Friday, 27 January 2012

Simply Engaged: A new trend... tell us your thoughts...

We once blogged about the highly controversial 'Wedding List' trend and your reactions were vast and varied both for and against!

Well Simply Bows and Chair Covers have recently discovered an ever growing trend for 'Engagement Lists' among our bride to be's and want to know your thoughts...


As with the majority of our UK trends this new phenomenon has originated from the USA. It is becoming so popular that now that Debenham's has seen a doubling in the number of engagement lists registered by customers in the past year.

Wedding lists tradionally focus on items for the home; cookwear, bedding, towels and other not terribly thrilling items! The Engagement lists however seem to include the more romantic items available.... heart shaped cake tins, silver plated heart shaped photo frames etc, his and hers robes etc.

Ladies and gentleman... tell us what you think.... a delightfully romantic idea to celebrate the commitment that two people have made to each other... or a greedy excuse to get more presents in an ever-growing material world?!


Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Simply Vintage

2011 was the year of Vintage Wedding. As we move into the 2012 wedding season, vintage weddings are still emerging but are becoming even more intricately designed and themed as more and more wedding suppliers offering an array of vintage accessories have been created and are working closely with some of the leading wedding linen specialists in the UK including ourselves.

We thought we would share a little inspiration with you....

Vintage accessories by Teacups and Pearls, Penrith
Butter Linen with Peacock Blue Sashes and table runner finished with gold flock by Simply Bows and Chair Covers
Vintage accessories by Teacups and Pearls, Penrith and Olive Pintuck runner from Simply Bows and Chair Covers
Vintage birdcage filled full of spring flowers and pearls by Gardenalia
Bunting can add a lovely vintage effect to your big day
 
Floral runner from Simply Bows and Chair Covers
Vintage accessories by Teacups and Pearls, Penrith and Olive Pintuck runner and pintuck chair backs from Simply Bows and Chair Covers
Antique Pink Organza tied with vintage pearls by Simply Bows and Chair Covers
Dainty vintage bites from Teacups and Pearls

Antique pink organza sash with a lace sash tied together for an effective vintage effect by Simply Bows and Chair Covers
  
Lace napkin tie provided by Simply Bows and Chair Covers

Gold flock with matching gold flock runner over a gold pintuck runner by Simply Bows and Chair Covers

Beautiful vintage cake from Cotton and Crumbs

Vintage Crockery and crochet flowers by Teacups and Pearls

Double bows of organza mixed with lace again created a fabulous vintage effect from Simply Bows and Chair Covers

Vintage cookies displayed in a bird cage from Cotton and Crumbs

Cane hearts and floral garlands add a touch of vintage to a modern bar area by Gardenalia

Make a wish cards- tea stained and burnt at the edges to create a vintage effect

Quirky wooden signage add to your vintage theme to the exterior of your venue

Golf flock chair backs by Simply Bows and Chair Covers

Butter table linen with lace caps and matching runner by Simply Bows and Chair Covers


Vintage Favour boxes doubling up as place settings- By Wendy

Lace bows can be added to normal wooden pub/ bar chairs by Simply Bows and Chair Covers

Vintage cupcakes by Rococo Bakery
Contemporary meets vintage- gold bands with diamante's matched with a gold cloth, vintage organza overlay and gold charger plates by Simply Bows and Chair Covers


We hope we have inspired you!

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Simply Choccywoccydoodah: Need we say more?!

We can't tell you how thrilled we are that Choccywoccydoodah gave us a unique interview into their wild and wonderful world of chocolate!

For those of you who either a) aren't chocoholics or b) have been living under a rock somewhere let us explain a little about this amazingly talented company before we share with you are interivew with the team....

Choccywoccydoodah are a dedicated team of artists, designers and chocolatiers who specialise in creating decadent, bespoke wedding cakes, chocolate birthday cakes and unique chocolate gifts. They are sooooo much more than your usual cake shop. All of their cakes are made by hand and are covered in the most creative chocolate creations to tantalise your taste buds and your eyes....

What is company name?
We are called choccywoccydoodah.

