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South Carolina-Charleston

Newly Engaged & Already overwhelmed!!! (LOOOOOOOONG)

I just recently got engaged (last Friday) and am already overwhelmed with the amount of things that need to be done!!!  So luckily one of my best friends (and a loyal/somewhat obsessed Knottie) has been planning her wedding for the past year.  Our weddings are going to be during the same time of year, but on the opposite end of the spectrum when it comes to themes/colors.  I'm hoping to get tons of advice from her, but I'm also hoping to get tons of advice from some other Charlestonians.  Also, my dad was laid off last year, so we are working on a very, very tight budget.  Lastly, it is more important for me to have a FABULOUS honeymoon rather than ridiculously overpriced wedding.  Here are my main issues and would greatly, greatly appreciate each & every word of advice I can get:

1. I have lived in Charleston my entire life so I have TONS of close friends & family who will without a doubt expect an invitation & who will actually show up to the wedding.  Luckily, my fiance is from a teeny tiny town in North Carolina, so he doesn't really have a lot of people he wants to invite besides family.  How do I narrow my guest list to the bare minimum without hurting anyone's feelings?

2.  It has always been my dream to be married on a plantation; HOWEVER, I don't want it to be Magnolia, Middleton, Boone Hall, or any of the other cliche Charleston wedding venues.  Does anyone know of any small, off the map plantations that are cheap, cheap, cheap?  Or even some privately owned land that people rent out for special occassions?  What about land scattered with old oaks with sleeping quarters for a bunch of people, maybe like an old campground or something???

3. My fiance & I are huge musical buffs and the musical that connects us the most is "Phantom of the Opera".  Also, red roses have always been & will always be my #1 favorite flower, so it just seems natural to combine the two loves together; HOWEVER, I absolutely do not in any way, shape, or form want to have a "themed" wedding.  No future husband in a Phantom mask, no hardcore organ as my entrance music.  What I'm looking for is something Phantom "inspired".  How can I pull this off without it being tacky?  The colors are red, black, white & silver & I plan to have my bridesmaids carry single long stem red roses with black satin ribbons, tons of twinkle lights, & maybe even a non-theatrical version of some of the songs.  Any other ideas?

4.  As mentioned before, we want a fantastical honeymoon.  Does anyone know of any amazing & affordable travel agents?  Also, is the payment of the honeymoon suppossed to be included in the wedding budget or are they completely separate?

5. Does anyone know of anyone who has had a wedding at Smythe Park on Daniel Island?  That's where we were engaged, so I wouldn't mind looking into that as a venue.

6. Invitations, reply cards, etc....my fiance & I are both in school for graphic design, so we wouldn't mind creating our own paper supplies.  Anyone know how to go about transferring our designs into a funtional product?

7. Has anyone ever had seen or used white pumpkins?

This could continue all night, so I am stopping myself there.  Again, I would greatly appreciate any & all advice, so please comment if you wish.  Thank you again girls & did I mention how excited I was to finally be able to play on the knot without people thinking I'm weird!!!!
My Food Blog: Slim Pickin's Kitchen Our Wedding Website Photobucket Anniversary Daisypath Halloween tickers BabyFruit Ticker BFP #1: Mother's Day 5/13/12...m/c Memorial Day Weekend 5/26/12 BFP #2: 2/16/13...Please, baby, please be a sticky *fingers crossed*

Re: Newly Engaged & Already overwhelmed!!! (LOOOOOOOONG)

  • edited December 2011
    1. I don't think this is possible.  I cut other things out like a limo and opted for cheaper food to afford more guests.
    2. The first venue that comes to mind is old santee canal...  very affordable, lots of space. However, it is in Moncks Corner about 1 hour from Charleston. You could try short stay which is close for people to stay but you have to have someone in the military to book this. 
    4. I'm not using a travel agent but I got an awesome deal for Paris on Priceline and I'm planning everthing through the internet.
  • edited December 2011
    First of all, congratulations!!!! Secondly, breathe. :)

    1. How do I narrow my guest list to the bare minimum without hurting anyone's feelings?
    You can do this a number of ways, but you will probably get some hurt feelings. You can limit who can bring dates (e.g., only engaged or married couples), limit the amount of family (e.g., no one past first cousins), etc. The best option if your family and friends are really close knit and you don't want to hurt people's feelings would be to cut in other places. Find your veil on ebay, go with a less expensive DJ, don't serve really expensive food, only beer and wine (instead of open bar), etc. The budget wedding board would be a good place to bounce ideas around on this.

    2.  Does anyone know of any small, off the map plantations that are cheap, cheap, cheap?  Or even some privately owned land that people rent out for special occassions?  What about land scattered with old oaks with sleeping quarters for a bunch of people, maybe like an old campground or something???
    I'm sure if you did some Google searching, you could find some things. Unfortunately, I'm no help here.

    3. What I'm looking for is something Phantom "inspired".  How can I pull this off without it being tacky?  
    I think incorporating the colors is a good idea. Think of the elements you most love about Phantom and try to bring them in quietly. Maybe your cake topper can be something Phantom-inspired. Whenever I think of POTO I think of all the candles and low-lighting (aside from the music, etc.). Could you do hanging lanterns, candles/lanterns as centerpieces (non-florals are usually less expensive), etc.? I'm sure I could think of more if given more time. 

