Wow, what a lot has happened since my previous post, namely the actual event that is A Marquee in Winter has actually taken place but, before I get to this, I am going to take a few minutes to high five myself, something I don't do very often/ever really. When Emma Meek at Miss Bush called me up back in March to float the concept of me planning this marquee wedding event we were already within a month from the actual event date. Then there was the tiny issue of the fact I was due to be on a 2 week family holiday in America, landing home the day before the event (along with all the jet lag that entails). Oh, and then the small matter of the Paris marathon I was due to be running 2 days after the event. If ever there was an example of biting of a little more than perhaps is quite comfortable to chew, this was it. However, the personal high fives feel deserved. The event went brilliantly, the concept was superb and the feedback was glowing. Secondly, I achieved my marathon goal of sub 3.45 and managed myself a good for age "badge" of honour (ok it was 1 second within the 3.45 good for age target but a win is a win and I'll take that). So, before, I dive into this wonderful marquee in winter event, I am allowing myself a huge pat on the back for proving, once a wedding planner, always a wedding planner, and that we really can bite off more than is probably sensible and come out the other side - who knew?!
A MARQUEE IN WINTER
So, personal pieces aside, on to this event. As a wedding planner I get asked with fair frequency if I'd like to get involved in planning collaborative events or styled shoots and, I have to admit, that I don't tend to get involved in too many (for various reasons but mostly due to the time/effort/investment vs. return balance often being too far weighted to the left of that equation). However, when Emma Meek calls you up, it's worth a listen. The concept behind this event, held at the beautiful location which is Miss Bush HQ (aka The Chapel in Ripley, Surrey) was something quite different to what I'd been approached to do before: an actual event to which real brides and grooms to be were invited, where industry experts and professionals would not only demonstrate their expertise but provide actual advice and experience to couples to be planning their marquee weddings. It involved constructing and decorating an actual marquee in the driveway of The Chapel (no small task I can assure you), a winter inspired fashion show with custom made dress by Nortier Shallow, a question and answer panel, gorgeous design floristry and styling and, of course food, cocktails and cake. What was not to love? But, the best bit, the event was so much more than just a standard industry led styled shoot, it was a beautiful event that allowed top suppliers to come together, to show case their work and create an online legacy of beautiful imagery AND content. There is more to come on the latter but for now I am going to leave you with a few of my favourite event images from Katrina Bartlamand that showcase the amazing work - and a few thank yous to the amazing team involved.
THE DREAM TEAM
When putting together any event or wedding I am guilty of banging on a lot about the concept of the dream team, but I make no apologies for it! Any event is only as good as the experts behind each of their individual areas of expertise. With a jet lagged planner at the helm, we needed the best team. Now the great thing with an event like this one is that it gives me the opportunity not only to work with some industry greats who I have worked with before, but, also, the opportunity to discover talented professionals I haven't yet had the pleasure to work alongside. Part of the team was already drafted - in that they were the headliners behind the event itself - Inside Outside Marquees and Two Many Cooks. Now I've worked alongside Two Many Cooks several times before, in fact it was Emily (Owner) who kindly gave Emma that nudge to approach me (thanks Emily) but I hadn't had the chance to work with Inside Outside Marquees before.
When you have awesome suppliers on board you often then get this "snowball" effect where they will recommend other suppliers that they work alongside hand in hand. Will of Luminaire Events, who provided all the sound and lighting, was a perfect example of this, with both Two Many Cooks and Inside Outside marquees singing his praises (deservedly so, it turns out). And then I had my "go to" suppliers who I knew would be the perfect fit and amazing to work with. Special shout outs here to Rosie of Brolly Bucket (you always need to think about umbrellas and blankets, especially in the winter) and the ever fabulous Wedhead for the most gorgeous selection of unique and beautiful furniture. In fact I can't finish the shout outs without one to Fen at Monannie Cakes (you have to check out her Patisseria concept, recreated for us in the Chapel).
Getting to work with new suppliers is perhaps the most helpful piece of putting together any event of this kind. I won't cover the fashion piece (Emma is far more qualified for this than me, I really do not have a clue on this front, although I do love Emma's Instagram feeds whenever there is a key fashion awards night -if you know, you know, and, if you don't, follow @missbushbridal). But in meeting and working with Sharon Roberts Hair and Carolanne (Make Up) I've added two new suppliers to my white book of wedding suppliers.
Ellie of Era Calligraphy provided the most gorgeous stationery bang on brief and the all important florals were created as a joint effort between Kingfisher Farm Shop and Mad Lillies. It wouldn't have been a wedding event without some seriously stylish wedding present gifting ideas from The Wedding Present Co. and it certainly wouldn't have been a party with music, courtesy of the Juke Joints through ALR and, of course the drinks from The Cocktail Service.
There's so much more to come on this, least of all the event film. Watch this space!