As a wedding planner, my job is never dull, to say the least. From traveling to Mexico with large decor items in tow, to helping my brides to the bathroom in their wedding dress, creating a sweetheart table from thin air, planning an entire wedding in two weeks, and lots of other exciting madness, I’m sharing today 10 of the craziest things I have ever done for a client.
Had my assistants physically hold down a mandap for two hours (a traditional Southasian wedding ceremony altar) so it wouldn’t fly off of a helicopter pad during the ceremony
We once did a wedding up in the mountains of Malibu + the ceremony was held on the helicopter pad of a gorgeous private estate. The only risk to having your ceremony on a heli-pad? It’s windy AF. Unfortunately, this particular decor company failed to bring enough sandbags to weigh the thing down, and down she toppled – about 20 minutes before ceremony time. Thank GOODNESS it just fell to its side + not off the cliff. I remember one of my assistants came up to me + told me, with a panicked look in her eyes, “The mandap fell down.”
I immediately put on a poker face, stay calmed, and walked over to the decor company, explained to them what had happened, and instructed them to add more sandbags ASAP. They ended up placing just two more (the thing needed like 12 total, it maybe had 6) and I didn’t want to take anyyy chances. So I literally had two ladies hold the back two posts of the mandap during the entire two-hour ceremony. They kept their smiles, and guests probably thought it was a ceremonial thing, maybe that the bride was being “extra” + wanted ceremony attendants at the ready.
Helped (several) brides go to the bathroom in their wedding dress
This one is a classic wedding planner move. During the initial consultation with potential clients, I always encourage them to interview several wedding planners before making a decision, and to review not only our work, but pay attention to my personality, the content I create, my social media accounts, etc. I want my brides to book me because they see me as not only a competent + talented professional, but also an extension of their wedding party + someone they see as a potential friend – because we get CLOSE. From wiping lipstick off of her teeth, to pulling twigs out of her hair, to seeing her full-frontal as she’s getting dressed in the morning, to yes, getting right in there up close + personal + holding her dress for her when she goes to the bathroom, “awkward” is simply not in my vocabulary when it comes to my brides.
Traveled from LAX to Puerto Vallarta with a giant welcome sign almost as big as my body + a luggage full of linens
My dedication to my clients + passion for my craft runs deep + strong. I have many, many examples to illustrate this, but one in particular comes to mind – the time I traveled to Los Angeles to Puerto Vallarta with a huge welcome sign almost as tall as me. Simply put – I wanted the couple to have a killer welcome sign for their wedding, and I didn’t trust that anyone in the city would be reliable enough to get it done, and be able to print on a foamcore board that we were looking for. Chalk it up to also being super busy + not having time to heavily research if there were any “American” brands like Minuteman Press or Office Depot in the area, and I just said eff it + carried the thing with me.
This was also the trip I snuck 4 cocktail table linens + about 40 napkins in a suitcase because you can’t have a wedding without fun linens + velvet napkins, duh! I got some side eye at customs, but all was well, and despite the torrential downpour the night of the wedding, thanks to the amazing maids at the Villa I was staying at, they were all dried + ironed, and returned back to BBJ Linen in Chicago without a trace of trauma.
Borrowed decor items from a hotel in Tulum + trekked them two hours into the jungle to dress up the bride + groom’s sweetheart table
I once had a wedding in Tulum, Mexico where the client didn’t want to spend a penny on decor or flowers. This broke my heart, and I was determined to at least make a cute sweetheart table come to life for them – one way or the other. The Villa where the wedding was held was kind enough to let me move some furniture up to the roof near the pool where the reception was held – and voila! A sweetheart table + chairs were born.
I knew the Villa didn’t have any decorative items for the table itself, so I ended up borrowing a couple of rugs, knick knacks + baskets from the room + explained to concierge what I was doing. Again, another look of “this American girl is wacko”, but you gotta do what you gotta do! I scoured the cabinets at the Villa for place settings, set the table. Added some coconuts to the baskets, and it ended up looking so good! The couple was blown away that I was able to create a fully decorated table for them when they hadn’t spent a dollar on any furniture or decor. My answer? I make magic happen.
