Tips and Ideas for all things Wedding
2020 has been the year that has taught us how to be flexible, hasn't it? As I worked with couples this year we had to deal with weddings being rescheduled (some earlier and some put off until 2021), weddings getting smaller with less flowers needed and much more. I applaud all of you for dealing with 2020 with grace and I just want you to know that I am here to help and I will be flexible right along with you. We can get through this together!
I am excited about 2021. I don't think that COVID is going to miraculously go away but I am hopeful that things will slowly get back to normal. And even if we still have to be as flexible we will at least have had a lot of practice doing that!
I am looking forward to growing my business and I want to offer you more that can help you as you plan your wedding. I have offered all things floral (Personal flowers, centerpieces, garlands, alter pieces, arch decorations and more) since 2007 but in 2021 I plan on offering more...
I hope that I can serve you in 2021! Let me know what you need and I will do what I can to help.
Being a florist, a common question that I deal with is how can we save money on our flowers. Everybody has a budget of some sort. Some are big and some are little but I haven't met anybody yet that would say "Money is not an issue".
Flowers are a big part of a normal wedding. The challenge can be figuring out how much money you need to allocate to them. My advice is to sit down early on in your wedding planning and figure out what things are very important to you and what things are necessary. Then you can figure out what things you don't really care that much about and save money in those areas. Hopefully flowers isn't one of those areas but sometimes it is and I understand that.
So, whether you just have a small budget over all or flowers is an area you don't mind scrimping in, here are some ways to save money on your wedding flowers:
A lot of thought usually goes into planning the party that follows your wedding ceremony. Finding a nice place to hold your reception can be fun or it can be challenging. I am hopeful that this post can be helpful and possibly bring some places to your attention that you didn't know were available.
BWB Ranch is located South of Bemidji near Laporte.
It has a beautiful rustic barn available for receptions. There are also many outdoor spaces available for you to have your ceremony there as well. They can hold up to 200 guests (in addition to the wedding party) comfortably but have options for going bigger than that if needed. Various linens and decorations are available as part of the price. The cost for the whole package is $6000.
Beaux Arts Ballroom is located on the BSU campus in Bemidji. They have a large attractive room with windows overlooking Lake Bemidji that seats up to 450 people. Onsite catering is available. A downside to this venue is limited close parking. There is a lakeside yard available that can be used for activities or potentially a ceremony. Around $700 is the daily rental rate but they will work with you to try to customize things just for you. Also on the BSU campus are the American Indian Resource Center and the David Park House which are attractive (but smaller) locations that could be used for a wedding reception.
Hampton Inn and Suites is a very popular reception spot in Bemidji, MN. Located on Lake Bemidji you can also hold your ceremony out on the beach if you desire. Their banquet room can seat up to 300 people.
Buena Vista Ski Area is a fun place for your reception (and wedding too, if you desire). They have a 3 story chalet with a rustic feel. Located next to 2 small lakes. This venue is not very handicap accessible so that is something you should keep in mind when making your decision.
The Bemidji Curling Club is a place you may not have thought of to use for your reception. It might take a bit of decorating to make it look elegant but it can be done. I saw some pretty pictures of it decorated up here.
Bemidji Eagles Aerie is a nice option for large receptions that won't break the bank. You can seat up to 450 people at a reception here. It was recently remodeled. It isn't the greatest looking (especially from the outside) but it can be decorated and it is practical. They have onsite catering.
Chester Charles 2 - a tour boat on lake Itasca is a fun and unique venue for smaller weddings. There is room for around 140 on board. This is located in Itasca State park a half hour drive south of Bemidji. This can be used for both your wedding and reception.
The Boys and Girls Club has large spaces that area available for rent. They have a commercial kitchen that can be used as well.
Old Salem Hall just north of Bemidji in Turtle River is a quaint place to hold a smaller wedding reception (and ceremony if you like). There is room inside for banquet seating for 80. I have seen couples add tents and tables outside on the pretty lawn for additional seating. It costs $400 to rent for your wedding and/or reception.
Concordia Language Villages is a neat option for smaller wedding receptions held from September through May. They have facilities available at 5 different villages each having its own unique and fun look. They can seat around 130. These are around a 15-20 minute drive North of Bemidji. The scenery around the villages is beautiful too. They provide catering and have lots of different ethnic food choices. They have a pretty detailed rental price sheet here.
Rail River Folk School is a community center with modern rustic charm. They rent out their River Room which can seat up to 140 people. They have what they call a DIY package which includes access to a lot different kitchen items, PA system, decorating items and various vintage/industrial/salvage type furniture. You may need to rent some items (such as tables and chairs) to round out what they have on hand. They charge $1000 to rent that room out. You get the room from the afternoon before the wedding to around noon the day after. I have also seen a couple have their ceremony on the grounds down by the lake and then have their reception in the River Room.
The Sanford Center is largest venue that Bemidji has to offer. They offer onsite catering and a modern facility on the banks of lake Bemidji.
Bemidji National Guard Armory is a utilitarian but very practical place to have a larger wedding reception. It can seat just under 500 with tables and chairs provided. There is also a nice kitchen that you can use, good bathrooms and a handy nice sized parking lot. The cost is $1000. You do have to provide your own table cloths, dinner ware, food, decorations, etc. It is quite basic.
