How often do I get to blog about beer? And not just any beer - dogfish head. With the new show (discovery channel)dogfish mania has somehow managed to grow even more then it already existed in Delaware. I don’t know anybody at this time in Delaware who does not look to get their hands on a great craft beer - brewed in Delaware - that just makes it even better.
A few of the couples getting married here at Winterthur have asked me to add dogfish onto their beer list for their wedding evening. And I do this, with great trepidation! I have never gotten my order of Dogfish delivered - never.
This past Sunday in the business section of the New Journal I finally got to know why - not just rumor- a whole story on dogfish production and delivery. Sam Calagoine speaks to the News Journal about how they are looking to reign in where they are selling in an effort to deliver what is ordered. Here are a few of the key facts, as I see them…
Dogfish is distributed in 30 states
Production has increased 303% in the past 5 years; last year was 20%; it is still not enough!
“To ensure no store was completely cut off, an allocation system was adopted” - what’s that mean - as one store owner says in the article - “it is not uncommon to order 40 (cases) and get 5 or 6″
So I will continue to add dogfish to your orders but buyer beware - with this demand and not enough supply - there are no guarantees. To read more please visit delawareonline.com for the full article by Eric Ruth.
The past few weeks have been so busy - great problem to have to meet all of these new people!
So I am seeing an underlying theme right now - budget! I wonder if there was something written recently on another blog or magazine but budget is the buzz word this January. I get it - I know everyone has a budget - whether it be big or small or more then likely- somewhere in the middle. I ask, is budget the only important thing for your wedding?
When I meet with a couple for the first time I like to spend a few moments talking, trying to get to know them at least for a few breaths, before we dive into the conversation. I do like to ask -What is important to you for your wedding? LatelyI am getting a one word answer - Budget. I feel that if budget were truly your only concern you would have a multiple options in free state parks or a beach or a friends gorgeous backyard. I think that while it is a concern, there are other things to you that are also important.
Preston Bailey - planner extraordinaire - just posted a blog about how to help clients who want champagne on a pepsi budget. His tip and what he does is talks about money in person and he explains where his costs come from and he openly acknowledges that he is covering his costs and looking to make a profit. He runs his business after all.
A lot of you know that I love to talk about food and the estate and the service we provide. I believe that we are in the tops in our field. We have a great reputation. We have a proven track record and we provide personal attention. Can you put a price on that?
Perhaps we shift the conversation to value. What do you get for your money. Do you get organic fresh food or frozen food, a personal attendant, your sales person at your event? And is that important to you?
One tip I have used with a lot of my friends is to list out your top 5 most important things - that is where you spend your money and you look for deals or creative ideas on the things that are not as important to you. As you all start planning for 2011 are there any thrifty things that you have done to save money that you want to share and help another?
Happy New Year everyone! Hope everyone is ready to make this a great new year.
This is the time of year where I get to catch up on my reading and look at the trends and new things happening for the coming bridal year. I must admit I have not quite gotten into it yet (so many great new inquiries!) but, I was flipping through a pottery barn catalog the other evening and I saw 2 things that made me think Winterthur Weddings.
Terrariums - no, not the ones you had as a kid with bugs in them. These are rustic and would look gorgeous as a centerpiece on the gift table - perfect to update the card holders/bird cages. Pottery barn has them right now in two sizes and I love how they have the tablescapes with them. I am sure your florist would LOVE to add some plants or flowers to match your decor and to help you own this look as your own.
How about updating the look from the traditional bird cage to a great collection of lanterns. Sets of 3 always look great and you cold light two and leave one for your cards and envelopes. Some more ideas from pottery barn -
You can also search antique stores, flea markets, even bargain box stores like Marshalls and TJ Maxx. Now will be the perfect time once the stores clear out their Christmas and Holiday stock and start thinking Spring.
Work with your florist to really complete the look of the gift table. Nothing looks worse then one item or holder set in the middle of the table with nothing to tie it in or ground it. The finishing touches go a long way in showing how much energy you spent making your wedding perfect!
I knew from the moment that I met Eva and Kevin their wedding was going to be just a little bit different in all the right ways. Such special touches included…
The bridesmaids carried lanterns instead of flowers which shone beautifully as the sun set
We used the pool for the ceremony but moved into the Gallery for cocktail hour - Eva works at a museum (or the museum) in NYC and all of her guests were enthralled with the sites at Winterthur. We then escorted guests via shuttle to the VC for the dinner and dancing portion of the evening
Eva’s dad took the mic from the DJ - pre-planned of course - and he did the bridal announcements - including Eva and Kevin coming in first so they could watch their friends and families
The cake was accented with fall fruit - how simple and beautiful, and the motif was carried out in the wonderfully simple centerpieces that the Winterthur Floral team created.
