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caterer vent and help!

Bare with me please.My mama and I met with our caterer on Saturday, which is mama's friend.  We picked her b/c she's ridiculously cheap.  She gave us her menu in the winter... so we were able to figure out our budget for the catering.  Saturday after we pick the food her bill ended up being roughly $1,500 more than what we budgeted and that's just included the food and the plates and flatware no linens!  Basically what it comes down to is her prices only include the food, no service fee, no plates, no silverware.  There's nothing I can do about her service fee but I figure I can go get plates and linens myself.  We wanted the disposal plates that look real.  And I just want ivory table linens with a black runner.  My heart is totally set on chair covers but right now I'm putting those on the back burner until I can take care of the neccessities.  We have the entire wedding paid off right now except the catering.  We can afford her bill and still be comfortable but I don't want to pay an extra $1,500!  No where on her menu does it say that plates and silverware were not included in the price so I feel like we were misled therefore I would rather take care of that stuff myself.  So does anyone have any suggestions as to where I can get plates, and linens ridiculously cheap?/end vent.TIA!

Re: caterer vent and help!

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    edited December 2011
    I am no help with linens.  But for plates, check wholesale catering supply sites such aswww.galasource.com www.foodservicewarehouse.comwww.restaurantsource.com Also there is a place called GFS (Gordon's Food Service).  They have alright prices on plates.  The only one I know of is  by Century III Mall.  They do have a website so maybe there are more locations.www.gfs.com
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    morainemommorainemom member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Sam's Club has the clear disposable plates that look real.I think over on the Budget Board they have great recommendations for inexpensive linens.
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    edited December 2011
    I agree with the previous posts to check the warehouse clubs like Sam's, Costco, etc for the plates.As far as linens, I think chaircoversonline.com rents linens and are known to be very cheap. That's where I got my chair covers. If you want ivory runners, you may be better off sewing them yourself than renting; it would be pretty cheap and easy to do that.A lot of ladies have bought the linens and then sold them. Maybe you and another Knottie on here could share them, buy them, and agree to split the purchase price?Have you thought about getting a second quote for food? Or just going back to her and saying that it is more than you budgeted? That might work for you too.
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    edited December 2011
    Ugh, I'm sorry you were misled. I'm assuming you didn't sign a contract, huh? I don't know of many places, but I'd check the Trash to Treasure board, esp. for linens. I don't know how cheap they'd be, but people are always selling linens it seems (at least when I last looked), and those are pretty basic colors. GL!
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    edited December 2011
    I used the fancy plastic plates for a fundraiser and we got them locally from Schorin's. They were cheaper than getting the boxed sets from Sam's Club. Hope this helps!When budgeting for your caterer, don't forget to add 15% gratuity (of the food & drink total).
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    edited December 2011
    Word of advice for ordering linens online:-If you are renting from online, the linens will come wrinkled. If your venue can set-up the linens in the morning of the event, it won't be a problem because the wrinkles will release. If not, I would work with a local company. -The difference in my linen cost from a very reputable company with high quality pressed linens was only $1 or $2 more per linen versus the online company with think wrinkled linens. -If you buy the linens, they are not of great quality (thin). Also, they will come wrinkled, so order early and try to iron at home.
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    edited December 2011
    Oh, good point about the linens coming wrinkled, N. My chair covers were ordered online (but they have a local office in Pittsburgh) and mine weren't wrinkled, but I think that's because it was dark in there, they put them on early, and they were black, so if there were wrinkles, they weren't noticeable. HTH
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    edited December 2011
    Thanks ladies.  I can set up the reception hall the day before the wedding so the wrinkles won't matter much. N, where is the store you bought the plates from?
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    edited December 2011
    Here you go![url]<a href="http://www.schorin.com/" rel='nofollow'>http://www.schorin.com/</a>[/url]
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    edited December 2011
    that easy huh?  lol I'm sorry... I'm such an idiot sometimes!  Thank you!
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    edited December 2011
    LOL! I was lazy for not looking the url up before. In the Fine Disposable section they have a few varieties of fancy disposable. Including square plates and fancy silverware.Oh, and if you want to get real silverware, A-1 Party Rental seems to be the cheapest. I am using them and I think Cobrien is too.
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    edited December 2011
    Thank you, N. My caterer does already have real silverware... I think I'll let her use those... but I'll take care of everything else thanks to you!  That site is by far the cheapest I've seen them! 
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    cobrien1976cobrien1976 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I am using A-1, they are mailing us a quote this week for dinnerware, I'll let you know how much flatware will cost us when I get the quote.  Also, I think Karen (KBielak17) got a really good deal on chair covers, not sure if she is using the same place for linens, as the Gateway Clipper Fleet might provide basic linens. It could be worth a shot calling around to several local places and compare prices for linens and chaircovers.  I am using Victoria Linens out of Glenshaw (no website) for all my linens.Also, Salem 22 Linens in Delmont (they do restaurant linens and cleaning) will also do events for basic linens.  Gina is the owner, she may be able to help you.  Just another option.
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    edited December 2011
    Cheryl-- I used to use Vicky for linens for events all the time! She is so sweet! We are using Mosaic lately though.
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    cobrien1976cobrien1976 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    N - good to know, I've only talked to her once about 8 months ago - she gave me good prices, plus she's childhood friends with my catering manager - so I did some name dropping!!  haha
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    dvanskydvansky member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I agree with whoever said about checking out GFS. It's basically a catering supply store that you don't have to be a caterer to get into! I'm in a wedding this October and we just had her shower and I can't tell you how much we got there! There's one in Robinson also, right by Costco. GL!
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    edited December 2011
    I'm so sorry this happened!  That really sux, 1500 in hidden costs is crazy!  I'd check GFS (there's one in Monroeville) or Sam's
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