Candle in the Wind

Now that I’ve shared what kinds of flowers we will have going on at the reception, let’s talk about the flip side of that: candles!

When I first started looking into weddings at the Board of Trade, I noticed that the decorations for the courtyard always seemed to revolve around beautiful candles in glass vases and lighting in the trees.

Gorgeous candlelight around the courtyard fountain / Decor by Get Polished Events / Photo by Meg Baisden Photography

They’re so romantic and create a beautiful ambiance, so I knew that we wanted candles incorporated into the decor. And they’ve got to be such a great money saver over flowers, right?

Well, not so much.

I met with one of the local candle decor companies (yep, it’s a thing), and while they do fabulous work, it was a bit out of the price range when we were also looking at flower costs and other rentals. Also, this was for the courtyard, not the actual ballroom, so I hated spending that much money on something that the guests might only see as they walk through. Sure, we’ll get some great pictures out there, and if the weather is nice then I hope some people will mingle outside, but it just wasn’t worth signing on to another vendor (who had a minimum).

We might have made the separate candle company work into the budget, except that upon receiving the price quote, Momma P and I headed out shopping to check out some local craft and decor stores to see if we could find suitable items on our own. Turns out, we could! For a few weeks, we stalked stores to see what kind of glassware they had in stock, and were able to accumulate quite a collection. Stores like TJ Maxx and Marshall’s seemed to have a better supply of what we were looking for over Michaels or Hobby Lobby, but we’ll probably pick up any straggling pieces that we need from the latter, since there’s usually more in stock.

Anybody want to help remove some stickers? / Personal photo

The glassware was actually the easy part; it’s those pillar candles that can get expensive! We randomly found some pillar LED candles at Kirkland’s for really cheap, and that means our candles won’t blow out at any point in the night. So we’ll have a mixture of pillar, floating, and votive candles surrounding the fountain in the courtyard.

If you’re thinking, “That’s great, Miss P, but who is going to do the hard work of getting all of this set up?” then you’re going right to the question that I avoided for a while. We don’t have a coordinator or planner, and this would probably be a lot to ask of our florist, but I knew that we could figure out something. Great plan, right?

Well, before we had to resort to hiring some of my brother’s high school friends (a plan that made me nervous with such fragile decorations!), I found Kevin with CHL Linens. He was recommended by my florist as the go-to guy for linen rentals. Along with his massive supply of tablecloths, Kevin also had some decorations and candle supplies of his own. When we told him what we have collected, he said that it wouldn’t be a problem to do all of the setup for us (for a little bit extra in labor cost, of course). He’ll set up the vases, fill the tall pillars with water, light (or switch on) the candles, and hang some cool glass votives in the trees along with my chandeliers!

The kind of look that we’re going for. / Photo via David Tompkins Photography

We’ll either bring our stock to Kevin or the venue before the wedding, and I’ll leave it to them to make everything beautiful! I wouldn’t have minded setting up some the morning of (we have access to the venue all day), but someone would still need to turn on and light the candles right before dark, and the task of hanging things in trees sounds better left to a professional. With our hotel right around the corner from the Board of Trade, I definitely want to stop by and check it all out before we head to the ceremony!

So in the end, should we have just gone with the original lighting company? Maybe so. I don’t have an accurate tab on how much we’ve spent on the vases and candles, but it hasn’t been dirt cheap. It has been spread out over a year, and we might be able to sell some items to recoup the costs. Sphinx says he wants to keep it and rent it out to other weddings (you’re joking, right, dear?), but I want to reclaim the storage space in my shed!

Overall, though, I think even with the additional cost of the labor by Kevin’s team, we’ll still come out a bit better off doing it ourselves. The way that we did it, we could have returned the vases if we decided it was too expensive and wanted to back out, but signing a contract for a vendor meant that the deposit was gone. At the time, it was a safer decision to wait, since all of these decorations would be one of the first things to go if we needed to cut the budget down. Only time will tell if this was a good decision, so I’ll be sure to let you know all about that when I’m a missus!

Tune in next time for a closeup look of those chandeliers I keep alluding to!

