Author Archive

Henna Inspired Details Add an Artistic Flair to Wedding Cakes

You’re sure to swoon over these wedding cakes featuring artistic details inspired by the art of Henna (Mehndi).  Largely inspired by the popular tradition of bridal henna (practiced for centuries in India, Africa and the Middle East) these wedding cakes range from dramatic to colorful to elegant.

Because I’m still feeling a bit awe-struck over the the henna inspired cake that was shown on the “Amber and Amethyst” inspiration board I recently created, I’ve collected a few more great examples that I’m excited to share with you!  If this type of cake is appealing to you, you should know that wedding cakes designed with henna inspired details and intricate patterns are also called mehndi cakes.

Pictured below is a gorgeous cake inspired by South Asian and Indian culture.  Created by IndAroma‘s Abhishek Handa, this artful cake makes a glamorous and memorable statement.   Source: IndAroma. 6548C Little River Tpke., Alexandria; 703-354-1812
cake photo by storymotion.com
This next lovely henna inspired wedding cake is by  Eileen Carter Creations.

cake photo by www.jamiehowell.net

Many thanks to Jamie Howell Photography for the above photo

What’s not to love about the subtle elegance of a white on white cake?  Pattern and texture make this cake come alive!

cake photo by jaytsaiphotogrpahy.com

photo by jaytsaiphotography.com

The henna inspired pattern seen on this next wedding cake has a more whimsical flair.  The intricate detail is very pretty and balanced nicely by the simplicity of the smooth white icing.Purple Henna Cake by Sugar Coated Desserts and Cakes

, LoveLifeImages.com

And just for fun…  how about some cookies!

photo of mehndi inspired cookies

03

01 2013

Amethyst and Amber Inspiration

Amethyst and Amber – an amazing color combination and design inspiration

Engagement season is upon us!  Naturally, I am excited for all the recently engaged couples! But my planner|designer self is eagerly looking forward to styling the upcoming 2013 weddings with the creative ideas I’ve been pondering for the past few months.



What do you think of this inspiration board?  It’s titled Amethyst and Amber – although I definitely envision the look being accented with platinum or silver accents, so there would actually be three key colors.  Purple is a very popular color and widely used in event design. It’s also one of my favorite colors – regardless of the shade! – perhaps because amethyst is my birthstone.  My interpretation of amber is a rich golden-brown color, much richer than yellow; more like a jewel tone, less like a gold which is metallic.    Anyway, if you love color, and are open to the richness of jewel tones and layered colors you will absolutely adore these ideas as much as I do!

Amethyst and amber; Amber and Amethyst

Can’t wait to hear your thoughts!

13

12 2012

DJ #Fail

 

Unfortunately, I find myself revisiting topic of hiring professionals. In what is indisputably the craziest wedding DJ disaster (aka DJ #Fail) I have ever experienced, I must tell you about “DJ C”.

(Names and places are not important, the point of the post is: this really happened!)

“DJ C” started out with a fair amount of promise. I learned that he was hired by the Father of the Bride on a recommendation. On the wedding day, “DJ C” arrived on time, nicely dressed, with decent equipment. So far, so good.

Unbeknownst to us, the dj/mc started drinking before the guests even entered the dinner reception. He must have gotten a beer (or two) from the cash bar at the cocktail reception. By the time we were ready to introduce the wedding party into the reception, we began to sense that the “DJ C” was a little ‘off’. Only a short while later the bartender came to us and mentioned that the dj/mc had already purchased four drinks. We had no choice – “DJ C” was cut-off immediately – and we were only an hour or so into the reception! Drunk DJ

*I must stop momentarily to point out that I do not condone vendors drinking, nor do the establishments I work with. However, when we are dealing with a vendor we have never met before, we are typically not aware of their relationship with the client (friend, co-worker, etc.) – so we keep a watchful eye on them.

“DJ C” continued to act oddly, and in my opinion obnoxiously; the music was a bit too loud and I was incredibly annoyed that he kept repeating his own name (“I’m DJ C…!“), but we focused on managing the flow of the reception and keeping everything on track. We made it through parent dances and cake cutting, then said our farewells for the evening. All the formalities were complete, and the guests were dancing up a storm – exit the coordinators.

The next day:

Apparently, a few wedding guests* were buying and slipping the DJ/mc drinks and he got more intoxicated. Mother of the Bride told us how “DJ C” with microphone in hand, announced a special message to the groom: “Congratulations on marrying a nice piece of ass!” Further… three wedding guests* were actually friends of the DJ (aka crashers) – they flew under the radar due to open seating, and everyone just assumed they were invited by the other family. Last but not least, he kept trying to end the reception early.

So… to recap: DJ/mc came by way of a recommendation (not from a preferred vendor list offered by venue or coordinators), drank continuously during his shift (a no-no), brought his posse (who does that?), acted unprofessionally and made inappropriate comments, and tried to shortchange his clients by ending their evening early.

How much for a DJ?

This story gives me an opportunity to share a very informative article with you:

In the article “How Much Should Your Wedding DJ Cost?“, author Stacy Tamaki shares timeless tips on selecting a quality DJ/mc.
She also lists a number of mis-steps, including  a few I have witnessed over the years,  such as:  incorrectly pronouncing the bride or groom’s name during the introductions, dressing or acting inappropriately, hitting on guests, drinking on the job, using inappropriate language or using inappropriate humor.

