LKE and ABC

Tags

, , , , ,

In a prior log, I wrote about how I began my journey to becoming an Accredited Wedding Planner. What I left out of that blog was how the Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC) helped me achieve the title. My personal story includes a village of ABC members.

When I decided to launch Lisa Kenward Events, a full planning wedding company, the process was made easier with the help from ABC. ABC is an international organization that focuses on helping wedding professionals gain knowledge within the industry, offers webinars, seminars, annual conferences and has a large staff of dedicated professional ready to answer all your questions. The Wedding Planner Magazine is published with help from ABC.

The lengthy process of paperwork, online classes, written tests, essays, attending conferences including the ABC South Carolina Chapter networking event and attending CPR and AED training classes helped me gain the points needed to earn the title of Professional Bridal Consultant as of January, 2011. It took me until January 2016 to earn the title of Accredited Wedding Planner after many additional weddings planned, conferences attended, volunteering within Beaufort County and having three prior events featured in local publications.

My goal was achieved by marketing to destination couples, creating a personalized plan with each couple, months of coordination, hours of documentation, phone calls and emails, volunteering my time within my community while staying focused on the prize. I am proud to say that I am the only AWP in Beaufort County.

The next goal for me is Master Wedding Planner! Look for that announcement in 2020!

The Beginning Of A Wedding Planner

If you haven’t already noticed, the Internet is all a buzz about wedding planning with ads, and sites guiding you to review the info they want you to read, take action on, and open your wallet.  How does one become a Wedding Planner? Where do you start?  For me, my beginning started at age six.

My earliest memory of baking was using my older sister’s Easy Bake Oven in the basement of my family home.  While my mother was washing clothes, I found a few empty brown wax paper candy wrappers – the ones wrapped in Fanny Farmer candies – and began to flatten each circular wrapper and stacked them together and place the ‘hamburger’ inside the oven.  Luckily, my mother was standing nearby and stopped my first baking encounter.

From that time forward, I was always in the kitchen ‘underfoot’ as my father would say as I tried to help set the dinner table while he was cooking.  Washing dishes, clearing the table and putting leftovers in the refrigerator became a routine that I gladly volunteered for.

A trip to the local grocery store became a weekly routine.  My mother would take me along as she shopped for dinners, birthday parties, Thanksgiving and Christmas meals, and our annual Grandma O’Keefe’s sugar cookie bake with homemade strawberry jam.  She made the process seem so effortless but as I began to plan my own dinner parties and invite family and friends, I learned quickly and sometimes not so easily how hard it is to have all the food ready at the same time.  Somewhere along the journey I realized that I would rather bake than cook.

For me, the kitchen was the hub of our home where the sounds and aroma guided me  into the area for conversation, a bite to eat and great memories.  It’s the place where I could find Mom and Dad.  And, it’s the place where my event planning career started.

Gathering people together over food and drink is an event and a logistical production.  Family members and friends have expectations with an invitation – to be entertained, eat great food and make memories.  Getting guests to my location and having enough chairs, tables, silverware, plates and creating an atmosphere that focuses on the reason for the event is also part of the planning.  Understanding the fundamentals of why we gather together in groups for specific personal reasons strengthened my decision to become a wedding planner.

Living in South Carolina has opened many opportunities that I thought weren’t possible.  Being miles away from my Michigan family has given me time to reflect on past experiences and strengths and seek out what truly motivates me. I was offered a career position within a private, gated community to be the Clubhouse Coordinator for non-member events and that experience renewed my focus and allowed me to expand my knowledge, experience and dedication. In December, 2010, I launched Lisa Kenward Events with a focus on wedding celebrations.

The Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC) guided me thru their program so I could achieve the  designation of Accredited Wedding Planner (AWP).  The process for the AWP title took eight years.  Every event, publication, award, CPR and AED training, completing the ABC online classes and attending two ABC Annual Conferences has led me to my goal.

My event planning experience has grown over the years but my focus remains. And, I have learned that I cannot do it all myself. My patient and supportive husband keeps me sane through the process of developing sophisticated, creative and memorable events. Knowing that every event is a group effort, I work with local professionals and business owners who bring their knowledge and services to the event making each celebration unique and fun.

