Orlando Wedding magazine – Q & A with Wedding Planners

Q & A with Wedding Planners as seen in Orlando Wedding Magazine

Orlando Wedding 2010

Orlando Wedding 2010

The debut issue of Orlando Wedding magazine is absolutely enchanting! I would even go so far as to declare it a ‘must read’ for engaged couples in Central Florida!

Among many terrific articles and features was “Q & A with Wedding Planners” by Megan VanWaus.  Not only was I delighted to be quoted in Megan’s piece, I was elated to be featured alongside fellow Association of Bridal Consultants members Kerline Docteur (Joie de Vie Weddings and Events) and Heather Snively (Weddings Unique). I’m proud to share a common bond with these ladies:  Heather and I are both Senior ABC members, and Kerline and I regularly work together on  ABC meetings and projects geared toward educating local association members and wedding professionals.

Good things come in threes they say, and in this case I certainly agree!

06

07 2010

Orlando Wedding Magazine features Cara & Jared’s Big Day

Cara and Jared’s wedding at Mission Inn Resort as featured in Orlando Wedding magazine.

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Congratulations to Cara & Jared, our newlyweds whose wedding is featured in the premiere issue of Orlando Wedding magazine!

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They were wed in January at Mission Inn Resort – which was the perfect backdrop for their romantic and elegant wedding.  Cara’s vision centered on old world elegance that was glamorous and graceful.  From candles to crystals, and cigars to candy bars – this wedding was an enchanting affair! They even had a sparkler exit! One of my favorite things about this wedding was how they incorporated so many family photos into the reception decor; that was a special touch that really enhanced the nostalgic feel of the evening.

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Of course there was also a fabulous vendor team working behind the scenes to make ensure that the day progressed smoothly and that everyone enjoyed a stellar evening. Thanks and applause go to:

Mission Inn Resort & Club – Ceremony & Reception Venue
A Flair for Affairs – Planning and Coordination
Cheryl’s Distinctive Creations – Floral and Decor
Brian Adams – Photography
Cakes by Design – Wedding Cake
Entertainment Concepts – DJ, A/V, Lighting

(c)A Flair for Affairs

03

07 2010

Extreme Chic on a Shoestring – Are you saving or sacrificing?

“We’re on a tight budget.”

Yes, I know (but I don’t say it out loud). Times are tough, money is tight, and everyone is trying to save a buck. But lately, I’ve been hearing this way too much.
BigLots-Cart
And you wouldn’t believe the trends I’m starting to see! Flower-less centerpieces, DIY linen installations, sub-par vendors, and more! It sounds funny, but in the end, it’s really not.

Maybe you’d like to poll the guests from a recent wedding that I coordinated (notice I said coordinated, NOT planned). The bride contacted me to help her with the reception design and we put together a great look for her. However, she insisted that she wanted the reception to be ‘cocktail style’ – meaning that she wanted the guests to mingle – therefore she only ordered 100 chairs for 200 people…. Hmmmm…. I think you can see where I’m going with this.

“What’s your budget?” I ask. Rarely do I receive a truthful answer, that is, until I quote a price. It’s not a problem because I know my services are not inexpensive. I charge what I’m worth: I’m an educated, experienced, nationally recognized industry professional. I work with clients and couples who realize that what I bring to the event planning process is more than the ability to create a memorable day – I help them create amazing and memorable moments. I am a specialist; it’s like comparing stitches to brain surgery. Shopping Cart

Anyway, I do appreciate that many people are on a budget. Whenever possible I do the best I can to meet them where they’d like to be. After all, I love what I do, so for me there’s a lot more to it than the paycheck.

In a previous post, I wrote about how Brides and Grooms can protect themselves while shopping for vendors. Check it out – there is a lot of good advice there. This post centers on something different; it’s about being realistic. There seems to be a trend towards style over substance. Let’s go back to my story about the bride with the 200 guests. Do you think those guests cared how good the room looked when they realized they might have to stand for the rest of the evening? Nope – they bailed at their first opportunity. Do you think they felt valued and appreciated? Nope.

It’s my responsibility to tell my clients if something won’t work, or doesn’t work well. I educate them. What I’m seeing lately is so many people (future brides and grooms, potential clients) who are out of touch with what things cost being serviced by vendors who want to say yes (because they need the business) – this is not exactly a recipe for success.

My free advice for today is this: If you truly can’t afford the wedding of your dreams – put it off and save more money. If you want to save an extreme amount of money without cutting corners, scale back your guest list, move up your wedding date and consider a week-day event. Also, if you’re planning a wedding or special event be a good host! – that’s just good manners.

Wedding Professionals Gather in South West Florida for WeWed Summer 2010

WeWed – A Gathering of the Best Wedding Professionals

Elisa Delgardio, Jeannine Kennedy, Kelly McWilliams, Saundra Hadley

Elisa Delgardio, Jeannine Kennedy, Kelly McWilliams, Saundra Hadley

(c) sam brockinton

(c) sam brockinton



Founder and event organizer Kelly McWilliams describes it this way: “WeWed gatherings are for those who want to continue to build their business and/or become a better business person. It’s about getting motivated, learning how to improve, discussing what our industry is, where its going, and how to stay on top (or get back up there).”


When Kelly offered the first WeWed Brunch at the award-winning Miromar Lakes Beach & Golf Club I knew I must attend! It was such a fun and educational experience that I cleared my calendar to attend the second event at The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club. This year, I was honored to be asked to speak at WeWed Summer 2010 which was hosted by the new and uniquely luxurious Resort at Marina Village. Not to mention that I was in the incredible company of Saundra Hadley, Jeannine Kennedy and Kelly McWilliams (of course).

My presentation centered on Time Management techniques and strategies. I basically discussed that there are many options available to us, but the important thing is to find the system or method “that works best for you”. Sometimes a combination of techniques works the best. It’s all about trying new things and taking the time to evaluate what’s working and what’s not.

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Time Management CafeLeft: Opening powerpoint slide

I was thrilled that I also got to enjoy the other speaker’s presentations, and I met so many wonderful people. I returned to Orlando feeling very motivated!

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