Friday, October 30, 2009

Photo shoot featured on local photographers blog

There is nothing in the blogging world like featuring a blogger on your blog, which we did in the last installment and now being a blogger and having yourself featured on another blogger's blog.  Check it out and get a little glimpse of my life outside of wedding world-

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Guest Blogger for "Secrets Behind" series, featuring a Professional BRIDE!

You may have seen our blog featured on http://kadeeswedding.wordpress.com she featured our interview with Cakes by E. & If you missed it, you can catch up on that post HERE.

The story behind her blog, in her very own words, is as follows-
||Idea Behind the Blog||
Having grown up in Yakima, it has always been my {dream} to have my wedding there. However, living in Seattle and planning a wedding 2 ½ hours away, I discovered the options were somewhat harder to find. In May, I contacted Yakima Valley Bride and proposed the idea of creating a blog in conjunction with their magazine. I am heavily dependent on the internet and Yakima just doesn’t have the online communities that I’ve become accustomed to. Due to my habit of diving into projects and an appetite to challenge my c.r.e.a.t.i.v.i.t.y (this is my first blog!) this little idea was born. As a result, I invite area brides, near or far, to join me over the next year in discovering unique, stylish and fresh ideas for their Yakima wedding.

We were so impressed with her blog that we thought the best thing to do was have her featured as a guest "vendor" and get her inside thoughts on planning a wedding. Why not get some feedback from the most important person that we work with! What follows is the fun and very interesting interview with Kadee.
And now (drum roll please) another installment in the Secrets Behind series featuring- THE BRIDE

INTRO from Kadee: I don’t think “professional brides” really exist (after all, most only plan on walking down the aisle once), so some of my answers may not be what is best for other brides in other areas of the world. I’m simply giving my opinions based on the research I’ve done and how far I’ve gotten into my own wedding planning so far.

Q: What is the biggest misconception about planning a wedding/being a bride?
A: Well I guess my answer may seem obvious, but for me, the biggest misconception was how much there actually is to do. You don’t think about having to call your vendors and set up appointments, researching who would be the best for you and why, visiting multiple places (venue) and coming prepared with a list of questions. Plus, with the stress on you, it amplifies the feelings of everything you have to do and get done in order to make the wedding the one of your dreams. It is like “making a dream come true” so to speak, it’s putting ideas onto paper and into action. It’s way easier when it’s just all in your head. The logistics of everything are what makes it the hardest to plan because you want to take you + your groom into account PLUS all of your friends and family there.

Q: What are a few mistakes that brides may make when choosing their vendors?
A: Not asking enough questions; I’m a questioner, I think about details that (apparently) isn’t normal . . . I want to make sure they’re the perfect fit, so don’t just settle with the first vendor that talks a pretty talk. Make them prove they’re worth your money and let them know you’re not an easy sell. The more meticulous you are in your vendor interviews they more they are willing to live up to the hype they’re selling you and make them accountable. If you don’t expect much, they may not give as much. Word of mouth is the strongest PR tool that companies have – good or bad.  Plus, by asking all the questions, you are ensuring you get the best fit for the wedding you want.

Q: What are a few things brides should look at when selecting vendors?
A: See if they have any reviews. Sometimes they’ll include them in their informational packets and a lot of times you can find reviews online simply by Googling the company’s name. See what others had to say about their service and judge whether those opinions are valuable or not to you. Also, when meeting with them, make sure they “click” with your personality. There’s nothing worse than having a DJ who won’t take your guests requests even if you want him too or a photographer who will only take the pictures he wants. Make sure you trust that they’re willing to do what YOU want to do on the big day.
Also, ask your friends, friends of friends, your hairdresser, classmate . . . anyone who’s been around the wedding industry in your area for suggestions in order to generate some good leads. Someone who has no vested interest in the company you’re looking for will most often give you the most candid responses.

Q: With the economy down and many couples struggling, can you see any areas where the bride and groom can save and still have the wedding of their dreams?
A: If you don’t have a lot of guests traveling, a good way to go would be to have a wedding on a Friday or perhaps a Sunday. These are usually cheaper days when booking a venue which can be a huge chunk of your budget.
Another option, which I absolutely love, is going the DIY route. There are so many great tutorials, web sites and blogs that cater to the DIY bride; you just need to do a little research. I know it can be intimidating if you’re not the hands-on type, but try to solicit the help of some crafty friends or family members and chances are you’ll find someone who can lead you through it. A lot of these sites also have free templates for invitations, decorations or guest favors as well as numerous other inspirational ideas.
A few of my favorite DIY Blogs:
http://www.i-do-it-yourself.com/

http://mydiyweddingday.com/

http://www.marthastewartweddings.com

I’ve also done a series of http://kadeeswedding.wordpress.com/tag/budget-resources/ Budget Resource posts on my blog in which I suggest where/how brides can save money during the wedding planning process. To the right of my posts, you will also find a list of budget resources that include other budget savvy blogs, coupon links and websites that allow you to earn money back from your online purchases . . . no matter where you live ;).

