Weddings have so many details that are similar to puzzle pieces. Each play a big part in creating the picture-perfect day for a couple that's ready to start the next chapter in their relationship.
But ditch the flowers, cake, table settings, and seating charts. For Christina Joslin, it's all about the booze. She's the owner of Copper and Crystal, a bartending labor service.
- Photo Courtesy Of Yvonne Goll Photography
- TO YOUR LIKING Copper and Crystal is unique because its goal is to serve up unique drinks at an affordable cost to the bride and groom.
The difference between her business and other bartending services is that she supplies the people, but her clients supply the booze. She said her services are more aligned with the DIY side of wedding planning.
"My clients can buy their own alcohol and make it as affordable as possible because aside from the venue, photographer, and coordinator, food and alcohol are pretty expensive," Joslin said.
- Photo Courtesy Of Michelle Roller
- CUSTOMIZED If you're looking for a vintage vibe for your wedding, Christina Joslin has the hookup to serve your booze from a retro vehicle.
It's a lower price point for the bride and groom because Joslin focuses on the number of guests and the kinds of cocktails the couple wants to be served. Based on those factors and, of course, the couple's budget, she can make a grocery list for them to use when purchasing all the alcohol that's needed.
In that process, Joslin works with the couple to come up with signature cocktails to serve their guests. She has a hidden page on her website that, after a couple contracts her, she gives them access to. It's a list of different cocktails for them to get ideas from. But she really encourages them to come up with a twist on their favorite drink.
- Photo Courtesy Of Samantha Josette Photography
- CLINKING GLASSES Joslin works with the bride and groom to create signature drinks for their big day.
"We've done things with different flavors of Moscow mule. There's obviously the standard mint, but you can add in a raspberry or blueberry," she said. "I always try to elevate it just a little bit."
Her bartending skills really come into play when she's adding a bit of flair to make an ordinary cocktail special and personal. Joslin's favorite cocktail is the tequila-based paloma. The drink is traditionally prepared by mixing tequila with grapefruit-flavored soda and serving it on the rocks with a lime wedge.
- Photo Courtesy Of Leana Myra Photography
- FAMILY THAT POURS One of best parts of Joslin's job is creating a bartending family that love to work with one other and interact with wedding attendees such as Luke Wills (pictured).
Joslin uses a grapefruit flavored La Croix with a small splash of grapefruit juice and a hint of lime.
A point she always likes to make when collaborating with couples on making cocktail concoctions is time.
"I think it's important to have drinks that are fun and elevated, but I think it's also important that they come out in a timely fashion," she said. "I want to make sure that no one is waiting in line at a wedding, because we've all been there."
The Copper and Crystal venture was something that Joslin ran with after bartending for a few of her friends' weddings. In 2010, she was the project manager for a local solar installation company and had a side hustle as a bartender. She worked at the old Pappy McGregor's location on Monterey Street in San Luis Obispo.
"I always had a second job; I'm kind of a workaholic," Joslin said.
Just before Pappy McGregor's closed its SLO location, Joslin was using her bartending skills for more than just the restaurant setting.
"The last couple of years of me being at Pappy's, I had been asked quite a few times to bartend friends' weddings and I realized how much fun it was," she said.
- Photo Courtesy Of Megan Sorel Photograhy
- BIG DAY The wedding day is the first day that Joslin meets with her clients, and it's a surreal moment to watch the happy couple walk up to her booth to order their drink.
The restaurant's closure was the push Joslin needed to start a business she's always wanted. Copper and Crystal began as a part-time partnership between Joslin and her friend, a fellow colleague at the solar company. But eventually Joslin realized she wanted to make this side business full-time. After an amicable split, she ventured out on her own in January 2018.
Joslin has flourished within the wedding industry, between getting her name out there and growing the number of clients she books. She not only credits her former partner, the wedding industry community, and the long hours she puts into her business, but the bartenders who have been with her from the start.
"I want my bartenders smiling, engaging in conversation, asking where attendees are from, when they got there, how they're loving San Luis, and when the DJ or the band comes on, I want my bartenders dancing at the bar," she said. "They're creating an experience and a relationship, even if it's only for one night."
At the end of the day, Joslin is just happy she's doing something that she loves with the people she loves. People are always happy at weddings, she said, they really are beautiful days. Δ
Staff Writer Karen Garcia is sipping her mojito at firstname.lastname@example.org.