The Value of a Preferred Vendors List

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The Preferred Vendor List (PVL) from your wedding planner can be your pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, if you utilize the list to your advantage…

Every professional has a list of locals that they prefer to work with.  The reason behind the PVL comes from experience, research and many phone calls made by your wedding planner to find experienced vendors – florist, cake baker, officiant, venue, transportation, photographer – that are available on your wedding day, take pride in their work and return emails or voice mail messages within a timely fashion.  Contracting with a vendor without checking on their references could mean additional stress to you or a no-show on your wedding day.

  • Don’t take the list for granted as the info will save you time – the internet will help you find a professional but can you tell by the business name what the owner offers? The PVL has the gathered information you need organized in specific categories with business names, contact info and phone numbers listed
  • Already proven successful outcomes – your wedding planner has experience with these companies and has evaluated each company
  • Local professionals ready to provide services – they can be found in local magazines, newspapers, Chamber of Commerce, and online presence; not just listed on the PVL
  • References come from your wedding planner – experience matters along with a track record and positive review
  • Their business name appears on the list for a reason – a professional in their field who responds to emails and phone calls in a timely fashion and provides exceptional service and a quality product

Did you know that some PVL are created as a “Pay to Play” document with those vendors paying fees to be listed on a PVL?  Ask your wedding planner if they receive compensation from those vendors on their PVL.  If payment is made, ask if the funds charged are passed onto to you.  Pay to Play agreements destroy the integrity of the wedding industry by eroding vendor ability to make a profit while providing high-quality products and services.

The Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC) require each member to sign and follow an ethical contract noting to disclose any fee paid or payment received from any source in reference to an event booked.  Noting the fee paid or funds received to the client is an important detail that should be disclosed to each client.

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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) Professional Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

 

 

How Much Is Your Wedding Planner Worth?

 Jeannie Ward, owner and principal consultant at Wedding Jeannie, wrote the following article in 2012 for the Huffingtonpost.com, The Blog. Jeannie’s article touches a subject that many clients are hesitant to discuss = their budget & the cost of services.  In 2016, if I also focus on the cost of a wedding planner and what that professional will do prior on your wedding day and day-of, I couldn’t and wouldn’t change a word Jeannie wrote in 2012.  Industry standard is the same now as it was in 2012 = provide exceptional service at a competitive price in a timely fashion.  Some professionals go beyond the standard and charge more due to their  credentials and many years of documented experience.  When you begin interviewing wedding planners for an important day in your life so far, what is your budget and how much is your wedding planner worth?

“Day-of” coordination. What is it? Many brides call or email me, asking for this service. The TRUTH is it doesn’t exist.Then why do so many brides want it? Where did this term come from? The term was introduced and perpetuated by wedding publications and blogs.

They’ve convinced the bride that they can plan their own wedding and simply bring in a coordinator to handle things for them on the wedding day. Jumping on that bandwagon were newer, inexperienced planners who wanted to build up a portfolio. So along came the $500 “day-of” coordinators.

Let’s break it down shall we? You can expect your co-ordinator to work, at the very least, 10 hours on the wedding day. Established planners charge anywhere from $50 an hour to $100 an hour.

10 Hours X $50 = $500
That sounds accurate, right?

*We’re basing this exercise on $50 an hour. Planners charge different rates based on experience and region.
Now let me explain the difference between the EXPERIENCED PLANNER and the $500 PLANNER.

EXPERIENCED PLANNER: They’ve been in the business for years, can identify every single problem before the wedding day arrives. Their experience allows them to manage 10 to 15 vendors prior to and on the wedding day. The experienced planner is also calm and resourceful, which allows them to problem-solve when things turn bad.They have an extensive vendor list that they can turn to if one your vendors has to be fired and a replacement needs to be found FAST. They has extensive knowledge in floor plans and timelines. Another advantage the experienced planner carries is insurance, which is required by almost all venues. The experienced planner can charge anywhere from $50 to $100 an hour for their expertise. On your wedding day, you can expect that your planner will work at least 10 hours.