Q: What is one area where you think a bride and groom should splurge?
A: I’m all about finding the best deal, but there is one area I don’t think you can skimp on and that’s the food. Really, that’s probably going to be the highlight of your guests’ night and it’s your gift to them, a way of thanking them for being there. While you may not eat a whole lot that evening, they sure will and it’s one thing they always seem to remember. If the food is bad, they’ll remember it so you’ll want to make sure and leave them happy not hungry.

Q: What is the worst wedding story you’ve heard from a bride or a groom?
A: I haven’t heard anything too bad or too over-the-top. I know one bride who had an outdoor wedding and it ended up raining before she walked down the aisle . . . turns out she was still glowing during the ceremony and it made for the quite the “memory maker” moment. I’ve seen some pretty bad wedding moments on TV where limos didn’t show up, a bride fainted during the ceremony, or a guest caught on fire . . . however, these are all small incidents compared to the fact that you get to the spend the rest of your life with the person at the other end of the aisle. Things can “go wrong” i.e. not the way you planned exactly, but as long as you get to marry your honey, everything will turn out fine in the long run. Your guests will understand that things happen you can’t account for, you have to remember, it’s JUST a wedding ;).

Q: What is something you wish all your vendors knew, or a certain thing you wish all of your vendors would do to make working them easier?
A: Not putting prices on your websites – even estimates – I found this thoroughly irritating when researching my vendors. I know prices can vary but if I’m in unfamiliar territory and trying to research who would be best for my wedding, I want to narrow down my choices (and a lot of times, money dictates your choices for you). Having to call the vendor and ask questions just to get an idea of pricing is a waste of my time and theirs.  It’s especially bad when they want you to sit down with them BEFORE they even give you an idea. Big turn off.  At that point, I feel like it’s more about them than the customer.
Have your information listed for online contact. For the web-obsessed and the email-addicted out there {like me}, it’s really helpful to find my information online and have an email address available for quicker correspondence for those of us too busy to sit down and have a conversation over the phone or in person. I know, sometimes you just assume everyone has a website nowadays, but they don’t . . . it just makes it that much easier on prospective clients.
Lead the conversation. While I encourage brides to be prepared with questions they don’t always know what to ask and don’t always have specifics in mind. Knowing your capabilities and what you’re best at helps them narrow down what they may want. (i.e. most people don’t know what fruits are in season) I’ve sat down with a few companies, where I was looking for them to tell me what they think or what they suggest and not a whole lot came out . . . I’m looking for you to be the expert so lead me in the direction you think is best and we’ll go from there. Lay it out on the table for the brides and grooms and then customize . . . they don’t know your industry inside and out but they’re hoping you do.

Q: Any other suggestions for brides and grooms out there?
A: I tend to over analyze and over-worry which leads to over-stressing. Not a good combination. One thing I forgot {and still tend to} while in the early stages of my planning was that you hire the professionals because they are professionals. You don’t need to worry about the entire play list at the reception, that’s what the DJ is for (he can assess the crowd while you’re having fun mingling), you don’t need to figure out how to keep the hot food hot, you’re caterer will take care of it, etc. etc. Let their instinct and experience do the work for you and know where they come into play during the wedding . . . keeping this in mind will free up your focus for the things you really do need to worry about.

Most important point to make, we may never hear another bride say “It’s JUST a wedding” but she DID say that!
I think that was a great viewpoint to get in this series. She even has a few tips that I had not thought of before. While I'm not the go-to planner for DIY (I enjoy more wedding management, as opposed to wedding cutting and pasting) I think it is a great concept for the creative bride!
Kadee even touched on something that I am constantly unsure of, posting your pricing. You hate to scare off a bride with our pricing but I do think giving them an idea upfront is better than giving them nothing. As a planner you always want to be able to tell the bride the difference between a $300 planner and a $900 planner (and even a $8,000 planner) before they make their decision.

Looking forward to feedback on this new installment! Remember if you'd like to be featured, just send me an email and let me know.