Are you incorporating a lot of candles in your decor? Did anyone else take on a DIY task because they didn’t want to commit to a vendor?

BLOGGER

Mrs. Pyramid

Location:
New Orleans, LA
Wedding Date:
May 2014

Related Posts

Add a comment

comments

  1. Member
    milkcow 192 posts, Blushing bee @ 10:10 am

    I love candles and we are using them for all of our centerpieces (hopefully… haven’t really thought too far ahead!), but now I want a fountain because those pictures are gorgeous!

  2. Guest Icon Guest
    BeeHellenistic, Guest @ 10:19 am

    The tall glassware with the candles highlights the fountain well and really brings the courtyard to life. I am assuming these chandeliers your alluding to will be hung from the trees? If so, wow, talk about gorgeous. Photo op of the decade!!

  3. Member
    OKJC 98 posts, Worker bee @ 10:22 am

    Love this – looking for candle glassware myself!

  4. Member
    roadtrip 803 posts, Busy bee @ 10:37 am

    It’s going to be gorgeous!

  5. Guest Icon Guest
    LJ36, Guest @ 10:40 am

    We are also using plenty of candles. At home we live by candlelight so an important part of who we are. Our florist indicated that we have to provide the candles and glassware. They recommended we order from quick candles. I am also not sure who would do the setup as we do not have a coordinator.

  6. Member
    LaughLines 346 posts, Helper bee @ 10:45 am

    Love this look! if you need more, I was amazed to see cylinder vases at a dollar store the other day – they looked great (and were, yes, $1!)

  7. Member
    tvmtran 1 posts, Wannabee @ 11:02 am

    I love that look! I’m getting married in New Orleans as well and was looking to buy vases to decorate for my own wedding. If you’re interesting in selling your vases after your wedding, you can contact me.

  8. Member
    genie 723 posts, Busy bee @ 1:18 pm

    That first picture is gorgeous! I’m sure you’ll achieve the same effect!

  9. Member
    weathervane 171 posts, Blushing bee @ 2:28 pm

    Good call on hiring someone to set up the candles, it will be a lot of work that you don’t want to do on that day!! We are also using lots of candles, wax ones and LED ones, they are so pretty and give great ambience!

  10. Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 4:59 pm

    This is going to be gorgeous at your venue! I can’t wait to see how it comes together!

  11. Member
    msfilly 827 posts, Busy bee @ 2:42 am

    All those candles are going to be so romantic and beautiful! I think buying everything yourself and outsourcing the setup to a pro is the perfect compromise. I can’t wait to see what you ended up doing for the chandeliers!

  12. Member
    phonebooth 57 posts, Worker bee @ 4:27 pm

    That courtyard is going to sparkle and be so beautiful! I can just picture it being like something out of a princess movie :)

  13. Member
    gondola 1046 posts, Bumble bee @ 1:09 am

    I’m so glad you found someone to set it up. I’m sure it will be gorgeous!

  14. Member
    mswaterfall 1403 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:58 am

    Wow, it`s gonna be so gorgeous! I feel you on hunting down the glassware, it took us months to get all the vases we needed, in the right price range. I wouldn`t worry too much about cost though, we were able to re-sell very quickly!

  15. Member
    pyramid 92 posts, Worker bee @ 8:24 am

    @Miss Milk Cow: the fountain is pretty awesome! Can’t believe we found such a pretty venue!

    @Mrs. Road Trip: @BeeHellenistic: @OKJC: @Mrs. Genie: @Miss Weather Vane: @Mrs. Pony: @Miss Filly: @Miss Phone Booth: @Mrs. Gondola: thanks everybody! Here’s to hoping it turns out well (and doesn’t rain!)

    @Mrs. Waterfall: good to know! I would certainly have bought up someone’s stash if I could have found it!

    @tvmtran: PM’ing you.

    @LaughLines: Yes, we’ve bought some of those too! Right now I’m trying to make sure I’ve got enough tall vases to really give a staggered look, but those dollar store ones are perfect!

    @LJ36: Maybe see if your florist has enough helpers to set them up? Or someone at your venue?

add a comment

Find Amazing Vendors