What I’ve Learned from the Wedding Industry

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The more I am immersed in this industry, the more epiphanies I have and the more lessons I learn. I’ve discovered things I never thought I would need to know and I’ve been able to apply the lessons I have learned in an effective way. As a way to share the wealth, so to speak, I’ve decided to share a few tidbits of information I’ve picked up along the way!

1. It’s Not All Glamour and Glitter. This is a thriving, hardcore industry with serious business people and lots of responsibilities. Yes, the fun part of working with weddings makes the job exciting and the sweet moments make it rewarding, but working in weddings does not mean all we do is daydream.

2. Check the Little Details. Check them all. Every. Last. One. Once, I got everyone all ready for a cake-cutting and champagne toast, but forgot to uncork the champagne. A friend of mine worked a wedding that included a piano that was never tuned, so the bride walked down the aisle to an off-key mess. Needless to say, these lessons have stuck with us and are some of the first things we check now, as well as other things you might not think about immediately.

3. Effective Communication Takes A Lot of Forms. Working with a variety of personalities and connections, from brides to vendors, you need to be able to quickly figure out how someone wants to receive communication, and then tailor your communication to them.

4. It’s OK to Play. With the details, that is!Sometimes brides have an idea but no plan, and sometimes there is a plan it just isn’t the best plan. If you can find the best way to do something, and explain how it’ll work effectively, don’t be afraid to speak up and offer differing ideas. While respecting the bride is important, they shouldn’t scare you.

5. Ask Every Question. Even if you feel like you’re giving the bride the most obnoxiously thorough grilling of her life, it’s ok. And necessary. You don’t want to end up in the thick of the big day with questions, so clear everything up early on.

I am lucky enough to be a part of one of the most important day in people’s lives! I’m having fun, no matter how stressful it can be at times, it is fun and exciting and new and great every day. I really do love this industry and I hope to keep growing and learning as much as I can. Hopefully my lessons can help you all grow too!

5 Tips for Planning a Destination Wedding

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So you want a destination wedding. And why wouldn’t you? Picturesque mountain views or calm coastal scenes make for ultra romantic weddings (and killer pictures). But how to pull it off? If you’re thinking of having a wedding away from home, check out these tips for a smooth, exciting event that’s just as idyllic as you imagined!

1. Start Early! This goes for planning and communication. It may seem like you have plenty of time, but things will sneak up on you. Research your options, make sure things seem doable for you and your guests. And when you do decide on a location, make sure to send your save-the-dates as soon as you can because you want to give guests enough time to book their travel.

2. Hire a Local Wedding Planner. With most of the wedding planning happening between local vendors, it can be good to have someone in the area of your wedding to work with everyone on your behalf. They know the area, how things will best work, and the best vendors to hire. Let them figure out the logistics of your vision (and take on most of the stress of the execution). When you hire a wedding planner, it makes the destination wedding seem more like a vacation, even in the planning process.

3. Stick to your Budget. Destination weddings can add up quick. Costs for things like food and rentals can be broken down as per-person expenses. And with each resort or hotel offering things that seem to one-up the next, it can be tempting to be a big spender. Having a firm budget, and really sticking to it, can help to avoid feeling extra money pains later when you get the bills from your big day.

4. Make it Easy on your Guests. Let them know how much you appreciate them coming so far for you. Create little welcome baskets for their hotel rooms with local goods or your favorite snacks and treats. Include a map of the area or a list of fun local activities to do.

5. Bonus Option: Second Reception! If there were some people who you wanted with you on your big day that couldn’t make the trip, give them a chance to celebrate with you. Once you return from your destination wedding or your honeymoon, host a casual get-together with everyone else important to you!

Has anyone had a destination or out-of-town wedding? Any other tips or advice for those looking to plan one?

Pretty in Periwinkle

Yesterday, I went with Leslie (the wedding planner I’m interning for) to a site visit with a bride and her family. As they were discussing decoration options, the bride mentioned she had decided to go with periwinkle as one of her colors. Leslie loved the idea, as one of her mom’s wedding colors was periwinkle. I love it too. Personally, I think periwinkle is an underrated and underutilized color that can work with so many venues, seasons, accent colors, flowers, etc.