$500 PLANNER: He or she is most likely new to the business. Their list of vendors is minimal, if at all. They have very few weddings under their belt, which means they doesn’t have much experience. Because of that inexperience, they may not be able to direct a large number of vendors requiring their leadership. Their knowledge of contracts and timelines is minimal. They may not have the insurance required by your venue. The “Day-of” planner charges $500.

Here is where it gets interesting. In order to be present at your wedding, your coordinator has to do more than just show up on the wedding day. Why? What’s so hard about just showing up? Let me pose a few questions for you to consider. Humor me, it’s all going to make sense. Here we go:

  • Should your coordinator know who all of your vendors are? Well of course they should. They would have to spend hours calling each one, introducing themselves to them, discussing their duties, delivery, set-up and start times.
  • Should your coordinator have copies of — and have read — all of your vendor contracts? In order for them to fully understand what each vendor’s scope of work is, delivery and set-up times, and even the amount of hours of service they are providing, they would have to spend hours reading and comprehending these contracts. Without these contracts, they’re not able to create an accurate timeline of your day.
  • Should your coordinator know the physical aspects of your venue? It’s essential. They have to visit your venue prior to the wedding day. Together with you and the venue manager, it’s mandatory that they perform a walk-through. It’s their job to know your venue like the back of their hand. If they just show up on your day, how do they know where the load-in bay is? How will they direct the vendors on delivery and set-up? Can they tell the DJ/band where the electrical outlets are for their use? By meeting with the venue managers prior to your wedding, they know your floor plan. They would know where there is an extra chair if an unexpected guest arrives. Oh by the way, they take hours of time getting copies of your guest list in order to know that. Yup, they would have spent time sorting out your guest list alphabetically and by table number. Pretty essential since the majority of your guests expect them to help them find their escort card and seat.
  • Should they make a timeline for your wedding day? ABSOLUTELY. I’ve been planning weddings for over 10 years, and it takes me an average of three hours to draft the perfect timeline. Yup, I’m serious. After the preliminary timeline has been made, you need to review it and confirm it’s what you want. Then changes are made and it’s sent to your venue, caterer, photographer and DJ/MC or band. Everyone follows the coordinator’s timeline and direction. Oh, and they have to be flexible and be able to adjust it as the day goes on, especially if problems arise.
  • Will your coordinator direct your rehearsal? They absolutely should. The only way they wouldn’t is if your ceremony takes place at a church. Don’t expect the venue manager to do this for you… it’s not their job. An experienced planner has taken the time to send you a ceremony diagram and gone over it with you. My clients and I work together to decide who stands where, who walks in first, last and in between. We also determine if there is a table needed for a memorial, or a unity candle. With preparation, your rehearsal should last only an hour. This ensures you get to dinner on time and start having fun.
  • Who sets up your escort cards, favors, toasting flutes, cake knife and server… and all those special little items you that require attention? Your “day-of” coordinator does. But how do they get them? The experienced planner was at your rehearsal and required you to bring them to him or her. They show up on wedding day prepared with all of these items. If your planner only showed up on the wedding day, how did these items get to your venue? Who is going to bring them? You, your mom, your friends?

We’ve addressed some very important questions and scenarios. I hope it’s much clearer for you to understand what tasks your coordinator must perform prior to your wedding day. Still not sure? Let me break down the required tasks and time spent performing those tasks.

  • Contacting your contracted vendors and obtaining their contracts — three hours
  • Reading and fully comprehending contracts — three hours
  • Venue walk-through — two hours
  • Creating a timeline to perfection — three hours
  • Assisting you in creating your ceremony order and flow — one hour
  • Rehearsal — one (more like two) hours
  • Pre-planning with the bride on ceremony lineup, guest lists, floor plans, etc. — two hours
  • Wedding day — 10 to 12 hours
  • Total hours required to PERFORM SUCCESSFULLY on the wedding day: 25 hours

25 hours X $50 = $1250.00
That’s far more accurate. And we haven’t included the costs for our assistant, our insurance and our overhead costs.

