Every couple wants their wedding to be unique, meaningful, and fun for their friends and family. One great way to achieve this is to shop local for your Chattanooga wedding. Shopping locally will not only help to make your wedding day classically Chattanooga, but it will also lend a unique, local vibe to the event while supporting local businesses and the community. Making an effort to shop “small” for your wedding day not only adds authenticity to the entire endeavor, but also you can feel good knowing you are stimulating your local economy, supporting small businesses, and furthering the livelihoods of artists and makers right in your own town.
Get Inventive While You Plan
In addition to shopping locally for the traditional elements of the day– like the wedding attire, cake, and wedding florals– there are endless other creative ways to incorporate local vendors and artists. Our team at Howe Farms has got a few ideas to share with you for inspiration as you try to shop local for your Chattanooga wedding. We love being a part of events in which our wedding couples successfully showcase the Scenic City’s creative spirit through every little detail of the day.
Shop Local for Wedding Favors & Gifts
Planning and hosting a wedding generally comes with a lot of opportunities for gift giving. Of course, you have the traditional bride and groom gifts, as well as gifts for the members of your wedding party. You also have an opportunity to shop local for wedding favors. One great idea is to incorporate gift cards to local establishments or restaurants for people who helped with planning and executing the event. We also love the idea of locally-made jewelry for your bridesmaids, which they could even wear at the wedding.
When it comes to wedding favors for your guests, there are so many options that also help support local Chattanooga businesses. You could give delicious handmade chocolates from the Hot Chocolatier, or special macarons from Noogarons. The options are limitless!
Use a Local Designer for Invites & More
Another great way to support local artists and small businesses through your wedding is by using a local graphic designer to create custom invites and programs for your big day. You’ll get a totally custom design that is perfectly you, instead of something a hundred other brides have used and guests have seen before. Take it a step further, and have that designer create a custom t-shirt design for everyone involved in your wedding day! This also makes for a great gift and lasting way to commemorate the event.
Use a Small, Local Print Shop
When it comes to those custom invites, programs, thank you cards, and more, why not use a local print shop to have them made here in town? We love Chattanooga’s Wonderpress, a local digital print shop with “old school production values.” This small local business stocks more than 150 different paper types, and can give any print project the unique style it deserves. The Wonderpress production team also has extensive experience, and can handle short runs and quick turnaround projects too. You will not be disappointed!
Local Food and Drink
Of course you’ll likely go local for the catering, but you could even have a local chef create a special menu for your wedding meal or a local mixologist craft a custom wedding cocktail to serve your guests. The sky really is the limit here. Incorporate local ingredients and even condiments like the 423’s beloved Hoff & Pepper Hoff Sauce. Little nods like this will be fun and intriguing to your guests, and again, contribute to giving your wedding that Chattanooga vibe.
Impress and delight your wedding guests with locally roasted coffee drinks at the reception, when you roll out the coffee cart. Mad Priest Coffee Roasters is one great option for this, as they have a lot of experience working events with their mobile coffee bar set up, locally-roasted beans, and talented baristas to whip up concoctions. Wine and dine your guests, then caffeinate them so they’re ready to party the night away on the dance floor.
Local Art for Decor
Another big part of a wedding event is decor. So why not get super creative and bring in some local artwork for a wow factor your guests will appreciate? This can also make for some great photo opportunities for you and your guests as well. You could literally do anything with this! From lavish floral installations to custom photo booth set ups, bring out the big guns with the help of a local artist you love. Ashley Folkner is one local talent whose work we admire. You may have seen incredible art installations of hers around town at places like Anthropologie in Warehouse Row.
With a little effort and strategic planning, you can ensure your special day has all the charm the beautiful city itself boasts. We hope these ideas for how to shop local for your Chattanooga wedding have inspired you to keep local vendors and artists in mind as you piece together your event. Of course, we’d love to host you and your guests at our Howe Farms property, and party with you when you say “I do!” Happy planning.