Bemidji Town and Country Club is a pretty place to have your wedding reception. They can seat approximately 200 people. In is a bright place with lots of windows that overlook Lake Bemidji on one side and the golf course on others. The main entrance does include a lot of stairs. They require that you use onsite catering. They include most of their prices on their website.
Northern Town Hall is an option for receptions of less than 100 people. It is a basic but attractive building just north of town. Tables and chairs are provided but that is about it. There is a very small kitchen that you can use. The cost is under $100. No alcohol is allowed on the premises. If you are having a small reception on a budget there are many town halls around Bemidji that can be rented for a small fee.
Holiday Inn Express (218-751-2487) in Bemidji has a banquet room that can seat up to 120 people. There is nothing fancy about the room or special about the setting (right in the heart of Bemidji) but it can be made to look quite attractive. You would need to bring your own food and drinks in. The cost is under$400 for the day.
Diamond Building and Diamond Point Park is a pretty location for a warm season wedding reception. It can seat 80 and they have tables and chairs for that number. It costs $200 plus a $300 deposit which I think is refundable. It is right next to lake Bemidji. You will have to bring your own food and drink.
Beltrami County Fairgrounds is a very basic (industrial is a word that could be used for it) venue that some couples are using. I believe it is fairly economical and it also has a good amount of space and enough bathrooms as well. This would mostly be an option for warm weather weddings as only a smaller building is heated.
Bemidji State Park has a rustic cabin with a large stone fireplace down by the lake that has seating for around 60 people with more seating available outside. You can see pictures of it here. A beautiful but rustic setting for your wedding reception. That costs $85 dollars a day. It has electricity in the building but that is basically it. There is a water spigot outside and bathrooms not far away. They also have another building called the dining hall that is up by the campground area (the above link also has pictures of this building). It is a larger building seating around 100 people (with more tables outside on the lawn) and it has a full kitchen and it also has a stone fireplace. That one costs $125 a day. No Alcohol is allowed in the park.
Your own backyard. This has the potential of being both an economical and beautiful place to have your wedding reception. However - you may want to be sure you have thought through all the different logistics such as parking, bathrooms, seating, potential bad weather, etc. Price out all the you might need to rent (or maybe you can borrow things) and then see if you still want to host or not. Many couples also use their parents or some other friends or relatives yards.
Church Buildings, Resorts, Restaurants and Schools are other reception venue options that I haven't so far covered. Church buildings usually have good space and seating but might limit your activities more than you like. Resorts don't usually have large indoor spaces but often have beautiful outdoor spaces that can be used. A fun part about doing it at a resort is that out of town guests can stay in the same place as the party. Restaurants are often limited in size but can have very good food and a fun atmosphere. Schools often have good size to them but it can take some decorating to make it so they don't look like a gymnasium.
What did I miss? Do you know of any great reception venues in the Bemidji area? Please comment and tell us all about them!
I enjoy the addition of children to the wedding party and I am sure many of you do as well. Though they can be a bit unpredictable and may cause giggling to burst out during the ceremony they also add a lot of charm.
Nearly always brides will choose to have some sort of flowers for the flower girl. There are quite a few options to choose from - let's look at some of them.
Pomanders are an easy option for a little flower girl. They also look pretty classy for a bigger flower girl. They are basically a ball of flowers with a ribbon (or twine, etc) handle. Many different flowers can be used for a pomander. They can be all one type or mixed. They could be also made with a base of moss. We can make them fit with your wedding theme.
Baskets full of petals are a common item for the flower girl. It is usually pretty easy for me to come up with plenty of petals for your flower girl to toss. Some venues do not allow petals though - so that is something to check on before going with this option.
The basket picture was one that I had fun making for one bride. The Bride and Groom's Mothers brought me their wedding dresses, some heirloom hankies, doilies and such and asked me to make them into a basket and a ring pillow. It was rather scary to cut into them but I thought it was a pretty neat way to have something meaningful for the basket and pillow. I also make other baskets that brides can buy for their flower girls.
A floral headwreath is another fun option for your flowergirl. It can be made using flowers that go along with your wedding. If you like there can be a streamer of ribbons going down the back of her head.
A Wand was what one young flower girl requested so this is what the bride and I came up with. The flower girl was pleased that we were using her idea and I thought it turned out rather pretty too.
A Basket with flowers is another option for a flower girl. It looks prettier than just petals, there aren't rules against it and the flower girl has less to do. Of course then you do miss out on having pretty petals for the Bride to walk on.
Below is another picture of a basket with flowers in it.
Other options for flowers girls include: small bouquets, flower bracelets, wrist corsages or pin-on corsages, a single flower to carry or flowers put in their hair.
Are you having a flower girl in your wedding? What sort of flowers do you plan to have for your flower girl?
This is a Pomander which is a type of bouquet often used for young girls but it can look very chic when used for brides and bridesmaids as well. These can be made with a wide variety of flowers. You can also carry more than one of them.
Another type of bouquet is an Arrangement in a Basket that can be carried. This would be more commonly carried by a flower girl but an arrangement in a basket could be lovely for a bride or bridesmaid as well.
A Composite Flower is another style of a bouquet to carry. The one on top is called a Duchess Rose and for it the petals of many roses are put together to make it look like one very large rose.
The Glamelia is another example of a Composite Flower. It is made from Gladiola blooms. The picture below is an example.
There are even more varieties but I think we will save those for another post. These will at least give you an idea of the large selection available. Now to chose what you like best!
What is your favorite style? Feel free to leave your opinion in the comments!