I know that every bride expects her “day-of” planner to handle all of the tasks outlined above. When it’s broken down, she is charging you $500 for 25 hours of her time. The $500 forgot include the costs of their phone, website, advertising, computer, fuel costs, paper or printer. After the costs of doing business are accounted for, you are paying them $5 an hour. That’s just crazy talk! It’s less than minimum wage. Employees at McDonald’s make more than $5 an hour.

How hard would you work for your boss if he told you he wanted you to perform the tasks of a $25 an hour employee, but he’s only going to pay you $5 an hour to do it? Eventually you will be tired and disgruntled. So is the $500 planner.

A word to “day-of” coordinators out there offering this service: If you are reading this, ask yourself, “Aren’t I worth more?” Your future is based on the reputation you build with venues and vendors. If you place yourself in a situation ripe for disaster, you place your reputation at risk. Your career will not thrive on bad reviews. For clients and the industry to value you, you must first value yourself. Offering at least “month-of” services, and charging properly for it, allows you to perform a thorough job for your clients and it raises the level of professionalism in the industry.

A word to brides who want a “day-of” coordinator: Be careful, you may get what you pay for. I’ve actually received calls from brides who thought I was too expensive. They have called me after their wedding to say, “I should have listened.” By then, it’s too late. You only get one opportunity to get it right. Don’t put the success of your wedding day in the hands of the $5-an-hour wedding planner. If you aren’t paying them what they are worth, the odds are they don’t have your best interests at heart.

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) Professional Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

Buying Local for our Future

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Readers…

I decided to rerun an article that I posted in 2013 due to a timely topic (recent U.S. presidency decision) and because it is a week before Thanksgiving.  And, Hilton Head Island is still cleaning up after Hurricane Matthew.  My decision to post the article is three fold.

According to President-elect Donald Trump, making America great again includes buying American-made products.  With the Christmas season nine days away (Black Friday is November 25th) Moms and Dads, Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles and teenagers will begin to search for the perfect gift with the hope of bringing a smile to their loved ones face.  As you sit and search or drive and walk to your favorite store, consider buying from a shop down the road or across town within your hometown to help support local business and your America.

Hilton Head Island will continue to be a great choice for family vacations, wedding celebrations and a wonderful place to live and do business.  Hurricane Matthew’s devastation is begin removed on a daily basis per the chain saws that run from sun up to sun down.  We are ready to welcome you back to your favorite location within the Lowcountry with many ‘Mom & Pop’ stores ready to help.

Here’s Cindy’s 2013 message…

Remember, folks this isn’t about big National chains — this is about supporting your home town Americans with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.

As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories are kicking into high gear to provide Americans with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods   –  merchandise that has been produced at the expense of American labor.

This year will be different. This year Americans will give the gift of genuine concern for other Americans. There is no longer an excuse that, at gift giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by American hands.  Oh…. Yes there is! It is time to think outside the box, people. Who says a gift needs to fit in a shirt box, wrapped in Chinese produced wrapping paper?

Everyone — yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut.

How about gift certificates from your local American hair salon or barber?

Gym membership? It’s appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some health improvement.

Who wouldn’t appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, American owned detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates.

Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plunking down the Benjamin’s on a Chinese-made flat-screen TV? Perhaps that grateful gift receiver would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or driveway plowed all winter, or games at the local golf course.

There are a gazillion owner-run restaurants — all offering gift certificates. And, if your intended isn’t the fancy eatery sort, what about a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint.

Remember, folks this isn’t about big National chains — this is about supporting your home town Americans with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.

How many people couldn’t use an oil change for their car, truck or motorcycle, done at a shop run by the American working guy?

Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a local cleaning lady for a day.

My computer could use a tune-up, and I KNOW I can find some young guy who is struggling to get his repair business up and running.

OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, and pottery and beautiful wooden boxes.

Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave your server a nice tip.

And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at your hometown theatre. Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.

Honestly people, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese lights for the house? When you buy a five dollar string of light, about fifty cents stays in the community.