 What is your line of business?
Choccywoccydoodah is an art and design focused chocolaterie based in the bohemian city of Brighton ...

How and why the company begin?
It began when the two Christine’s decided that if they had to have keys to a shop it would have to be a chocolate shop.

Why do brides come to you?
So that we can create the cake of their dreams for their special day, paired with impeccable customer service and a healthy helping of fairy dust.


What is your favourite design and why?
Our towering six tier cake called “All You Need Is Love”, because it is very colourful and brings a smile to everyone’s faces, as well as being the truest thing ever said..
What is the most popular item you supply and why?
Our towering six tier cake called “All You Need Is Love”, probably for the very same reasons mentioned above.

Where do you get your inspiration from?
All over the world, Gaudi to Caravaggio, Hockney to Lowry.

What is in store for you in 2012?
Hopefully we will have a London store very soon which we are delighted about. We are also looking forward to Valentine’s Day (the season of love), whenever there’s love, chocolate follows. There is also the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, and of course weddings, summer weddings, winter weddings, alternative weddings, weddings abroad, anti-weddings etc etc. Easter is well underway, of epic proportion, of course! Finally, Christmas, It’s looking quite busy for us this year.
Who would be your dream client, and what sort of design would you envisage for them?
We love all our customer, we adore turning their dreams into chocolate and cake reality.
What would be your top tips for brides when searching for a supplier in your industry?
The best tip we can give any brides when searching for a cake supplier is to stop their search immediately and come to us!
Where are you based and where can you supply?
Our shop and cafĂ© are based in Brighton, in the heart of the historic Lanes, but customers can order most of our products online in the UK. A selected line can be shipped to Europe too. For  countries with tough food importing laws, we have a lovely collection of non-food items, such as T-shirts, tote bags and Branded bracelets available on mail order.

How can I get in touch to discuss my requirements or place an order?
Simply email us on info@choccywoccydoodah.com or call the shop directly to speak to one of our lovely staff on 01273 329462 who will be more than happy to book you in for one of our free consultation. Little word of warning though, it involves having to eat cake.

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Simply looking for fabulous people: National Franchise Opportunities

Simply Bows and Chair Covers are frequently receiving enquiries for events in areas where we don't have an office... this is incredibly frustrating for both us and our brides/ event coordinators.

Our main hot spots for such enquiries currently are Edinburgh, Berkshire and Surrey.

Are you looking for a exciting new challenge our lifestyle business has to offer?

 

 Recruiting Franchisees

Our recruitment process has been designed to be informal and completely transparent so that you have all of the information about our franchise that you need to make an informed decision before there is any commitment.
The recruitment process takes place over two meetings. The first is to explain how the business operates and to give you some background information.
The second is for when you have decided the franchise is something you wish to pursue. Here we ask you to sign a confidentiality agreement and we will then disclose our contract supported by financial information.

Franchising

Franchising is now a well established industry with a successful track record, and you’re possibly already aware of some of the general potential benefits franchising offers, such as funding arrangements with most of the high street banks, operating your own business but with the ongoing support from the franchisor. As the franchise network grows additional benefits will include greater brand awareness which in turn generates more demand for your service. You’re in business for yourself but not by yourself.

The Simply Bows & Chair Covers Franchise

The franchise is described as a ‘lifestyle’ business because it allows you to have the flexibility to have a great lifestyle whilst working from home. Franchisees need to be confident about their business the service provided, and they must also enjoy meeting people, socialising and talking about the benefits of the service they provide. Our franchise is based around a franchisee working to provide the service in specific territories. Franchisees will be responsible for promoting the business as well as delivering the service. Each territory is protected, and this will allow individual franchisees to build up their businesses over the long term.
Our business format has been designed to be as simple and straightforward as possible therefore be managed by most people given the right training.

Our service

We provide high quality chair covers and table linen with a creative edge for people who wish to add a touch of glamour to their events. The UK has a vibrant and varied events calendar. Our clients range from event organisers, venues to private individuals booking their own wedding. Our services are in demand throughout the year and we have built up a preferred supplier status with many of our clients through the great work we have done regularly in their venues. We also get many referrals from our brides and other service providers in the industry.

