Happy New Year! - again

February 1 might as well be New Year Day for me. Adam and I spent most of January being sick or (for him) healing from surgery. I woke today, February 1, well rested and not sick! I even kicked off the month with a round on the Wii fit. Not too shabby!

I had fun this weekend at the WCSM Bridal Show at Romers in St. Henry. I enjoyed cake (naturally) but more importantly I got to visit with a bunch of brand new brides. I hope I get to know some of them better via a FREE Consultation. Speaking of free - I know a lot of you are cutting corners these days. Many of the brides I spoke to we looking for ways to do their own invites.

Taking on the project of your own wedding invites is a big task, even for those who are crafty. Don't get me wrong - it can be done and I've seen it done beautifully. However, I urge those of you DIYers (Do It Yourself) who are thinking of doing your own invites to give me a buzz first. I can help you cover the invitation bases and maybe even save a little money in the process.

DIY or a Professional - or somewhere in between

With all the bridal shows swirling about, I've been in touch with my fellow vendors. And we've been talking. In any business you have obstacles and challenges that make you think outside the box. One of the considerations of Sara Paper is the "DIYers". The Do It Yourself Brides.

Let me start out by saying that I am a frugal person. It may not seem like it because I like expensive lipstick, dinners out and I'm pretty fussy about using nice paper for everything. Still, I like to cut corners when I can. So I respect the DIY Brides. Especially these days when you don't know if it will take $11 to fill your gas tank or $20. Especially if you have the challenge of planning the most beautiful day of your life - and then paying for it on a shoestring budget.

Let's face it. It's expensive when you're first starting out. Maybe you don't have the dream job yet. Probably you have student loans. Or you've just purchased a now home and have to fill it with the essentials. It's hard to shell out a bunch of money for printed paper when you really would rather buy a set of matching dishes. "I'll just make them myself," you think to yourself. But wait, this isn't only about spending money. It's about finding value in the services you need.

Wouldn't I love it if all my brides picked out the dream invite? The one with pockets, layers, ribbons and sparkly things and thick shimmery paper. But the reality is that many brides need to exercise frugality. That is why I want to urge all DIY Brides to consider the value of working with a professional before they take on a project themselves.

First off, I don't want to upset my fellow professional vendors. Some vendors might think it's a waste of time to meet with DIY Brides. But I view each free consultation I offer not as a waste of time, but as an opportunity to serve. I understand that not every gal can afford the elaborate, sparkly invite. I can even accept that not every woman even WANTS the elaborate, sparkly invite. (you crazy, nutty people). And that is why I strive to provide a wide variety of products for all tastes and budgets.

This spring I will carry a line of products specifically geared towards the DIY Brides. The Carlson Craft Album is aptly called D.I.Y. I haven't seen the book yet but I think it's going to be a hit.

Another reason to contact me before you do your own invitations is because I would love to show you all the other products I offer. A DIY Bride cannot make her own wine glasses. (Well, if she can I'll be very impressed) but I can offer her beautiful personalized wine glasses at a 20% discount. A DIY Bride can't foil stamp her own personalized napkins but I can let her flip through pages and pages of cute, fun designs that she can order from.

A DIY Bride can cut her own paper when she's making her own programs. Sure, it will be free but it might take her several nights to do it. Or a DIY Bride can wisely decide to pay me $10 and I'll cut it in a couple swoops of my cutter. There's a value in paying $10 to save hours and hours of time.

Some things you can't put a price tag on is advice. Professional vendors are pros because they know the ins and outs of their business.

My point is, doing it yourself is a great thing. While there is a certain satisfaction in taking on projects and saving money there is also true value in shopping around and letting a professional help you. Especially when it's such an important event. Give me a call and see if I can help!