Last week on Wedding Wednesday, I mentioned that we chose to purchase most of our dish and silverware for our big day. Why?
Let’s tally up a quick estimate of what I could have spent to rent dinnerware for a night shall we?
- Plates – average cost of $1.25 per plate x 250 people = $312.50
- Cups – average cost of $.60 per cup x 250 people = $150.00
- Silverware – average cost of $2.00 for a spoon/knife/fork x 250 = $500
At the risk of sounding ineloquent, I was too poor for that. Honestly, to pour $962.50 (approximately) down the drain so that people could eat off of used forks and only use one cup each? No thanks. At the time I didn’t think that it would have been acceptable to use plasticware for our dinner, but now that I’ve been to a few more weddings, I realize that I would have been totally fine to do that. Instead, I bought all of the aforementioned needs. I figured that even if I spent the nine hundred bucks on spoons, at least I could sell it to other brides or silverware fetishists to make some of my money back. So off I went to the Dollar Store. I picked up 250 white circle large dinner plates and some serving-ware.
I begrudgingly rented our tablecloths after months of searching for an alternative. However, I would have had to dry clean each one post-wedding before selling, I would have had to pay significantly more than they cost as rentals and I don’t think many brides even consider buying used tablecloths anyway. I’m still a little miffed that I had to rent them though because there was absolutely no good deal to be found. Trust me, I looked. And looked. And looked. All of the tablecloth makers in the world got together and set a price minimum. Grr. At least they looked beautiful and I didn’t have to clean them after our giant dinner!
Next, Mom and I sleuthed Ikea and found an AMAZING deal on cups. I tell you, the wedding spirits and sale spirits were in cahoots on this day. I bought cups that were about half the size of regular cups, but cost $.10 each. Since I’m the kind of girl who likes a drink with dinner but LOVES water, I was hoping that I could find some way to give each person two cups. Lemonade with dinner? Sure. But that sticky sweetness post-dancing is not necessarily what the doctor ordered. So finding really inexpensive cups meant that I spent $60 and purchased more than 400 moderately sized glasses. Everyone could have water and beverages! Heavenly. Lastly, the silverware. Now that I’m googling silverware rental costs, just for the sake of being consistent with research for price comparison in this post, I see that forks are a mere $.60 to rent. Well then.
When I was searching, high and low, the least expensive silverware that I found cost a buck a piece to rent. No. No thank you. So I bought my silverware for less than a dollar a piece. I can’t remember my exact pricing, but then again, the website I bought them from no longer exists, so isn’t this a helpful little blurb here?
After the silverware arrived and we sent it through our dishwasher once (no factory dust for my guests please!), Mom and I sat down and wrapped them up with white napkins and tied them off with jute twine. I wanted to use a cute little ribbon but I eventually decided on the twine because I liked that it tied in a texture and a little bit of that natural/Southwestern feeling we were going for.
After we chose our caterers, we knew what serving ware we would need. Off to Ikea, our second home. We purchased two large rectangular white wicker baskets and two blue bread liners so that we could put our rolls in them. We also bought some salad bowls and some bamboo kitchen utensils. Since we were lucky enough to be able to use a friend’s estate for the wedding, I certainly didn’t want to assume that we would imposing further by using their personal kitchenware. So I made sure to buy some blue oven mitts, dishrags and bamboo kitchen utensils.
The last thing that we purchased for the big day was a collection of drink dispensers. Wal-Mart sells them at $15 a pop, and I really loved the ones we got. They have a hollow cylindrical base that can be removed and filled with absolutely anything, like ice or decorations. We filled our bases with both ice and lemon/limes. This keeps the beverages cold without sacrificing liquid space, lessening refill time and increasing eye candy!
As we collected all of these items, we packed them into Rubbermaid bins, labeled them and stacked them. When it came time to set up for the wedding, we simply stacked the boxes into everyone’s cars, trucks and vans and set off for the venue.