Our next interview will be Secrets behind- Wedding Dresses

Onewed.com Wedding Expert (again)

Check out my expert wedding advice at 


If you are interested in any advice or tips on your wedding plans, email All Events Planned and let us know!  

Monday, October 26, 2009

Free Wedding Assistance


Yes, you did read the title correctly! 
Basic information on wedding planning,
referrals or even just tips and ideas are always FREE
.
 
Yes, free.  Email me, call me or just leave a comment and I'm happy to help.  Free vendor referral is always good for me since it allows me to give business to the great people I know in the wedding industry.

If you decide that I'm not perfect wedding planner for you I will always be happy to refer you to another planner that might be more to your liking or more in your price range. Yes, I'll even do that.  (It is better to have helped someone find a great planner than it is to find out someone's wedding day was ruined by a bad one)

Don't hesitate to give me a chance to assist you, for free!

New Wedding Magazine

As a few classic wedding magazines close down shop, a brand new magazine has opened its doors to the wedding industry!

making wedding planning a piece of cake 

I've handed an issue of this magazine out to 15 brides over the last month and the feedback has been exactly the same, "love it"!  I take an issue to a consultation appointment and hand it to them when we sit down, before we are half way through our meeting we are both checking out the magazine and pointing out ideas and colors for their reception.

The magazine is fun, fresh and "bride" focused.  They offer great ideas and tips and all of them in a (gasp) reasonable price range for any bride.  The best part of the magazine is that you aren't bombarded with 100's of ads, page after page.  This is a very clean layout that I think everyone will really enjoy.
Check it out, you will not be disappointed that you did!


You can look for it is your local stores & shops soon!! 

Friday, October 23, 2009

Secrets Behind Series Continues with "Guest" Vendor

During my excitement of being emailed by vendors all over the world, I was contacted by a vendor that I thought had a great site, great product and some really good insight, so here she is!  I copied some information from her web page to get you the background on our "Guest" Vendor, Girl Metro, Inc.-

what we're about

Paper, paper, and more paper... With a little design thrown in for good measure.
Girl Metro, Inc. principal Richelle Albrecht displayed a love for all things paper at an early age - 2, to be exact - and has yet to give up her paper-hording ways. Joined by a crack team of designers (including Spike, design beagle extraordinaire), Girl Metro has been creating extraordinary invitations and occasionally irreverent cards since 2002.
Tucked into a studio on the north side of Chicago, we're pleased to work one-on-one with clients to create the perfect stationery. Personal consultations at the studio are always welcome by appointment. We also regularly work long-distance (via phone and internet) with our clients. To arrange a consultation either in person or by phone, please give us a call at 773 878 4475 or drop us a line.
 
about richelle...
After graduating with a degree in Graphic Design, Richelle did the ad agency gig for a few years, where she designed and art directed everything from logos to packaging to giant posters to corporate video, and even a few websites. Having learned vast amounts about the world of advertising in those years, she found that it wasn't perhaps the best fit.
It wasn't long until designing wedding invitations for friends made it clear that invitation design was exactly the kind of work Richelle had been looking for all along. Designing things for happy occasions, for couples who were not only excited about their event, but were totally invested in the design of the pieces - what could be better? Consequently, when the dot-com crash came, it seemed the perfect opportunity to start working toward that goal. Now, several years later, Richelle and her team are loving every minute of it.
In addition to running Girl Metro, Inc., Richelle is a founding member of the Chicago Craft Mafia, which is affiliated with the worldwide Craft Mafia organization.

Richelle is also honored to be part of the AllExperts at About.com panel of experts, specializing in wedding invitation etiquette.

Now that we've got that covered we are moving on to Secrets Behind- STATIONARY & INVITATIONS

Q: What is the biggest misconception about your industry?

A: Many people feel that invitations aren't a priority - the line I hear most often is "because people just throw them away." Which, if you don't take time to make your invitation an expression of the wedding and the couple, is most likely true.

A wedding invitation is the introduction to the wedding for the guests - it's the beginning of the wedding experience for them... make a custom invitation totally unique, and most often it will become keepsake for guests, as well.

Q: What are a few mistakes brides sometimes make when choosing their invitations?

A: Some brides will order invitations without ever seeing a physical sample - so the paper, quality of the printing, and everything else are a surprise... and sadly, not always a good one.

With custom work, some brides don't count on how long it takes to truly develop a custom stationery suite from scratch - it's not an overnight process, especially when you want something truly unique and personal! Ideally, we like 4-6 months to get everything designed and complete, but many brides come to us only a couple of months before their invitations need to be mailed, which makes it more of a challenge.
 

