A Letter to the Bride, Love Your Wedding Planner!

Engagement Ring

Dear Blushing Bride,

First, congratulations on your engagement! Along with everyone you shared the big news with on social media, I’m equally as excited about your big day. (And your big ring, which you were so quick to share with a finger selfie along with the words, “I said yes!) I assume there is a wonderful man that indeed got down on bended knee to propose but somehow the diamond blocked out his face. I look forward to seeing the Ken to your Barbie in the wedding photos.

Now that you are officially off the market, and you are giddy with wedding excitement, there are a few things we should get straight, so follow me down the aisle as we have an honest chat.

  1. You hired a wedding planner because you wanted help to design what will arguably be the most important day of your life. But let’s get something very clear; I should be considered a partner in the planning. I’m not your slave, therapist, or Girl Friday that will jump at every wail you have when you think your wedding world is falling down around you. I’m a seasoned professional that is going to guide you, support you and to work feverishly on your behalf. Help me, help you, by treating me like the professional I am, and for appreciating the stripes I have earned through experience.
  2. If you want to sign contracts without running them by me, you will be put on restriction in the time out chair. I realize you are trying to be an independent woman but the reality is that there is a language within the event industry, and unless you are fluent in it (Rosetta Stone can’t help you), you should defer to the pros for translation and guidance. When you get confused between a final guarantee and an estimate, things can get expensive. Unless you want to confess to Daddy that you just cost him an extra $25,000 because you prematurely signed the contract without running it by your wedding planner, you might want to consult with me. Remember, you hired me to be your guide. Contract negotiations do not faze me.
  3. Please realize that the images you have pinned on Pinterest, will realistically cost you $1.8 million. Weddings are expensive. If you think your day won’t be complete without tuxedo-wearing doves and diamond confetti, Daddy is probably going to have to sell the vacation home. An excellent wedding planner will take your Pinterest inspiration and turn it into the event you can afford. Please don’t look at us with those puppy dog eyes, full of disappointment, when we tell you what things really cost. It’s the reality of an open market. Sorry to be the one to tell you no for the first time in your life.
  4. Lighting is like Spanx; it highlights what you want and camouflages what you don’t. When in doubt about what to cut out of the budget, never cut lighting. You are a pretty girl; be lit appropriately.
  5. Please don’t hire me as a “day of coordinator” and assume I’m going to be a full planning coordinator. First of all, there is nothing called a “day-of coordinator” in our industry. No good planner is ever going to just show up on site without coordinating with vendors. At a minimum, I would be a month-of planner but even that window is closing. Experience tells me a client asking for discounted services will always be a discounted client in terms of attitude, appreciation and our relationship. Don’t be that client.
  6. You are allowed one (and only one) complete meltdown during the planning process. Please plan accordingly. When we first met, you were a very mature, capable and right-minded woman. Let’s keep her front and center, shall we? If you want perfection, you shouldn’t be getting married. Don’t sweat the small stuff.
  7. Whatever happens, remember to enjoy the experience. Share your story with your guests. Be authentic. Celebrate the fact that all the people you love are in one room, on one day, showering you with best wishes. Put way more thought into your marriage than your wedding day. I promise it will make all the difference in the world.

I hope I have made myself clear by laying the groundwork that is going to make our working relationship very successful. I realize you might be taken aback with my straight talk, and I could very well be the first person to take this tone with you, but if you are old enough to get married, you are old enough to hear the truth. Don’t forget, I’m here to be your biggest cheerleader, the bad cop to your good cop, your sounding board and your support system. However, that doesn’t mean we are going to allow crazy to creep in to the process. Promise you will keep your head on straight, your perspective in check, and your mind wide open to all possibilities. I, in turn, promise to be the planner worthy of your referral.

Cheers,

Your Wedding Planner

Image by fashion-kid.net

 

Nicole R. Matthews, CSEP, is Founder & Lifestyle Architect of The Henley Company, LLC. a global event, travel and lifestyle concierge firm. With the belief that life should be experienced in a big way, Nicole set out to create a company focused on helping clients to live the life they want and to produce the experiences they want to remember!

The Henley Company offers comprehensive event production, as well as manages the busy lives of executives and their families. Her recent international projects include the 2012 London Olympics, the 2013 Super Bowl & FIFA Confederation Cup in Brazil, and most recently the 2014 Sochi Olympics. Nicole’s first book, Permission – Stop Competing & Start Creating The Life You Want to Live is now available on Amazon. Follow her antics on Twitter at @henleyco.

