Archives from 08 / 2010
June and July and a bit of August– 2 and a half months in the life of an event planner!
People are often asking me “So, are you busy at the moment? Do you have any events or weddings coming up soon?”, to which I always reply – “Yes but I’m working on them now”. Event planning is a complex way of life that involves multi-tasking and versatility on a mass scale. Yes, the event or wedding may be on such and such a date but most of the actual work goes on beforehand and sometimes in the weeks and months afterwards too. Add to that the range of events and projects that may be on the go simultaneously and constantly overlapping in various ways, as well as the everyday tasks of trying to run a business, and you soon find yourself spinning lots of plates in the air. Luckily for me, I quite like plates!
So, I thought it might be a useful exercise to list some of the things I’ve been up to and who I’ve been working with in the last 2 and a half months. So here it is – a rough synopsis of 2 and a half months in the life of an event and wedding planner (but please remember to add all the emails, site visits, meetings and phonecalls that go with it!):
Outdoor Garden wedding:
Last weekend I set up, decorated and managed Alyx and Jonny’s outdoor marquee wedding in York. It was held in Alyx’s parents’ 3-tier garden which goes down to the river Ouse. We’ve been planning it since last year and has involved hundreds of emails going back and forth, organising the creative theme, decor items and purchases, generator, PA hire and outdoor lighting. We’ll be talking more about the wedding and sharing the photos from it, on the blog shortly….
Wedding Venue Search:
J and D were looking for an informal countryside rustic barn setting within about 1 hour of Sheffield. This sent me off looking at more barn and outdoor sites particularly in the Peak District. Amongst those we visited were Beechenhill Farm near Ashbourne and Foxholes Farm in Bradfield. Foxholes is great as you can rent the whole site and cottages for the weekend and there are no restrictions as to when you need to turn the music off!
Beechenhill Farm is one of the most beautiful barn venues I’ve been to with strong environmental standards, gorgeous country views and near to lots of accommodation for your guests, inlcuding some on-site. The wedding ceremony takes place upstairs and then there’s room downstairs for your reception:
We recently partnered up with Valerie from Left Luggage Creative Training and Facilitation to run two events for Sheffield Hallam University. One was a guest speaker and dinner evening in Sheffield city centre’s Millennium Galleries:
Guests were entertained by the highly talented classical guitarist Andrew Clegg:
Flowers by Swallows and Damsons:
Lovely desserts served at the Millennium Gallery event:
The next event was a creative day workshop at the beautiful ‘countryside in the city’ venue Kenwood Hall Hotel in Nether Edge, Sheffield:
Both venues were brilliant and all the staff looked after us very well indeed!
Indian Kashmiri Restaurant:
In June we were asked by Azad’s, the new Kashmiri restaurant at Woodburn Road, Darnall, to organise flowers and decor for their opening night. Anna from Swallows and Damsons did me these wonderful arrangements in a very short turnaround time. Thanks Anna!:
40th Birthday Party:
‘E’ recently contacted me to organise her future 40th birthday weekend in the Peak District. This prompted me to visit some beautiful grand youth hostels and cottage complexes in the Peak District. It took me back to the days when I used to organise residential retreat weekends at venues and youth hostels around Scotland. Lots of people nowadays are opting for more informal and relaxed celebrations where they can hang out with friends and family and feel at home. I think this would be my ideal sort of party too!
Dessert Bars and Candy Buffets:
Enquiries to hire our candy buffet jars are increasing, so much so that we decided to buy some new stock and different sized jars and containers. I’ve also been working on some new design concepts for various events.
One of my friends contacted me for some tips and advice as she has been organising Britain’s first national Breastfeeding Festival which has been taking place this week, in Ulverston, Cumbria. We were able to help her look at the project plan, logisitics, venues, speaker and costings.
Our plans are progressing well for next year’s historical events with a circus twist, based around one of my famous Victorian relatives. Watch this space!
We attended the Creative Exchange ‘Through the Looking Glass’ day tour of creative enterprises and met lots of new and inspiring creative people! Thanks to Rachel for the great organisation of a great day!
For a bit of light relief I’ve been reading the novel ‘Wedding Babylon - The Confessions of a Wedding Planner’ by Imogen Edwards Jones which follows a week in the life of a wedding planner and is full of funny anecdotes based on true stories!
Check out my vintage blog for what I’ve also been up to in the last 2 and a half months on the Vintage Front!
News on the Vintage Front!
As some of you who know me know, I have a bit of a split personality and find myself doing ‘Vintage’ things parallel to everything else I’m doing (non-Vintage!?), although nowadays a lot of it is starting to merge into a bit of modern and a bit of Vintage!
On my other (non-vintage!) blog I’ve been listing the various things I’ve been up to in June and July and a bit of August. So here are a selection of the things I’ve being doing in June and July and a bit of August whilst hanging out in the ‘Vintage world’ part of my head!:
Vintage Crockery Hire:
Enquiries for hiring my vintage crockery and other items has risen recently as more local brides opt for the Vintage look for their weddings. We also hired out all the crockery we had with roses on it for a naming ceremony celebration for baby Rebecca Rose. My vintage crockery collection is ever increasing and I’ve been busy sorting it all in my new studio so that it’s easier to see (and count!) what I have. More developments on this coming soon…
Emma from The Wedding Daze and Helen from Ph Weddings also used some our vintage crockery and glassware for their recent stunning Sex and the City photoshoot:
Food by Coco Catering
Cupcakes by Yummylicious
Menu Card and Place Name by Lucy Ledger Designs
Photographs by Ph Weddings
In June I was invited to give my talk on ‘Weddings through the Ages’ at Chatsworth Women’s Institute. Members brought their own wedding memorabilia and photos and told me details from their own weddings, spanning from the 1940s to the 1990s. We hope to post some of their stories on here soon but for now, here’s a photo of Mary’s wedding day in 1970:
She hired her dress of Nottingham Lace and her veil from Young’s and she still has the drawing of the design in her photograph album:
Last year we gave the talk at Bakewell W.I and next year we’ve been asked to give the talk at Balsow W.I. Thanks to Paul from CVC Event Services for hiring us the very reasonably priced powerpoint projector and screen.
Vintage Wedding Research:
We’ve been doing some research into the dying out concept of ‘keeping a bottom draw’ so do let us know if you have any ‘bottom draw’ stories to tell!
1930s Themed Wedding:
We recently met with a bride and groom who are wanting us to help them decorate their 1930s wedding next year. Very excited about this one! Will keep you posted!
Vintage Wedding Showcase event:
In the last couple of years, I’ve been wanting to organise some sort of Vintage wedding event showcasing what Sheffield has to offer for local Vintage brides. I’ve also been developing my idea to start organising evening bridal soirees, as an alterntative to traditional wedding fayres. So after chatting to fellow business colleagues, Laura from Little White Book Wedding and Event Management, Blanche from Coco Catering and Anna from Swallows and Damsons, we decided to take the plunge together and organise an exclusive vintage bridal soiree this September. We’ve chosen the beautiful Chimney House at Kelham Island for the venue and have lined up lots of great local suppliers. More news and ticket details on this shortly…