    4.  Does anyone know of any amazing & affordable travel agents?  Also, is the payment of the honeymoon suppossed to be included in the wedding budget or are they completely separate?
    I know nothing about travel agents. I think once you start booking vendors, you can ask them for recommendations. Also, decide who is paying for the honeymoon (you, FI or both of you) and set a budget together. THEN start looking for where to go. My FI and I have a separate honeymoon budget that he's saving for - my savings are going to the wedding itself. Just talk to your FI and go from there.

    5. Does anyone know of anyone who has had a wedding at Smythe Park on Daniel Island?  That's where we were engaged, so I wouldn't mind looking into that as a venue.
    I don't know of anyone, but if you search this board you may find someone who has and who's written a vendor review post.

    6. Anyone know how to go about transferring our designs into a funtional product?
    Call a printer and ask them what you would need to know. They'll want to talk to you about paper weight, texture, size, diecuts, etc. A lot of places can take an image you design and recreate it too, if necessary. Just call some local printers and go from there.

    7. Has anyone ever had seen or used white pumpkins?
    I haven't, but they could be an interesting touch with the POTO-inspired thing. I'm not sure what I'd think of them.

    HTH! :) Feel free to PM me with any other questions.
    tiffandshel.tumblr.com
    www.tiffandshel.com/wedding

    Photobucket

    Anniversary
  • edited December 2011
    1. Like people have said, try to cut back on other aspects of your budget to make room for more guests. But you can also limit guests- I made an A, B and C list to help me narrow it down. A was for who HAD to be invited, B who SHOULD be invited, and C who it would be NICE to invite. That may help you cut some people back, and if they ask- explain you were on a very tight budget and tried to keep the guest list to family and close friends.
    2. The Pavilion at the Pepper Plantation; Old Wide Awake Plantation; Alhambra Hall- it's not a plantation, but if you know a Mt. Pleasant resident, you can get it for $1500 and it's on the water; Wickliffe House. Charleston Yacht Club is also below $1000 to rent I believe. I know people and have seen pictures of people who have been married at all of those places and they are all BEAUTIFUL. You could also check Cypress Gardens out in Moncks Corner as well.
    3. I'd say colors are your best bet.
    4. I am booking my honeymoon through Jennifer at VIP Vacations. Google her and you should find her. She did the work looking for places for me and she doesn't charge anything. She saved us $3000 on our honeymoon and we are putting down a $300 deposit to hold that rate without having to pay for everything up front. She's wonderful- just tell her what you want, she'll find it.
    5. Don't know of anyone, but make a seperate post and title it Smythe Park, someone will respond.
    6. Google! The internet is going to be your best friend through this process.
    7. Nope, but google it as well, or look in the galleries on here. I'm sure someone has done it before and they will probably have some great pictures for inspiration.

    Best of luck and try not to stress too much!
    LilySlim Weight loss tickers
  • edited December 2011
    Thank you so much ladies!!! I really appreciate all the input!!!!
    My Food Blog: Slim Pickin's Kitchen Our Wedding Website Photobucket Anniversary Daisypath Halloween tickers BabyFruit Ticker BFP #1: Mother's Day 5/13/12...m/c Memorial Day Weekend 5/26/12 BFP #2: 2/16/13...Please, baby, please be a sticky *fingers crossed*
  • edited December 2011
    Congrats on your engagement....

    You have a lot of questions and I'm going to help you with the most important on.

    SMYTHE PARK!
    REALLY economical is an understatement

    They have a huge covered shelter
    Bathrooms
    Right on the water

    It took me FOREVER to find her information.  Make sure when you are asking her about info that you ask her specifically about Smythe since she handles a couple of venues on DI.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    It's just Paper has a BUNCH of different types of paper/weight...
    I was going to go at it on my own too, but thought it would be a bit daunting for 125+ invites....
    Instead, I'm doing post cards of Charleston for save the dates (Printing the wedding information on my own instead).  I got this idea when I was planning my wedding in the Virgin Islands. Called up the visitors bureau and I could have gotten 10 post cards for 3.00... a steal and would get out of town guests excited for the wedding.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Honeymoon.....
    Traditionally, it's the groom's responsibility to take care and plan the honeymoon (in some cases, an out right surprise!)  In the same vein, traditionally, it's the bride's family who is supposed to pay for the wedding.  In my case (both of us are 40 years old and never married), we are both involved in the planning of the honeymoon and wedding, communicating our likes and dislikes, etc.
    Long story short, i believe the answer is no.  Honeymoon is separate from the Wedding Budget.  Look at the Knot or Wedding Channel Budget tracker and there's no listing of that.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Go to the Bridal Show on the 15th in North Charleston....it's not the best, but it will get your planning juices flowing!

    cheers!
  • jenlc527jenlc527 member
    10 Comments
    edited December 2011

    ok.... i worked for a wedding coordinator in chas for two years and am now currently planning my own wedding... hope this helps

    check out the wickliffe house, charlestown Landing, thomas bennett house, pepper plantation, wide awake etc.

    for the guest list. i started with my "wish list" everyone that i woud LOVE to have at the wedding and then narrowed it down. start with immediate family and those friends that you HAVE to have. be sure to include people that know you as a couple and people that you would be upset if they did not show. remember charleston is a place people want to visit so count on 75-80% of your guests coming. this is the hardest part for sure....

    honeymoon should be sep. from your overall budget. luckily now you can register for your honeymoon so that helps!

    yes i have seen the white pumpkins used... depending on your date wait until halloween when they sell "funkins" for cheap and paint them :)

    congrats and best wishes!!

  • MellandNateMellandNate member
    10 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Check out: http://www.charlestonwedding.com/#/hicks/

    They got married at Smythe Park on Daniel Island.
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