Wrote a groom’s vows for him
All of our grooms are sweethearts, and all mean well, but some are just not the greatest when it comes to words. I once wrote a groom’s vows for him because he was so stressed about it + I love to write. I got a few bullet points from him as to how he felt about his bride, and the types of things he wanted to say, and I was able to draft up something really beautiful + eloquent for him, that was well-written but still sounded like him. Hmm, should I introduce this service as an add-on to our planning package this year?
Changed locations for a corporate event after all of the vendors had set up because we got kicked out of the venue. The client had ensured us the venue was confirmed – it was not.
I once had a corporate client approach me one week before he wanted to host an event for 30 influencers. I am always up for a good challenge, so of course I accepted + hit the ground running on the planning + design of the event. He event was to be held at his apartment complex in LA, and he assured me that the venue was locked + loaded, all ready to go, and I just needed to focus on getting the vendors + styling the event.
Come the morning of, despite several detailed emails + phone calls to go over logistics, we were locked out of the building, and the girl at the front desk was totally at a loss as to why we were there. Nobody communicated to her that an event was going on that day. Long story short, but we end up getting into the building, and just as we are wrapping up setup, that girl’s boss comes in + says we have to leave. No mercy, no explanation, we had to relocate. I gathered all of the vendors, explained what had happened, apologized profusely, gave a little pep talk, and with bright spirits we packed it all up, and moved to a new location. We ended up only having to move the event back one hour.
Trekked two hours up a SUPER bumpy road in a four wheeler, then hiked 20 minutes to set up a styled shoot picnic scene at the very top of a mountain in Sedona, Arizona
Last September, I planned + designed a gorgeous picnic-style elopement engagement shoot at the top of Merry-Go-Round Rock in Sedona, Arizona. The trip required a two-hour bumpy (I mean BUMPY – the truck couldn’t go more than 10 mph!) drive up the mountain, followed by a 20-minute hike to the perfect photo spot. Rugs, pillows, table settings, + flowers in tow, I trekked it all up the mountain + only had one casualty (one glass broke). It ended up being SO stunning + we are excited to see where we can hopefully get it published in the coming months. Read all about my Sedona shoot here!
Planned an entire wedding in two weeks
This was actually the same wedding where we had to hold the mandap steady during the entire two-hour ceremony (see above!) This bride is a pretty well-known marijuana doctor in LA, and she approached us two weeks before her wedding day, explaining that she had a venue picked out, was in talks with some caterers, but didn’t have anything else done. We jumped right in, booked + confirmed it all, and pulled off a $200,000 + wedding in right around 14 days. After an experience like that, you really feel like you can plan anything, and it’s pretty true!
Fed the DJ/Emcee lines for the entire reception because he had never emceed a wedding before
Unfortunately, in this industry there are several vendors who advertise themselves as wedding “professionals”, but in reality, have no idea in hell what they are doing. I have encountered this way too many times when it comes to wedding DJ’s. Sometimes we get stuck working with a DJ who is a family friend or has DJ’ed “all of our family’s house parties so we want him to do our wedding” Red flag alert!
I always advise my clients to only book a DJ who has several weddings under his belt, and patiently explain to them that DJ’ing a house party (or a club or even a baby shower) is very, very different than being able to emcee a wedding + carry an event through on a microphone. Despite my best efforts, some clients still decide to, what I like to call, “go rogue”, and book the damn DJ anyway.
I always chat with every single vendor before each wedding, to confirm they have received my timeline, check in to see if they have any questions, or otherwise, and with a DJ like this, I always make it a point to (respectfully) ask if he has any questions on how things should be announced, the flow of the reception, etc. Again, despite my best efforts (I have been known to make magic happen, but I can only do so much), I have literally had to stand right next to the DJ table all night, and feed him lines before every single announcement. Comical, but we get it done.