Story by Elberta McKnight
“I really feel like the day-of coordination piece is huge,” offered
Dolph. “Most venues do not include that in their pricing.
But our feeling is that we want to provide the bride and groom
with the best day possible.
Original pine plank floors. Exposed brick walls. Rustic wood rafters and black metal pipes that span a tall, expansive open ceiling with natural light pouring in through turn-of-the-century glass windows that date back to 1922. The Chair Factory in Gainesville offers a time-tested backdrop for any wedding. “We’ve got a lot of brides that are coming out of Atlanta because we have that look of some Atlanta venues, but not the price of the Atlanta venues,” said Allison Dolph, senior event coordinator for Soirées Southern Events, which manages the Chair Factory.
For roughly 100 years, the Georgia Chair Factory manufactured furniture on Grove Street. In 2016, the property was sold transformed into a wedding and event venue. “Obviously, all of our brides love the industrial, brick wall look. We have some brides who want to keep it simple with just the exposed brick and then we have some brides who have brought in other vendors to do draping to elevate the space a bit and make it a little softer, make it more elegant,” Dolph said.
The price for the venue starts around $6,000 and includes eight hours the day of the wedding, tables, chairs, linens for up to 300 guests, and two day-of coordinators to make certain everything runs smoothly. “I really feel like the day-of coordination piece is huge,” offered Dolph. “Most venues do not include that in their pricing. But our feeling is that we want to provide the bride and groom with the best day possible. In order to do that, we really feel like the day-of coordination is essential.
Soirées Southern Events also offers an all-inclusive wedding day package that allows the bride to work with just a handful of people on the menu, cake, DJ and flowers, rather than scores of vendors. “Even though it’s a package, it’s still totally customizable to what they want,” said Dolph. “They get to pick their menu, they get to do a tasting with a caterer, as well as the cakes. They get to talk to the DJ about their style and what kind of music they like.”
The 8,000-square-foot Chair Factory offers a smaller room, in which a ceremony can take place, and a larger ballroom-type of area. “I feel like a lot of people from Gainesville want to get married in the Gainesville area,” said Dolph. “They want to get married local. And really, when you get married local, you have a lot more people usually attending. So you have a bigger wedding.” There’s also parking on-site, and the building is wheelchair accessible.