If you have those kinds of bucks to burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.

You see, Christmas is no longer about draining American pockets so that China can build another glittering city. Christmas is now about caring about US (We the People), encouraging American small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams. And, when we care about  other Americans, we care about our communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we could not imagine.

THIS is the new American Christmas tradition!!

Please pass this around. We can make a difference. Can’t we?

“If you lack the courage to start, you have already finished.”

 

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) Professional Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

U.S. Honeymoon

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Wedding Season 2016 has ended.  As I reflect on the spectacular weddings coordinated, I remember the smiles on each one of my clients faces as they exited the venue and the excitement in their eyes – ready to start their lives together and to leave for their honeymoon.  2016 weddings are complete but I look forward to offering additional services to 2017 clients – honeymoon packages.
The following article was taken from a posting on From This Day Forward‘s website.http://weddingsfromthisdayforward.com/blog/
Genina, Meredith and Taylor write about wonderful locations within the United States.  Their article focuses on bachelorette party locations but these locations are also great for couples.  And, these destinations won’t break your budget.

Las Vegas, Nevada is the most popular destination for a bachelorette party. You can enjoy the spa, great shows, fabulous restaurants, a little gambling (if you’re so inclined), or just party the night away on the Vegas strip.

Miami Beach, Florida has some of the hottest night clubs (and temperatures, so check out those trends before you get your flights) like LIV, white sandy beaches, and the most interesting drink menus.  If you’re looking for a great cuban restaurant to visit while you’re in Miami, be sure to visit Versaille Restaurant.

New York, New York is known best for exceptional shows, shopping, and extravagant restaurants. No wonder the Big Apple is called “the city that never sleeps” – you need time to fit it all into your schedule! For a great shopping experience, visit 25 Park, and check out Minus 5 Bar for an interesting night out.

New Orleans, Louisiana is perfect if you’re looking for a more music centered weekend. With the very best Cajun cuisine and jazz musicians in the country, what’s not to love with this spicy city? Visit the Palace Cafe for some of their infamous cajun cuisine, and if you plan to have a splurge night, Commander’s Palace is a New Orleans institution! And, we can’t not mention Cafe Du Monde…you simply must enjoy a cafe au lait and a beignet (or three) before heading home.

Orlando, Florida is filled with theme parks if you’re looking for more of a thrill on your bachelorette weekend with both Disney World and Universal Studios.  Make sure you visit the rooftop bar Sky Sixty for a great girl’s night out on the town!

Napa Valley, California is a great spot to indulge in delicious wine and food, hot air balloon rides, and spa treatments.  This is the perfect choice if you are looking for more of a relaxing and wine inspired weekend.  Check out the Hess Collection Winery – one of the MANY wine tour options in the area.

Scottsdale, Arizona is known for its great spa treatments, outdoor activities, and luxury resorts. This is a great spot for a “zen” weekend of relaxation and getting closer to Mother Nature.  Check out these two fabulous resorts – Kierland Resort and The Hermosa Inn.

If you’re looking for a more southern charm bachelorette weekend then stop by Charleston, South Carolina.  Charleston has the most gorgeous boutique hotels, beach houses, southern style nightlife, and southern cuisine.

Of course, we can’t forget our hometown of Savannah, Georgia!  Savannah is full of things to do and if you are interested in fun ghost stories and drinks then the Creepy Crawl haunted pub tour is for you. As far as where to stay, a bed and breakfast is your best bet – not only do you get to enjoy the charming architecture of the city, but you have the opportunity to experience our warm southern hospitality. We’re not called “The Hostess City” for nothing!!

There are so many great locations to visit for a fun bachelorette weekend.  Whatever location you choose make sure it’s ideal for you and your bridesmaids and most importantly a place to have fun!

Like these ideas?? Let me know by “Liking” this post and or leaving a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

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) Professional Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

Before Starting to Plan your Wedding…

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If you have read any of my blog content before, you know I get to the point of my topic, quickly.  ‘Before you start planning your wedding’ has four key points with specific direction suggestions starting with #1.  If you need further assistance, feel free to give me a call.