As of January 2018, I booked my 100th wedding with a wonderful destination couple who selected Hilton Head Island as their wedding location and Lisa Kenward Events as their wedding planner. I am overjoyed and humbled to have reached this milestone in my career. And, proud to have met and served so many great couples. It’s been a great journey; a path that I chose knowing the road wasn’t straight or easy but would allow me to do what I love. I am very fortunate to have found a profession that bring me great joy and fuels my passion for events.

For more ideas and tips, follow me on my Facebook page! Lisa Kenward Events

Want to copy my post in your newsletter, blog or website? You can as long as you include: “Hilton Head Island, South Carolina (and surrounding areas) Accredited Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

 

 

Tell Me Everything

Tags

, , , , , ,

If you select a wedding planner to assist you in the planning of your wedding day, please plan to tell them everything.  When I say, ‘everything,’ I mean all the details about:

  • what your expectations are on your day
  • the atmosphere/look/vibe that you want created/experienced for your guests
  • disclose the actual guest count and include any pets, children (of all ages), vendors providing a service
  • potential problems – logistics, directions, Type ‘A’ personalities
  • budget for your event

Your wedding coordinator will, in turn, create a timeline for your day that reflects where you and your wedding party (including parents, grandparents, VIP guests) needs to be at certain times of the day.  Please plan to follow the timeline as it is created to help keep your wedding day moving forward.  The timeline will also let you know when deliveries will be made, when professionals will be arriving and when you need to be ready for photos.  The timeline will give you and your bridal party (including parents,  grandparents, VIP guests) a look into the future to assist them in getting ready, where to be for photos, what is happening before your ceremony, and what is happening after.

The timeline doesn’t ‘hold your hand’ or fluff your dress or deliver breakfast to you.  If there isn’t a line item for it, it doesn’t happen under the coordination of your planner.  Those responsibilities fall into the hands of your bridal party – Maid Of Honor/Matron of Honor or Best Man.  Hence, you need to communicate everything to your wedding planner so they can delegate to the bridal party, BFF, future mother-in-law.

If you elect not to disclose the details to your wedding planner, do not expect your day to flow smoothly.  Adding, changing or delaying a segment of your day causes a ripple affect which in turns delays the next announcement/photo opportunity or movement forward.  Depending on the item/task that is being pushed back, your meal could be cold, the frosting on your wedding cake could soften and begin to slide off the cake, or, your photographer could leave your event before capturing the final fair-well/send off.

When you disclose/tell/communicate the details of your day to your wedding planner, they will have a better understanding of what you want, your focus.  Your planner keeps that message/vision close to their heart as you are their client.  The planner wants your day to go smoothly without any hiccups, drama, yelling or unnecessary stress.  Let us help you the best way we can.  But, we are not mind readers so speak up and communicate and let your voice be heard.

Is there ever a time to not tell your wedding planner about what you are planning?  NO!  Tell me everything.

For more ideas and tips, follow me on my Facebook page! Lisa Kenward Events

Want to copy my post in your newsletter, blog or website? You can as long as you include: “Hilton Head Island, South Carolina (and surrounding areas) Accredited Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

Be A Voice, Not an Echo

Tags

, , , , ,

My day started with a conversation with a potential new client.  My day ended awaiting the information that I requested – a signed contract and retainer paid.

The conversation with the bride-to-be has been continuous for two weeks discussing what I can do for her and listening to what she wants on her wedding day.  My service is about the value that I offer, experience and history.

My services may not be what she is looking for.  And, she may not be the client that I prefer to work with.  Either way, my voice – my message  – is clear.  There are other wedding planners that do what I do.  I set myself apart from the crowd by being the only Accredited Wedding Planner in Beaufort County.  I cherish every opportunity to be part of a client’s wedding day as this profession is my passion.

At some point, the destination bride decided to shop for another wedding planner. I know this because Hilton Head is a small island with event professionals who network to discuss clients needs and the latest trends.  I try to be a voice, the voice of positive reassurance and guidance.

If you are looking to lead or follow – decide and move forward.

For more ideas and tips, follow me on my Facebook page! Lisa Kenward Events

Want to copy my post in your newsletter, blog or website? You can as long as you include: “Hilton Head Island, South Carolina (and surrounding areas) Accredited Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

Will You Consider the Trends?

