Tuesday, September 25, 2012

These days when it comes to creating a wedding registry, anything goes!  But if you're looking for a little guidance on what types of items to add to your list, we've got you covered. 
1. Small kitchen appliances
Whether you don't already own a mixer or you could really use a new toaster oven, or even if you just want to streamline your kitchen with matching appliances, kitchen gadgets are always a smart go-to for any wedding registry.
2. Casual dinnerware
Sure you can register for fine china, but why not outfit your dining table with a stylish set of casual dinnerware as well?  After all, these are the pieces you'll be using the most often.  Make sure to register for enough place settings that you won't worry about breaking pieces... and they will break! 

3. Items related to hobbies you do as a couple
Are you and your beloved the outdoorsy types?  Wine lovers?  Video game enthusiasts?  Add a personal touch to your registry and select items that will encourage your mutual interests.  These are good for your marriage, after all!

4. Yard items
There are so many indoor home items to consider registering for that it's easy to overlook the outdoor items, but don't forget to cozy up your yard, patio, or entry as well.  Consider adding a gas or charcoal BBQ (and accompanying accessories), garden decor, or even pots and planters to your registry.
5. Fun stuff!
There's no reason your gift registry has to contain only practical items.  Add things you and your spouse will enjoy daily, or at least weekly, such as:  Cameras, video games, electronics, wine glasses, board games, sports equipment... the sky's the limit!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Great Ventura County Rehearsal Dinner Locations

We love so many restaurants in Ventura County that it was hard to choose just a few to recommend for rehearsal dinner spots. If you are looking for casual, elegant, large or intimate, we have great place to host a dinner. We also know many caterers that would be happy to help with a backyard soirĂ©e. And of course if you need additional choices just let us know. We are happy to help. 


The Alamo Bar & Grill 
They serve great Mexican food. Laid back atmosphere and they are an excellent caterer as well. 


They serve modern American regional fare infused with flavors from all over the world. They have private rooms, an outdoor patio, and cabanas available. 

The French Bulldog
This is a wonderful Gastro-Tavern serving American French food. They have a great private room that seats up to 25


Authentic Italian dishes which can be served on a beautiful rustic patio or inside this charming restaurant. They can also cater a rehearsal dinner for you. 

The Ranch House
This is an amazing restaurant known world wide for original award winning cuisine. Dine in a garden setting next to streams and lush foliage.

Suzanne's Cuisine
They feature French and Italian inspired food. Suzanne's is great for group parties. They can 
handle as few as 12 all the way up to 120 people.

Inside the Embassy Suites Mandalay Beach, Capistrano's features pasta, seafood, and steak. The decor include Spanish-Mediterranean decor, an arcaded courtyard, waterfalls and koi streams, lush palms and flowers.

Santa Barbara

Incredible view of the harbor and Santa Barbara Mountains. Fresh seafood.

The Wine Cask
This restaurant offers great foods featuring the freshest ingredients. They also have one of the best and most extensive wine lists in town. 

Santa Ynez
Ballard Inn
This is one of the most romantic dining destinations in the Santa Ynez Valley. They feature an extensive wine list, with award winning French Asian cuisine that melds the flavors and techniques of eastern and western cuisines.

Thousand Oaks
A great neighborhood restaurant serving delicious French cuisine. 

Sophisticated classic steak house.


Italian restaurant with a great outdoor patio and large selection of martinis. Cafe Fiore is an understated elegant spot for traditional rustic Italian cooking with a southern flare.

This is a casual family friendly restaurant servings high quality steak and seafood. On the beach in downtown Ventura, they also offer an extensive selection of wine. 

Bellini Osteria Bar & Lounge
Bellini Osteria Bar & Lounge is a modern restaurant which serves hand crafted Italian food with great wines. They cater to a young hip crowd. 

Farfalla serves Italian and features a mozzarella bar. This great restaurant gives you the option of intimate seating either at their sheltered and heated patio or inside the main dining area. 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Questions to Ask Every Event Planner
There are some important questions to ask yourself and any planner you are considering working with.

The first thing to decide is do you need an event planner?

