Parties: Marsha + Adetunji’s Jamaican and Nigerian Wedding

Last year (yes I said last year…don’t you DARE judge me) I watched a fabulous couple exchange I Do’s at NYC’s Landmark on the Park. A beautiful venue with superb architecture and a very helpful staff. Marsha (a Jamaican Bride) and Adetunji  (A Nigerian Groom – and I didn’t even have to look up the spelling of his name) wanted a fun, culturally rich event where guests can eat well, drink well and party WELL. With clothing changes and lots of culture in the room I think we were able to accomplish exactly what they were looking for.

Look at some of my favorite shots captured by Rick Messina Photography… LOVE THEM):



My favorite part of the wedding was definitely the culture. I love when couples embrace what is true and unique about their individual and couple selves. I learned a bit of Nigerian lingo as well as had fun infusing Jamaican patois in some of the signage for the reception.

As far as JunePlumm couples go, these two are my kinda peeps and I was so happy to be a partner in creating such a splendid night.

Shout out to these Fab vendors that helped to make it all worth it!

Event Planner: JunePlumm Events
Cinematography: Majestic Creative Films
DJ: Wale (groomsman) & Assistant
Cake: Fancy n Sweet
Florist: Marina Florist
Officiant: Pam Randaleman
Make-up: Vee Diddy

Planning: Love Your Wedding Like Yuh Playing Mas

There is no shame in my game, I LOVE Weddings and I LOVE Carnival (not the circus…picture Rio De Janeiro). Therefore one of my favorite things to do as a Wedding Planner is to merge my two loves together. If you have every experienced a Carnival in [Insert any Caribbean Island HERE] then you know it’s a feeling like no other. The euphoria, the joy, the “nothing else can top this feeling”, the “cast your troubles away feeling”, the “everyone is so happy and awesome” feeling, then you know why I want my clients to LOVE their wedding like they are playing mas (as in masquerading). Wouldn’t you like to experience your wedding and feel like “nothing else can top this”…I would and my client should as well. So while some clients will express to me that carnival is their favorite time of the year I try to show them well let’s bring the essence of carnival into your big day.

So if this Tribe Azalea carnival costume was the my clients inspiration, their wedding would look like:

Inspiration for your wedding can and should come from ANYWHERE. So why not use what you love especially if it is what joins you and your love together and celebrate.  Embrace the culture, embrace the color, enjoy the music, feel the vibes, relive the excitement that carnival, or whatever it is brings you and Love your wedding like yuh playing mas!
Photo: courtesy of Etsy

Planning: 6 Reasons You May Not Be A DIY Bride

I envy those people that get excited at the thought of picking up a tool or thingy or thingamajig or whodat or whatdowehavehere in the attempt to recreate an item that they have seen on Pinterest but refuse to buy because they can do it better. KU-DOS!!! I am NOT-THE-ONE. THERE…I said it…whew, what a load off ! There is a time and place for everything and while I commend those that have the patience and energy for it…JunePlumm Events does not for a number of reasons:

1) I just don’t want to

2) DIY isn’t always the easiest route. If you are like me, no patience for the perfectionism that it takes to create or recreate that totally awesome Pinterest thingy that you MUST have. Then it will drive you insane if it doesn’t come out EXACTLY as you have seen online. CAUTION…BEWARE…DO NOT PASS GO!

3) DIY isn’t always the cheapest option. Items purchased in bulk are typically more affordable than those purchased one here and one there. So unless this is something the is being created or recreated on a consistent basis the cost per product will be more. Not to mention if you do not have a wholesale ID affording you the option to get these items at a cost savings then…$$$$$$$

4) DIY takes patience and time. Nobody move..no one talk to me… no one even think about breathing as I attempt to stripe this vase. Yeah… doesn’t sound fun to me either. I just grew another grey hair remembering that time that I tried to… you know what, I wont go there. Let’s move on

5) I just don’t want to

6) See #’s 1 and 5

AGAIN: Let me be clear, I APPLAUD those that are DIY’ers but it is completely okay if you are not the one. So brides, understand that while planners may have a love for most things wedding, it does not mean that everyone of us want to recreate it ourselves. There are vendors out there that have built up the skill (and patience) to handle these items in bulk and for a fraction of the cost that it would cost your planner to do it themselves. So yeah… it’s not a fun project for everyone.
DISCLAIMER: While I am not into DIY I will spray paint the heck out of anything. Oh yeah, and I’m mean with it too.
Photo: Courtesy of Pinterest

Planning: You are bound to piss off someone

Twice this weekend I found myself telling two seperate brides the exact same thing, “You are bound to piss off someone while planning your wedding”. It isn’t becuase you are a mean (insert word the rhymes with itch HERE). It’s becuase friends, family and people have a set of expections from your wedding that is most likely different from yours.