Tags

, , , , , ,

Looking for a creative way to entertain your guests? Feeling overwhelmed with wedding decisions?  The 2018 wedding trends may help you decide which direction to follow…

  • Balloon decor – standard sized helium balloons can be purchased at the nearest Dollar Store for $1.00.  If you are looking for 36-inch diameter helium balloons, plan on spending $50 each.
  • Unexpected entertainment – caricatures  of your guests drawn by local artists during your reception make an unique, personalized Thank-You gift
  • Nontraditional venues – rental homes, public parks, yachts – think outside the box when selecting a location that reflects your personality
  • Single-stem bouquets – it’s the quality of the flower, not quantity.  Besides, don’t you want your dress to be seen?

For more ideas and tips, follow me on my Facebook page! Lisa Kenward Events

Want to copy my post in your newsletter, blog or website? You can as long as you include: “Hilton Head Island, South Carolina (and surrounding areas) Accredited Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

Am I Worth My Fee?

Tags

, , , , , ,

With the Hilton Head/Bluffton Wedding Expo scheduled this month, I feel compelled to update my post ‘Value vs. Price’ written March 27, 2017, to ‘Am I Worth My Fee?’  If you are planning to attend the Expo, please keep in mind my comments and the comments noted from Jean from WeddingsFromTheHeart.net.  I am worth my fee and here is why…

As of January, 2018, I booked my 100th wedding; a milestone for myself and my business.  The 100 wedding couples selected me for a reason.  I’m not the most expensive nor am I the cheapest.  The destination and local clients place their trust in my Preferred Vendor List and are confident in my ability to get the job done.

Yes, your wedding day is a job, for me.  One of the responsibilities is to make sure you are happy and comfortable and not stressed about planning your day.  Your wedding is also my passion.  I love what I do.

My fee isn’t set by a randum number or amount.  My fee is calculated by the time/hours it takes me to create your wedding celebration and getting the key players (wedding professionals) together. My fee includes being there for you for your wedding rehearsal, on-site at your ceremony location and being there thru your reception.

‘It’ shouldn’t be about price.  ‘It’ should focus on your comfort level, confidence in the person to do what you ask them to do and it should be about trust.  Trusting someone that you hired to explain the pro and con of every decision, give honest answers to your questions and to be there on your wedding day implementing your decisions while stopping any family drama that develops.

Now, Jean from WeddingsFromTheHeart.net  writes about her experiences and response to her clients questions…

How much do you charge?”  That is usually the first question I get from a newly engaged bride or groom.

And it’s definitely a valid question.  However, my answer is “It depends.”

Now you’re probably thinking, “why does she give a vague ‘it depends’ answer when other planners can tell us a dollar amount?”

How can I (or they, for that matter) tell you the price without knowing any details of your wedding, without knowing what you want me/us to do for you?

There way too many variables from one wedding to the next that affect the level of service I can provide for any couple, and in turn, affects ‘how much I charge.’

Do you want to end up paying too much because you’re getting things you really don’t want, or end up paying too little and miss things that are truly important to you?  Of course not.

Some things (but not all) that affect price are:

    • The size of your wedding

– A wedding for 40-50 people is different than one for 250-300 people.

  • How traditional or non-traditional your event will be

– Although traditional is in no way “cookie cutter,” non-traditional events can require more time and effort.

  • How hands on or hands off you want me to be

– Do you want me to schedule vendor appointments for you, and join you at these appointments? Or do you just want me to provide you with names and contact information of vendors that would be a good fit for you?
– Do you want help with DIY projects?
– Do you need help locating unique resources and products to enhance your wedding?
The main services I provide are planning (partial to full-service), wedding weekend coordination, and hourly consulting. But (other than the hourly consults, because well, an hour is an hour, no one couple’s planning or coordination needs are the same as another couple’s.

Unlike so many other wedding planners, I do not have a price list to hand out, and am really surprised that others do.

So please don’t think I’m trying to be secretive when I don’t immediately answer the “How much do you charge” question. Instead, let’s get together (in person, or by phone-chat), and talk a bit about your wedding needs. That way we can develop service programs specifically for you (with pricing), based on you and the wedding you want.

The decision to have LKE as your wedding planner shouldn’t be solely decided upon due to price.   It’s not always about price.  Your decision to contract with me should be about the value of my services – knowledge, experience, education – a trusted professional that will guide you and help you have the wedding day that you envision.