 

Playground Chatter: Sharon Mintz, Organic Elements

Welcome to our first, Playground Chatter! Our new blog series, where we get to profile and chat with some of the best executives in town! Sure, we could ask about all their fancy business stuff but since we are fun monsters, we want to know how they spend their spare time!

Meet our first Playground Monitor: Sharon Mintz, Owner of Organic Elements

_______________________________________________________________________________

Your nickname?    SmintzySharon Mintz

What is your grown up job?  I don’t know, I’ll decide when I grow up. Oh, you mean wedding florist :).

How can we find you?
Facebook:      organicelementsflorals
Twitter:          @organicelements
Instagram:      organicelements
Pinterest:         sdorganicelements
Website:           http://www.organicelements.com

 

1) Tell us where you spent your childhood years. Is there one year you remember most?
I grew up in Los Angeles in the 80-90’s so the usual, Beverly Center, Century City, 3rd Street…

2) Favorite part of the playground to hang out in? Swings

3) Lunch pail, brown bag or did you buy lunch?
Tupperware (due to my mother’s hobbies) lunchbox.

4) What would be your ideal recess today?
Snorkeling on the beach with breaks of cold drinks and absolute silence to listen to only the waves.

5) Does your company encourage recess for their employees?
Yes, paid for field trips included.

6) If I deemed you Playground Monitor for the next 15 minutes, how would you rally your employees? What activity would everyone participate in?
Team cheer, all hands in and a quick baton race.

7) What rules did you learn on the playground that you still utilize today?
Fair is fair, be kind to everyone-you never know who will grow larger than you later in life, you have to join in the activity to have fun with the group… but you can still make up your own games and lead the charge.

8) When does time disappear for you?
Talk about your hobbies. Currently my time disappears making sure my children have plenty of time for recess themselves, my time will come again soon enough.

9) What is one area of your life where you need more recess?
Sleep. I work in my dreams. Though I love what I do, I need to dream further away.

10) What is your authentic intention (that thing that you really, really want to do or accomplish?) What are you doing to get there?
I have a first child, it’s about 10 now and it’s name is Organic Elements. I work, everyday to make sure it is happy and healthy, surrounded both those that make it so. Everyday I focus on how it can be smarter, stronger and more beautiful to all it touches.

11) What can you do to design your life to better incorporate more recess? (Pinky Swear).
Declare some days off (even a few per year), and mean it!

5 Out of the Box Brunch Ideas for Brides Magazine

Creative-Post-Wedding-Brunch-Ideas

We recently had the opportunity to contribute to an article for Brides Magazine on out of the box ideas for day-after wedding brunch events. We love the chance to get creative and help our guests to enjoy recess!

With post-wedding brunches now becoming the new norm, why no throw a breakfast bash that truly suits you and your groom’s personalities? Whether you’re an artsy couple or just big kids at heart, here are five unique ideas that will totally rival the festivities from the night before.

1. Have a Field Day
If stuffy, formal brunches aren’t exactly your thing, throw the ultimate recess for your friends and family the following day. “Let your guests play and blow off some steam from all the wedding planning by organizing a casual BBQ that includes fun games,” suggests Nicole R. Matthews, CSEP, owner of The Henley Co, an event, travel and lifestyle concierge company based in San Diego. Think old school picnic games, like a three-legged race or a water balloon toss with bridesmaids verse groomsmen, his family verse hers or even men verse women, she offers.

2. Host a Hangover Brunch
Trust us, after a long night of dancing and boozing, your guests will be more than delighted to enjoy a little pampering. Matthews recommends putting together a “Morning After the Night Before” brunch with chair and foot massage stations, an oxygen bar to help get reenergized and a greasy food menu to help with all the hangovers.

Enjoy the rest of the ideas by clicking here.

Top 5 Venue Pointers to NEVER Forget When Choosing a Venue | CUR8EUR

Every venue is not built the same; nor should they be lumped into one big category when you are trying to select the perfect venue for your event. Thanks CUR8EUR for asking us for our opinion on how to select the best venue! We are delighted to share our two cents…

 

Top 5 Venue Pointers to NEVER Forget When Choosing a Venue | CUR8EUR.