Friday, November 09, 2007

Linens: Luxury or Low Cost option?

The key element for my reception will be aubergine/eggplant table linens. I'd really like it to be the main color and focus for my overall design. Therefore, I can use more cost effective flower arrangements, versus spending tons of money on out of season dark purple flower arrangements. Instead, I can choose cheaper florals in ivory with a few purple accents to tie them in.

I started my linen search with Cloth Connection, the provider of the linens I first fell in love with in Bride&Bloom Magazine. That's when I learned the difference between lamours, satins and duponi silks. They all have a sheen, but they are of different weights and thicknesses. The linen I had seen in particular was called aubergine lamour. Once I found that out, I searched other websites for something similar. BBJ Linen offered an eggplant lamour and Mosaic carried a polyester in eggplant.

Once I had the three options, I decided to start doing some pricing. I wanted to use long rectangular tables versus rounds, but it just doesn't work in our venue and triples the cost of linens, so I inquired about 120 inch rounds. Here's the breakdown for 10 tables and 75 guests:

Cloth Connection: $32.95 each, dinner napkins $1.95 = $475.75

BBJ Linens
: $28.75 each, dinner napkins are $1.80 = $422.50

Mosaic: $10 each, dinner napkins 75 cents = $156.25

Looking at this, it would seem the obvious choice would be the Eggplant Polyester from Mosaic, but it's a completely different, way less luxurious fabric. So just to get a better idea of the comparison, I ordered swatches from BBJ and Mosaic. When I got the lamour from BBJ, I immediately loved it. Then I got the poly. It's...okay. The shade of purple is the exact same (though the photos show otherwise), which is nice. But, it's not soft and heavy like the lamour and it has a grainy texture. I know it won't lay the same way on the tables as the lamour. So before I ask for your help on the decision, heres a compromise I've come up with so there are three options to choose from.

I could alternate table linens on every other round. I could use the lamour 120" cloths on 5 tables, and luxury ivory linens (provided free of charge by my venue) with a lamour runner (in eggplant) on the other 5. The total cost for this would be 291.25. It won't be as rich of a look, but it will be more luxurious.

I wouldn't be breaking it down so much, but I've already gone over budget on my venue/catering/ cake (which came as a package) by a few thousand and my photographer by a few hundred, so I've got to start cutting corners somewhere.

So what do I choose? Please help...

1. Lamour table cloths and napkins from BBJ: $422.50

2. Poly table cloths and napkins from Mosaic: $156.25

3. 5 Lamour table cloths and 5 runners, and napkins from BBJ: $291.25


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you should go for the cheapest option (easy to say when you aren't the bride, I know). If you were within budget up to now I'd say splurge but if you save here then you will kind of cancel out the extra you payed for photography. Really you are going for a certain image so it's the color that matters most...guests will see the rich purple color. No one will be feeling or inspecting the quality of fabric. Even if the fabric was spectacular I bet that's not what anyone would be talking aobut the next day. I think your splurged in the right areas that will have a big impact...food, venue, photography.

That being said I can't tell you the number of times I've talked myself into the more expensive options!

Saturday, November 10, 2007 10:17:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would go for the cheapest as well (#2), as Ms. CH mentioned, there are other more important/noticeable things that you could spend more on. I would rather put that extra money on more photos or the honeymoon :)

Saturday, November 10, 2007 9:14:00 PM  
Blogger Bsam said...

I agree with Miss CH and Moi, the actual fabric won't be tested, probably just spilled on! The color is what will make it pop! Unfortunaatly cutting corners is necessary, but I think you found a way to do it and still get a great ambience and beautiful linens, it look great!

Monday, November 12, 2007 10:11:00 AM  

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