Dear Wedding Decorator: Where do you recommend I get married near San Gabriel?

DSC04747Q: Hope this finds you well. I had a great time reading your blogs and found some interesting ideas for my wedding in September this year. My fiancé and I are searching for a perfect venue for our tight budget. We are looking at about 50 to 60 people, and less than $5000 for ceremony and reception including catering and decorations. With your excellent past experience in the industry, I am wondering if you could kindly provide some recommendations? Preferred locations are anywhere near San Gabriel. Much appreciation for your attentions and I hope to hear from you soon.

A: If you are looking for a venue near San Gabriel, I would recommend Almansor Court in Alhambra. I can’t say for certain if they will fit the $5,000 budget for ceremony and reception, including catering and decorations, but they do have the details of their wedding packages available online — always a plus in my opinion.

Almansor Court gazebo in blueI know there are also a number of picturesque country clubs in the San Gabriel Valley, including San Gabriel, Altadena, La Cañada Flintridge and Azusa.

Dear Wedding Decorator: How much would you charge to decorate a wedding of 75+ people?

IMG_7766A: Prices on decorations wouldn’t (at least, they shouldn’t) be dependent on the number of people attending. If I were charging, the factors I’d be considering would be the materials desired (number of arrangements, types of flowers, draping, equipment), time (how much time needed to create arrangements, set up, break down), and location (far vs. close by) — that sort of thing.

I couldn’t really give you a ballpark on what a potential decoration fee would be without those factors. And beware florists and flower shops who give you a flat fee without asking for those particulars — either they will tack on fees for any or every little thing or give you the lowest-quality flowers and decorations available. You get what you pay for!