Logo Design: The Bridal Kool-Aid Cocktail Hour

A few weeks ago, I blogged briefly about being a featured vendor on Rogue Bride.  I was fortunate to be able to meet up with Lauren in person for happy hour not too long afterward, and I learned all about her new podcast with Christie from Hindsight Bride, “The Bridal Kool-Aid Cocktail Hour.”  It’s all about making good choices for yourself in your wedding planning process (rather than following the crowd, spending unnecessarily, and “drinking the kool-aid”).

Now, I love beautiful over-the-top amazing and/or frilly weddings as much as the next girl, but as I have said over and over, there is no one way to plan a wedding, and there is no reason you can’t plan a beautiful wedding without spending a ton of money.  It’s all about being realistic – and creative – with your budget.  Which is why I enjoyed the perspective so much at the Cocktail Hour – it’s all about making smart choices, with a good helping of snark.  Seriously these two ladies crack me up.

Lauren and Christie asked me if I’d be up for creating a logo for the podcast, and of course I said yes!

They gave me a font they loved, a color, some ideas, and said “go for it!”  I started off with the idea of doing a traditional “graphic” logo in Illustrator and even made a couple of attempts at a cocktail glass.  But I have to tell you that it was boring, boring, boring.  This show is anything but boring!  The most important part of graphic design, in my opinion, is editing, during both design conception and execution.  In other words, I knew I had to edit my original approach to the project.  That’s when I realized that what this project needed was a photograph.  A really interesting photograph.

I’m not a photographer, so the task was daunting.  I actually started off with a bunch of photos of the full cocktail glass with the engagement ring (not mine!) floating inside, but I wasn’t in love with the way they looked.  More boring.  More idea editing.

I spilled a little bit (actively, taking photos of the spillage).  I just started playing around with the spill and realized that I really liked the look, and that the spilled drink went well with the irreverence of the whole show.  So I styled and shot and restyled and reshot and finally came up with this:

Original Photo

I loved the imagery of the spilled cocktail with the engagement ring!  All it needed was some processing (aka: more editing, this time of the photo itself), and about 2 hours over Skype laughing until my stomach hurt (and nerding out over the English language) with Christie and Lauren.

The resulting logo is subtle and edgy, interesting and fun.  We all love it.  It’s easily one of my favorite design pieces ever, and I’m so proud of it!

The Bridal Kool Aid Cocktail Hour

The second podcast (“Forget the Cake, Let Them Drink Booze”) went live this morning, and it’s SO good!  If you are planning your wedding, or have ever planned a wedding, or like weddings…  Or just like snark…  It’s totally worth checking out on iTunes or by clicking on the logo below!!!  (iTunes is being stupid right now, so I’ll update the link as soon as it’s started behaving again!)


Bridal Koolaid Cocktail Hour, DIY Cake
Word of warning: The language does get a bit salty in places (since I tend toward wholesomeness online, I want to make sure I make that disclaimer!).

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What Sets You Apart From Other Planners?

Two weeks ago I had a phone consultation with a potential (now, a new) client.  They live 2,000 miles away, so meeting in person was out of the question.  It’s always nerve-wracking trying to figure out how to ask the right questions of one another so that you feel comfortable with each other (both as potential planner and as potential client).  I asked the couple a bunch of questions (why they were having their wedding here, for example, and what they wanted the day to look like…  My favorite answer was to my question of what they wanted their guests to walk away thinking: “That was the best wedding ever!”  But I digress…).  Then it was their turn to ask me.

The groom had obviously prepared, because his first question was a doozy.  “What sets you apart from other planners?”

I have to admit, I said out loud that he was asking the hard questions!  It’s so difficult to compare one planner to another.  But I really liked my response, and I wanted to share.

There are three things that make me unique among planners in San Diego.  Some planners share one or two of these with me.  But I think the combination of all three is what makes me special.

  1. I believe in exceptional service.  I take on a maximum of two weddings per month, and never schedule two on the same weekend.  This is by design, for a number of different reasons, including that I want to have enough energy to really make your wedding day amazing.  But it also means that you will be my only client for the week of your wedding.  That entire week leading up to your wedding day I’ll be able to focus on your wedding (I may still be talking and meeting with other brides and grooms, but as yours is the only wedding I’ll have for that whole week, you’ll be able to get almost all of my attention!).
  2. I am realistic about costs.  I’d never, never tell a couple that they couldn’t have a wedding for their budget.  It’s all about prioritizing and making alternate arrangements, but I’ve seen beautiful weddings at every price point.  I’d also never tell a couple that they could have a wedding for X amount, while knowing that it will cost them X+.  If I’m given a budget, I’ll do everything in my power to stick to it.  You’ll also be heavily involved in any budget changes, if they do arise.  I will work every bit of magic to get you the best wedding day possible within your means, and I am realistic with my pricing.  I may not be the cheapest wedding planner out there, but I work hard to give all of my brides and grooms the best value, and the benefit of my years as a nonprofit gala planner.
  3. I’m not just a coordinator.  I’m an Event Designer.  This means that I do more than just tell people what to do on your wedding day (seriously!).  I can help you conceptualize your wedding style, find pieces that will fit within your overall look, feel, and budget, and tie it all together.  I also own boxes and boxes of unique and vintage decor (as well as some standard pieces) to help my couples make their vision come to life without breaking the bank.  And don’t forget that I design event-related paper goods, too!
In addition to these traits, I really do care about my brides and grooms, and work as hard as I can to make sure that they have the best wedding day they possibly can.  That is the number one reason why I do this job.  And I love my job!