Q: What things should a bride look for, look at, when selecting invitations?

A:
There are a few things to take into consideration before choosing a custom invitation designer:

1. Clients should look at the breadth of the designer's style - if the portfolio contains a lot of fussy, ornate designs and you have very contemporary, minimalist taste, that designer is probably not the one for you. Ideally, you want to see a portfolio that either has a huge variety of styles that are done well, or, if you know exactly what you want, a portfolio of designs that closely fits that vision.

 
2. Ask to see physical, finished samples of the designer's work - do they look and feel professionally made? Or do they have a home-made quality? Some designers are fantastic at design, but their production skills aren't great. You'll want to know the designer's limitations before you hire them to do something that might be out of their skill set.

 
3. Look at the quality of the materials in the finished samples - does the paper feel heavy enough to you? Do you like the way the envelopes are lined? Does the printing look even, and does it match from the invitation to the response card? If the quality of the samples seems poor or lacking, you'll probably want to find a different invitation designer for your invites.

Q: What is the one thing a bride should save on when booking with you?

A: With custom work, you will always save money when you print as much as you can in one go, so order all of the stationery pieces you can at one time - invitations, place cards, thank you cards, etc.

A custom invitation designer can also help couples get something they love to fit into their budget. A designer can work with a bride, creating an invitation which can be printed on a letterpress, and help her find ways to cut costs elsewhere in her stationery - for example, printing map cards digitally, or printing other parts of the suite in the same ink color, but on an offset press, which is less expensive.

Q: What is the one thing a bride should splurge on when booking with you?
 

A: The one thing a bride should splurge on varies - it should be the thing she loves the most about stationery. So if it's super-thick paper, or paper that can be planted to grow herbs or flowers, that should be the one thing. If it's a special shape, or incorporating a velvet or silk wrap, or having an actual book created around her invitation, then hiring a fantastic designer is where to splurge.

Q: What is the worst story you have heard about a mistake someone in your industry has made, anyone, ever?

 
A: Oh, gosh, I've heard a few... there was the invitation designer who lied about being on vacation to duck a client's calls (and got caught); there's the designer who didn't deliver the invitations until 3 weeks after she said she would... and there are a few designers out there who are stealing other designers' work, re-doing it for their clients and calling it their own. To me, that last one's a cardinal sin, although it sadly happens pretty often.

Q: If you had a client who had endless funds what unique ideas and products/services would you offer them?

A:
It would absolutely depend upon the clients.
For some, it would be handmade paper in a custom color that's cut into a fantastic, folding piece.
For others, it's a letterpress invitation mounted on rich velvet, with a crystal button closure (I actually got to do that one
-it was something else!).
Or, it's a custom-made box of things that speak to the wedding and the couple - and would be utterly unique to them and their wedding.
For still others, it's custom printed frisbee for a casual BBQ wedding, or orchids, hand delivered with scrolls wrapped and tied around the stems.... The possibilities are totally dependent upon the style and personality of the couple and their wedding.


Q: What are a few things that bridal clients should review in contracts with their vendor?

A: There are a few things that are sort of unique to invitation designers, that clients should watch for in their contracts:
1. Look for timing and turnaround information. A client should know how long the designer will take to incorporate feedback and send revised versions of the stationery. The contract should also indicate that after final approval, invitations will be delivered in a specific number of days or weeks.

2. The contract should list every item included in the stationery suite and at what cost. For example, if you want place cards designed to match your stationery, they should appear in the contract, and the price should be included in the total estimated cost. The description of each item should be as specific as possible, too - if items are to be letterpress printed, that should be noted in the contract.

3. Keep an eye out for the number of revisions (sometimes called change orders), allowed. Most designers put a cap on the number of times they will revise a design, after which an hourly fee applies.
This is pretty standard, but a couple should be aware of that number, so that they can make their revision requests as efficient as possible and avoid additional charges.

4. Terms and payment information. Clients should know exactly how much is due, and at what point during the process a payment will be due. Some designers take a small deposit with the contract, a larger payment upon approval, and a final payment upon delivery. Some ask for 50% up front, and the rest due upon approval or delivery.
Whatever the designer's policy is, it should be spelled out in the contract.

5. How to end the agreement. It's unpleasant to think about, but clients should look for an "out clause," just in case. It's honestly never happened to me, but in the event a client wants to end our agreement, my contract stipulates that it must be before anything has been printed, it must be in writing, and their deposit is non-refundable. I always point that part of the contract out to clients, so that they are aware that if something were to go horribly wrong, they have an out clause and know what must be done.

