Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Bows on Dresses

While browsing the Grace Ormonde website I noticed a new trend that seems to be emerging, many top fashion designers are incorporating bows to accentuate their designs more than ever before. Vera Wang has used black ribbon around the waist on over half of her dresses, and it was stunning! Reem Acra added a pale, mossy green ribbons and a bow to accent the ballroom gown shown below. I love this new trend in bridals, and encourage all to choose a dress with this feminine little accent! Even with Indian Bridal dresses, who says you cannot add bows.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Questions to Ask a Planner Before Hiring Them...

We recently met with a bride who was considering us and another planner for her wedding. We asked her what questions she had and it was responded very honestly by her saying, "I really don't even know what questions I should be asking. This whole process is so confusing". Over time, we have seen that this is what so many brides are feeling when they interview potential planners or vendors.

We put together a comprehensive list of questions that a bride should be asking not only us but other planners. We wanted to share this list so it can help a bride generate questions. We are hoping it helps you....

Questions to ask a planner before hiring them…

•How long have you been a wedding coordinator? How many Indian/South Asian Weddings have you done? How long have you been in the wedding planning business?

•What professional organization do you belong to and do you have a diploma? What is your educational background and professional background?

•Can we have at least 15 references for you and can we call them? We prefer non friends or non family members to call.

•Are you a registered business? LLC, Corporation?

•How do you charge? (percentage, flat fee, hourly)

•How much will you charge us for the services we need?

•Do you collect a commission from vendors or what is your policy on this?

•Are you computer literate? How do you communicate with your brides?

•What is your normal turnaround time for requests made by us? 24 hours? 48 hours?

•Do you have backup staff in case of an emergency and cannot make our wedding and who are they? Are we able to meet your staff?

•How will you be dressed on wedding day? How will your team be dressed?

•Can you help plan a wedding within our budget?

•How many brides do you work within a year?

•Will you have more than my wedding on the same weekend?

•Have you worked at our venue before?

•What are the extra charges? Is there an extra charge for phone calls, e-mails, taxi receipts, car rental charges? What is included?

•Do you have a preferred vendors list? What is the criterion for someone being on that list?

•Will you direct our rehearsal? Will there be a rehearsal? Is that extra?

•Can you handle last minute changes and emergencies?

•What is the deposit requirement? If we cancel our contract, will we get all or any of our deposit back? What is the policy if we cancel?

•How many times will we meet and how long will each meeting last?

•How many phone calls can I expect from you in a week? How many emails?

•Will you meet with our vendors and look over their contracts?

•What time do you arrive on the wedding day and what time do you leave?

•Will there be someone exclusively with me (the bride)? How many other staff members will you bring on the day of?

•What is your policy on confidentiality about our budget and vendors? Can you put this in writing?

Hiring the right vendors for your wedding will ensure success. Remember to call all 15 references. We know it takes time but this is the only way you will feel absolutely comfortable with your decision.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Our New Intern- Jessica

Hello everyone! I am so glad to be writing you from Sonal J. Shah Event Consultants. I just moved here from Marietta, Ohio (a very small town in Ohio). I graduated from The Ohio State University about a year and a half ago and I have wanted to be a wedding planner since I was in high school. Now I am here in New York City at my dream job and I can’t believe it. So far it has been everything I hoped it would be, from a meeting with David Tutera to seeing Salman Rushdie! I cannot wait for the first wedding!