30th March, 2013 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
When it comes to preparing a wedding, it can become really stressful – so hiring a wedding planner seems like a tempting way to eliminate that stress. However what are the advantages and disadvantages to getting hired help to do the work for you – we assess some of the pros and cons.
The positive side is that instead of worrying about the caterers and getting a good venue, you can get someone else to do it for you. So you can focus on more fun things like your honeymoon or making yourself gorgeous for the day.
A wedding planner can make sure that everything will run smoothly on your big day, and because someone else is focusing on the little stressful details means that you’ll be a beautiful and relax bride rather than one who is fretting about everything being perfect.
Connections are also the key – and a professional wedding planner will know who to go to for the right food, venue, flowers and who can send out those perfect invitations. You want a vintage wedding but have no idea where to start with the details? A planner can sort all that out for you with minimum effort.
So what are the downsides? Well, primarily there is the cost. Weddings are expensive as they are on their own – without hiring a personal assistant to take care of all your whims. You might have a better idea for budgeting, a wedding planner may not be aware of these concerns.
Also planning is a lot of fun. Many brides and grooms enjoy getting ready for the big day – assuring that they’ll have the most perfect experience imaginable. You might tell a planner you want vintage, thinking of throwing a 1930s jazz era and you end up with a Mad Men themed event. You may be specific and know what you want, but the wedding planner may believe they know best. In fact, perhaps working with a planner may stress you out even more!
At the end of the day, if you’re not sure what to do and need a helping hand – and you can afford it a wedding planner may be a good investment. But for the more creative types or those who know what they want, then perhaps it’s better to plan it yourself. The main question is whether you trust someone else, no matter how professional they are, to plan your special day.
24th January, 2013 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
Planning a wedding is one of life’s most stressful experiences – so why not take the edge off and hire a wedding planner? If you decide to go down this route, then you need to make sure you’ve got the right wedding planner to match your needs. Here are some tips to help you find the right fit.
One thing that’s important to take into account is that the very first impression is everything. When you meet a wedding planner – go with your instinct. It’s vitally important that you pick someone you’re comfortable with, if you’re going to leave your big day in the hands of someone else you’ll need to trust them and you’ll also need to have a good relationship. The same goes for taste. You need to like your planner’s aesthetic. Take a look at their website. Do the photos and testimonials appeal to you?
Weddings are expensive affairs, so make sure that the planner knows your financial situation. It’s hugely important that they plan a wedding that doesn’t break your bank account. Draw up a budget and be firm on it. Make sure they keep you up to date with the costs so you have no nasty surprises. A good planner should be able to tell you what to prioritize and what to cut.
Be clear on vendors. A good planner will come up with a selection of retailers and caterers with a list of prices. Discuss this together on which one would be the optimal choice for your wedding. This is a good time to find out how the planner can get the best deals with these vendors for your wedding. Perhaps the planner has a good relationship and gets a discount. This can play to your advantage rather than going out and looking for a place on your own.
Your wedding is about you, and a good planner knows that your needs come first. They need to be flexible about working with your preferred vendor, for example.
When meeting your planner, you need to find out what they can contribute. You might have your own ideas, but a good planner might be able to expand on your original idea to bring things above your expectation. You might have the idea for a theme and your planner can help bring that to life in a way you couldn’t have imagined.
Organization is key, and you need to make sure your planner can deliver a projected timeline and milestones. This will help you see how the planning process is coming along and what needs thinking about. You’ll get an impression just how your wedding is going to shape up and you can tell whether your expectations will be met.
30th March, 2012 - Posted by Natasha - 1 Comment
I feel very honoured that I was asked to become a weekly contributor to this blog, as a wedding/event planner and coordinator for Events by Natasha, I believe I can provide brides with the right advice and tips on planning their wedding. For my first blog, I thought it was suitable to explain the benefits of hiring a wedding planner/coordinator as I find many people ask ‘Why should I hire one?’
So you just got engaged, a million thoughts are running through your mind and the thought of it all is starting to stress you out a little, not only that you have your family members adding to your stress with question after question about the planning of your wedding. You are not sure of where to even begin with all the planning, nor do you have that much time to devote to it. That is where a wedding planner/coordinator comes in.
I truly believe, a wedding planner/coordinator is the bride’s personal fairy godmother and after reading this blog, I’m pretty sure you will too. The average wedding takes about 250 hours to plan, now throw in your full-time job, your extra-curricular activities, your own personal time, and sleep of course – what are you left with? Stress! Hiring a wedding planner/coordinator is probably the best decision a bride could make, not only does it save the newly engaged couple time to go about doing their daily activities, but it also helps relieve a lot of stress and with relieving stress, comes eliminating a lot of arguments that may have started between you and your groom, or family members, not saying that the normal quarrels might not happen during the wedding process, but majority of them are eliminated.
