Getting started!

I know it’s been a while since I wrote a piece on our feature bride Emily, from our series, where has the time gone? However you won’t have to wait too long for the next one as part two of this one is coming very soon.

Invitations went out a few weeks ago now and it was important for me that although Emily has, agreed to let us follow her journey, that I respect her privacy too, some elements of her wedding hadn’t been discussed openly with friends and family.

So invitations… this is where it starts to feel real. Actual people are going to be turning up to an actual event that you are planning.

In Emily’s case she has opted for a Tipi venue to be held on Richards family, dairy farm and this takes a lot of planning. It’s a bit like those family holidays camping where everything has to be packed, right down to the salt &pepper. There is so much to be considered and thought of, from generators, toilets, staff, kitchen access and everything in between.

So when Emily and I first met we had an initial chat about what she might want from me, see my blog coming soon about why you might consider a Wedding stylist & planner.

It’s really, important that Emily and I get on, let’s face it we will be spending a lot of time together.  

After our initial chat, which to be honest and I think Emily would agree, it feels much more like we are friends. I love events and weddings and I never tire of the endless ‘look at this, this would be so perfect for the wedding’ I love, love love to hear it all!

Emily chose the full styling and planning service and with only 6 months to go at the time, it really felt like I had to roll my sleeves up and get stuck in . First thing was to establish where Emily and Richard were in their planning process and get a feel for what they both wanted to achieve for their special day.

We will talk about the creative and fun bit but for now we needed to discuss the boring but incredibly important part of the wedding ….. budget! Oh my this is a really difficult one, it’s so important to have a budget and stick to it. If you don’t adhere to a budget not only are you creating additional stress and pressure for your selves but you are in danger of it getting out of control and could even land you in a heap of debt.

Emily and Richard had booked their Tipi and a few other vendors but other than that there was a lot to do. It’s so much easier to book things when you have an idea of what costings you are working to. You only have to pick up a national bridal magazine to see what a 25k wedding looks like? This doesn’t mean you can’t have a beautiful wedding but you may have to compromise (yes compromise) on other things, like guest numbers or eliminate the candy floss station for the one child you have coming to the wedding.

Luckily I have have been able to negotiate discounts for Emily & Richard’s Wedding, or offer alternative and more cost effective ideas, another bonus of having a wedding planner. There are certain items though, the nonnegotiable, items that simply just have to be paid for. 

Top tip for negotiating, don’t be afraid to ask for discount, or if a vendor can’t offer a discount, can they add other things to your package but be honest and above all be polite, state why you are asking. If the answer is still no then, it’s time to walk away and think about alternatives.

We all love a bargain but don’t forget, these businesses especially smaller independent ones, have usually carefully thought about their prices and that doesn’t always mean they are making a huge profit, you can run the risk of insulting them.

Once we had spoken about the budget, Emily and Richard were then invited to another appointment, where they brought all the things they had been buying to my workshop, naturally I thought they were moving in, surprising how it all builds up.

We pulled it all out to have a look and see what we had to work with. Now I know from our conversations that Emily was starting to feel stressed about the whole thing and whilst you may be amazing at planning and creating, the one thing you can’t do as a bride, is be in two different places at the same time and it’s this realization that usually triggers the stress button.

Emily had been saving pins on pinterest, which can be really helpful but sometimes is a little overwhelming because, it’s one thing to look and love these images but another to bring them to life.

This is where I am so pleased that I had already built trust with Emily, they left all their purchases with me and I systematically worked through all the items.

Even Emily had forgotten what they bought, top reason for overspending is buying things you don’t need, that doesn’t just apply to weddings of course.

After I had a good look at everything and based on the conversations we had already had, I was able to create a digital mood board and send this to Emily.

Mood boards are a fantastic way of bringing ideas together and in this instance gave us a platform to start working from. It’s important to point out that as things unfold, as they have with Emily and Richard, ideas change, new and more brilliant ones come to the forefront and things evolve.

So that’s how we got started! In my next blog I will cover some more of what we have been doing including how the day will run, cake tastings and top tips for catering your wedding.

Photo by Creative Pantry Somerset

I hope you have enjoyed this, if you have then I’d love you to leave a comment, if you have any questions or would like to book a free consultation then please get in touch.

Photo by Tipi Events

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