Great pics shown from Joel Plotkin- we love Joel - he just makes our life so relaxing and allows me to focus on all of the other important details- look at some of the shots he sent me- thanks Joel!
Huppah designed by Winterthur Floral
pictures in the gallery - how unique
Cake by Kimberly Withers - Liberty Lane Bake Shoppe
Good afternoon all. Well we just had one of the busiest and most successful wedding weekends that I can remember in a long time - 4 this week - Friday, Saturday, Sunday and our first ever daytime wedding yesterday while the museum was closed. What a great way to celebrate Columbus Day!
Cynthia wanted a relaxed wedding - one she would would have fun at and not have that many formalities and one she would cherish always. Yesterday delivered all of that and more with an off-season high of 78 degrees and a light breeze. The ceremony started at 3pm and guests grazed on an ice seafood raw bar and fun stationary hors d’oeuvres - butternut squash risotto anybody? - while being served the perfect size crab cake sliders.
The signature cocktail had to include the couples favorite - limoncello, served with peahc schnapps, sparkling wine and fresh peaches.
Cynthia told me later in the afternoon that it was the perfect wedding for her and Miles and their friends and families - thank you, we thought so to….
Bar and Ice Carving (out of the sun!)
Limoncello Favors, Chocolates for the kids
Cake by Liz Marden
At least we are not whining about the weather this morning. The last remnants of Tropical Depression Nicole has left the area and the sun has come out and the wind is giving us a lovely breeze. This evening we are celebrating with Ethan and Lindsey and everything wine, wine colors, wine accents, well, you get the idea….
Wine Table Numbers, Flowers Sweet Peas of Jennersville
Wine Table Numbers - aren't these a great touch?
I think the flowers were great - they were all so natural and enhanced the Visitor Center and the Pool so well. We love Meg and her team with Sweet Peas from Jennersville!
Liberty Lane Cake - Flowers from Sweet Peas of Jennersville
Creative cake topper - all of the flowers were so natural
Guests entered the Visitor Center and were greeted with this great display of wine bottles as favors and placecards.
Wine bottles as favors and placecards
- Placecard table or bar?
I was able to listen to Lindsey and Ethan’s ceremony last night - I loved the way they laughed and looked at each other throughout the entire ceremony. We hope they continue to laugh throughout their wedding and years!
Wow - what great weather we are having right now - a tad below 80 with a light breeze - thanks Hurricane Earl!
Tonight we had the pleasure of working with two great people who are so obviously entranced by each other - Sueyeun and Beckhyon. They opted for a traditional Korean ceremony at the reflecting pool. I think pictures may be better then words in this case:
Processional, Parents first, Bride and her family, followed by the groom
Traditional Korean Ceremony
Liz Marden wedding cake - how beautiful
We started the weekend off with a little bit of luck on our side, Hurricane Earl stayed far enough out on the ocean that we did not get any wind or a drop of rain last night for the first of 3 weddings this weekend. Last night we kicked off our holiday weekend with Kellie and Sal. Kellie and Sal had an intimate wedding ceremony at the pool then brought their guests back to the Pavilion at the Visitor Center for delicious hors d’oeuvres on the patio and dinner and dancing inside. Theresa Florals did the flowers which were all aglow. Eventions did the great plum lighting but I am afraid my camera with its flash does not do the room justice. Overall it was a very sweet night for one of the sweetest couples that I am lucky enough to get to work with this whole season.
Raining flower petals, arch enhanced by Thersa Florals
Coordinated bubble sticks and program holders are a great touch
David has the foundation for the watermelon, beet, and red onion salad started
Thersa Florals lights up the night
Wedding cake by Kimberly at Liberty Lane
Eventions customized Kellie and Sals monogram on the dance floor
A pop of purple behind the planters was perfect
The whole dance floor ceiling was lit up!
Sunflowers and puzzle pieces lenta sunny mysterious feel to this evenings festivities. When the puzzle pieces were put together it was Van Gogh’s sunflower pic. Sunflowers captured the feel of the estate and the amazing weather on this gorgeous summer evening. Curry and Bob held their ceremony at the pool with cocktail hour following and then back to the VC for stations and dancing. The food looked great and people rushed back to the VC to enjoy dinner and start to dance. It was a great evening and we wish all the best for Currie and Bob!