Q: What is something you wish all of your clients knew, or a certain thing you wish all of your clients would do to make working with them easier?

A: One thing I always wish is that clients would be up front about their budget. It's awful to sit through a consultation and  talk about silk ribbons and special bookbinding techniques and letterpressed cotton papers, only to have to tell a couple that the things they just got all excited about are totally out of their budget. If a couple lets a designer know ahead of time what - approximately, no need to get down to the penny! - they want to spend, the designer can show them options that they will love that *are* within their budget.


Additionally, it's hugely beneficial when working with a designer, if a couple is candid about their likes - and their dislikes. Not liking something in a designer's portfolio of samples isn't going to hurt the designer's feelings - it will actually help the designer figure out the couple's style. When clients are firm about what they don't care for, as well as what they do, that's the best possible way to move forward and get to a design that's going to be perfect


Well, I hope that interview helped out some of my brides during their interview ordering process.  Thank you again to  Richelle from Girl Metro, Inc in Chicago for her time and her "secrets."  Check out more photos of her stationary work below.




If you have a good idea for the "Secrets Behind" series or would like to be featured in an interview, please email me.  We are trying to keep the vendors local, but a few guest here and there will be fun!

Featured on another blog! http://kadeeswedding.wordpress.com/

All Events Planned is so, so, so proud to have part of OUR blog featured on a bride's blog!  Especially because her blog is fantastic and so fun to read! 

Here is a little about the blog-

Kadee’s {Wedding} is a contemporary blog, with a romantic flair, that features chic wedding trends + m.o.d.e.r.n inspiration for the Yakima bride. Written by {Kadee Peterson}, this site features area vendors + resources such as: photography, catering, beauty, fashion + travel, along with product analysis, shop reviews + everything else wedding!

Here is a little about the bride-
.the bride.
About The Bride Final Banner 100 dpi

 Simply put, I am a Yakima girl who fell in love with a Seattle boy. I recently graduated from the University of Washington with a B.A. in Communications and a focus in Public Relations in June 2008. I am an aspiring PR professional in search of my {dream} job, social media junkie and a Martha Stewart-enthusiast.


Dubbed “Nancy Drew”, I am always scouring the web for information and have more recently looked to other bloggers for i.n.s.p.i.r.a.t.i.o.n on the latest wedding trends. I am continually amazed by the amount of fresh + ::fashionable:: ideas available and even more excited to share and use them for my own wedding. While I’m all for keeping up on tradition, I have a slight touch of anti-bride in my system.  I believe a wedding should be unique, fun and really shine on who the couple is.  After all, this is |their day| to share who they are with their loved ones.
My fiancĂ© {Kyle} is currently studying for his Master’s in Education while working construction to pay the bills. In his spare time, he finds solitude in his true {passion}, coaching community college Men’s Basketball in the winter and just recently, Girl’s Varsity Softball in the spring. While he’s more excited about the marriage than the actual planning of the wedding, he has been very tolerant of my newly admitted obsession. . . . this, ladies, is why I love him :)

Check it out here, our interview with Erica Fill from Cakes by E-
http://kadeeswedding.wordpress.com/2009/10/23/cake-spiration/  

Thank you to Kadee for featuring the interview on her blog!  Definitely a great way to start the weekend!!!!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

In 1st Place?!

Wow, I just checked.......


and it seems as though I'm in 1st place.  That's not too bad to see considering that I've forced myself to stop keeping track of the standings.  Might as well keep it up, go on and vote if you haven't already!  Thanks.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

And now for the pictures- Running of the Brides

Thank you all for your patience, here are the pictures from my morning at Filene's.  Even the best pictures won't convey to anyone the excitement and fun of that morning.  You'll have to experience for yourself next year!  Thank you again to Dawn Bebout Photography for the incredible photos!






Everyone even got out, in the pitch black of the morning to do some "group dancing."  Thanks again to Billy J DJ, they did such a great job getting everyone moving.  









 







 

I think that about sums it all up.  Congrats to all of the brides and their wonderful friends for their dress success.  Call or email me now to reserve me as your "Running of the Brides" assistant for next year!

Be sure to check out Dawn Bebouts blog for more photos of the fun.


Friday, October 16, 2009

Running of the Brides

I had the pleasure this morning of joining Dawn Bebout of Dawn Bebout Photography at 6am to witness and partake in the Running of the Brides at Filene's Basement.