In honor of promoting this fabulously sweet shade, today’s post is all about periwinkle!

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What other colors are underutilized in weddings? Let me know if there’s something I should highlight!

Why Weddings?

Before I dive into to all of the crazy wedding posts and trend talk, I figured I would share a little bit about what lead me to this obsession.

I have always loved the idea of being an event planner, but it wasn’t until this spring that I decided to start pursuing it. In February, the student-run public relations and advertising agency at OU put on a small networking conference with professionals from several big-name agencies in the industry. Our faculty advisor tapped me to help coordinate scheduling and other details.

The conference was a big hit and I had such a good time in my role that I wanted to explore how I could do more. I knew a family friend nearby had her own event planning company, so I reached out to her for some guidance as to where to go next. To my amazement, she offered to let me assist her with a wedding she was organizing. The rest is essentially history.

After that first wedding, I was completely taken with the world of event planning. I loved seeing how all the little details could come together to make such an overall spectacular event. I offered to help her with any other weddings she had that spring, then I reached out and tried to connect with wedding planners in Dallas while I was there for the summer. My experience with her helped me get my current internship (which I am LOVING!). Right now I am just trying to take it all in and learn as much as I can, and hopefully I will be prepared for my own opportunities down the road!

Speaking my current internship, check out my Meet the Intern post if you want to learn a few more fun facts about me and what makes me (and my obsession) tick!

 

Finally, just to give you a little idea about my experiences…

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 Some of those sweet details…

photo 4 photo 3And how those details create a beautiful big picture.

The New Someday Morning

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I have officially found my direction in life. One word: Weddings.

It’s a small obsession. Ok maybe not so small. In fact, I am determined to be a wedding planner when I “grow up.” But can you blame me?!

Anyway, I finally feel like I have hit my stride in terms of a blogging topic. I could talk about the nuances of nuptials for days on end. So from here on in, this blog will be a sweet, creative place to inspire and discuss the wonders of weddings (#accidentalalliteration)

So if you swoon over gowns and flowers and love all things glittery and fun, stay tuned!

I cannot wait to get started on this new endeavor and I hope you all are as excited as I am!

The Wedding Planner

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[ Flowers from the wedding: Hydrangeas, Tulips, and Roses…I’m in love! ]

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[ The wedding cake and the groom’s baby cupcakes ]

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[ The finished tablescapes ]

Saturday night, I had the opportunity to help with a wedding organized my Events by Morgan. I always thought event planning would be a fun and rewarding job, and Morgan have me the opportunity to see what it’s like!

A little note about Morgan real quick: She is awesome! She’s so organized and calm in the face of chaos. She seems like she can handle anything. She has the best taste, too! Not to mention she’s super sweet and fun.

I mainly helped with the setup of the event. Putting out table cloths and charger plates. Arranging place cards. Setting out favors. As tedious as it was, I really enjoyed it. I loved seeing how a few carts worth of boxes and supplies became a beautiful setting for celebrating.

Once the ceremony was over and the reception got started, Morgan let me shadow her while she made sure the evening ran smoothly. We gave cues to different parts of the program (grand entrance, mother-son/father-daughter dances, dinner, cake cutting, etc). We also had a couple fires to put out throughout the evening, but nothing too intense.

After the event, I can almost certainly promise that I will not be a perfectionist bride! I realized that there are too many tiny details left in the hands of so many other people. There are so many variables and no way for everything to go absolutely perfectly, just as smoothly as possible. I do have tons of ideas, though, and am already kind of mentally planning out my own wedding! (Let’s be real–what girl isn’t?)

I can also say with certainty that this is an experience that I would like to try again. My boyfriend may not totally agree, but this wedding was something I really enjoyed, and possibly something I would like to pursue more down the line! All of the chaos and detail that goes into planning the wedding, and any frustration that follows, somehow melt away into a grander picture once the event starts.

 

One final note: Thank you to Morgan at Events by Morgan for giving me the opportunity to help out, and for introducing me to the wedding business!