One thing I’ve been DYING to do is to give back to all of the INCREDIBLE vendors I work with who I see going above and beyond for my brides and grooms. I work with A LOT but there are a select few that have always stood out in one way or another and most importantly has always had their eye on the prize, which is giving brides and grooms an AMAZING experience. This is why I created VENDOR SPOTLIGHT. To showcase the extraordinary so when you are planning your wedding, big or small, you can have access to some of the insights of other professionals in the industry without having to get lost in the internets!
When my wife and I were planning our wedding we interviewed SO many vendors in hopes to find the right one’s but instead of finding someone who’s character we loved as well as the quality of service, we ended up with just the latter. Now to most that might be enough but what I have learned in the years of being around so many couples is that the CHEMISTRY matters just as much, especially with how much you’re investing in them. If you read through my reviews the one constant is that they all get along with me, I help them feel at ease and that I’m laid back. Well, why wouldn’t you want that of all your vendors? If you’re going to be around someone for 8+ hours you ( whether you know it or not ) need to have chemistry with them.
AND with that said let me introduce you to Lillian of Just Merried Events!
To start tell my viewers a little about yourself!
My name is Lilian – I’m a mama (to a 1 year old tot who has crazy amounts of energy and 3 fur children – a pit bull and 2 chihuahuas), a wife, bosslady of Just Merried Events, and a Bruin!
What made you start your wedding planning company?
It all happened very unexpected and organically. My sister-in-law had asked for my help with planning her wedding in 2012 – she and her fiance (now husband) were med-school students with a small budget and no time (and they were doing rotations in different states every few weeks). I was in-between jobs and had plenty of time and the curiosity to give it a try. I really enjoyed the process (despite how stressful it could get), and after that it became a hobby that I was able to turn into a career! I got my certificate in meeting & event planning and started with word-of-mouth referrals from friends and family, and things took off from there.
Tell us your funniest moment or most emotional moment you’ve seen at a wedding.
Ah, this one is so hard because I see so many awesome moments! I think one of the funniest things I’ve seen recently is the silent disco – we did a wedding in Palm Springs, which has a strict noise ordinance, so amplified music had to be off early. Our couple decided to keep the party going with a silent disco – this is where the DJ hands out headsets to everyone and continues to spin & play party music. It was hilarious from my team’s point of view because we were just watching a bunch of people (and many very drunk) dancing in silence and once in awhile singing/chanting the words, the few words, they knew to the song. It was a ton of fun for the guests, but also a lot of fun for us to watch 🙂
Do you think every bride and groom need a wedding planner?
I think that a planner may not be necessary for everyone, but I think every couple needs to have at least a month-of coordinator to help with the final details & logistics the month of their wedding. The planning process is a lot of fun, and many of my brides and grooms enjoy taking on that part of the wedding process themselves. However, as we near their wedding date, my team takes over the final correspondences and coordination with their vendors because let’s face it – most people are new to this getting married thing, and there are so many logistical details and nuances that they’re not familiar with and may not even think of, but we’re dealing with them every week so we know what to anticipate and how to work out those final kinks. And this way, the couple can enjoy the final weeks leading up to their big day and just have a blast with their friends and family.
Any advice you have for a bride and groom about the wedding industry in general?
I know with all the technological resources available nowadays it’s so easy to get lost in all the digital correspondences, but I think it’s so important to get to know your wedding vendors as individual people. These are people that you’re putting your trust in to execute your vision for your big day and represent you to all your guests. There are SO MANY wedding vendors out there, some phenomenal, some good, some ok, some MEHH, and some just awful. You want to get to know one another and feel comfortable with them – especially with your photo & video teams who will be following you around with cameras for the entire day!
What do you think is most crucial when working with other vendors? Other than you wanting them to be kick ass 🙂
Communication & collaboration! It’s so important for me to be able to communicate effectively with vendors – I always worry when I email a vendor and 5 days later there is still no response. It’s crucial for us to be on the same page so that we can make the couple’s wedding day as seamless and awesome as possible, and in order to be on the same page we need to be communicating constantly. And we also need to all act like we’re on the same team, because we are! We are all there to make the couple’s wedding day as kick-ass as possible, and when we work together and help each other out, it makes ALL the difference. Sometimes my team will help the floral design team out when they’re running behind schedule. Sometimes they will help us set up when we’re shorthanded. It takes team effort to pull off a successful event.
When an inquiry comes in, what clues do you look for to know they will be an INCREDIBLE fit for your company?
A personal connection. Like I mentioned above, I think getting to know people and being comfortable with the people we’re working with is so important in what we do, and I always hop on a call or video call with my prospective clients to get to know them a little more before we sign them up. And sometimes we’ll even meet up and grab a coffee or boba (boba is always a good sign). If we vibe, it’s something we’ll mutually feel immediately. Our couples are fun-loving people who just want their guests to have a great time at their wedding – they just want to throw an awesome party!
Anything extra you’d like to share?
We also have a kick-ass in-house graphic designer – Fable – who can assist our couples with projects like custom invitations, escort cards, signs, menus, programs, and other items. We even take on projects from other planners and coordinators who may not offer the services in-house. Most recently, she worked on some super fun travel themed escort cards that looked like boarding passes – so rad!
Lastly is a few speed-round questions HA! Top 3 favorite venues / Top 3 favorite films and Top 3 things you still have on your bucket list!
The Lion King
The Sound of Music
Roman Holiday (Audrey Hepburn is the best!!!)
Vacation in Bora Bora in an overwater bungalow (very specific, I know)
Visit Paris & see the Eiffel Tower
I know…everything is travel related – I want to travel the world, take in all the sights and cultures, and taste all the different foods!
To get a hold of Lillian at Just Merried Events you can email her at email@example.com or call 626-658-8383
While you’re here feel free to check out some of the other incredible weddings I’ve been a part of as well as advice you’ll need when debating that First Look!
I want to tell YOUR story and be you’re VENTURA WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER! Chat with me today to see if your date is still available!