The next time you’re at a wedding, take a good look around.
Not at the ring bearer and flower girl jumping around with frosting all over their faces. And, no, not at the tipsy uncle haphazardly trying to dance.
Take a look at the gargantuan outdoor tent, comfy white chairs, silky table linens, shiny dishware and even the twinkling lights. Everything you see was carefully picked out, planned and prepared.
“Some people don’t know. They think it magically comes together,” said Barbara Yontz, outside sales consultant for Classic Party Rentals in Bluffton.
Of all the endless to-dos, the wedding accoutrements — the very details that set the tone of the celebration — are often overlooked.
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“It’s one of those things,” Yontz said. “You don’t think, ‘Wow, these chairs are great.’ But when you don’t have them, they stick out like a sore thumb.”
Party rentals rank up the to-do list alongside wedding consultant. As soon as the guest list is narrowed down, it’s important to locate a party rental company. Yontz said as long as she has a ballpark figure, she can work with the couple-to-be on acquiring what they need; they can wait up to 48 hours before the wedding to give the final head count, in fact.
But what makes a good party rental company?
The Proof Is In the Products
Classic Party Rentals offers an elaborate showroom, where brides and grooms can garner inspiration for their big day.
“Our showroom is one of our best assets,” Yontz said. “Not every party rental company has a showroom.”
Yontz said she stays on top of the trends by scouring Web sites, such as www.marthstewart.com and leafing through endless bridal magazines. She uses this inspiration to set up a sample reception table dressed to the nines with linens, fine china, centerpiece and more.
“We draw up a table with the colors the couple wants,” Yontz said about working with brides and grooms. “Then, they can see it brought to life. It’s like getting your hair done before the actual wedding day.”
Classic Party Rentals also offers a book of photographs and other helpful information of indoor and outdoor weddings throughout the area that they’ve furnished. Yontz said it’s important for people planning the wedding to see that there is an art to wedding décor in the Lowcountry. Not every contemporary trend works well with the live oaks, Spanish moss or the miles of pristine beaches.
“What we do in our California store doesn’t go well over here,” Yontz said. “Our views are so hard to compete with. It’s better to embrace and work with them. It’s difficult to beat the beautiful palmettos and wonderful marsh views. We incorporate the backdrop into the wedding rather than completely transform the venue, which will break the bank while doing so.”
A Good Reputation
As with every other vendor associated with weddings, do your research. Visit the store, ask questions and check references.
Perhaps the most important question to think about: Can the party rental store accommodate your needs — whether you’re planning a “big, fat wedding” with all of the trimmings or a simple beach ceremony?
“I had a bride come in with a party of eight,” Yontz said. “I spent just as much time with her as I would have with a tent rental.”
Classic Party Rentals typically handles between 30 and 50 weddings per weekend during the height of the wedding season. In addition to ceremonies and receptions, the company also is equipped to furnish bridal luncheons, rehearsal dinners and even bachelorette parties.
“We have the same people,” Yontz said. “We’ve been doing the same events we used to. But now, we have support from other locations. If there’s something we need, we can call up our neighboring stores.”
For more information about Classic Party Rentals, call 837-5090 or visit their Web site at www.classicpartyrentals.com.
(843) 368-9437 (c)