Future of Weddings – an Inspirational Journey with David Tutera Experience
Being a Ph.D. in chemistry, I do love learning! As a professional wedding planner, I am always inspired by creative people in the events industry who share their experiences and thoughts.
During 2020, when the whole world went on lockdown, the education aspect was more intensive than ever:
We had to compensate for an empty wedding season.
We needed each other's support.
We wanted to find new ways to celebrate because we knew that people crave positive emotions.
Human beings always celebrated important moments in their lives, and our mission is to help them.
Last year, alongside other industry experts, while confined to our homes, we learned about new tips and tricks: live streaming of ceremonies, extra flexibility and ability to plan quickly, micro wedding format popularity, and new safety requirements. Obviously, all these learnings were taking place on Zoom, and we all grew tired of the extended screen times. I missed dearly not only my wedding season but the possibility of meeting with my colleagues in person.
The event started with the Covid-19 rapid testing, which confirmed that one could attend and a welcome cheer by Linda Mitchell, a "Team-Tutera" and our travel guru. Of course, masks were worn all the time during presentations. set the festive mood.
The ballroom of the resort was welcoming and inviting. The presented topics were top-notch, informative, and inspirational.
How to succeed in challenging times? What are the hottest trends for social media? How to find your style and believe in yourself? How to offer your clients new levels of service?
We've heard about other people's journey and learned how challenging it was and how these fantastic personalities followed their calling, reaching for perfection.
I was inspired by David’s keynote speech, which almost brought tears to my eyes. His husband, Joey Toth shared how to become the person that you believe you are. My friend, a brilliant photographer and a true fashion star, Victoria Angela, gave an amazing presentation on how to cultivate the ultimate experience with your clients and industry colleagues. Prior to her talk, the attendees received little goody bags from her company, where I discovered a pair of cute pink earrings, which looked amazing with my clothes!
As I am constantly looking out for new ideas for my clients, I particularly loved an appealing feature offered by Merri: creating a 3D visual experience for your clients when designing their wedding. As many of my couples do destination weddings in Italy, it is a handy tool that allows them to visualize spaces without traveling.
Besides lectures, we had a hands-on experience, learning how to make floral arrangements guided by the talented Darin Bahl, the Tailored Twig floral design company owner. To address people's craving for creativity, Tailored Twig now offers a design class that provides doorstep delivery of an all-inclusive design kit and an interactive workshop in the comfort of your own home. I completed my floral composition and loved the experience!
During breakfast and lunch, we were able to mingle with old friends and meet new ones.
And, of course, each evening was full of surprises, florals, music, and culinary delights! From charming casual welcome party "Bursting Our Bubble" on the lawn to the Grand Ballroom's chic "Modern Madness" party with lush floral compositions and an impressive The Hit Factory Band, the anticipation grew. The culminating point was the Gala Night, "You Are a Star," at the much thought-after Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts in Orlando. The theater stage was our dinner setting, where Shoshana Bean was performing for us. The Raining Roses Productions created an incredible floral display, complemented by exquisite rentals and stationery. The complete list of the conference vendors is in the credits section.
What are the key learnings, which could prove practical for my couples?
Here are just a few!
1. Weddings are showing strong signs of recovery and will do strong in the second part of 2021 and further. The demand is overwhelming.
2. New safety requirements are being tested and implemented and will stay for a while. They are becoming the new socially acceptable norm, and following them is getting easier and better.
3. There is more flexibility to the planning process than ever before as the industry's professionals and couples quickly adapt to the pace of changing situations.
4. Couples embrace live streaming as part of their celebration to include those who cannot participate in person, and live streaming options become more versatile and affordable.
5. Couples favor quality over quantity. A limited number of guests allows them to splurge on florals, food, wedding dresses, and luxury extras, including better drinks, video and photo services, and honeymoons.
6. Couples realize that more than ever, they need a reliable planner by their side to offer professional support, advice, and care, helping them navigate the tricky covid- and post-covid environment.
7. Being compassionate and loving your clients is an incredible extra you can give your clients, in addition to being passionate about your job.
I returned home refreshed, happy, and full of overwhelming energy. It was exactly what I needed at the beginning of my wedding season! It started with an exquisite styled shoot in Miami at Villa Vizcaya, one of the most beautiful venues in the area. Stay tuned, we will post about it soon, but here is the short teaser: https://vimeo.com/537896050