Friday, July 26, 2013

Wedding and DIY Tips

Hello P&P Friends!

I get lots of questions about advice on throwing a DIY event or wedding, so I thought I'd do a little blog post about it.!

Question: I thought DIY meant cheaper?
Answer: Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Doing things yourself can get expensive if you don't look at the total cost of things. For example, you really want vintage pie stands for your wedding cake or pies. To buy them new your looking at costs ranging from $25-75. Depending on the look. To make them using glue, old plates, vintage candlesticks and spraypaint your looking at a cost of around $10-20 per stand. It's a savings, but consider your time as well! How many hours out of your day did it take?

People are under the impression that doing things DIY is easier and cheaper. Not the case. It takes a lot of effort to get the things you want that otherwise might not fit into your budget. It also takes a lot of creativity and imagination.

My tips on ways to save money:

- Go to flea markets. 
But go with a shopping list. If you don't you'll end up blowing your budget on things you don't need but sure look pretty.

-Recycle and Reuse. 
Everyday we throw out bottles and cans into our recycling bins. Start collecting the ones you like! soak them in water to peel off the labels and get some Goo-Gone. Suddenly you have so many great vessels! use them for flowers, water bottles, candle holders, straw holders for the bar, and much more! Let your imagination go wild. You can bring some new life to them by using some ribbon, spray painting them or adding some glitter. Look at this beautiful example I found on Pinterest.

Use your friends-
I don't mean this in a bad way. All of us choose people in our lives that are wonderful and have talents we don't have. Ask those friends for help. Does someone have amazing sewing skills? do they have a hobby of crafting? It doesn't hurt to ask for help. The worst someone can say is no, right? Give friends assignments. It will save you time AND money. But don't be a jerk. Be kind to your friends who volunteer to help.

Budget for a Planner-
I think this is a must, and not because I am one. I became a planner and stylist because I didn't want brides going through what I did for my wedding. While I hired a planner, I hired the wrong one. I needed someone who had my back, I could vent to, and would take most of the crap off my shoulders. I didn't get that. If you don't have someone working beside you every step of the way, no one will have any idea of all the ideas in your head and how to make them work on the day of your event. Things don't magically happen. They have to be planned and executed properly so on the day of it seems effortless and casual. Having a planner will save you more money than you think. They will push you in the right directions for other vendors and know where to save.

Don't go cheap on the big things-
Decor can be done for cheap with lots of creativity. But doing that it gives you extra cash for the big ticket items.

Photography- Don't use friends just to save money. It's one day, only a few hours. If you don't capture your day properly its over before you know it and you don't have a record of it. All that work and money wasted. You don't remember as much as you think you will. It's over in a flash. We have so many wedding blogs out there. Find someone that fits in a budget range you feel comfortable with, but make sure it's the style you like. Don't chose someone just because they're cheaper. You get what you pay for, believe me.

Food- Budget for good food. The saying that "The food isn't important" is a lie. It is important. Let your guests and family know how thankful you are for them attending, buying you gifts, traveling, possibly giving up work and vacation time to come to your wedding by feeding them properly. It doesn't have to be fancy. Just good. By getting good food its not a waste of money.

Music- show your guests a good time. Don't just use an IPOD. Use social media to find a DJ or Band. maybe a friend of a friend would love the job! Local bands are also great! they usually charge less than half of the big ticket wedding bands. Then you can end up with someone more your style and at a price you can afford.

Videographer-  I believe in having one more than anything. But if you REALLY can't budget for one, find a friend or family member with a decent camera and tripod to record your ceremony. I insist. EVERYONE should have their ceremony recorded to watch anytime you want. I wish I was kidding that I have caught my husband watching ours and crying his eyes out. We get to revisit that day anytime we want and it's so special.'s priceless.

Please send me more questions!! I would love to help in any way I can. Design questions? budget questions? I'm here for you!!


Thursday, July 25, 2013

NYC Wedding at Battery Gardens

Hello P&P friends!

We've had a crazy two weeks over here. We just completed our busiest part of the wedding season. Two weddings, six days apart. I swear i didn't sleep for three weeks. It was lots of hard work, but I'm so happy with the results.
 On July 14th Rachel and James Farrar got married at a black tie optional affair at Battery Gardens in lower Manhattan. It was a bit of a scorcher but we all melted together, so it was just fine. It was such an amazing day of love. People flew in from all over. California, Wisconsin and the UK.
 Rachel and James wanted a lovely English garden wedding with a modern feel. It was romantic, lush, and soft. The day was beautifully captured by photographer Sean Kim We had lovely little touches everywhere. Rachel and James decided to make the gifts for their guests. It saves money, yet it's very personal. They made homemade Rhubarb bitters for cocktails. They also had a signature cocktail called The Bees Knees which was made with their bitters. Every guest received a 2oz bottle with the recipe of the special cocktail to take home and bring a piece of the special day with them. Keeping it at 2oz means that guest flying back home could pack it in their carry-on without hassle. The labels were designed and applied by me. Want to know an adhesive secret? milk. seriously...I used heavy cream and it works like glue. 
Flowers for the day were glorious! They were designed and put together by Kinston Rushing over at Petal Rush They also did the gorgeous greenery up the birch branches at the ceremony site. Bridesmaid dresses were handmade by the brides friend Kambry Morrison and the ceremony was officiated by me (yes I'm ordained) plus I also sang the first dance song. Make You Feel My Love by Bob Dylan. I wore a few hats that day. Here are just a few photos of the lovely day. Enjoy!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Pickles and Pies had a BIG week.

Hello P&P Friends!

It's been a bit since my last posting, but we have lots of fun and exciting things coming your way over the coming month.
We recently hosted a fabulous bridal shower that was accepted into publication and I'm so excited to be able to share those pictures with you as soon as it's available. I collaborated with the AMAZING photographer Caroline Frost , so it's going to be pretty fabulous. Here is a sneak peak:

 We have two gorgeous weddings coming up. Both completely opposite is style which is exciting and an artistic challenge to constantly switch gears in a day. One is a classic deco inspired wedding the other is a moss covered woodsy barn affair.

But...the really BIG NEWS is that our pies were just featured in the NEW YORK TIMES!!  It's been quite a whirlwind. It's so exciting to see myself in print. It feels so official! Here's the link to check it out.
Here is the photo gallery where you can see my Strawberry Plum Blueberry Pie

This week has also brought up a few questions from people and old friends(otherwise known as your Facebook life). "Erin, I'm confused. What exactly do you do? Pies or weddings"?Look, I know it might be confusing because most people think of a job being one specific thing that can put you in a singular category. I've created my own category and its that simple. We don't question Martha Stewart when her job entails a million things. My company is about being creative. Styling, baking, crafting, planning, catering and putting together pretty flowers.
  Imagine if you could make your living doing every single thing that you consider a hobby. Would you do it? Could you do it? It's a challenge sure, but what a way to spend your days. One of the BEST pieces of advice I ever got was from one of my favorite acting teachers. And I feel like it can apply to everyone. "If you can't find work, make your own". Or I can take it further, "if you don't like your work, change it". Life is too short to not be doing the things in our life that make us happy.

Until next time friends. Please remember to like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram, follow us on Twitter and Pinterest.