Intern Insights: Custom Thank You Notes

Devon here! I’d like to introduce a new segment on our blog: Intern’s Insights! We love having Tim in the office, and his fresh perspective on the wedding business leads to some great conversation. In speaking with Tim, we recognized that his ideas, questions, and lessons learned would really benefit brides, grooms, parents, and anyone interested in the wedding business because, like so many, he came in to this internship without any idea or insider secrets to the wedding industry. So without further ado, here is Tim’s take on things!

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Mohawk Pinhole Press

I am awesome at giving gifts!  I always find gifts that people enjoy but also ones that serve a purpose.  For those who don’t happen to have a knack for gift giving, there’s a magical all-in-one tool called a wedding registry.  On the off chance that you are someone like me, using a registry just isn’t enough.  I love giving gifts that include my own personal touch as well as those that are a suitable fit for the newly weds.

The other day I came across a website called Pinhole Press, which specializes in paper goods.  Pinhole Press believes that their “photo gifts are designed to inspire the gift giver, spread joy to the recipient and create an unforgettable Moment.”  On their website, I found a very simple design for customized stationary, and it hit me-this is the perfect personal touch to add to any gift from a couple’s registry!

Mohawk Pinhole PressWhile I understand the functionality of a wedding registry, it’s like having a peanut butter and jelly sandwich without the jelly; you can definitely still eat it for lunch, but there’s that spark missing and it just doesn’t taste the same.  A couple’s wedding registry may include useful household items and that 12 piece dinnerware set the couple has been dying for, but there’s just something so impersonal about the whole process.

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Pinhole Press shows an example of a simple and classic card with the couple’s names on the front and a cute picture of themselves on the back.  Because of the cards’ simplicity, they can be used to write friendly notes, thank you cards, or even holiday greetings!  In addition, the minimal wording and design makes them timeless.

 

Pinhole Press also offers other custom paper goods that would be a perfect complement to a gift from a couple’s registry.  Two other items stood out to me: personalized coasters, and custom wine/champagne labels.  Coasters are always a useful item to have in any home and can remind the newlyweds of their special day every time they put their drink down!  The personalized wine/champagne labels are a fun twist to put on a bottle of the couple’s favorite wine for them to enjoy.  I believe that these custom gifts add a personal touch to any gift from a couple’s registry, and shows the bride and groom just how much you care, while still satisfying their desire for a 12 piece dinnerware set.

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Images via Pinhole Press

Posted in DIY Wedding, Find of the Moment, LA Wedding Planner, Party Favors, Uncategorized, Wedding planner in LA, Wedding Planners, Wedding Planning Advice, Wedding Planning Info, Wedding Vendors | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Meet Our Team: Our Intern Tim

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I’m Tim Healy and I am thrilled to be working with Moments by Wayne. Working at such an established and well-run company, I have found that my entrepreneurial spirit is well suited to the event planning industry. This field has the perfect balance of logistics, creativity, and everything in between that it keeps me interested and on my toes.

During the school year, I attend Occidental College, where I am pursuing degrees in both Economics and Spanish, and expecting to graduate in Spring 2015. Originally from northern New Jersey, I decided to attend school in Los Angeles and I hope to continue my career here after graduation. I absolutely love the California sunshine as well as the perks of being in such a unique city. During my first year and a half at Occidental, I was a member of the Occidental Swimming & Diving Team, before giving the sport up to pursue my academic and career interests. I still love swimming, and enjoy it recreationally and to stay healthy. After spending most of my life dedicated to the water, I have found that I draw inspiration from the cool tones and the emotions associated with the anything having to do with the water or ocean!

In addition to loving any shade of blue, I also am fascinated by Asian culture, from the food to the bold reds and blacks used in so many Asian designs. While interning at Moments by Wayne Gurnick, Inc., I hope to utilize my strong business skills and sharpen my creative sensibilities to help me put on events that step outside of the box. I feel so lucky to work alongside Wayne this summer and be a part of his team because I witness first hand how he orchestrates incredible events, his passion for design, and his commitment to our clients’ visions.

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Meet Our Team: Devon

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My name is Devon Balsamo-Gillis, and I love working at Moments by Wayne. I believe life should be embraced and celebrated, explored and lived- and I love knowing that I’m helping make that possible for others.

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Growing up in Calabasas just north of Los Angeles, my three sisters and I were very involved in the San Fernando Valley Chapter of National Charity League, which is where my love for events blossomed. I became very involved in organizing meetings, philanthropy events, and parties for NCL. By the time college rolled around, I knew I could see myself pursuing event planning, the perfect amalgam of creativity and organization, as a career. I joined a Sorority and was immediately drafted onto the event planning commission. I worked with top wedding planners in the summer, and during the school year, I helped organize fundraisers for multiple organizations and schools. After three short years at university, armed with an English Degree from UCLA, I came upon Moments by Wayne, and it’s been like home ever since!

