Weddings are one of the most joyous events for a couple, but sometimes they come with an expensive price tag. Some brides and grooms have to keep to a small budget, which means some sacrifices must be made.
However, Deb Fardal helps bridal couples keep their special day under budget and still get the wedding day of their dreams, with her non-profit “store,” Second Time Around.
Second Time Around is similar to a thrift shop, in that people can donate their wedding items and decorations – no dresses or tuxedos, though – and bridal couples can come in, pick out what they need to rent for their big day with only a $50 charge, starting in January (until then, it’s $25).
Fardal has everything for wedding decorations, from tulle to burlap to tablecloths to candlesticks to artificial flowers to pew bows. Centerpiece plates, ribbons, arches, seat covers, baskets, easels, chargers, vases – you name it, she’s got it.
People coming in to take some of the stuff aren’t actually buying it, but rather renting it as a freewill donation.
“A lot of it I’ve gotten donated from other wedding sales, bring back – oh my gosh, I’ve had this one, she went with one car up in Asa, and she came back with two carloads of stuff,” Fardal said.
Second Time Around started in Fardal’s four-car garage after her son got married with a beach-themed wedding and everything they bought for the wedding was expensive.
“A good friend of mine, she says, ‘God, it’d be cool to have a store in town,’” Fardal said. “This was many years ago and I knew there were already two of them going in Clear Lake, and I didn’t think anything of it.”
Fardal had been the wedding coordinator at Immanuel Lutheran Church for 20 years. After her son’s wedding, she wondered what they were going to do with all the stuff they bought for it. Realizing some brides didn’t have the money to decorate the sanctuary or their reception, she started buying more wedding stuff for this somewhat wedding thrift shop.
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“I started buying items on a lot of wedding sites and I buy a lot of things from brides, you know, all over the United States. They were buying it for really cheap,” she said.
Fardal also accepts donations from brides, who have had their weddings and don’t know what to do with the extra stuff, like table covers and centerpieces and so her inventory is always growing.
Because Second Time Around is a non-profit store, Fardal can rent her inventory out to brides for much cheaper than they would rent something at other stores.
“I’ll show you what it would be if you were literally renting it out and they just can’t believe it,” she said. “I said, ‘Yeah, it’s not cheap.’”
Brides seeking caterers can also look to Fardal, as she also does catering, with prices depending on what menu the bridal couple selects.
Fardal is also connected with Farm Girl Weddings, owned by Mary Lovstad, and together they sometimes share items and come together for some brides on low budgets.
Second Time Around is now moving to downtown Forest City at 103 S. Clark Street, the first door at the end of the alley off of J Street, in the basement of the former TSB Bank.
Though she is still unpacking everything from the move and organizing the store, Fardal said she is still open to people who need to rent something out for a wedding.
She said she plans to be done unpacking and hold a mini open house sometime in October. Second Time Around can also be found on Facebook.