How-To: Create a Hot Chocolate Bar For Your Event ✨

How-To's | Masterposts | Guides
A very snowy, good evening to you, my detailers!
Sending lots of warm wishes to everyone as I’m snowed-in during a winter weather advisory, & it got me thinking about designing a festive winter wedding, & what to incorporate in such a bash so that your guests remember & talk about more than just how miserably cold it was outside. Now I don’t know about you, but when I think of cozy comfort in the winter, I think about snuggling up by the fireplace with a cup of hot chocolate. Lucky for you, there’s a way to bring those warm & fuzzy feelings to your winter bash, & in the very convenient form of a bar, too! Here’s a little guide on how to make a hot chocolate bar to remember!
  • Set aside a large, rectangular table, preferably near the dessert table &/or in a back corner of your venue, that is easily accessible for guests.
  • Decorum will be dependent on your overarching theme for your event, but some ideas you can incorporate on your hot chocolate bar table include, but are not limited to: string lighting, snowflakes & winter white hues/florals, pine tree garland, frosted pine cones, christmas tree ornaments.
  • Organize your hot chocolate bar with organized trays, mason jars, caddies, & the like! Have cups & napkins ready to grab first, the hot chocolate itself next, & then the mix-ins & lids (& more napkins) at the very end as a base set-up for your table. Have a variety of mix-ins, as well as the classic marshmallows & whipped cream as toppings for your guests to customize their hot chocolate to their warm little heart’s desire!
  • Proper signage is a MUST (see above & below)! Take advantage of your wedding season by incorporating quotes from Christmas songs & themes like so:
  • If you’re wanting a boozy option for your guests, I’ll share this this awesome homemade boozy peppermint hot chocolate I made one Friendsgiving that was SO GOOD, but also super simple! I used almond milk, Theo’s Sea Salt Dark Chocolate bars (vegan-friendly!), & peppermint liqueur & slow-cooked it in a Crockpot, letting it melt together. I saved the peppermint liqueur as a last addition until the chocolate completely melted with the almond milk, & my goodness it was the perfect hint of peppermint with the rich, dark chocolate flavor.
I’m definitely getting some hot chocolate cravings right now, & lucky for me Godiva makes this delicious Dark Chocolate Hot Chocolate mix that’s Chelsea-friendly, so I’m placing an order as we speak! Send warm thoughts my way, detailers! ✨
P.S. Shoutout to Little Spice Jar for writing this article (& providing some beautiful pictures!) including some great recipes & tidbits on making sure your hot chocolate bar is a total hit!

Career Update & Wedding Venue Pro Tips ✨

About Me, Pro Tips
Good morning, afternoon, & evening detailers!
I’m just getting settled in at home after a very productive day, & thought to update you all on what’s going on!
It’s the holiday season, so life at Macy’s is at it’s most hectic. I’ve been there for about half a year now, running the show on all things Wedding & Gift Registry for the entire state of Indiana, & I’m absolutely loving my job. For the most part, my direct overseer has little to no contact, so I don’t have someone over my head every day telling me what to do; I very much get to be my own boss, & the discount isn’t half bad either! We have a huge event coming up for my department called a Sip & Scan, which is an in-store event inviting all newly-engaged & married couples alike to create, update & manage their wedding & gift registries, all the while enjoying food, music, entertainment, & even some prize giveaways for some lucky couples! My social media for WGR is #1 in the company, & we have gotten the attention of two huge bridal conventions in the area! To sum it all up, my coworkers are great (for the most part), & my manager is very supportive & always has my back. Macy’s does a really great job of taking care of me, & for that I’m very appreciative.
I also booked a wedding client a little over week ago, & we went & saw our first potential venue today- very exciting things!!! Although I will say the venue we went & saw was a lot more disappointing than either myself or my bride were anticipating. We both walked into this grand, covered entrance into the lobby that is adorned with ornate, Christmas decor. We met with my contact who proceeded to give us a tour of the entire venue, dazzling us with the stunning, 360-degree views of rolling green hills lightly dusted with snow, a gazebo overlooking a pond with two swans floating in the center, & large ballrooms with windows for walls, feasted on what Mother Nature was displaying for all to admire. All very picturesque as my bride & I envision the idea of her big day taking place here. The views, unfortunately, did not make up for all of the hidden fees that just kept getting tacked on, ultimately making the decision for us that this venue was a no-go. My job allows me to know exactly what questions to ask venue contacts, but I want you, my followers & everyone out there that’s planning an event to be educated & not get swindled into paying more than what you should be & were expecting to. Obviously you should know if they have your ideal date available, but there are some tough questions your venue doesn’t want you asking so that you’re a little less knowledgable when you’re signing contracts. Here are a few questions you can ask your potential venues-to-be so you know what you’re getting into before you put ink to paper:
  1. Do you allow outside vendors such as caterers, bakers, designers, etc.? Asking this question gets down to the bottom line of what kind of restrictions the venue has on what you can bring to the table, literally. Sometimes the venue will allow you to surpass using their in-house catering, but follow-up with asking if there are any fees tied to using outside vendors (i.e. corkage fee for outside alcohol, cake-cutting fee for using an outside baker, etc.).
  2. Are there any noise restrictions on your venue/do you have a sound variance/curfew in effect? Some venues have restrictions on the time frame that loud music can be played, which may put a damper on how long you & your guests can keep the party going for. With sound variances or noise curfews in effect, dancing the night away immediately gets thrown out the window; so if you have your heart set on a late-night shindig, it’s best to keep searching.
  3. What is included in the cost? This question does two things: lists everything that is covered in the overarching cost (usually includes: in-house catering per person, tables & chairs, linens, etc.), & it inadvertently lists everything that’s not included. You can follow-up with asking point-blank if specific things you care about incorporating are included in the cost as well, or ask your point-of-contact what is excluded.
  4. Do you have any restrictions on decor? There is always someone out there that ruins it for everyone. Because of poorly-placed candles or some overeager bride that went a little trigger-happy with the confetti guns, a few venues nowadays can have strict limitations in place as to what your wedding decor can & cannot contain. The venue we looked at today, for example, allowed candles but they must be placed in a glass container at least an inch below the opening, & definitely no confetti, glitter, or silly string is allowed.
  5. What is the backup plan for inclement weather, should it arise? Having an outdoor wedding a la open air makes for great photo ops, but I think I can speak on behalf of all wedding & event planners out there when I say that Murphy’s Law is real, & if you don’t want it to rain/snow/sleet/hail/blow a windstorm on your big day but you still want to risk an outdoor event without the proper measurements taken, anything that can go wrong, will come pouring down on you on that day. It’s best to be prepared & figure out what your venue’s backup plan, & find out if that includes an additional fee to switch to the indoor space.
If you’re just beginning the search on your ideal location, or still stuck deciding between a few different places, compare apples to apples (what’s included versus excluded, overall cost including rental fees, etc.) in a list, ask those tougher questions that venues are hesitant to answer, & once you’ve made your decision, the rest of the pieces of your event will fall into place more easily. ✨