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I still live in Calabasas; my family is extremely important to me, and I love that living so close to my sisters and my parents allows us to spend quality time together. I love making time for creativity and imagination, whether it be reading a really good book, trying out a new recipe, or annually making my Halloween costume (confession: I keep a list year round of costume choices and start the design process mid-June. Is it obvious Halloween is my favorite holiday?)  My passion for Halloween is only rivaled by my travel bug; I have a bad case of wanderlust. I’m constantly dreaming up my next adventure, desperate to soak in as much culture and global perspective as my budget will allow. When I’m not working at Moments or planning my next grand adventure, I am training for my second-degree black belt, playing with my dogs, or enjoying some of my favorite television shows.

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Dear Better Business Bureau – leave the wedding planning to us!

Dear Better Business Bureau,

We were delighted to see that you chose wedding planning as a topic of your recent blog.  We too believe passionately in doing business better.  To us that means giving our clients honest and well-founded information.  That is why we were compelled to respond to your blog post.

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Katie,

As a seasoned wedding planner, designer and coordinator, I feel that your article has done a huge disservice to Brides and Grooms and their families by misinforming them about the ways to manage their budgets when planning their weddings.  While there are certainly many ways to DIY a wedding, many of your suggestions are simply not realistic.  Case in point #1: While evites are simply easier and less expensive, often they go into spam and guests never receive them.  Additionally, not everyone has the capability of receiving the evite and some just do not use email.  Although a bride can be tech savvy, some still feel that the evite is a “rude” way to receive and invitation.

#2: Rental dresses and gowns are a good idea, however not always cost effective. In addition, renting can often turn into purchasing if the dress is overly stained, torn or otherwise damaged.

#3: A smart phone planner can never take the place of a human being.  It can never provide the same guidance, advice, and information that a qualified wedding planner / coordinator can, thus saving the bride and groom time and money.

#4: DJIY is really not an option for most. DJ’s are not paid by the hour. They are payed by the job and grouping of services that they provide.  They are able to understand a room full of guests and play the music that will keep everyone on the dance floor.  They MC the reception and a great DJ will be able to make the reception flow seamlessly. There are no apps that can do this.

#5:  Be your own florist… but choose your DIY projects carefully.  Have you ever delivered 15 floral centerpieces and set up a wedding arch?  It takes a team of designers hours to prepare and deliver and set up and strike at the end of the reception. Flowers are perishable. Getting them too early or too late for designing and installing can be a disaster for an unknowing bride and groom.  Consult the experts before deciding to take on the Flower DIY projects.

#6: Buyer Beware… why did the other bride and groom cancel their contract? Yes, one can buy “cheap” but often “cheap” becomes “expensive” to the unknowing Bride and Groom. Another reason to consult with a qualified wedding planner who can save time and money.

Katie, I realize that you are an intern at the BBB; however, I feel that this article was published without the advanced knowledge of what goes into planning, designing and coordinating a wedding.  In addition, you are misinforming your readers and advising that they not consider using professional wedding service providers, some of whom may even be members of the BBB in your area in an effort to save money.  Maybe another way is to inform your readers to consider working with wedding services that will work within any budget.

 

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Find of the Moment: Bride Box – The Right Tools to Create a Beautiful Photo Album

Photography is a must-have at any wedding; you want to remember and celebrate the most important day of your life in a beautiful way! But with the less than stellar economy and DIY on the rise, companies are popping up that take some of the not-so-easy professional services and make them DIY accessible. Bride Box is one of those companies, allowing brides to create their own wedding albums. Bride Box provides an affordable way to display your wedding photos and commemorate the Big Day.

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So what does it do? Based in Palo Alto, CA, Bride Box’s online store provides software for brides and grooms to upload and design their own photo albums. Why is this special? They provide a similar, though not identical, product line to that of a professional photographer. All you need is to upload the photos and to arrange them however you like. It’s perfect for creative brides and grooms who want more control in the process, or for couples who want additional wedding albums.

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How does this compare to other photo book companies, like Shutterfly or even Apple iPhoto? The answer is quality. Bride Box provides handcrafted albums with high quality pages and leather bound covers. They have a range of options, so you have plenty of different sizes and prices from which to choose. They also offer photo enlargements, guest books, and a personal favorite, canvas wrapped prints, which look great in any room as customized artwork. Bride Box also offers gift cards for that perfect wedding gift.