When hiring a wedding planner/coordinator you are not only saving yourself the stress and anxiety you are also saving a lot of money – yes, I said it MONEY! Wedding planners have a lot of connections in the industry with qualified vendors and venues, where they offer them certain discounts that you are able to use, not only that, wedding planner/coordinators are very skilled in negotiating so they are always trying to get you the best deal for your money. Budget Management is one of their strong suits as well, so they will make sure your money is being spent right and you are never going over your budget or spending money in the wrong places.
Majority of Brides have been dreaming about their wedding day, since they were little girls, collecting pictures, visioning what their special day will look like, a wedding planner/coordinator will work for you to make sure that all these dreams are met, and surpassed. They will plan your wedding as to how you want it planned not how they want it planned.
Now, we all know sometimes even during the greatest day of our life emergencies or crisis tend to happen. But, fear no more, your wedding planner/coordinator can take care of them; they are trained in handling any type of emergency and making sure that everything gets taken care of immediately.
Wedding planner/coordinators also create detailed schedules and itineraries for your wedding allowing you not to worry about orchestrating your rehearsal, or ceremony. Your wedding planner/Coordinator will make sure your bridal party and parents are properly lined up and standing in the right places. They can orchestrate the whole wedding from rehearsal right through to the end of the reception and make sure that everything goes as planned.
But, the number one reason as to why people should hire a wedding planner/coordinator is to reduce stress and put the fun back into planning a wedding, more often enough brides forget to enjoy the days leading up to their wedding and have fun because they are so stressed out from planning. Wedding planners/coordinators allow you to throw the fun back into it, and sit back, sip champagne, choose colour swatches, and taste cake.
In the past a wedding planner/coordinator was known to be more of a luxury, today it is more of a necessity to ensure that your wedding is planned smoothly and you are having fun throughout the whole process.
If that doesn’t seem like a bride’s personal fairy godmother-then I don’t know what does.
8th October, 2010 - Posted by Lia - No Comments
I am pleased to feature An English Rose, one of Montreal’s most professional wedding planners on my blog. Rachel Cripps-Gervais, president and owner of An English Rose took the time to answer our questions with well thought out responses, many hints and tips for brides and grooms as well as an insight into current wedding trends. Enjoy!
What can you tell me about your business and what you can offer your clients?
- Founded in 2007
- 3: myself, husband, admin staff
- Wedding, Honeymoon & Event Planning
- Mid – High End Wedding Planning
- Individual Consulting & Mentoring to Full Planning Wedding Design
- Multi-Cultural, Same Sex, Multi-Religious
- This summer I worked on my first Hollywood family wedding
What makes your business unique from other wedding planners?
- ME – I have a strong corporate background, managed teams of over 100 and had to liaise with junior staff to Board level Executives. Worked with external suppliers for 20 years, negotiations and management of suppliers.
- HR background give me good listening and communication skills including mediator when needed
- Hotel management background for 7 years – Wedding Planning for 10+ years
- Travelled & worked throughout Europe, Africa, North America and Asia – so gives me a wider perspective on life
- My husband is also a certified wedding planner, so gives a male perspective for the Grooms. He has also spent 20 years living and working in the US, Morocco, India, UK and more.. again giving a global mindset.
- This is my full time occupation, which I take seriously, I am qualified and certified, incorporated company with full liability insurance
- Strong organization & project management skills (not everyone in this business has!!)
- Fully engaged with my team of vendors that are hired for an event – we all pull together and support each other to ensure the wedding or event is a huge success. How you treat people is key – you never know who or where you will see people again.
- I like to Blog and network with other Wedding individuals, always staying on top of the world of weddings
What would you advice someone that just are about to start their wedding plans?
- Sit down and talk with your fiancé and both agree the vision and the style of the wedding, along with location etc – ensure you are both aligned on what you want.
- Work out your budget and understand that the more guests you have the more cuts you may have to make in other areas of the wedding.
- Hire a wedding planner who will give you peace of mind and let you enjoy the planning process, they will also have hints, tips and come up with cost saving ideas!
How do you go about hiring a professional to help you with your wedding plans?
- I meet with them face to face and conduct a full hour interview on all the services they offer, including pricing, payment terms and contract details
- I then check out their premises: office, studio space, kitchens etc – take photographs for my file
- Ask for references which I follow up on
- I then can present my clients with a 3-page summary on each vendor I present along with relevant photographs
- This ensures anyone presented to my clients are reputable and reliable and I have met personally and referenced – gives clients peace of mind and reduces a lot of the leg work.
Have you noticed a remarkable wedding trend for 2010?
- Shorter style Bridesmaid dresses
- Cultural Dance Routines for Entertainment during dinner
- Indian Dancers
- African Dancers & Drummers
- Hungarian Dancers
- Ukranian Dancers
Acrobatic Dance Show
You can reach An English Rose here.