Call me, let’s chat so I can answer your question, how much do you charge?

For more ideas and tips, follow me on my Facebook page! Lisa Kenward Events

Want to copy my post in your newsletter, blog or website? You can as long as you include: “Hilton Head Island, South Carolina (and surrounding areas) Accredited Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

Unique Venue – Haig Point

Tags

, , , , , ,

Looking for an unique venue for your wedding?  Consider Haig Point…

Planning your wedding on an island – any island – will have its challenges.  Planning your wedding celebration on Daufuskie Island, an island just off the coast of Hilton Head Island, will be an unique experience for you.  Haig Point is an unique location with a casual atmosphere, outstanding amenities and ocean view.

Hop the ferry from Haig Point Welcome Center and Embarkation off of Helmsman Road on Hilton Head to enjoy a 25-minute ferry ride to Haig Point’s Landing.  Once you arrive at Daufuskie Island, a golf cart will be your transportation.

The Haig Point Lighthouse and lawn area sets the tone for your day.  The oak trees and water view of the Calibogue Sound is spectacular.  The Beach Club for your reception is welcoming with ample space, great menu choices, and a spectacular sunset.

Consider what Haig Point has to offer … an intimate wedding venue with lowcountry hospitality; a place where you can relax with your guests – your island spot – with first class amenities and recreation.

Decompress and enjoy the peaceful environment of Haig Point.

A Milestone Reached

Today marks a milestone for Lisa Kenward Events…
I just booked wedding number ‘one hundred’ with a wonderful destination couple who selected Hilton Head Island as their wedding location and Lisa Kenward Events as their wedding planner. I am overjoyed and humbled to have reached this milestone in my career. And, proud to have met and served so many great couples. It’s been a great journey; a path that I chose knowing the road wasn’t straight or easy but would allow me to do what I love.

Experience. Knowledge. Dedication. Education. Community Involvement.  Look for these traits when selecting your wedding planner.

Wedding Planner or Wedding Coordinator… Which Is Right for You?

Tags

, , , , , , ,

Is your head spinning from the overload of wedding info?  Let me help you sort out one of the line items on your wedding planning list.  Do you need a wedding planner or a wedding coordinator?

I found the attached article below, online, written by Lindsay Goldenberg Jones.  Her insight of event responsibilities will help you understand the difference between a planner and a coordinator by breaking down pre-wedding details and day-of responsibilities.  And, lead you in the right direction so you can cross of one more detail from your long wedding check list.

Wedding Planner or Wedding Coordinator

 

For more ideas and tips, follow me on my Facebook page! Lisa Kenward Events

Want to copy my post in your newsletter, blog or website? You can as long as you include: “Hilton Head Island, South Carolina (and surrounding areas) Accredited Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

Bridesmaids: Try On Your Dress

Tags

, , , , , , , ,

Image the setting… It’s the morning of your wedding day and your bridesmaids arrive to your staging area early for hair and make-up application.  The room is buzzing with excitement and conversation.  You are relaxed, chatting with ‘your girls’ and the morning hours fly.  It’s now 3pm and time for you to get dressed for your ceremony.  Your bridesmaids follow your lead but one gal returns fifteen minutes later to tell you her dress doesn’t fit.  Do you believe this scenario?  It truly, 100 percent, happened.

Now what.  You have a bridesmaid that cannot fit into her dress and it’s 3:15pm and your ceremony starts at 5pm.  It’s too late to call for an alterations person to sew a panel into the dress.  Even if the tailor could sew another panel into the dress, where would they get the fabric?  There isn’t time to go shopping for another dress as the nearest store is 20 minutes away.  Time is ticking.

What would you do?  Tell the bridesmaid that she cannot walk down the aisle or send her to the nearest department store to find a similar style, color and fabric match dress?

The bride was calm but embarrassed and sent her friend to find another dress.

Lesson to learn:  Focus on every detail even the ones that seem so simple but can become complicated.

For more ideas and tips, follow me on my Facebook page! Lisa Kenward Events

Want to copy my post in your newsletter, blog or website? You can as long as you include: “Hilton Head Island, South Carolina (and surrounding areas) Accredited Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com