day' stationery and signage until the big day is fast approaching. You've already spent a small fortune but you've now got the decorations and pretties to think about. I'm not suggesting that the place cards, table plan, signage etc aren't TOTALLY essential (imagine the chaos that could ensue if your guests couldn't pore over your table plan to analyse where and who they were to spend the next hour or so sitting next to... shock horror), but I'm just saying I'm not precious...

So to get the most from your budget when it comes to your stationery and signage, I've shared a few hints and tips below which I hope might help:

  • If you'd like your guests to have individual menu cards, why not combine your menu card with your place card and save some room on the table at the same time?
  • If you'd like some chalkboard signage making, maybe for your table plan or as a welcome sign, why not have this created on black mountboard and pop it into a sandwich board or a frame that you've sourced yourself or is at the venue? You'll save the cost of couriering the frame/sandwich board back and forth to your designer, and you can just pop the mountboard out afterwards to reveal a pristine sandwich board behind (hell maybe you know a kindly pub landlord you can borrow one off for the day?)
  • Consider hiring photo frames for your table names/numbers, you can hire just the frames from £5 each, or have your table name or number handlettered on the glass from £7.50 each, they're a steal over buying your frames and table name/number cards separately.
  • Source all of your wedding stationery and signage from the same supplier, if I know my esteemed peers they'll be super flattered that you want them to create everything, and they'll no doubt offer a better price to know that they can just get stuck in and do everything. There's no clashing of styles and your wedding will benefit from being more cohesive as you can have the same theme running all the way through from your save the dates to your thank you cards. Who wants to liaise with ten suppliers when they can liaise with one? The same applies for us designers, we would much rather work with you alone than create bits and pieces for ten different clients (so many emails to keep track of!).
  • If you can, work with suppliers who often work together, the chances are their styles will be similar and small businesses are always keen to get good pictures of their work in situ, so they might offer a discount if they know the photographer on board for example.

I'm currently putting together a price list for my services, so if you'd like to get a copy just drop me a line via the get in touch form. 

Have your 'chalkboard' created on black mountboard then just fix into the sandwich board, voila...

Have your 'chalkboard' created on black mountboard then just fix into the sandwich board, voila...

Combine place cards with menus and save some room and some money!

Combine place cards with menus and save some room and some money!

Nkuku Danta frames for hire, starting at £5 each

Nkuku Danta frames for hire, starting at £5 each

Super Sundays with TWC UK

My love for a barn wedding knows no bounds. My husband and I were lucky enough to get married in a marquee on my parent's farm, but if my dad could have weatherproofed one of the barns, oh the opportunity - I can only imagine the electricity bill for those hundreds of metres of festoon lights weaving their way back and forth above our heads... I'll stop daydreaming and just say if you appreciate great photography and flowers and are willing to brush over my terrible beginner's attempts at modern calligraphy you're welcome to check out the pictures over at Rock My Wedding

Anyway, when this crack team of wedding industry pals (aka The Wedding Collective UK team, aka TWC UK) got wind that there was a new barn venue on the scene, we knew we had to go and take a look. We hoped that Grove Barn just outside Kinoulton in Nottinghamshire would provide us with the perfect blank canvas for an upcoming styled shoot we were planning. 

Jenny, Grove Barn's first ever bride, clearly had great vision and imagination for what this vast space could be transformed into for her nuptials last year. So with first hand experience, a wealth of contacts from planning and organising her own wedding, and a friendly and warm approach, she now works with couples to co-ordinate their weddings at Grove Barn. 

So on a sunny Sunday back in April we loaded the cars with our wares, our stylist Nay packed up a knockout picnic, and we headed for the farm. TWC UK's cinematographer Rachael captured the action in all it's ethereal glory so you can watch how the day unfolded... I defy any bride who won't want Rach to film their wedding day after seeing this!

Photography - Matt Horan Photography

Cinematography - Rachael

Floral Design - Number Twenty Seven

Bridalwear - Kula Tsurdiu

Hair & Make Up - Joella

Model - Chryseida

Cakes - Elle Jane

Chocolates - Chocolate Alchemy

Styling - Nay

Hand-dyed silks - As Petals Fall

Stationery & signage - Kayleigh Tarrant

Venue - Grove Barn, Kinoulton