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Just a quick post today to let you know that if you’re interested in learning a little more about me on the personal side of things, how I stay organized, and my top beauty secrets you can jump on over to the Emily Ley blog where I was featured in her Simplicity Series Post. Click the photo to view the article.

niagara wedding planner

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  • May 3, 2016 - 2:57 pm

    Christine March - Is there a link for this Meagan?ReplyCancel

    • May 3, 2016 - 3:04 pm

      Meagles13 - Hmm, it should work when you click the photo. I just tried to go to her site and it looks like it’s down, so that could be why :(ReplyCancel

This post, right here, is about as personal and as truthful as I will get in this journal. It’s all of the real reasons I became a wedding planner and why I truly love what I do.

People always joke “Oh, like J-Lo” when I tell them what I do for a living, but honestly, it was when I first watched the movie “The Wedding Planner” that I fell in love with the dream. Could wedding planning be a real job? Probably not. None the less, it planted the idea in my head.

Skip ahead ten plus years; I could feel the draw of becoming an entrepreneur. As a creative, I needed a job that I could put all of my artistic energy into. I craved a career that would give me a sense of accomplishment upon the completion of each project and individual challenges to face throughout, but I also knew that I wanted to live a slow, intentional lifestyle outside of work and my choice of career would have to fit in with that. This was when that distant dream of wedding planning came front and center again.

To really explain why I love what I do, I first have to start with the concept of slow and intentional living and what it means to me. When we think of our ideal lifestyle, our career will usually fall in as a piece of the puzzle that completes the dream, rather than the entire focus. Taking time to plan an intentional day/week/month means looking at my schedule, choosing the times where I can slow down to enjoy time outside of work and also deciding on the times where I’m going to do nothing but work. Being intentional with my time means that when I sit down to work, I focus on the business tasks at hand, and when I’m setting aside time to spend with my family, they are my focus. While it would be lovely to create a firm schedule of work and non-work hours it would limit the flexibility I’m able to create and for me, having a schedule that allows me to be flexible with my hours has always been important. It means having the ability to take anywhere from a few hours to an entire day off in the middle of the week. With Ryker being 18 months old, I want to be able to spend one whole day with him playing and taking him on adventures while he’s home with me. That doesn’t mean I just let go of 6 hours from that work week; I end up making it up by sneaking some work in during nap time, working odd hours, sometimes here and there or sometimes for an entire day from 7 in the morning to 9 at night.

Finding a career that would easily fit into my ideal lifestyle was never just about “flexible” hours, but it was incredibly important for how I wanted to live overall. My dream job “must-haves” also included loving the work I would be doing and being able to financially support myself.

Working as a wedding planner gives me:

Sincere Enjoyment: Who wouldn’t want to have a job that doesn’t feel like work? I love my job tasks. The ability to pour all of my creative energy into numerous, unique projects, face challenges head-on, problem-solve for my clients, and work on the day-to-day logistics makes my heart sing. It truly doesn’t feel like work when I do the planning leading up to the wedding, the days on days of floral prep and design and even during the 12-14 hour long wedding days. I love it.

Financial Stability: While I do believe that it’s important to love what you do, if you’re working as a source of income, then you have to have an income which can cover your living expenses. Whatever career I chose would have to provide me with enough financial stability for me to work full-time in this chosen path. It’s never been a goal of mine to “get rich” from this business or to largely expand my team. The cost of my services allows me to live a slow, less-is-more lifestyle with my family while being just enough to take on a few less clients. That means I can put more focus and energy into the weddings I have booked and can offer an extraordinary experience vs. just a service.

My ideal lifestyle includes good, whole food cooking and eating, minimalism, simplicity and living a slow but full, intentional life. While I don’t share too many personal posts in this journal, I felt like sharing a little piece of who I am and why I do what I do with you here.

If you’re interested in reading more about my personal thoughts and tribulations, you can see them over on www.withwhimsyandgrace.com

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Over the last few weeks we’ve broken down, in detail the services we offer with our full planning wedding service. You can see them here. 1, 2, 3.

Today we wanted to talk about the additional benefits you get when you book a full planning service with us.

Online/ Easy-to-use 

We’re all about making things super simple for our clients. We provide an online software that makes signing contracts, receiving quotes and invoices and answering questionnaires a hassle-free experience. We have “1-click” options that create and maintain an approach of simplicity for the clients.

Questionnaire Booklet

Pages upon pages of questions that make sure we catch every detail during your wedding planning. We’ve spent four years putting these lists together. They’re a combination of our own experience, planning book questionnaires, to-do lists and just-in-case lists we’ve come up with.

Ready for a quote? Click here to contact us!

