Wednesday, September 30, 2009

A Great Place for Chocolate- Lilly in Tremont

Weddings always need something unique.  As a bride you typically don't want to have something that other people have already had, colors that someone else used or even a dress that someone else has worn.  As a planner I am always looking out for products or vendors that offer that something special to my clients.

Last week I had the pleasure of joining Felicia from Lindsey from (along with a few others) at a chocolate shop in Tremont.
To say this chocolate was "good" would be one of the more ridiculous statements that I could make.  This chocolate was above and beyond amazing.  As a chocolate "'liker", I'm not necessarily interested in chocolate for the most part, but this, this was dreamy.

We got to sit down with one of the owners, as she hosted the special chocolate tasting event. My first thought was, any bride who could utilize these as favors or even as a dessert display at her wedding would NOT be disappointed.

Check them out if you are interested in "unique" for your wedding, trust me this is it.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Beth & Bobby

This will probably be the first and only time I post details or information on this blog about my bridal clients.  I like letting the bride decide what she wants everyone to know.  Plus, I don't tend to get tons of bridal clients that are interested in "blogging" or having their wedding info posted online.  Some planners do, and I LOVE reading about it! 

With all that being said, I have a bride that I worked with and it would be a HUGE disservice to her and her new husband if I didn't post this for everyone to see! (and of course, I've asked her permission as well)

They planned/choreographed their "first dance."  This was no ordinary first dance though, this was the most fun, energetic, first dance I've witnessed yet.  The fact of the matter is, that this "first dance" of theirs tells you everything you'd need to know about their relationship.  They are fun, exciting, adventurous couple and together they share a real, true love in enjoying each other and their lives together.  I think it is safe to say they are in it for the long haul.  Anyone that can manage to pull this off, really, they have a great shot at anything they set their mind to, obviously. 

Check it out-

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Secrets behind Vendor Selection (that no one talks about)

After, what I would consider, a substantial amount of time in the industry, I think I have some advice on vendor selection that may be helpful to brides.  This may or may not be information that you would have previously considered or even thought about.  While I am not trying to say that it is typical of vendors to be untruthful about their abilities, in the day and age of "anyone can be anything with a good website", you need to be more careful.

1- ASSOCIATIONS: If your vendor belongs to an association, that is wonderful!  First thing you need to do is find out what it takes to become a Member of the association, in order to understand how "wonderful" that really makes your vendor.  Some associations just require a payment.  Yes, that is it.  Your DJ can be "certified by the "Amazing Wonderful Awesome DJ Association of America", and all he had to do was pay them $100.  While other associations have a lengthy review process and even referral requirements.  Find out which one your vendor participates in.

2- REFERRALS: Another thing that usually helps with choosing a vendor is referrals.  Some vendors just have "quotes" on their website, while others will offer you the numbers of several clients to contact.  Keep in mind, NO ONE, is going to give you the phone number to an unhappy client.  You'll need to know what matters most to you before you call, so that you have specific questions for the client.  "Were they on time?"  "How long did setup take?"  "How do you know the vendor or how did you find the vendor?"  "What type of attire did they wear?"  Sometimes even a simple "When did you last work with the vendor?" may bring up surprising information, such as "Eight years ago" and in that case, you might want to find someone who can offer useful, up to date, referrals. 

3- PHOTOGRAPHY: I am not referring to photographers.  I am referring to the photos that some vendors use on their site that have been provided by photographers.  A florist can do "okay" designs but when working with an "amazing" photographer, those designs/centerpieces/arrangements come out looking spectacular.  I'll be kicked out of the Wedding Planner Club for this one, but even some wedding planners can provide pictures of events that they worked, but that doesn't mean what you see has anything to do with what they did, sometimes they didn't even coordinate the vendors OR their work.  A Wedding Planner can work with great vendors to create a great day, that you CAN tell from a photo.  A Wedding Planner may not be able to create the design, color, creativity, layout and themes that you see, that you CAN'T tell from a photo.  Sometimes, if you are inclined, it is okay to ask Planners what part they had in the design of certain photos.  Don't count on your Planner to be able to create 6-story high centerpieces OR to even be able to setup place cards JUST because they show photos of those things.

I know, I know no one wants to hear this awful truth but it must be told.  I have researched many "Wedding Planner" sites and some of them, after investing time and energy to review, are nothing more than someone who has seen Jennifer Lopez in The Wedding Planner, one too many times.  You can't tell JUST from someone's website, so do your research.  Don't be fooled by the pretty pictures and the "I love you" quotes from clients.

I'll continue to expose the secrets of vendor selections (that no one wants to talk about) as the months go on, eventually you'll be able to sift through the Flash Sites and fancy blogs and find what matters!

Monday, September 14, 2009


I am overjoyed to be listed/nominated and request that you log on and vote for All Events Planned!  Fun contest for all vendors that are listed on the Fox 8 Hot List.

Check us out!

Thursday, September 10, 2009


Now is a great time to support/promote your favorite vendors. I would love to know who you like to use for-

Reception Halls
Anything else you can think of, add to the list.

Post your favorites on the blog comments. I have weddings booked for next year in Akron, Canton, Cleveland, so I'd like to hear about vendors from any area in NEO. I've got a few of my favorites, but I'm always interested in meeting, getting to know and recommending new vendors. If you have a favorite wedding planner, that is NOT me, that's okay, I'm always interested in meeting other planners as well! The best people come from referrals, do your favorite vendor a favor and list them!

I'm looking forward to getting to know some new people in the industry!

UPDATE- Thank you to the 50+ people that actually emailed me lists.  I was disappointed not to end up getting comments, but then as the emails came in, I realized it was a much better way to list them for me!  Thanks everyone!!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

A Whole Month

Why yes, it has been almost a month since I've last blogged. I had a wedding every weekend in August and with back to back to back weddings it is hard to find time to do anything other than work one wedding and then start planning/finalizing the next wedding, after that working the wedding and planning the next. All the while still taking calls for new clients, I'm scheduling appointments into January now! Phew. All wonderful for the business, but definitely exhausting.

I remember a time in my career when I would have a wedding on Friday evening AND Saturday evening a few weekends here and there, that was serious wedding planning. I loved every minute of it, but looking back, I don't know how where all that energy came from! If things keep going as well as they have been, I'll have to work my way up to having that kind of energy again. Wouldn't be the worst thing : )

Now that wedding season is slowing down, but not nearly close to ending, I've got to turn my focus on marketing. The "off-season" will need to be filled with appointments, meetings and times where I update/revamp the website, post for the blog, send out postcards/flyers/mailings and just get my name out in the industry. I already have some really great contacts in the media, so all I need to do make time for meetings and that will just take care of itself!

By next wedding season, I'll have everything in place for a successful year. Well, really I have it all in place now, but I think I will just continue to work on it, continue to make things better and promote my experience as the #1 selling point to brides, because really, that's all you can have in order to know what you are doing as a planner. No book, guide or class prepares you quite as well as 100's of weddings over the years.

If you have any marketing tips, sales ideas, promotional concepts or even contacts, feel free to let me know. You can never know "too many" people when trying to sell yourself to, well, people!