There were brides who had driven from all over the United States to get to Filene's and yes, there were even brides who had camped out overnight, in the freezing cold weather and rain, to get a front spot in line. Billy J DJ Service was there bright and early to get the girls moving, and they did a great job.

Teams of up to 10 or more people were waiting in line with the bride, ready to grab every dress they saw as soon as the doors opened.  There were special colored hats, shirts, scarves and even entire outfits so that the girls could keep track of each other.  I had the chance to talk to brides from all over about their wedding dates, wedding details and dream dress. (P.S.- September is going to be a BIG wedding month)

We were given "special" badges from Filene's so we were even able to get inside and check out the store early and then get started with the girls as they came running, yes running, in.  There are some amazing pictures that will be posted shortly.

When the girls and their "teams" got in it was a mad rush to grab as many dresses as they could get and get started.  The dresses are in NO order whatsoever and there are strapless, pink, cream, ruffled, glitter, beaded and silk gowns galore.  Everyone searched to "trade" for different styles and sizes but when someone found one they LOVED, they weren't letting it go.  There was even a bride who didn't LOVE the dress she had on but refused to take it off, just in case she couldn't find anything else.

The brides and their friends used the event to do something really "fun" and unique with their friends and families before the big wedding day.  If you ended up finding the perfect dress at a great price (Average Sale Cost- $250), that was probably amazing as well.  It is another great memory to add to the long list of memories you make during the wedding planning and preparing process.

Look back soon for pictures! 

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Wedding Expert

All Events Planned is thrilled to be part of the OneWed panel of experts.  We are featured in some of their online articles and blogs.  Please check out our information on "Contract Signing" and always feel free to email us if you have any question in the wedding planning process.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Secrets Behind- Wedding Cakes

Wow, I can't even begin to explain how excited I am with all of the feedback from my readers.  Vendors and Brides from all over have emailed me to respond.  People from Chicago to San Francisco Bay have sent in feedback and positive reviews of the "Secrets Behind" series.  So, without much further ado, I am happy to introduce- Secrets Behind- WEDDING CAKES


Today's Interview is with Erica Fill from Designs by E.  


Erica is a "self-taught" baker with some amazing work at quite affordable prices.  Her cakes look and taste amazing, which is all you can ask for in a wedding cake!









Q: What is the biggest misconception about your industry?


A: That it's "just cake". 
I don't think people are really aware of all the planning,
time and ingredients that go into creating a cake. Additionally,
if chocolate clay or fondant decorations are needed,
those need to be started at least a week
before they're due, to allow time for drying. 
Once the cakes are baked and the icing is made
(which can take hours!),
it can take HOURS to decorate it,
depending on the level of detail. 
A part of what the bridal couple pay for
when hiring their baker is for the baker's time! 

Another big misconception is that our costs should
be the same as the grocery stores. 
I don't freeze my cakes nor do
I ice from a bucket of pre-made icing....
everything is made fresh, to order!  

Q: What are a few mistakes brides make when choosing their vendor?
A: Research!!  Always take the time to do research about the
services you want to hire for your special day, so you know what to expect. 
In the area of cakes, call around to local bakeries to see
what the going rates are per serving. 
However, you need to compare "apples to apples". 
Don't call Walmart and compare their price with the
gourmet bakery down the street.  Also, know your budget!!
What do you want to spend vs. what can you afford to spend.

Q: What things should a bride look for, look at, when selecting a vendor?
A: The bride and groom should definitely look for a vendor
that knows his or her trade.  If you are meeting with
someone and you get "that feeling"
that they don't quite know what they're doing, politely move on!

Q: What is the one thing a bride should save on when booking with you?
A: I don't believe in over-charging a bride for her
wedding cake simply because it's for a wedding. 
I don't see dollar signs when a bride steps into my kitchen.
Every cake I create gets the same, undivided attention,
whether it's for a birthday, a baby dedication or a wedding. 
When I book a wedding cake, that date is filled. 
I love to give my brides a gorgeous cake for a fair price. 

Q: What is the one thing a bride should splurge on when booking with you?
A: Delivery.  Nothing is more heartbreaking than
to order a gorgeous cake, only to have it destroyed
by the time it gets to the reception hall because someone
else picked it up and delivered it.  
Trust your baker to get your cake to your reception hall! 

Q: What is the worst story you have heard about a mistake someone in your industry has made, anyone, ever. Alternatively, what is the worst mistake a person in your industry can make?
A: One horrible mistake a baker
could make is to not properly support the cake! 
Dowels do take up some space (minimal),
but they are the difference between
your cake staying upright or falling over! 