Personal qualities required

We are dedicated to providing a high quality service that regularly exceeds customers expectations because we want repeat business and we want satisfied customers to tell others about our service. Our prime concern is to ensure that customers get value for money with a service that reflects well on their event. In order to succeed, you must have high personal standards and a commitment to providing a quality service.
In addition, you need to be organised, self motivated and have a determination to succeed. If you go ahead with this business, then the onus will be on you to manage it properly, giving it the attention it deserves. We will assist you with training and support, but you must be ready to work to develop and maintain the business at all times.

 Am I suitable?

Ideally, you will have some business experience, attention to detail, and of course understand the principles of good customer service. However, we offer a full training and support programme to assist with the development of these skills. You do need to be prepared to work hard, follow our systems and be fully committed to developing the business off the ground in your area.

What does the Simply Bows & Chair Covers Franchise offer?

The franchise offers all of the initial training and support that you need to help get your business off the ground. The first twelve months of any business is crucial, and our comprehensive franchise support service includes:
  • Use of the unique Simply Bows & Chair Covers brand
  • Pre opening support to establish the business
  • Assistance with the production of a business plan and raising finance, if it is required
  • An in depth induction training programme
  • Comprehensive local launch strategy, including marketing and promotional activities
  • Ongoing advice and support, with access to our in depth knowledge and experience
  • Stock
  • Marketing Collateral
  • A business operating manual (containing details of our operating systems, marketing, administration, etc)
  • Initial stationery pack
  • Uniform
  • Point of Sale

As a franchisee, what is my role?

As a franchisee, you will be responsible for the delivery of the Simply Bows and Chair Covers service. Marketing the business, dealing with client enquiries and of course solving any problems that you encounter are all part of the role of the franchisee. There is also an accounts and administration role which you will need to deal with effectively to ensure that the business is run smoothly. Most franchisees will appoint an accountant to support them in this area.

Do I get a defined territory which is also protected?

Everyone has their own defined and protected territory. We know the size of area that is required to make a viable business and will provide you with all the relevant information. As a franchisee you will be expected to respect the territory boundaries to protect your own business and that of your colleagues. 

If you would like more information on our franchise opportunities please contact Sarah on enquiries@simplybowsandchaircovers.co.uk 

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Simply Successful: The Tesco Interview

Simply Bows and Chair Covers Managing Director Sarah Pittendrigh this month features in the Tesco Magazine!



The article titled 'The Redundancy Survivors' tells the tale of successful business people who have created a fabulous business after hitting the ever so familiar depths of redundancy in our struggling economic climate.

For more information of buying a Simply Bows and Chair Covers franchise click here



Read the full article here!

Friday, 13 January 2012

Simply Engaged! Proposal Stories....

Last year the Simply Bows and Chair Covers team heard some wild and wonderful proposal stories from our lovely couples that passed through our offices. Some warmed our hearts, some made us smile and some made us gasp!

Brides to be in 2012 we want to know your proposal stories! Please share them with us by commenting on this blog :)

As a starting point we thought we would share with you a unique proposal we heard about over the pond in Atlanta, Georgia. Men of the UK... can you beat this??!



Nornally marriage proposals involve an air of romance, (hopefully) a diamond ring and a bended knee but filmmaker Walt Thompson, 29, wanted his proposal to be unique and that it was!


The newly engaged couple


He created a stop-motion animation movie featuring lego to pop the question to Nealey Dozier, 28. He spent two-and-a-half days on the project, taking over 2,600 photos of a Lego couple to create the three minute film charting how they met and fell in love right up until the proposal itself and even shows a clip of their wedding followed by the words 'Will you marry me'!

See the video for yourself here!

Monday, 9 January 2012

Simply Vera Wang: Bridal Collection 2012




For 2012, designer Vera Wang set the bridal (and fashion) world ablaze when she presented a daring collection of all black and nude gowns on the runway. "The fact we did a lot of black made me feel that bridal was being viewed in a much more fashion way," Wang told Brides magazine during an exclusive interview at her New York atelier, adding, "It's time for brides to see themselves as seductive, sentential, and to have that freedom."