Ceremony at the Pool
Mango Rum Soup Shooters - Caribbean Station
Black Bean Cakes, Avocado and Mango Salad
Hi All. Well we had our first rain plan for the season. I think Ken and Angela had every gardener and farmer on the East coast rooting against them with this rain storm coming. It did clear enough so that guests did not get wet going into the buildings. We so wish it would have cleared just an hour earlier so we could have given them the pool that they wanted. Angela is the last of her sisters to get married and it must now be tradition as it rained on each of their wedding days as well. The guests loved everything and marveled at how beautiful everything was.
Hi everyone. First lest me say that I am sorry I have been remiss the past two weeks about posting. I got some much needed time away after the weddings on the 26 and 27th and I never got the chance to post pictures from Corey and Shawn or Maryann and Chad which is a shame as they were both gorgeous brides with some gorgeous touches. Maybe if the ladies send me some pics I can post late.
Last night - after the 2:00 pop up storm - we hosted the wedding of Emily and Phil. I want to show you even more then what I am posting now and I am waiting for Jim Grahamwho was the photographer last night, to send me some of his shots - you have to see the way these two had the Gallery lit - amazing! I always love the work that the Eventions team does.
Let me tell you what I do have though in the meantime. After the storm we had some much needed cool breezes for our ceremony and cocktail hour outside by the pool. Emily (And Phil?) thought of some great little touches - love the card holder. I was able to carry it around securely for them throughout the cocktail hour!
Loved these programs - remember 1 per couple is more then enough
Cute card holder
Pond Water - no refreshing cucumber water for guests
Sweet Peas simplicity
Dinner and dancing were held in the Gallery. As always Meg from Sweet Peas of Jennersville did a great job and the music from Tom Barrett was fun and fit the couple great. Newest thing I have now seen - Phil actaully rented 2 identical tuxes and changed completely once he came in from outside. Now there is a guy who knows how he reacts to the heat!
Cake by Liz Marden
PS - Emily if you are reading this in Aruba Phil wanted me to tell you to turn off the computer and go be with your husband!
More pics from Jim Graham - thanks Jim -these are great!
Saturday evening was the 3rd night of festivities for Sue Ann and Mike and their lucky guests. Sue Ann and Mike had a lot of guests from all over the world and they really wanted to show that they really appreciated everyone taking the time to come into town and celebrate with them. Thursday night kicked off with a small intimate dinner for guests and family. Friday night after the rehearsal the whole gang went to the country club for a BBQ and pool party. The guests stayed at various hotels - including blocking every room at the Inn at Montchanin; where they held brunch on Sunday for guests. Rumor has it that some of the guests then headed down to Dewey Beach on Sunday evening!
Kimberly from Liberty Lane worked on Sue Ann’s cake with her
Linens were a mix of sangria and ivory vine from Total Table
The ceremony was at the reflecting pool and their rain plan was under a tent on the VC patio due to their size
Flowers by Yukie did the beautiful peonies on the tables. We also had the pleasure of working with the team from Proud to Plan - Lisa and Danielle specifically. It was so great to have an extra set of hands and another person helping me to greet guests and get the ceremony off without a hitch. I don’t think I could have done it without them. They do the best thing for cards - it is 4 picture frames together that cards may go into -
2 more weddings this weekend - stations in the gallery on Saturday and seated dinner in the VC on Sunday. Look for more posts then!
What a great night tonight. Sometimes I think the couples vibe just makes the night. Lindsay and Andrew are pretty laid back and relaxed, they are just so happy to be around each other and they have such a warm loving vibe when they are together, people can not help but to look and to smile. I have had a lot of fun as both Lindsay, Andrew, and both moms were very involved and oh so helpful. And some sweeping azaleas in the background aren’t bad either!
Aptly named - look at that reflection!
Bridal attendant Jessica fluffing the trane
Making her grand entrance
Donna and the gang from Beautiful Blooms did the decor. Gorgeous orchid shimmer cloths were the backdrop for the mercury glass arrangements that varied from table to table. And let’s not forget the setting for the wedding with this great addition to the arch at the reflecting pool - I love the layers of crystals cascading from the top
2nd Table Arrangement
Lovely cherry blossoms with more crystals on the placecard/frame table
Kimberly from Liberty Lane Bake Shop did the cake this evening and I think it is so pretty with the sweet floral touches supplied by Beautiful Blooms.
One of my favorite people - Steve Croce - is our DJ and master of ceremonies this evening. Steve is so great to work with, he just helps us make the night smooth and makes us look good. Gotta love that!
Winterthur Guest Book and Chocolate Truffle Favors - yum!
We are working with a new photography team tonight - Tony Baida and his son Sal. Really nice guys. I am hoping to catch a glimpse of some of his photos at some point this evening.
