You may have noticed we have a lot of Video Testimonials from our clients on our website - recorded on the day and in front of their ice sculpture of Vodka Luge. However, it is not always possible to create a Video Testimonial for one reason or another; the client is not at the venue, it is a Wedding and the Bride and Groom are not there, or there is simply no one (apart from the venue Manager) at the venue when we are setting up the sculpture. As a result, (not wishing to be boastful) but we receive a lot of written testimonials after the event - which we love (and keeps us going!)
Every Testimonial we get (gratefully received) is very complimentary and are an absolute joy to read. Every-so-often we get one that touches us, makes us feel really good and to be frank, one that makes us feel, 'this has all been worth it'. One such Testimonial was from Amy; a Bride.
For Amy's wedding she wanted her and her husband's initials carved into ice. Not just carved, but carved in the style of their wedding monogram. She sent us a hi-resolution image of the initials along with a picture of the fleur-de-lys 'type' of idea she wanted beneath the initials. We instantly knew this was not going to be a hand-carved job nor an easy one. We did not have the fluer-de-lys design she wanted in our computer and we simply could not find it anywhere to replicate. In a leap of faith, Amy gave us carte blanche to create the design we thought would be appropriate and right.
We first set about plotting the initails into our CNC machine's computer. A relatively simple but long process. Plotting even the simplest of designs can take hours to get right. It is not just a matter of 'scanning' (like a photo-copier) an image and hey presto it is in the computer. Far from it. Plotting consists of placing miniature dots around the chosen design (in this case the initials), linking up the dots - making sure it is a 'whole' picture and nothing is missed out. It is painstaking work.
Next was to track down a Fleur-de-lys design. Simple? No. There are hundreds if not thousands of designs dating back to the 15th century and beyond to look at and analyse. We trawled and trawled, sifted, viewed, debated and looked at (so it seemed) billions of fluer-de-lys designs. This is something the client never gets to know, see or even comprehend - the physical time it takes to decide upon a shape or design that is just right for the final piece. It has to 'look' right.
Once chosen and the design plotted, the CNC machine then takes over. Cutting the ice, although 'automatic', the CNC machine needs constant supervision and correction every-so-often. Several hours later the ice cutting is completed - the CNC part. We then 'finish' the sculpture with hand tools - creating the final design and finished 'look'.
The 'easy' part then follows - the logistics of getting the sculpture to the venue on time and set-up. I must admit, we are a tad theatrical and dramatic in the way we set-up and light a sculpture. We try hard to make the final result look spectacular and simply amazing.
Back to Amy. On the day we did not get to meet Amy (unfortunately), she was 'upstairs getting ready for her big day. As a result we set the Vodka Luge up where she wanted it, lit it and then...left the building. It is (sort of) worrying not to get the reaction of the client - the look on their face, the joy, the smile, the wonderment. With Amy's Vodka Luge we just had to 'guess' what her reaction would have been.
Today an e-mail popped-into our In Box. A written testimonial from Amy. This was one of those moments we love. The atmosphere although always good here (we LOVE what we do), was bouyed up a tad more because of her words. Thank you Amy.
Here is Amy's written Testimonial:
After what has been an amazing month, starting off with our wedding day, then packing and unpacking for various trips - honeymooning and bank holiday weekends away etc.; our feet have finally touched the ground and the post-wedding blues have well and truly kicked in!
Chris, we just wanted to take this opportunity to say thank you for the beautiful job you did on the ice sculpture for our special day. You quite literally, took my design and made an exact replica - IN ICE, and inclusive of a CNC carved monogram! When I came down the stairs, minutes before walking down the aisle, I was floored at how professional and beautiful it was. It reflected the stylish, simplistic ambience of the wedding and the venue; and the craftsmanship that went into it was unbelievable. It took away any nerves I had and as a result, I walked down the aisle with a huge smile on my face!
Thank you for being so easy to work with from day one. You made it so easy to trust your expertise with regards to timings etc., and I cannot wait to send you some photographs once we have them back from the official photographer. In addition, if you would like this review posting on a website and/ or Facebook page etc., please do not hesitate to ask.
What more can we say?
We KNOW how difficult it can be to 'trust' someone you have never seen, someone off an 'Internet site'. Are they real? Are they going to do what they say they are going to do and more importantly, "if I pay money to them, will I ever see my sculpture?" We know these are concerns - hence unlike any other Ice Company we try and place hundreds of photos of the carvings we have created but not only that, video REAL people saying things about their ice sculpture - a Video Testimonial. We want to convey trust and that we are real people trying to create something artistic, something special and something unique. Amy took a leap of faith - it was her Wedding she was entrusting us with. I am so glad she loved the sculpture we created for her - carved how she wanted it and delivered on-time.