Monday, December 10, 2007

The Schoolhouse

When my husband and I selected a Bed-n-Breakfast - The National Trail Schoolhouse Inn (also known as the Brownsville Schoolhouse) as our wedding location, I did not expect it to change our lives in more than just a "this is where we started our life together" way.

Shocking - I know - but I made my own invitations, programs and just about everything else used in our wedding. The bridal coordinator at the Schoolhouse was so impressed with my work that she asked me to put together a few samples of things that she could share with her brides. I had spent so much time researching invitations at that point, that this "connection" she was forging was just the boost that I needed to start this business.

Stacy and I dedicated hours upon hours upon hours on developing samples, pricing and order forms for her. We put together books of wording and typestyle options. We drove two hours down to Brownsville, OH to deliver them in person. I had never been so proud of anything I had done in my life. My product was out there and she was going to sell it! Driving away from the Schoolhouse that day felt like a new beginning. Little did I know that it was really the end.

I never heard from that coordinator again. Every phone call and email I sent went unanswered. Everyone who knew of the situation urged me to drive down and pick up my portfolio. They all seemed to think that she was probably using my work as a model for her own benefit...but I refused to deal with the situation. It was easier for me to not know what happened than to ruin my memory of the Schoolhouse.

Fast Forward a couple of years to just a few months ago when I wanted to surprise my husband with a trip to the schoolhouse for our anniversary. Our business had grown so much that I didn't much care about that initial portfolio. When I tried to set up the reservation, I found out that the Schoolhouse was no longer accepting reservations because it was "for sale". I was shocked. I toyed with the idea of moving down there to run the schoolhouse and then I remembered that money does not grow on trees. I cried. For two days I cried. It was over....The very place that inspired the start of my marriage and my business no longer existed.

Today I got an email. It was titled " Invitations" :

Hi there. My name is Tanya and I am taking over the National Trail Schoolhouse Inn in Brownsville, OH. I ran across your scrapbook and box of samples the previous owner had. I would like to know if it is current pricing or old. I would love to update these and use them as part of our event coordination service if possible. If you could send a price list to me, I can compare it to what we have. There were no dates on anything, so I am unsure if they are new or old.

Looking forward to talking with you.

Tanya (last name omitted for blog)
Event Coordinator/Innkeeper

I feel as if everything has come full circle! Tanya and I talked tonight and I think she is going to be the best thing that has happened to that place to date (and not just because she wants to show our products)! Needless to say, Dave and I are finally able to go back down to spend the night and reminisce on Tuesday! I am so excited!!
I wish I had the ability to "make a long story short",

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

10 things we have learned over Thanksgiving Weekend

  1. We do not like people who wallpaper directly onto drywall
  2. Sanding said wallpaper off of the wall adds days onto your project
  3. Mineral Spirits help with getting spilled paint out of the carpet
  4. It's a major buzzkill when 91.3 The Summit changes formatting
  5. It would have been much easier just to paint around the thermostat
  6. It takes 8 minutes to get from the Studio to Home Depot
  7. Stacy never remembers to plug the fridge back in
  8. More purple would have been okay!
  9. The cute little pictures on the IKEA Boxes and in the directions do not in any way make up for the fact that hardware is NOT included
  10. "Well, we're going running!"

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Pardon the dust!

Its been nearly two years since we have expanded beyond the comfort of working from home. I had toyed with the idea of expanding for a while and when we started looking at available space in the Falls, every place we found was all wrong. The spaces were too small, too large, too expensive, short on parking, up three flights of stairs .....and the list goes on. Finally we discovered what would become our current location on Craig's List. Everything about it was perfect....except the decor. Our intent was to remodel right away....but business happened - lots of it.....and we could never find enough time to allow for the disruption. For almost two years, our clients have been welcomed by textured wall paper and paisley border in jewel tones. (thank you for not holding that against us!)

The time has finally come! We have carefully planned our production schedule to allow us to remodel the studio over Thanksgiving weekend. We are so excited!! We hope to have everything back in order by Sunday....but you never know what we might run into! If you are in the area and still see the lights on at 3 am, please feel free to stop by and bring us caffeinated beverages!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Fun Facts - Installment 1

We found these wedding statistics to be pretty interesting and we think you will too! I would have expected more people to get hitched in Vegas though. We seem to work with quite a few Vegas weddings, so this number was shockingly less that I imagined. I would love to see an overall"destination wedding" statistic. Anyone?

  • There are somewhere around 2.5 million weddings every year in the United States.
  • June is the most popular month for weddings, then August, followed by September and October.
  • The average budget for a wedding is estimated to be $20,000.
  • So... about $40 BILLION is spent on weddings every year in the U.S.
  • There are a few people around who believe this number is as high as $70 BILLION a year.
  • A couple will spend an average of $3,800 for their honeymoon.
  • 99% of newly married couples will plan and take a honeymoon.
  • Couples are waiting longer to get married.
  • The average age of the first time bride is 26, the first time groom 28.
  • The average household income of a newly married couple is $55,000/annually.
  • More than 115,000 weddings are performed in Las Vegas every year!
  • More than 20,000 weddings are performed in Hawaii every year.
  • The average wedding has 175 guests (invited).
  • A recent study indicates 1/2 of all brides will use a wedding consultant or wedding day coordinator.

Friday, November 2, 2007

One more item on the to do list!

Okay, so we are jumping into the land of the blog! It may be a few weeks before we begin updating and decorating this new adventure, but we promise that once our new website is up and running, the blog will get alot of attention!

In the meantime, feel free to send us suggestions of topics you would like to see covered in our blog! What do our brides really want? Is it etiquette information, photos of stuff we are working on, current trends in color and style? Please let us know!

Stephanie and Stacy