Recently, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Jes Gordon. Jes Gordon is an award-winning event producer & designer, author, and most recently, star of Rocco’s Dinner Party on Bravo (US TV network). She is the former host of Fine Living Network’s “The Perfect Party”, and the resident Event Planning expert on Style Network and MyStyle.com. She is the CEO and Creative Director for her design firm jesGordon/properFUN, and the author of Party Like a Rock Star: A Celebrity Planner’s Tips and Tricks for Throwing an Unforgettable Bash.
This is Part ONE of my TWO PART Interview with Jes Gordon
What kind of mistakes do couples make when planning an event:
They don’t realize that this isn’t that last celebration that they will ever have for the rest of their lives. They can’t bring everything in that they have ever wanted to do in one party. They need to uni-focus and hyper focus on something that’s wonderful, that’s elegant, that’s them times a thousand for the one day that they are having for the event and that’s digestible for all the guests. That’s really important because often times brides and grooms just want to do something that’s insane that their grandmother or best friend will hate so they have to be a user-friendly host meaning that they need to kind of uni-focus a certain concept or design or a feeling or emotion and then realize that they are going to celebrate a lot of things in their lifetime to come. You can do things in the future.
What don’t couples know about the ins and outs of an event:
What goes into it. I recently went to Holland to see how flowers are grown because we have a floral division and nobody realizes that growing one tulip can take up to twelve months, one tulip. So I think that back of house production elements is a very important thing to focus on and educate the couples on. I often go to the flower market, we condition the flowers here for days before we even use them, brides and grooms don’t know that. Couples don’t know that we are working on flowers five days before their wedding even happens, also the amount of communication that goes on with the partners that you are having to make your event whole. Talking to the vendors, talking to the lighting person, talking to the cinematographer, talking to the photographer, the caterer, etc. All the little puzzle pieces need to be put together, so, there is just an enormous amount of back of the house work that happens that I don’t think people realize.
What questions should couples ask when planning their wedding?
The most important question is budget. They have to ask themselves that and then they have to ask me what they can get for their budget. Is it realistic? Is it doable for their vision? They have to just set their expectations to a level of where their budget is. It needs to balance harmoniously and that’s something that a lot of people don’t want to talk about but it’s the first thing you need to speak about. We generally speak to clients before they even meet us and we tell them what our price guidelines are, but it’s really not only about me it’s about what the budget should for their entire wedding, even their honeymoon, even the grooms tux and the shoes and the extra white shirt, really get down to budget. I mean, almost as soon as the ring goes on the finger they need to discuss what they want to spend on the wedding.
Edward Neary is the founder of Joseph Edwards Films. His passion for filming weddings flows through the films he creates. He has 20+ years experience in the wedding industry and loves helping engaged couples with practical advice on planning their wedding.
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