Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Danielle and Matt- a details video

Check out this great video from Maple Loft! Danielle and Matt had great weather last July and we really enjoyed looking back on these details. Thanks to Claris Photography for the fabulous pictures as well! Both vendors are members of the MY KPW family!


Check out Maple Loft
Check out Claris Photography

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Calligraphy- what you need to know

We have worked with some very talented calligraphers over the past several years and have had the pleasure of meeting some fresh new faces recently as well. It made me think about how many clients actually know about calligraphy and how beautiful and affective it can be to incorporate its cost into your overall paper products budget. Today we will review where you can use a calligrapher and the costs involved. Yes, you don't have to spend any money to have someone else write everything out for you but that can take hours and hours and your time is very valuable, so you might want to consider a calligrapher!

Calligraphy: n. the art of writing beautifully

There are a few ways to calligraph using different nibs- yes that's a technical term. Depending on the type of font, a calligrapher will use a different nib to create a thinner, more flourished font or a thicker, more chiseled font. Some fonts are so thin and delicate that an ink well can't be used and a calligrapher will use an actual pen to create the lines of the font.

Here are some examples of calligraphy in a more chiseled font:

The above two calligraphy samples provided by Calligraphy by Jennifer

Here's an example of a thin font that Jan has created:

The above three calligraphy samples provided by Jan Boyd Calligraphy

These simpler fonts would be great for a more casual wedding reception or maybe even a rehearsal dinner invitation.

For a more traditional, formal font, take a look at these options:

The above two calligraphy samples provided by Calligraphy by Jennifer

The above two calligraphy samples provided by Jan Boyd Calligraphy

The above the calligraphy samples provided by Ted Clausen Calligraphy

You can hire a calligrapher to take care of the following items:

Addressing Save the Dates
Addressing Invitations
Custom Invitations- they create one calligraphed invitation and send your printer a printable version
Place Cards
Escort Cards
Table Numbers
Addressing Thank You Cards
Specialty Signs- well wishes containers, signature drink menus
Custom Favor Tags
Custom Programs- they create one calligraphed program and send your printer a printable version
Custom Menus- they create one calligraphed menu and send your printer a printable version

Cost for each of these items greatly depends on each calligrapher, how many years experience they have, and usually the style of font you select. Here's a ballpark of what you might expect to pay for each of the above items:

Addressing Save the Dates-$1.25-$10.00 a piece for outer envelopes
Addressing Invitations- $1.25-$10.00 for the outer envelope, $3.00-$15.00 for outer and inner envelope sets
Custom Invitations- most calligraphers will charge a single flat fee of anywhere from $50-$150.00 for this artwork
Place Cards/Escort Cards- $.75-$1.95 depending on if the calligrapher includes just the guest name or adds the table number. Also if they have to calligraph an envelope and inner table number card that will be on the higher end of the price range.
Table Numbers- $5.00-$25.00 depending if the calligraph provides the paper and the level of detail of each table number
Addressing Thank You Cards- I HIGHLY recommend having this done for you so you don't have to deal with it after your wedding. The list is the same as your wedding acceptance list so send it to your calligrapher to not deal with the hassle! $1.25-$10.00 each envelope.
Specialty Signs- $5.00-$25.00 depending on the size of each sign and how many words need to be calligraphed
Custom Favor Tags- ask your calligrapher about this, their prices will vary
Custom Programs/Menus- similar to Custom invitation artwork, plan on anywhere from $50.00-$150.00

Now on to the timing of things..... you should schedule at least 2 if not 3 weeks for your calligrapher to get your invitations completed. They usually have specific ways they like to receive your lists, but excel or word documents are fairly popular and usually okay with most calligraphers. For place cards and escort cards most calligraphers can get those completed in 2 weeks. A rush fee can be applied to most orders to get them done in less time, and figure a 10-15% charge of your total bill in order to accommodate a shorter completion period.

