We’ve had some fairly interesting trades submitted in exchange for wedding officiant services, party planning, photography and other religious services and ceremonies.
Will we consider just about any trade? You bet but, we must exclude firearms, livestock and non running vehicles as we don’t have a sellers license for guns or a pasture for cattle and no mechanic on duty to repair vehicles.
Recently, Chad came to us with a request for a family reunion to meet the relatives he’s never seen for the first time. His trade was a work truck that needed a bit of body work but was in good running condition with new tires. Trading For a Family Reunion With Catering & Event Planning- The Pawning Planners is a video of my twin and I meeting and appraising the trade offered. Often we need to evaluate the number of guests and expenses involved prior to committing to an event or ceremony because we don’t “always hit a lick” or make a profit. Approximately 10-20% of the time, I sponsor the event by selling Pawning Planners Apparel or Texas Twins Treasures inventory offered in my storefront. Items I’ve taken in trade have been painstakingly refurbished prior to offering them up for sale. Texas Twins Treasures turnaround times usually involve a 7-10 process to restain and reupholster furniture items while “quick flips” of couture clothing or jewelry often require little more than light cleaning.
Why do I often use my home for a wedding venue? I never planned this but my home office is located here and often clients love the unique and funky decor in this old mansion that features leaded glass windows, chandeliers, and mirrored walls with a long hallway for Brides to enter. I videotaped my home recently for a Bride who hadn’t been here before- WorthamWorld My Home, Workroom & Occasional Wedding Venue gives you a quick tour of my home that is also decorated in furniture that I’ve flipped for over the past 5 years and refurbished. Occasionally, I fall in love with pieces and decide to keep them.I often arrive on location with my “team” who are also members of my family because I’ve learned the past 5 years to be prepared for anything from a bilingual translator to a set up and tear down team and anything in between. What sets me apart from other vendors aside from the bartering aspects? I also loan inventory to clients so they won’t have to buy these items themselves.
My client base is compromised of working class families who struggle to afford something extravagant like a wedding, funeral, baptism, anniversary party, birthday party, estate liquidation or anything in between. Loaning wedding bouquets, boutenniers, pillars, cake platters & serving sets is unheard of but, I’ve spent a lot of time and my own money to overcome every obstacle for our clients. In fact, my inventory is used at 7 out of 10 of our events. My grandnieces are often involved at our events and enjoy the glamour and excitement of a wedding or other event. They also love appraising trades of old toys, electronics and video games because they work for tips or “flips” of unique items they find while digging through a clients home, barn or trailer to “find a treasure.” Involving my entire family in this venture was never planned- my family saw the impact of what I was doing to give anyone regardless of their income a Dream Event and jumped on board. From sanding and painting to reupholstering an item, my knowledge of furniture and antiques spans 30 years because in order to generate a profit, I must know the value of the item submitted for trades. When something comes up that I’m unfamiliar with- I research the market value and weigh the expense and time to refurbish it in order to generate revenue. Often, funds from the sale of one item are “rolled into” my inventory to add more items to loan to clients or but camera equipment or pay my web designer,Michaelwho hosts and manages Texas Twins Events, Texas Twins Treasures, Texas Twins Tv and The Pawning Planners websites. I write all of the blogs for my websites myself and use my creative content to stay on top of Google search engines. Our clients are often as unique as my team and come from all walks of life sharing a common bond, the desire for a Dream Event with little or no money to pay for it.
Understanding their issues came from my own experience at my son’s wedding at a time of financial crisis for my husband and I after the real estate market crashed. For three years, my husband struggled to find work outside of the only industry he had worked in for 40 years.
Being creative and driven, I created the bridal bouquet, three bridesmaids, three junior bridesmaids, Maid of Honor, 11 boutenniers, 12 corsages, 16 Centerpieces and the Garland for my son’s wedding singlehandedly. I was struggling with thyroid cancer treatment during the same window and our medical expenses were the “cherry on the cake.” My determination to give my son the wedding I’ve never had gave me insight on the fact that there were others like me who truly struggled to get through the process.You see what I set out to do was never easy. Advertising was hot and miss and expensive so I started blogs and used photos at our events to generate new clients and along the way, learned this industry along with attaining knowledge of what my clients needed and creating an inventory and “team” willing to address any issue to achieve a Dream Event.
Maybe I’m a little different from other entrepreneurs in that I didn’t start a business simply to earn a living. I started a business to help others after surviving my son’s wedding and continued to change and evolve in order to meet the needs of my clients.
Taking trades for services has brought my family and I some fairly unique experiences and given us an adventure we never anticipated but at the end of the day- we’ve given folks the opportunity to experience something that they otherwise would have never had.
Wendy M Wortham
Comments by Wendy Wortham