1.  Hire a Wedding Coordinator/Wedding Planner

This professional will be there on your wedding day for you focusing on what is important to you on your day.  Your happiness is their goal.

 2.  Start a File – Get Organized – See the Future

Just like making a cake, get all the ingredients ready before assembling/mixing.  Look thru magazine, go online and create a Pinterest Board noting your focus and share the board with your wedding planner. 

 3.  Seek out the best deal – Money drives your decisions

Know what you can afford.  Keep track of money spent and what it was spent on.  Be willing to compromise but also know what you won’t compromise on.  The top three ‘non-negotiable’ items will become your focus and keep your budget in tact.

4.  Think future – Vision

How do you see your wedding day starting and ending?  Are there specific details that you want to happen throughout your day?  Have you selected a theme or color pallet?

 

Like these ideas?? Let me know by “Liking” this post and or leaving a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

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) Professional Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

 

What Type of Bride are You?

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Lisa Kenward Events writes about personal experiences to reflect and share timely happenings and offer suggestions to issues she has experienced, heard about or read about in trade journals, with the hope of educating future wedding couples. 

Topic for discussion:  The three types of brides.  Do you see yourself in one of these categories?

Helicopter bride – sends an email every day about the details of her wedding day.  Wants to be involved in every aspect of planning even down to the color of the town car that will be used as transportation.

“I am too busy” bride – knows she needs a wedding planner but cannot find the time to make a decision.

“I’ll hire you but don’t use you” bride – Bridal Posse takes over the wedding day.

Your wedding day will be less stressful with a professional wedding planner.   Plan to utilize their organizational skills, knowledge and experience to help guide your decisions.  If you hire a wedding planner, hire them because you trust them.  Trust their judgement and rely on their experiences not to lead you down a path that they know will not work.  Again, trust their judgement.  When they say something won’t work or they know you won’t like the outcome, listen to their communication and follow their lead.  Your planner knows that a black town car is the right decision to offset your ivory lace mermaid-style gown with sweetheart neckline.

If you are too busy to make decisions, hire a professional wedding planner that listens to your ideas and allow them to make suggestions and decisions for you within your guideline and budget.  Researching venues, caterers, florist, musician, officiants and photographers is what we do.  As part of the process, deadlines are needed and enforced.  If you cannot make a decision, the wedding planner will make it for you.  Your wedding is their priority.

Why hire a wedding planner if you aren’t going to listen to his/her suggestions?    You have paid for the service, so why aren’t you utilizing their expertise and knowledge?  If you are going to listen to your bridesmaids and not the wedding planner, set the professional free.  Release him/her from the contract that you signed.  Nothing is more frustrating than to listen to a wedding party make decisions for the bride – decisions that have already been decided upon by the bride and communicated to the wedding planner – weeks before.   If I am not needed, send me home.

 

Like these ideas?? Let me know by “Liking” this post and or leaving a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

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) Professional Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

 

 

 

 

A Renewed Focus – Past & Present

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Forever an optimist; always looking for the best in a stressful, negative moment.  Focused and passionate about life’s opportunities.  A baker since age 6, a wedding planner by choice.

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.  She made the process seem so effortless but as I began to plan my own dinner parties and invite family and friends to Thanksgiving Dinners, 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.

Living in South Carolina, miles away from family, has given me a renewed focus and has allowed me to reflect on my life experiences.  It’s time to do what I want to do instead of following someone else’s path.  My experience as the Clubhouse Coordinator within a private, gated community allowed me to broaden past experiences to gain a larger understanding of all aspects of planning an event including staffing, rentals, timelines and ‘Plan B.’  In December 2010, I launched Lisa Kenward Events with a focus on wedding celebrations.

My passion has grown over the years and my focus remains the same.  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.

It’s been many years since my first baking experience and I am approaching a total of 100 events coordinated.  All the lessons learned and experiences embraced along the way makes me realize how very fortunate I am to have found a profession that bring me great joy and fuels my passion.

