Events by Reagan

From the Desk of Reagan

Strategize Your Event Design with These 4 Steps

February 23, 2017

You have new sparkle on your finger, your mind is a dizzying frenzy of excitement and ideas, you are trigger happy to start making things happen.  So much to do, so little time!

Before you get too carried away, make sure you approach your wedding in a thoughtful and strategic manner so that you don’t find yourself in a pinch.  Avoid backing yourself into a corner and get the most out of your planning process with these four steps to efficient event design.

1. Think BIG!

This is something that I rarely have to encourage brides to do.  Have you seen the Pinterest board they’ve been working on for um, I don’t know, YEARS?  Sometimes when the process becomes real and not just a distant dream, brides (especially their parents!) can get that deer-in-the-headlights look of “I don’t know where to start.”

The fear of how much things will cost creeps in, the worry of not knowing the event lingo for lighting, AV, and flowers is there, there’s the stress of what vendors to book and then the “OMG, I can’t find a venue!!” panic.

Before you know it, I see clients fixating on the small stuff like the cost per rental chair or if a florist will give them a discount if they supply the containers because, don’t you know, they have about 50 clear cube vases…

If this is you, stop where you are, take a deep breath, and THINK BIG!  

We need to identify what the big picture looks like before getting down to the nitty gritty.  It’s like approaching building a home – you wouldn’t start worrying about the light fixtures and wallpapers first, you need a complete and comprehensive plan, then you tackle the details.

So, without budget, apprehension and fear, what does your dream wedding look like?

2. Think Logistics

While you’re thinking big and we’re gathering all of these ideas, I’m helping you streamline them into an event storyboard.  So often brides have so much wonderful inspiration that all of it can start to feel disconnected.  Finding a common thread and figuring out how to bring all of these great thoughts together is what I am here for.

This process is also when I think about HOW this will all come together.  Much of this is done by me identifying which vendors are best for your vision.  Too often I hear the request for a vendor list.  Connecting brides with vendors is so much more than just providing a list.  It’s about hearing their wishes, understanding their priorities, learning their personalities, and hand selecting vendors that truly are the right fit for the bride, the budget, her vision, and will execute accordingly.

Here I go again with my analogies but asking for a vendor list is like asking an interior designer for a list of her recommended upholstery fabrics without sharing the who/what/where/why.  It just doesn’t make sense.

Determining your vendors and figuring out logistics – the how – of making things happen go hand in hand.  Slowly but surely through thinking big and streamlining ideas, we are piecing together a framework that will carry us to the finish line.

3. Think Budget

Ah, the word we all love to hate: budget.  Here is where we reign things in and see what is actually attainable within your budget.

Maybe you choose to splurge in one category, which means scaling back in another.  Possibly the food and beverage minimum at the venue you have in mind doesn’t make the best financial sense for you.  Or the 15 piece band you had to have really needs to be an eight piece band, which is still amazing!

This is not the time to get down if you see your dream wedding being chipped away.  This is the time to feel empowered that you are making a vision come to life and if you have a planner like me, she is going to make your budget go the furthest!  …which leads to the final point…

4.  Think Strategy

If you have to scale back, are there ways to do so without losing impact?  Where is the greatest bang for your buck?  Identify it and nix the frivolous stuff that only you will notice if it’s not there.

Ask your florist if there are more cost effective blooms to swap out for those driving up the bill that would achieve the same look and feel.

Maybe it makes the most sense to go with the in house linens so that you can go all out with the flowers.

Do you really need all five chandeliers over the dance floor?  Nix a few and still wow your guests!  Remember, no one knows where you started and it won’t feel like anything is missing.

Are letterpressed menus really necessary when you have so many other beautiful things on the table for guests to experience?  Save this nicer printing method for the invitations and the save the dates, too, if you have room.

There are many ways of making your dream vision and your budget work together and a wedding planner is one of the greatest assets in making this happen.

Just remember, when you approach design do so smartly with these four steps in mind:

1. THINK BIG

2. Think Logistics

3. Think Budget

4. Think Strategy

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