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In the last couple of weeks, we’ve talked about Parts 1 and 2 of our Full-Planning Wedding Service which we’ve  broken down in detail. We covered the initial email communication and contracting, budgeting, venue and vendor sourcing, what’s included in our full-scale design proposal and our floral design proposal. Today we’re going to skip ahead to break down what we do in the week leading up to a wedding as well as on the day-of.

wedding planner niagara

Photo by Young Glass Photography

Week-Of

At Weddings Tied With Lace, we spend the entire week leading up to the wedding on our client of that week. We closely follow up with each vendor to confirm numbers, timing, package selection and specifics, requests for the wedding day, items required etc. We put all of this information together into a detailed timeline that we hand out to all key vendors and anyone involved in the wedding day logistics.

We also spend this time prepping and designing the client’s wedding flowers which means cleaning vases and containers, de-thorning and cleaning stems, conditioning flowers to live their longest and of course, arranging your bouquets, centerpieces, ceremony pieces, etc.

We always attend and supervise the clients rehearsal to make sure we have all the last minute details and changes, as well as have the opportunity to make last minute suggestions.  It’s also a good way for my team to meet the entire bridal party and parents before the day-of, so everyone knows who to find in case anything needs to be taken care of.

Day-of

We’re up bright and early on the wedding day to make sure we’re not needed by the bride and groom or any vendors. We use this time in the morning to pack up all of our emergency kit items as well as the flowers for the day. We arrive on site in time to complete the setup. For us, this usually includes any floral installations that need to be created on site, floral placement, menus, place cards, table numbers, napkins, charger plates, the seating chart, cocktail decor, candles, straightening linen and chairs and general tidying of the event spaces.

While on site we deal with everything on behalf of the client. Even with a perfectly planned wedding where all of the details have been carefully thought out, things can and do go wrong (due to human error, traffic, weather, etc.) We’re there to deal with these surprises so the clients don’t have to. In a lot of the instances, we can deal with the issue before the bride and groom even know. We’ve dealt with mix-ups in the seating chart, a cake that didn’t quite make it intact , vendors who were lost and couldn’t find the venue, and the list goes on. The important thing is we were on site to handle it so the bride and groom didn’t have to know about it, nevermind deal with it on their own.

Aside from dealing with unforseen hiccups, we’re also there to manage the planned parts of the day. We give our clients a head up before it’s time to walk down the aisle, move into the reception area for dinner, each time there is a speech, the first dance, time to cut the cake, etc.

In addition to all that, with a full planning service at Weddings Tied With Lace we’re there until the very end. We make sure everything is packed up and put aside for the bride and groom to grab the next day, all vendors have been taken care of, tear down has been completed and to make sure nothing has been left behind.

It’s hard to really explain the value of our services without actually experiencing them. We can tell you exactly what we do in detail, but until you’re really ready to get down to the nitty gritty of planning, it may not really hit you head on. It usually takes about a week into the budget and venue process before clients exclaim” how happy they are to have us”.

Most of what we “do” has been covered in the last three posts. We have one more coming with the additional benefits we provide to our clients with our full planning service.

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wedding planner winery

*Florals in the above photo were provided and designed by Bloom and Company

Last week we broke down the initial parts of our services (Email communication, budgeting & venue and vendor sourcing). Today I’ll break down the amount of detail that goes into our Full-Scale Design Proposal process.

We spend about one full week working on the perfect initial design for our clients based on the ideas they’ve given us. Our proposal includes everything that is a visual factor as well as the elements that help create the desired atmosphere. We break down the following into detailed ideas and sketch pictures to put the ideas in our head on paper.

Ceremony

  • “Altar design”
  • Aisle Design
  • What will guests sit on?
  • Ceremony programs
  • What will enhance the guest experience? A water station on a hot day? An apple cider station on a cool fall day?
  • How can we make that beautiful

Cocktail Hour

  • Layout of the event
  • Types of food, signature drinks, bar design
  • Linen choices
  • Signage/ Stationery
  • Music/Lighting

Reception

  • Head Table Design (Style of table, linen, floral piece(s), style of chair)
  • Guest Tables Design (style of table, linen, centerpiece design, style of chairs, charger plates, stationery design( menus, escort cards, table numbers) )
  • Room Layout
  • Overall “wow” appeal as guests enter the room
  • Lighting, music, signature drinks – elements that can suggest the desired tone.

Invitations

Invitations that will echo the entire design/tone of the event.

Floral

A basic idea of how the flowers will look.

After we complete the design proposal, we’ll sit down with our clients to go over the design elements that they want to implement. Once they’ve decided we will get firm quotes on all outside decor.

Complete Floral Proposal/ Quote

Once our clients decor has been decided we will work on putting together a detailed Proposal and Quote for them. This includes everything from type of flowers in each arrangement to how many of each arrangement are needed with a detailed quote on the cost of the service.

Stay tuned for Part 3 where we’ll skip ahead to what we take care of in the week leading up to the wedding.

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