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Here at Moments by Wayne, we know the importance of hiring a great photographer. It is a must! Every album should be created using professional quality images from a professional wedding photographer. DIY projects, especially aesthetically heavy ones like photo album layouts, are not for everyone. We think Bride Box would be great for people who have a knack for design, love the intricacies of the hands-on process, want to see a multitude of different options before choosing one, and for those who want the bragging rights of creating their own wedding album. However, if you want the best quality, most unique album, stick with your professional wedding photographer.

Bride-Box-Wedding-Photo-Album-Flush-Mount-Anza       Bridebox-wedding-album-main

Bride Box will definitely please a specific niche of brides and grooms. The website is easy to navigate, with plenty of examples of exactly what they offer. Bride Box takes a potentially confusing and tricky aspect of your wedding and creates an easy and creative process to ensure that your wedding album turns out exactly how you want it.

 

www.bridebox.com

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Why You Should Consider Hiring a Day-of Wedding Coordinator

Reposted from Bridal Guide.

We asked California event designer Wayne Gurnick of Moments by Wayne Gurnick to give us the 411 on working with a day-of planner.

Wayne solving a problem

What does day-of planning entail? Does everything happen on the big day?
Not quite. While this is commonly referred to as “day-of,” a better description is “coordination for the day of the wedding.” It starts with a comprehensive consultation with the bride at least three to four weeks prior to the wedding. From there we assemble a detailed timeline for the wedding day and work to ensure that everything comes together just as the bride envisioned it. As well, some wedding venues have a requirement that a couple hire a planner or at minimum, a coordinator for the day of the wedding.

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What do day-of planning services generally cost?
Day-of coordination can range from $800 to $2,600 depending on the region, the planner’s experience and the specifics of the wedding. Are the ceremony and reception in one place or two? Are there extra details like dessert-bar setups, midnight snacks or food trucks? Will the celebration last until 2 a.m.? These aspects can all affect the cost.

What are the key benefits?
The biggest: having the peace of mind that all the details will come together as you envisioned. The amount of resources budgeted toward a wedding can be substantial, and with just 5 to 10 percent of the cost going to coordination for the day, couples can ensure that countless hours of planning time will be made easier and that they get the most for their money. Think about it: In addition to being the center of attention, you two are also the hosts of the celebration, unlike the days when parents took charge of wedding day festivities.

If a last-minute snafu crops up, having a coordinator on board allows you to be charming, gracious hosts, rather than frazzled, last-minute problem solvers. You’ll be able to truly enjoy every moment of the day.

All in a day’s work
On the big day, Gurnick’s team often handles the unexpected:

  • Party crashers are ordering drinks at the bar and need to be asked to leave.
  • Groomsman is missing his tux shirt, so we implore the rental company to do an emergency delivery.
  • Bandleader arrives two hours late: We work with the lead singer to get the party going.
  • We direct traffic in the middle of the street so the photographer can capture the perfect shot.Wayne directing traffic
  • Mother of the bride disappears just as the couple is ready to cut the wedding cake — we find her and bring her back.
  • The lights in the ballroom are too bright; we work with the lighting engineer to create a warm ambience.

Day-of planning at a glance

Formulation of wedding-day timeline and distribution to all vendors.

Coordination of all wedding professionals selected by bride and groom.

Conducting the wedding rehearsal the day before.

Coordinating all activities, including:

  • Assisting the bride and wedding party with dressing, photo schedules.
  • Guiding the bridal party through processional and recessional.
  • Checking details both big (final head count for caterer, number of place settings) and small (placement of favors, menus and napkin folds).
  • Checking floor plans, lighting levels, cake placement.
  • Cueing all wedding professionals.
  • Collection of gifts and personal items, inventory and safe removal. “The coordinator is usually the last person to leave,” Gurnick says.0227

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Find of the Moment: Saving the Day

Knowing how much bridesSave the Veil spend on their dresses, veils and accessories for the day of the wedding, not to mention hair and makeup, we found an accessory that will help you showcase all those beautiful things.  Voted 2012 Best Accessory by Wedding Industry Experts, magnetic veil weights called Save the Veil make sure that your veil stays in place even in the windiest of situations.

Veil WeightsDesigner Jill Watson was tired of seeing brides struggling with their veils for pictures or outdoor ceremonies and thought there had to be a better way. She came up with the perfect solution – veil weights that attach right to the end of the veil. They are easy to put on and take off and are perfectly suited for the delicate fabrics.