Q: What are a few things that bridal clients should review in contracts with their vendor/site?
A: Know your payment dates!  If your baker is paid in advance,
then that is one less thing you have to worry about on your wedding day. 
Also, depending on the policies of your baker,
paying in advance will ensure that you get your cake! 
Many bakers have the "no payment, no cake" policy.

Q: What is something you wish all of your clients knew, or a certain thing you wish all of your clients would do to make working with them easier?
A: Always bring basic info to your consultations.  Reception info,
phone numbers of contact people, color swatches,
pictures, ideas that you've drawn up. 
If you have an idea of what you want
your cake to look like, then your consultation will not only run
smoothly, but it will be a fun experience!
 
Well, there you have it,some behind the scenes information on Cakes.  Thanks to the response, after we list some of our local vendors, I will be taking interviews with vendors from around the United States in order to illustrate different styles and ideas from all different areas.  
 
Let me know your thoughts and feedback and who else you'd like to see listed.  If you have a favorite vendor, send them the blog and have them contact me! 

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Secrets Behind...


Due to the overwhelming response I received about my "Secrets Behind Vendor Selection" blog, I am going to now feature a segment where different vendors are interviewed about their "secrets."  This series will be on-going, so if you have a vendor you would like to recommend for this or if you are a vendor who has some great answers and insight into your industry, feel free to email me.

The significance of knowing things a little more "behind the scenes" of your vendor, is that it allows you to make better choices, have a better relationship with them and (most importantly) get the most for your money.  Fellow vendors, brides and even other wedding planners can all benefit from
knowing the secrets behind- PHOTOGRAPHY


Today's interview is with
Justin Ketchem
of JustinK Photography.

Here is a little information about Justin Ketchem
and his love of photography.

"My artistic career began with portrait painting. While studying under the instruction of renown portrait artist Bill Kufahl, I learned the importance of light and photography in creating realistic portraits. While I have experience in portrait and commercial photography, the emphasis of my work is weddings. I choose wedding photography because I enjoy telling a story with pictures. I am passionate about capturing the emotion and creating the memories that will be revisited for generations."

*information provided from Justin's site- www.justinkphotography.com 


And now for all the secrets behind
Photography courtesy of JustinK Photography.


Q: What is the biggest misconception about your industry?
A:That anyone with a decent 
camera can photograph a wedding.
Using a good friend or family member
to take wedding photos will end in
disappointment.  It should always be avoided.

(if possible)

Q:What are a few mistakes brides make when choosing their Photographer? 
A: 1.Having a "biggest bang for the buck" mentality.
Sacrificing quality for quantity will get a
bride a whole lot of mediocrity.

 2.Cutting out the engagement session to
save a few bucks. Photography is an important investment and the
B&G only get one shot to get the photos right.
Why not get to know the photographer a little
and do a practice run. It's truly beneficial for
everyone and well worth the money.

 3.Not allowing enough time for photographs
between the ceremony and reception,
or wanting to go to a bunch of different locations
for photographs. The B&G should allow enough time,
and be efficient with the time they have.


Q:What things should a bride look for, look at, when selecting a Photographer?

A:The B&G should look for two main things
when selecting a photographer: QUALITY OF WORK and COMPATIBILITY.
Everything else should be secondary.
Besides a day-of coordinator,
the photographer is the only vendor that's with
the  B&G all day. If the B&G find the photographer
to be annoying, it could make for a terrible experience and even bad photographs.


Q:What is the one thing a bride should save on when booking with you?
A:If budget doesn't allow for all the bells and whistles,
hold off on them instead of booking the
cheaper photographer that offers the
"all you can eat buffet."
If the B&G have the digital files, they have everything they need to get started.
They will make more money later in life
and can pick up albums and such along the way. They should pay for
the highest quality photographer they can afford,
even if it means ordering the album in a year or two.

Q:What is the one thing a bride should splurge on when booking with you?
A:Time. There's nothing worse than telling a bride her time is up before the bouquet is tossed. Again, if it comes down to a 6 hour package with everything, or 10 hours of coverage and a DVD for the same price, they should go with the extra time.
Who wants an album of half a wedding?


Q: What is the worst story you have heard about a mistake someone in your industry has made, anyone, ever.  Alternatively, you can answer to what is the worst mistake a person in your industry can make?
A:1.Shooting half of the wedding
with no film in the camera.

2.A photographer told a disappointed bride,
"I can't fix ugly."

3.Losing the files before their backed up is the
worst possible thing that can happen to a photographer.

