As I mentioned in my last post, I got my save-the-dates from the vendor blimpcat on Etsy. We had some issues with the postal service, but when I finally got them in I was DELIGHTED! Blimpcat had wrapped the cards up in this adorable blimpcat custom wrapping paper and tied it with a bow and put it in a box with pretty tissue paper.
We had one tiny problem: the somewhat glossy finish on the card makes even permanent markers smear. Luckily, our brilliant friend John recommended we use shipping labels. Not only did this solve the ink smudging problem but also the terrible handwriting problem that both my fiance and I have been stricken with. My handwriting would have taken those beautiful cards from a 10 to a 2 in as little as a few pen strokes.
So we bought Avery shipping labels from Amazon.com (use that Prime membership!) and used the template that they have available for free at www.avery.com/templates to create a 10-page PDF. After trying and failing to print them on our own, we brought them to FedEx where they printed them for FREE! I love free. Thanks, FedEx/Kinkos. The labels & ugly Liberty Bell stamps have now been affixed and our save-the-dates are currently en route to a home near you. Total shipping costs including labels: $40.
I would like to take a moment to thank my wonderful fiance for helping book the DJ. Thank you, my love. ;) Who knew DJs were so darn expensive?! Goodness gracious! There was a moment there in our planning where I thought we would have an iPod (or in our case, Zune) wedding. I was given many wonderful recommendations for DJs that I'm sure are great, but I can't justify spending that much for a DJ when I have my eyes on a new house. I also know that a DJ is important and can make or break an event. Conundrum.
I started researching and comparing rates online and panic ensued. Almost every DJ was over $1000 for 4 hours, with a couple $795+ exceptions. The new "it" DJ group for the nontraditional Chicago wedding, Toast & Jam, came highly recommended.....for a quoted $1295. I know you guys rock and everything, but it's just not in this savvy bride's budget. So then I remembered the DJ from our company Christmas party last year. Rafael and I liked them so much that we were talking about them days later. They really felt the vibe of the crowd and kept everybody dancing. They even had Lupe Fiasco in their library! Thumbs up!
I asked our HR department for the information and they were very helpful in giving me the name (One Stop DJ Service) and their pricing from last year. I knew we were in business. I contacted them (despite their terrible, horrible, ugly website) and was promptly contacted with a quote for 6 hours plus 1 hour of set-up/tear-down time at $795. After about of day of not responding to them, they called me and left a voicemail saying that if we pay the deposit by the end of the month, they would take $100 off of the price. Better yet - if we pay in FULL by the end of the month, they would take $200 off the price. Now we're talking. I handed it off to my fiance and he got them all paid up and booked for the low low price of $595 (though we miss every penny).
218 days to go...