Not only are these clever accessories practical, but they also look beautiful. They aren’t going to take away from your gown or veil, but ratherVeil with Weights 2 enhance everything while keeping the veil down. You can choose from four different styles: oval with Swarovski crystal, oval with mother of pearl, round with Swarovski crystal and round with mother of pearl. The rounds are ¾ inch each and ovals are ¾ inch by ½ inch each. Jill suggests that 3-6 pieces are enough to control most veils, which is why she bundled them into 6 piece packages for $65.00 per set.

LisaDoug-BABC-097After the wedding, not only will you have beautiful pictures and memories, but also a keepsake you can continue to use over and over again. You can wear the veil weights as  jewelry, use them as magnets to hang up your wedding photos or even pass them down from generation to generation or even on to a good friend.

We love Jill’s Save the Veil 2solution to the wind, especially for beach weddings. Anything that can help a bride and groom enjoy the day and be able to look back fondly at their photos with great memories, makes us happy. We are so glad we found Save the Veil and were so excited to try out the weights. We hope you are just as excited to try them out as we were!

Posted in Budget, DIY Project, DIY Wedding, Find of the Moment, LA Wedding Planner, party planning on a budget, Ultimate Wedding Planning System, Wedding Dresses, Wedding Fashion, Wedding planner in LA, Wedding Planning Advice, Wedding Planning Info, Wedding Planning Steps | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Confessions of a Wedding Planner: I Still Swoon over Garden Roses (part 2)

In case you missed it, I already confessed to the fact that I love garden roses and still get excited when I walk into a flower warehouse.  Fresh flowers are truly inspiring, and it’s a thrill to use Nature’s stunning raw materials to create works of art.

When asked to design a piece to showcase garden roses for the Mayesh National Open House, here is what I came up with.  Hope you enjoy our Picture Perfect Bridal Bouquet.

Garden Rose Bridal BouquetPicture Perfect Garden Rose Brial Bouquet

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Confessions of a Wedding Planner: I Still Swoon over Garden Roses

When I was recently invited to take part in the Mayesh National Open House,  I was honored.  Mayesh is a florist’s best friend, providing the highest quality, most unusual products sourced from around the world.  I must confess that going into a warehouse full of flowers still gets me excited.  And when I heard that my design was to promote the use  of garden roses, well….

Garden roses

You may not know that garden roses have been doing some maturing lately, thanks to some pretty mind-boggling advances in the science of growing flowers.  They have stunningly long graceful stems, the blooms are sturdier yet still delicate and full, and the fragrance is even more intoxicating.

Garden roses

I had absolutely no idea which direction my design would take me and decided to just let the flowers inspire and guide me.  And inspire me they did!  The minute I saw the blush colors and delicate petals, I had visions of my wedding planning clients, all my brides, gleaming with excitement and anticipation of a ……….garden rose bouquet.  Timeless, elegant and effortless.  Effortless, so they think!  So, I went to work.

Want to know what I ended up designing?  Well, the big reveal will take place on Wednesday, January 23rd and we’ll have lots of pictures posted soon after that.

 

Garden roses

 

Garden roses

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Find of the Moment: Hanging On To Something Special

Bridal Hanger

Imagine walking into your closet to grab your favorite outfit, to find it hanging on a hanger that has your name on it – how is that for something special, something uniquely personal!  LilaFrances’s personalized wire wedding hangers on Etsy is just that kind of a special treat.  Not only do we love the products that the owner, Anna Hartshorn has created, but we also are inspired by her story. Personalized Hanger

When she was just a little girl, Anna loved to play with and twist together anything she could find lying around the house including twist ties, pipe cleaners, hair pins, and even telephone wires.  She would take these creations to her mother and present them as her own unique little masterpieces.

Bouquet Charms

Personalized Bouquet Charms

Her mom would always tell her that “there’s something to this” and encouraged her to use her talents for making something special for others. Little did Anna know that those talents would actually lead to creation of her personalized wedding hangers now sold on Etsy.  Anna now dedicates everything she makes to her mom who passed away from cancer. She says that her mom’s belief in her has propelled her to make these products for brides and grooms on their special days.

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Not only does LilaFrances make personalized hangers but she also creates cake toppers, ornaments, bouquet charms, wedding Earrings signs/decorations, table numbers, table number holders, jewelry hangers, and many jewelry items including earrings, necklaces, and rings.  Each item is lovingly handmade from scratch and you can just see the care and attention to detail.  Symbols and other objects work great in wire, too!

When you purchase items from LilaFrances, you also help fund cancer research. Anna donates 5% of all profits to the Ovarian Cancer Research fund in honor of her mother.   This is a wonderful incentive to use one-of-a-kind items in your wedding and even treat your bridal party to a special item of their own. What a great feeling!

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