Well, I have to say that was insightful for me.  How about you?  Think you learned something new?  Or, do you think you have something to add?  Email me or comment on the blog and we can discuss your thoughts.  Thank you to Justin Ketchem, whose photos you can see at All Events Planned's website or you can just click here to go directly to our portfolio.  Click Here.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Wedding Planner for The Knot Bride

We were thrilled to be chosen as the Wedding Coordinator for the lovely Ohio rep for The Knot, Karrie Ploss.  She was an absolute joy to work with, of course, and her wedding day was spectacular, with some great details that her photographer was able to perfectly capture!
Check out C Studios at
http://www.cstudiosphotography.com/

Karrie's photos are currently on our site, please click the link to view them.  
http://alleventsplanned.com/portfolio.html


Other photos have been updated in our portfolio.  Special thanks to the other photographers that sent them over for our site.  We are still working on posting and updating.  Some great shots from Z Media are up next as well as more great photos from Dawn Bebout Photography.

Z Media
http://www.zphotomedia.com/

Justin K Photography

http://www.justinkphotography.com/

Dawn Bebout Photography

http://www.dawnbeboutphotography.com/

Shayne Wynn Studios 
http://www.shanewynn.com/index.php/home/

Wedding Memories That Matter-

After I had decided to work for myself, I dug through all my old files to find some clients from years past.  I'm so glad that I printed out the information from weddings through the different companies I had worked for so that I could keep up with everyone and check in from time to time to see how their "happily ever after" was going.

While going through my files I found some emails from a client that I very clearly remember because of her amazing reception and the amazing love that she had found.  She was one of my clients that had searched for love for years and had finally found the one.  They planned their reception to be on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad because of her fiances passion for trains.  They had eveyone dress up to match the "theme" of their wedding and I think every guests showed up in elegant victorian gowns and very classic suits.  It was absolutely magical to see.  The planning details in this story don't matter, what matters is the love and joy the couple found in each other.  That's what matters all the time, with every wedding that is planned. 

They enjoyed themselves and their guests, they laughed and had fun, they hugged (even me) and loved each other to the fullest on that day.  It was an absolutely honor to be a part of something where so many people were truly there, just celebrate and enjoy each other.

I emailed her recently to catch up and see how things had come along.  Through the process her fiance/husband had struggled with cancer and I was hoping he had gotten better and they had been celebrating their love/life still to this day.  Unfortunately the news wasn't good, and he passed away only a short time after their wedding day. 

My post isn't to share someone's personal story or to make anyone upset by reading something sad. It is to let every bride that comes across this post know that what matters is the "love" and the memory you create.  The details are great, the dress should be beautiful, the cake should be delicious but the day should be a celebration.  If every bride took the time to relax and just enjoy their day, their love, their friends and family, if every wedding was as joyous as theirs, no one would ever look back regretting their bills, their hair choice or their makeup, they would look back and know that their special day was filled with love. 

Don't invite the people that don't matter just to have a big wedding, don't choose a site that you don't like just to impress guests.  Don't do anything that doesn't directly relate back to you being able to celebrate the amazing day you were able to commit to a lifetime with the person who you'd found to share your "happily ever after".  You never know how long that will be, so you should always have a special day to cherish.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Do I Need a Wedding Planner? The Checklist

 A checklist for knowing if you need a wedding planner.  Of course, I'll say you always need one, who wants to have to "work" on their wedding?  You should enjoy your wedding and hire someone to do all the work, or part of the work for you!

__ You're way behind on your checklist and schedule.
__ You both work full-time jobs that will prevent you from meeting with vendors on weekdays
__ You don't have other outside help such as an involved mother-of-the-bride, helpful bridesmaids, or      knowledgeable friends
__ You don't know many people who can give you reliable vendor recommendations
__ You are having a destination wedding
__ There are personality conflicts between the couple, their parents, and/or other people
__ You're excited to be married, but just thinking about wedding planning fills you with dread
__ You're having a very short engagement
__ You can envision your wedding, you have no idea how to make your dreams come true
__ You can't even envision your wedding
__ You're feeling overwhelmed, stressed, and generally wishing that you had decided to elope.

 But keep in mind that because of inside connections and experience that allows them to avoid common mistakes, hiring a wedding planner might be the most cost-effective move in the end.
http://weddings.about.com/od/weddingplanners/a/needweddingplanner.htm

Friday, October 2, 2009

Mywedding.com

We are thrilled to now be a part of mywedding.com.  Please check out our new ad, just click on the text below!