Continue reading weditorial for universal tips on hiring qualified professionals and planning a sensational, emotional and unforgettable wedding!

Insurance for Weddings and Events (…in an imperfect world)

In “A Perfect World” – far, far away – weddings are always blissful, and parties evermore spectacular. Vendors perform flawlessly, thievery is non-existent and nobody ever slips on the dance floor after too much champagne. Ne’er a rain drop falls, nor the winds whistle, only glorious blue skies by day and twinkling stars at night!

 

It’s time for me to sit down with you and have “the talk”. It sucks that we live in an imperfect world, and it’s no fun for me when I have to talk about this stuff – I feel like “Debbie Downer” – but I owe it to you. An important part of a wedding planner|event planner‘s job is to mitigate risk, and help our clients protect their investment as well as themselves.  Planners bring a wide array of experiences to the table, and the ability to spot potential risks and liabilities in particular is an extremely valuable benefit of our services.

You may be relying on contracts to protect your interests and ensure services are rendered, but how closely are you paying attention?  What liabilities are you assuming by signing an agreement with a venue or vendor?  Read carefully and you will likely see terms and conditions such as these:

Renter assumes all liability of damages from candles including, damage from waxes, fire, or personal injury.” 

“…the host will be responsible for any and all injury to persons or damage to property during your use of the premises…” 

“The event host is liable for any damages…” “Damages includes physical damage to any part of The Premises, personal injury to any person attending the Wedding/Reception Event, any unpaid balances to third­‐party vendors, and  any other physical, financial, or personal damage sustained as a result of this function.”

“(the venue) is not responsible for items lost, stolen or left by hosts, members of a wedding party, or guests”

Not to mention that it’s becoming more common for venues and public facilities to request (require) you provide them with a certificate of liability insurance.  Sounds a little scary – doesn’t it?

Forget the venue… Let’s just celebrate in the backyard

Nope, you are not off the hook if you throw a party or event at home.  For instance: If you host a party are you liable for injuries to a guest? Does it make a difference if you provide alcohol for your guests?  What if they bring their own alcohol?  Are you responsible for your guests after they leave?   Wait, there’s more: Special caution needs to be applied when certain activities, such as swim/pool parties or boat outings, in conjunction with drinking actually increase the danger of the activity itself as well as the liability of the provider.

wedding couple car in ditch www.feliz.com

Fortunately for all, there is insurance for weddings and events – because in situations where things don’t go as planned, it can be a real life saver!  Here are a few examples of wedding related mishaps:

  •     Unexpected illness, injury or death of people who play an important part in the wedding
  •     Dangerous and severe weather conditions that prevent the reception site from opening or impede guests from attending (hurricanes, blizzards, etc.)
  •     Bridal shop closed down (Priscilla of Boston)
  •     Stolen or lost gifts
  •     Rented table linens accidentally thrown away
  •     If the bride’s gown is lost, stolen or damaged
  •     The bride or groom has to unexpectedly relocate for a job/active military duty

How much does it cost?

According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), wedding insurance can cost between $125 to $400, depending on the amount of coverage you buy (options, costs and limitations vary widely). When comparing policies, read the fine print carefully (…before you sign!).  Pay attention to maximum coverage limits, exclusions and deadlines for purchasing various options.  Additionally, some policies have deductibles you must pay before insurance kicks in.

Liability insurance for short-term special events provides important protection for a variety of organized events – such as family reunions, weddings, business meetings, and community events. Some events are one day only, while others may take place over a weekend or a few days. Fees vary based on the amount of insurance needed, number of attendees and the nature of the event, and a number of other factors. For example, a family reunion for 100p. will be assessed differently than a multi-day chili cook-off event for 1200p.

Ultimately, the overall cost of insurance often works out to be a small percentage of the total cost of the event (except in the case of free, no-budget, fund-raising type events). Whether you’re investing 15k or 115k, and receive a quote equal to roughly 1.5% to 5% (possibly more, as events vary), you literally can’t afford NOT to have insurance.

tented reception weathers sever storm

Oxford Hills Sun Journal (c) 2010

Last yet not least, it is widely advised to consult your insurance agent before buying additional liability coverage.  Your agent can check how much coverage your homeowner’s insurance provides and whether it applies to wedding events; you may need a special rider or want to buy additional coverage through an umbrella policy.  For example, if a guest stumbles and falls during your event, that may be covered…. But what if a guest smashes a light fixture at the hotel and the owner holds you responsible – will your home insurance pay for the damage?

The benefits of working with a planner are clear:  Planners want to help you protect your investment and create a safe experience for your guests. By directing you to reputable facilities and vendors who carry appropriate insurance, and helping you make informed decisions, you can be confident you’re well prepared to handle unforeseen occurrences and properly covered for circumstances beyond your control.

image: youtube.com/user/jeffhayford

Additional Articles and Resources:

 
Should you buy wedding insurance for the big day? By JASON ALDERMAN , Parkersburg News and Sentinel

Why You Might Need Wedding Insurance , GalTime.com

Links to major wedding and event insurance providers:

WEDSURE (Firemans Fund)RVNA

WEDSAFE   |  PRIVATE EVENT INSURANCE

WEDDING PROTECTOR PLAN (Travelers)

NATIONWIDE

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