Cocktail hour on the VC patio
The past two weeks I have been so lucky to work with the great vendors on our list. I can not stress to all of you how much easier this makes my job pre-ceremony and how much more time I can spend on the bridal party and double and triple checking things for your wedding when I am not chasing new vendors throughout the 1000 acre estate!
More events next weekend and a big 3 in a row the weekend after - whew. Lets hope the weather continues to hold as it did today on this beautiful evening!
We kicked off our 2010 wedding season this evening with the ceremony and reception for Josh and Michelle. What a beautiful night - cool and crisp but sunny until 7:00pm - great for photos!
Ceremony was out on the patio under a tent and cocktail hour followed outside, sorta. The heaters in the tent were shut off to accommodate the cantor who had a sore throat - you could not hear her with the heaters on. Guests bolted inside after the ceremony and cocktail hour was impromptu outside and inside.
Josh and the cantor sneak a peakLaughs and tears under the huppah
Michelle had this cute cake topper made - on top of carrot cake with white chocolate buttercream from Liz Marden - yum! I love how this topper shows off their style.
Check out the look a like cake topper
Tonight is the first of 40 plus. I have a break for a week or so and then I will be posting so much you won’t be able to keep up reading. Looking forward to 2010 and working with So many of you!
Sunlight streams in as guests are seated for the ceremony
Hello again readers. While I have not been posting I don’t want anyone to think we have been slacking over here. We are hard at work getting ready for our 1st ever tasting on Nov 24th featuring some of our great vendors and so much food!
I wanted to let everyone know that I am currently revising the catering packages as we are going to be offering you a choice of 2 different cake vendors - our fabulous Kimberly Withers and the infamous Liz Marden. Liz has been a pastry chef in this area for over 20 years and loves when she now makes cakes for children of prior wedding couples.
Kimberly’s style allows you to mix and match your perfect combination. Liz puts her combinations together for you with signature items such as her White Chocolate Mousse Cake - Light and airy white chocolate mousse, sandwiched with a combination of chocolate and vanilla cake layers and raspberry jam. Other choices include Milk Chocolate Mousse, Strawberry Mousse, and Bananas Foster!
Both of the ladies will be here on the 24th with samples and photos. While you won’t have time to dig into every specific question, you will have plenty of time to sample and look and see what options best suit what you are looking for. We are so excited to be able to offer you more options and can’t wait to hear your feedback after the 24th!
I had a great time today working on a photo shoot with our buds from Eclatante - design and planning and our other fellow colleagues - Donna from Beautiful Bloooms, Marie Labbancz Photos, and Claudia on hair and make-up. I can’t wait to see these shots published. Here are a few of the pictures that I took. As soon as I get the professional ones I will have them up for you to see how cool this was!
Blue like the water....
Staging the ceremony space
Lower Level of the Pool - Super Cool Aisle Runner
Reflecting Pool - Lower Level
Hi Everyone. Jacqui and Ricardo are getting married this evening in the Gallery, with cocktail hour in the lobby of the Visitor Center and the dinner inside. We have some great linens tonight guaranteed to transform the space and set the scene.
Ceremonies inside the Gallery are so serene. They need little to no decor.
The bride is wearing one of the most beautiful dresses I have ever seen and she looks amazing in it!
Great linens from Special Occasions. I love the two tones - green see through and blue stripe. Brown on the bars was a great accent.
Sorry there are so few pics - my camera was misbehaving. This was such a great family to work with - so warm and friendly. We wish them all the best that the future can hold for them!
The clouds have cleared out finally and the rain looks like it will stay away as we get ready for the last wedding of the season at the reflecting pool. And what a gorgeous night it turns out to be - crisp - clear - amazing!
Accent tables this evening in copper silk - gorgeous. From our friends at Special Occasions Linen!
My bartenders - they don't like their pictures taken!
Guests were ready to dance and party as they were invited up to dance the rest of the bride and grooms first dance.
Dance, Dance, Dance
Great lighting at this time of year - look at how the cake just glows
Family Photos on the Front Desk, Slide Show on the Center Screen - Nice Touch!
This was such a great group to work with - I wish them all the best for the B & G and their families and friends!!
This is a two wedding weekend here for us at Winterthur - our last one this season. The bridal season is slowly winding down and going out with great beauty if last night is any indication!
Great fall weather at 74 degrees and great vendors made last night at the reflecting pool and the visitor center remarkable. We worked with 3 of the best - eventions lighting, steve croce - DJ extraordinaire, and Sweet Peas florist. I think rather then tell you about what a great job they did I can let the pictures speak for themselves!
Nice placecard idea
Placecards - up close!
Individual Wedding Cake Favors - Yum!
GoBo on the Patio