Lisa K.

 

Like these ideas?? Let me know by “Liking” this post and or leaving a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

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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) Professional Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

Let’s Eat Cake!

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 “A party without cake is just a meeting”   – Julia Child

Julia Child, a famous chef, author and television personality, was quoted as saying, “A party without cake is just a meeting.”  Her words echo in my ears every time a personalized wedding cake is delivered to a venue for a sophisticated, creative and memorable event coordinated by Lisa Kenward Events.

Julia Child is known for her cookbooks, TV series, unique French recipes and love of food.  Her focus and drive created ‘Mastering the Art of French Cooking’ and the long-running PBS show, The French Chef, gave millions of viewers the inspiration and drive to also cook and bake.

With the well-known quote from Julia, can I be as bold to say, a wedding is just a party without a wedding planner?  Is it possible to have the best day of your life without feeling the need to give direction to someone, straighten a chair or look for your wedding bouquet?  Do you want to settle for mediocre or do you want fabulous?

Upgrade your once-in-a-lifetime wedding day with a wedding planner. Rely on that person who will be with you from the start of your wedding journey to guide, suggest and coordinate your day without stress, without worry. Count on them to focus on the details and give direction so you don’t have to.  Plan to enjoy your wedding celebration with cake and a professional wedding planner.

 

Like these ideas?? Let me know by “Liking” this post and or leaving a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

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) Professional Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com

Add Exploding Streams of Fire

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Add exploding streams of fire – fireworks – to your wedding day!

If you visit Hilton Head Island each summer (the season starts in April and ends in October) than you know of the Tuesday night fireworks extravaganza event that is organized by the Island Recreation Association.  Shelter Cove marina is the area, Tuesday nights at dusk is the time.

The Island Recreation Association has posted on its website, Tuesday, June 14, 2016 thru Tuesday, August 9, 2016, as the Tuesday’s (weather permitting) when there will be a fireworks display.  Of course, Monday, July 4th, there will be fireworks (weather permitting) too, but the ‘holiday crowd’ makes it impossible to find a place to park, get good service at a local restaurant and navigate through the maze of vacationers.

The Shelter Cove marina area is ‘the’ place to be on Tuesday night to view the spectacular fireworks display.  If you elect to charter a boat out of the several marinas on the Island, you can get an unobstructed view with a comfortable seat.  Even better, plan to exit your wedding venue on a skiff, pontoon or sailboat that will travel down Broad Creek near Shelter Cove to end your day with fireworks.

If you are considering a Tuesday wedding, here’s a scenario…  Arrive in Beaufort County on Monday morning.  Drive to the probate court in Beaufort first thing (doors open at 8am) to apply for your marriage license.  Have the clerk fax your marriage license to the satellite office on Hilton Head Island so you can pick up the form on Tuesday on the Island.  Your wedding day is also Tuesday so pick up your license first thing in the morning too so you can spend the rest of the day being pampered.  Have your wedding planner schedule a couples’ massage at Faces Day Spa and then a light lunch at Porter & Pig within The Village of Wexford.  Head back to the hotel/resort/rented home to get dressed, meet your photographer, grab your flowers and start your walk down the aisle!

How fun would it be to say that you had fireworks at the end of your wedding celebration?  If your wedding is an intimate gathering, consider taking all your guests with you.  The SS Pelican at Broad Creek marina is perfect for a party of four.  Don’t forget to include your photographer.  Or, if you want to bring everyone along, The Pau Hana at Palmetto Bay marina is larger and can accommodate up to 43 people.  Additional great memories made – that didn’t break your budget – on Hilton Head Island that you and your guests will remember for a long time.

 

Like these ideas?? Let me know by “Liking” this post and or leaving a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

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Plenty of Wedding Planners in South Carolina

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Q & A to help you find which one is right for you

Feeling overwhelmed in your search to find professionals for your wedding day?  To help you quickly and efficiently find local professional for wedding services, start your search on WeddingWire.com or TheKnot.com – two leading website resources where locals pay to advertise their services.