The guidelines are:

If you don't have 12 hours a week (more as the wedding approaches) to
work on planning your wedding,
You want to invite more than 100 guests,
You don't have a full service venue, OR
You're planning a destination wedding,

Then you need the help of an event planner!

So, on to the 7 essential questions to ask any planner you are
considering working with.

1. What services do you offer?
We offer a range of services, from set up and breakdown, to day-of
coordination, and full event production.

2. What services are included in Full Service Coordination vs. Day-of Coordination?
Whereas Day-of Coordination only involves ensuring your event itself runs smoothly from start to finish and acting as a liaison and go-to person for you, your vendors, and your guests; Full Service Coordination involves a more active role in the event planning.  We can make vendor and venue recommendations, negotiate contracts, and provide creative input.

3. Are you able to work within my budget?
With our range of vendors and a la carte services we can fit into any budget.

4. How do you charge?
This depends on what you need.  For Day-of Coordination we charge by event hour.  For example, for a 6 hour wedding, you'll be charged those 6 hours, and all communications and meetings prior to the event are included (up to 3 in-person meetings including the rehearsal).  We also charge by the hour for setup and breakdown services.  For Full Service Coordination, we generally charge a percentage of your total event budget, based on your needs.

5. Do you have a list of preferred vendors?
We have several vendors in each category that we work with.

6. Will you work with any vendor I choose?
We are always happy to work with any vendor you choose.

7. How long have you been in business? 
I've worked in the event industry here for over 15 years. For the past five years I've focused on event planning and coordinating, and it's become not only my job but my passion! 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Outdoor Rustic Elegance

I can't tell you what an amazing experience it was to coordinate this wedding at a local ranch house venue this past weekend.  The couple chose a very elegant yet rustic theme, using an understated color scheme of gray and muted gold with accents of lavender.  During the reception, the focus of the decor was on the shimmering tablecloths under the low candlelight and twilight, making for a very romantic evening!

In a garden setting like this, let the environment guide you!  There's no need for large centerpieces or excess table decorations when you're surrounded by natural beauty.

Weddings don't have to cost an arm and a leg.  These elegant table settings make a statement, and the plates and flatware are entirely disposable.  (Or you can wash the plates and save them to entertain with in the future!)

Have the best of both worlds!  Save money by getting cupcakes instead of paying a caterer to cut your cake, and order a small cake top to save for your first anniversary.

I (and the bride) was enamored with this adorable lemonade stand made of wine barrels, a vintage door, and a burlap table runner.

After sunset, this venue glowed in candlelight and hanging paper lanterns!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Mad Hatter Tea

 My women's group held a Mad Hatter tea party in June that was an absolute blast to put together!  I really got to flex my creative muscles and go a little, well mad, on this one.

A simple easy-up kept guests out of the sun and gave us more dimension to decorate with in a sparse yard.

No need to be shy with table decor!  As long as guests can easily eat, drink and converse, this theme makes it acceptable to go a little overboard.

The easy-up was the perfect canvas to create a crazy ceiling and fun focal points.

The cupcakes turned out darling!

Champagne splits were placed at each table setting.

The obligatory Mome Raths kept watch from a distance.

St. Patrick's Day

For St. Patrick's Day I created some fabulous decor for Brendan's Irish Pub in Camarillo and Agoura.  The owner gave me full artistic license and I had a lot of fun coming up with these festive and eye catching decorations.  They came out pretty fantastic for a very budget-friendly price!

How cute are these bases I made for the bouquets??  I particularly love the little top hats!

Bouquets assembled and ready to be delivered!

Each Brendan's location was festooned with a single-strand arch in the entryway.

A couple of the bouquets on display.

Getting Started

For Valentine's Day 2012 we delivered about a dozen beautiful balloon bouquets all over Ventura county, plus I got a sweet gig decorating the Greek at the Harbor for the holiday!  There's nothing like good ol' word of mouth to spread the word about your business, and I have my good friend Jamie to thank for helping me get the job.

Here are a few photos of the work we did on day 1:

Our first Valentine's Day bouquet!

Yours truly, surrounded by my V-Day creations.

Decor at the Greek - Sweet and simple.