Calligraphy is an added expense for sure, but it can be the finishing touch to all of your design elements- from your paper products, tabletop decor and even special extras. It saves you plenty of time too as it takes hours to write out everyone's addresses. Most of you who have attempted to write out 100 addresses know that after a while your handwriting doesn't look quite as good as it did when you started your project. Some people ask a family member or friend to address everything for them as well and although that would be very generous of that person, some people are very intimidated by such a task, worrying that it won't look perfect. So after all is said and done, consider working with a calligrapher to make your life easier and make your wedding design that much more special.

Here's a list of noteworthy calligraphers we either know or have worked with in the past and we HIGHLY reccomend:

Jan Boyd Calligraphy
Ted Clausen Calligraphy
Calligraphy by Jennifer
Laura Hooper Calligraphy

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

KPW product line has been blogged about!

I am honored to share this great blog post about some of the KPW products we offer to our clients written by So Chic Events!


Thanks so much Shelby for blogging about us!

Take a look at So Chic Events website when you have a chance at: www.sochicevents.com

Meet the ladies of KPW

I thought it would be fun to show you who you talk to when you call the KPW office. Kate Mann has been with KPW for a few years now and we just welcomed Liz Sullivan to the KPW family. Lola, VP of operations, has been on board for almost 4 years now. Sometimes it's nice to put a face to a name. Thank you to Emilie Sommer of Emilie Inc. Photography for taking such fabulous photos!

Kate Mann, wedding planner, graphic designer, welcome basket customer service

Liz Sullivan, wedding planner, MY KPW customer service

Lola Parker, VP of operations

Kate Parker Weddings

Kate Parker Flowers

MY Kate Parker Wedding

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

How to make an Out of Town Welcome Basket- a tutorial

We have expanded the Kate Parker Weddings brand to include a number of products, most notably our custom Out of Town Welcome Baskets. We have been blogged numerous times showing off our products and occasionally someone comments on how expensive our baskets cost. While OOT welcome baskets are often a DIY project for many brides, I wanted to show you our process so you get a better sense of how involved they can be from the ordering through shipping of each individual basket. We will ship to as many hotels as a client requests, contacting each hotel in advance to let them know our baskets are coming. In addition we send each box with a list of guests as to minimize any confusion. I hope this tutorial gives inspiration for the DIY brides and maybe even some expert secrets and tips of the trade! Enjoy.

The first step is laying out all of the containers and filling them with whatever filler the client has requested. We have a number of containers available on our website but are always open to finding the perfect item if a client is looking for something a little different. The same goes with our filler- paper shred, crinkle paper, tissue paper, natural burlap...you name it, we can find it!

Next we add the heaviest of the items, usually the waters. We use local water companies within New England and then we use Fiji waters for the rest of the country. Sometimes we have them next to one another, other times we will separate them to make room for other larger items.

For this Chatham, MA basket, we wanted to include a Cape Cod travel guide as well as a map of the area for each guest. We usually get this from the local Chamber of Commerce and often times we create custom welcome letters and maps for our clients.

Because this basket wasn't very tall we needed to roll up the map and local guide. It ended up being cuter this way!

A KPW welcome basket isn't complete without our signature medicine kit which includes Tylenol, Advil, and Pepto Bismol. You never know how traveling will treat your guests.

Here is a photo of a completed basket. We like to include the following in each of our baskets: A sweet snack, a salty snack, 2 waters, a medicine kit, chamber of commerce guides and map, and an adorable container with filler. Some clients like to add additional items, some like a few less.

Sometimes we have to put items together in order to accommodate the size of the basket. Here we are creating bags of salt water taffy.

Here we are making small 2 cup bags of the BEST caramel popcorn in the world, Garrett's Popcorn in Chicago... it is so fabulous!

When the baskets are completed they are lined up to check for symmetry and to double check all the contents are included in each basket.

Packing baskets is not an easy thing, since we have to make sure the contents don't move or get destroyed in transit... we like to start with a large 30"x30" box filled with some biodegradable packing peanuts.

Each basket is wrapped in bubble. We don't like to use cellophane for each basket- it's a waste of money and it's not easy for your guests to deal with.

Once the baskets are placed in the box they are covered in more peanuts and bubble wrap, ensuring their safe delivery to each hotel.