A Very Lavender Wedding

The adorable bride and groom; Ryan and Danielle

The adorable bride and groom; Ryan and Danielle

This summer I had the greatest honor of being asked to perform the day-of coordination for the sister of one my dearest friends, Danielle, aka Sister! This wedding was so special to me because I love this family and it was so great to be able to produce a seamless and stress free event for them. In addition to working with the family, I had the help of two of my most favorite people to work with and close friends, Allegra and Lia.

The couple chose one of the most breathtakingly beautiful venues I have ever seen, Woodinville Lavender Fields in Redmond, WA. Woodinville Lavender was everything I wish for in a venue; well kept, organized, great communication and every process was well thought out. They obviously harvest and sell lavender whole sale, but from as an event venue, they make it so easy to hold your event with them.

Woodinville Lavender has predetermined ceremony locations on the property, each with a different view so you have a choice but with each location, the setup is determined so there is no re-inventing the wheel! There is a greenhouse, a really gorgeous tent with built-in lighting, and a barn with a patio. Woodinville provided almost everything; from the benches and arch in the reception to the lawn games and hi-boys used during cocktail hour, even the tables and chairs for the reception and these gorgeous wine barrels used for trash cans and hiboy!

From a venue standpoint, this is genius because it cuts down on the amount of vendors setting up on your property. It was seriously my greatest dream come true! #venuegoals! The rentals were limited to decor and china, and there was really minimal decor needed with such a gorgeous space. The owner, even rolled out heaters and provided really cool buckets for the sparkler send off. One of the coolest things; there was a “She Shed” for the bride and bridesmaids the relax and finish getting ready before the ceremony. To my amazement, Tom hand built the shed and the wooden benches used during the ceremony. He, most likely built other items around property! I was soo impressed, if you own an event space THIS is the way you should do it!

The ceremony took place in the lavender fields…. of course!!

Cocktail hour took place outside the greenhouse while the bridal party took pictures throughout the property. There was beer and wine served in the greenhouse and the guests enjoyed the lawn games.

The reception took place underneath the tent. The dance floor and DJ were adjacent to the tent on the farmhouse terrace. The bar and dessert were inside of the farmhouse. One of my favorite moments (there were many for this wedding) was that the bride chose to have Joyful Joyful, the Sister Act 2 version, play during the cutting of the cake.

The couple ended the night, stunningly, with a sparkler send off and drove away in a vintage Bentley.

I am so thankful for my team that executed this event!

My right hand: Allegra

Makeup and “hey can you do this” coordinator: Lia

Liason for family and BFF: Vanessa

Property Manager: Tom

Photographer: Samantha McFarland

Caterer: Bread and Circuses

DJ: Brian @ Emerald City Productions

Congrats to the bride and groom, I am excited to see all the wonderful, love-filled moments that lie ahead!

Robi & Leo Wedding Day Coordination

My first event in May held a special place in my heart. Robiannce and I were both in the Hotel College at UNLV (University of Nevada Las Vegas) and served on the board of NSMH (National Society of Minorities in Hospitality) together. I have so many fond memories of us traveling together, attending conferences, complaining about our respective internships and so many days of us talking about the futures we wanted. This day was the perfect addition to our long list of memories.

Robi asked me to perform her wedding day coordination and touch base routinely to ensure her planning was on track. She chose Spring Mountain Ranch as the venue and planned the details of the wedding. Leading up to the wedding we met together over several brunches and long coffee dates to review details and logistics of the big day. 

Spring Mountain Ranch has a breath taking backdrop of the mountains. The ceremony took place on the lawn in a spiral seating, coffee hour took place in the gazebo and the reception took place on the lawn as well. Robi arranged for the equipment and decor to be delivered in trucks. With the assistance of an amazing team we set the coffee hour, ceremony and staged the reception then during coffee hour we set the reception. My responsibilities for the day included setup and teardown of the event, ensuring the wedding was on schedule and expediting the food from the food truck that provided catering. 

It is always an honor when a couple asks for me to be apart of their special day but it was so amazing to see Robi and Leo happily begin this new chapter in their life. I am so happy that I could help bring Robi's vision to Fruition. 

Here are a few pics from the beautiful day!

Venue: Spring Mountain Ranch

Furniture Rental: RSVP


Photographer: Kenni Smith

May: The Month of Madness

Month of Madness

Dare I say, May has been the most insane month of this entrepreneurship journey thus far.... and it was completely self inflicted!! In my scramble to gain clients, build a portfolio, and make a living I signed contracts for 2 wedding day coordination, full planning services for a meet and greet and a wedding, and re-lauched a local chapter of a national networking group all while picking up as many shifts that I could get at the Tmobile Arena for income.

Even though this month was pure madness, the main takeaway is that I made it through. It was rough, exhausting, stressful and mentally challenging but I made it through! Now looking back I am so grateful for the lessons learned throughout this month of madness. 

Lesson #1: time management

My time management skills are still a work in progress but working so many events and being at the arena every day I could get forced me to get serious about my work time. If I had 2 hours to work, I couldn't afford to waste 30 min of it on Facebook and reading blogs. I had my task lists for each week and reviewed them and updated nightly. And with time being so tight this month I made sure my designated work time was just that, no procrastination. I put my phone on DND and made sure to remain focused on the task at hand.  

Lesson #2: financial planning

Taking on so many contracted events in May meant I received payment in the months prior and had to budget to make sure I was able to make it through the month. So my actual income for May was extremely low. Also, with most of my contracts taking place on the weekends I missed out on some major income days. I make sure to look at my projected income 3 months out to ensure I am going to meet my financial goals. So far its giving me enough time to plan to make any adjustments for compacted contracts.

Lesson #3: sales and marketing

An obvious realization I had was during the planning phases of an event the last thing I have time for is sales and marketing. Procedures need to be put in place and I need to remain strict about continuing with my sales and marketing even with an event in the works. I need to get to the point where I am working from one event to the next.

Lesson #4: outsourcing

Speaking of sales and marketing, I decided to make it a goal in the near future to hire someone, at least for a couple hours a week, to do some sales and marketing tasks. If I had someone that took care of sending out proposals, replying to emails and scheduling social media it would relieve a huge task load. 

Lesson #5: overextension

I also learned to be more careful in accepting contracts, to place a limit on the amount of events per month and work toward spreading them out throughout the year. Overextension is a real thing and I definitely exceeded my limit this past month. In the future I will be tactful about the events I accept. 

Overall, May was crazy, hectic, exhausting, stressful, a little out of control and a great learning experience that I needed to go through as an entrepreneur. 

So next time you have a rough time ask yourself "But did you die??". Laughing but serious!