I understand your stress, frustration and the time that is takes to find a venue, caterer, officiant, musician, photographer, baker, hair & make-up.  The key players that you select need to understand your focus and budget too.  So, I did some research this week and looked into those businesses marketing their services on WeddingWire.com & TheKnot.com – starting the search in South Carolina under ‘wedding planners’ category within the 29928 zip code.  Here’s a summary…

WeddingWire.com – within the 29928 zip code:

·         39 wedding planners total

·         29 ‘Day-Of’ services

·         31 Partial Planning

·         27 postings have 2 or less reviews

·         3 business shown are not located in South Carolina

·         1 business has closed its doors

·         1 photographer listing

·         2 caterers listing

·         3 links won’t open

TheKnot.com –  Hilton Head Island & surrounding areas = Charleston, Mt. Pleasant, Summerville, Myrtle Beach, Abbeville, Columbia, North Carolina, Georgia:

·         239 wedding planners total

·         12 ‘Best of Weddings’ Winners

·         71 rated in the ‘Affordable’ category

·         32 rated in the ‘Moderate’ category

·         2 rated in the ‘Expensive’ category

·         163 offer Full Service

·         42  offer Destination Weddings

·         62 Al-A-Cart (services)

·         131 ‘Day-Of’ Coordination

·         73 note ‘Budgeting’ skills

·         18 note their website address within their ad

So, how do you sort out the many wedding planners marketing their services?   Here’s a few thoughts to consider prior to your initial inquiry when interviewing professionals…

How do you pick the right one for you?  Focus on what you believe you need prior-to and on your wedding day = a wedding planner that knows the area and venue and can suggest/coordinate all the details. Are you wanting a full-service planner or can you get by with a ‘Day-Of’ Coordinator?  Review the initial lead-in photo to determine if this business shows personality and style thru the photo they selected to represent their business.

Should price be a deciding factor?  Yes, it always comes down to price/fees.  The consumer will pay more for a professional who has earned a degree, attends seminars related to the wedding industry, networks, works full-time at their craft and can document successful events from happy couples.

Multi-hat professional = caterer, florist, linen, invitations, and wedding planner??  No, not a good idea.  It’s is tough enough for the wedding planner as the ‘go-to’ person on your wedding day but to add catering & florist (services provided ‘day-of’) to the equation too just to save money, I don’t suggest the thought.  Each professional has its own specialty.  Let each one shine on your wedding day.

Don’t be fooled by the business name – do your research.  Look deeper into the marketing page to see if exactly what the professional does.  Just because a business owner lists their info on a wedding site doesn’t mean their specialty is wedding events.

Are they still in business? I was surprised to find a business listing that I know has closed its doors still marketing online.  Add this question to your initial Q & A.

Word-of-mouth vs. reviews?  You can’t go wrong with word-of-mouth testimonials from family and friends.  Reviews are great to read/know when the message comes directly from the person who received the service.  If you are planning a destination wedding, refer to your venue or wedding planners Preferred Vendor List for word-of-mouth testimonials.

Accreditation / Experience in the Industry / Full-time vs. Part-time:  Business owners who take the time to earn accreditation, earn a college degree, attend networking event & seminars and know their niche within the wedding industry because they are focused and work full-time at their craft are the ones that you want to hire.  Do you want to hire a person who works a full time day job and does wedding coordination part-time?  Or, a person who dedicates their day to event planning and can return your call, email or text during the day – the same day?

Trust a professional but don’t have blinders on … Everyone should be accountable for the services noted within the contract that is agreed upon and signed.  Plan on getting all your questions answered before signing a contract.  And, don’t feel that you cannot contact that person again to ask additional questions before, during and after signing.  Knowledge is power so use it to your advantage and be informed to make the right decision for you.

 

Like these ideas?? Let me know by “Liking” this post and or leaving a comment. I’d love to hear from you!

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) Professional Wedding Planner, Lisa Kenward, writes the “Southern Weddings Blog” with her perspective on current topics for weddings and special events. http://www.LisaKenwardEvents.com