  • You can’t invite EVERYONE
  • You can’t buy EVERYTHING
  • You probably won’t buy the dress someone wanted you to wear
  • You are not going to serve the food that everybody wanted to eat that day
  • Someone will want you to play hip hop when all you want to hear is RnB during the last half hour of the wedding

…and guess what, it’s okay. Whose wedding is this anyway? Im sorry I thought it was yours. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying to completely ignore your guests and don’t consider them at all. Afterall, you are creating an experience for them as well. What I AM saying is, utimately you have to make the best decision that you know how to make and please don’t loose sleep over the fact that 1 guest/person will be pissed off becuase you did something that they may not approve of. *oops my bad*…and now we continue.

So while you are there on a tight budget mulling over if you should invite kids, friends of friends, colleagues that you don’t speak to but they are in the same office even though you can’t stand them… just say to yourself ” what would Jesus do”. WAIT, no don’t say that to yourself… look in your purse and say hmmmmmmmm now how far am I willing to make this dollar stretch?

Happy Planning

Parties: La Wedding Nouba

Every year I spend about 7-10 days with my girlfriends in Trinidad for Carnival. I love everything that is Trinidad Carnival. The music, the vibes, the costumes, the euphoric feeling of having not a care in the world. For only but a moment there is nothing to put a frown on your face because you are too busy having the time of your life with the best people in the world…FRIENDS.

This year I played Mas (masquerade) with YUMA (Young Upwardly Mobile Adults). The theme this year was Cirque and I had the pleasure of wearing the La Nouba costume. After every carnival I like to take my costumes and merge it with my other love…Weddings.

Aaaaaaaaaand…VOILA’! Here is my interpretation of La Nouba…wedding style.

This costume merged my love of bright colors and black and white stripes so it really was a no brainer on which costume I would choose for the 2014 season. This has easily been one of my top 3 costumes, and there are many so this deserves honorable mention. I can’t wait to see what bands bring for 2015. The excitement has set in already!

So what do you think, could you have a La Nouba Wedding? I TOTALLY would!

Credits:

Parties: The Destination Wedding of Natasha and Brendon

There is no better way to spend Sunday’s than perusing beautiful wedding eye candy. So today I want to share with you a VERY special wedding taken place in Tobago. The absolutely stunningly beautiful sister island to Trinidad and a MUST visit for you lovers and aficionado’s of beautiful beaches. This NY/NJ couple topped off the annual Trinidad and Tobago carnival festivities by saying I DO in front of friends and family members in Tobago. I’d say they had the time of their lives…

Tobago is a MUST visit

Isn’t she Stunning

*High Five* for a fantastic job planning your Destination Wedding Natasha. I wish you both many more days and nights of happiness.

For more pics from this beautiful Tobago wedding, check the Photographer’s Facebook Fan Page Here

Planning: The Hard Part

So you think you have it figured out.

You hired…

  • The DJ
  • The Florist
  • The Photographer
  • The Cinematographer
  • The Stationer
  • The Make up Artist
  • The Pastor
  • The Hairstylist
  • The Venue
  • The Limo company
  • Etc.
And so the hard part is over right? Well:

What is your DJ going to play, when will they start, do they have insurance, do they MC, how many bars of your first dance song will they play, which song is a do not play, when should they play slow jams, when should they drop it like it’s hot, where do they set up, what equipment do and don’t they need, etc.
What kind of flowers do you want, do you want high & lows or all highs and or all lows, do you want peonies, roses and lilies or all of them or some of them, what color white, off white or cream, do you want flowers for the ceremony, do you want flowers by the head table, do you want a hanging bouquet or a round bouquet or a bouquet purse, will you need a bouquet to toss, what kind of vases do you want lacquer or round or reflective or hurricane or square or rectangle or oblong, or etc…
When does your photographer arrive, how many shooters will you want or need or have, who will go where and when, what photography style do you want, to reveal or not to reveal, when do you take your portraits, where do you take your portraits, what are the must have family pics, what are the must have detail pics, etc.
What typography do you want, how many invites do you need, what color envelop, what type of paper, what weight in paper do you prefer, what kind of design, calligraphy or not, table numbers or table names, with return or E-RSVP, save the date or not, etc…
I think you see where I am going with this. 
In the past 6 days I have had 3 inquiries into JunePlumm Events Partial Planning Service in which the bride said “We have the hard part done since we have all of our vendors”. I quickly ran down the list, similar to what I have stated above and it was a light bulb moment or an OH Sugar-Honey-Ice-Tea moment. I had to remind them that compared to everything that needs to be done, finding the vendors was the easy part. The hard stuff is all the itty bitty gritty details that have to be asked and answered for each “Hard Part Vendor” that was booked.  That’s where the real hair pulling comes in. It’s like this, you move out of your parents house for the first time. You know you need a bed, a sofa and a dining room table. BUT did you remember that you need, sheets, pillows, pillow cases, pots, pans, spoons, forks, knives, dish rags, toaster, broom, garbage bags, garbage pans, sanitizer, 409, Lysol, Fabreeze, grater, lotion, strainer, spoon rest, dish washing liquid, sponge, potato peeler, bathroom mats, glass cleaner, band aids, gas, cable, wifi, light, and the list goes on and on and on. Those are the little things that you forget you need until the moment you need them and then OH Sugar-Honey-Ice-Tea again…I don’t have it. Off to the corner store you go. 
This is why you need a planner. We put it together, we pull it together and we keep it together.    
The REAL hard part!

Parties: Munatour NYC

On Friday December 20, 2013 I had the pleasure of attending the Munaluchi City to City tour – NYC. It was an opportunity for Coterie Members (their esteemed vendors list including yours truly) to meet, mix and mingle with each other as well as prospective couples. I had a GREAT time! See for yourself:

Florals by Makini Regal Designs

*Florals by Makini Regal Designs*

*LBV Designs*

*Florals by Makini Regal Designs*

*Sweet Bitch Wines*

*Cake by BCake NY / Stand by LBV Designs*

*That’s me dressed like a cute Santa’s helper*

I can’t wait for the next Munaluchi Event.

Planning: It’s a Destination Mon!

Recently, one of my girlfriends said “St. Lucia is the #1 country for Destination Weddings”. STOP THE PRESS…WHAAAAT!!!!! (remember she’s a Lucian talking to a Jamaican so of course I disagree…biased yes I know). I asked her where she saw that little tidbit. She told me everywhere.  I visited St. Lucia for the first time this year and LOVED IT! So much so I tried to “convince” a 2014 destination couple to get married there, but I lost that battle. But #1 island for destination weddings? Hmmmmm, this I have to investigate.

So I spent a few hours on Sunday…like a lot of few hours…perusing the Internet looking for this magical “everyone” person that my friend was talking about. And what I found did not shock me one bit. Every site I checked, every expert that spoke, every frequent traveler that had something to say had a different answer.  Which leaves me to believe, the #1 country for a Destination weddings is…(drum roll please)

Wherever You Damn Well Choose To Get Married!!!! 

What works for you will NOT work for everyone else. What appeals to him, may NEVER appeal to her. So worry less about the #1, #2 or #3 choice and choose what best suits your needs. I am not saying don’t entertain the “experts”. But take from it what you will. Make your decisions based on what you and your fiancée want most out of the occasion and location.

BUT! just in case you wanted my “EXPERT” advice… go ahead I dare you to roll your eyes at expert, here are some of my faves:

Tobago:
I am a frequent traveler to Trinidad (every year for the past 7 years for Carnival) but 2013 was the first time visiting Trinidad’s sister island, Tobago. I FELL IN LOVE… ahhhhhhhh. The beauty of the island, the warmth of the people and the SEA.  Perfect place for a beach front wedding.

Check out Magdalena Grande and Coco Reef. Yeah…pretty right!

(Magdalena Grande)

Barbados:
This small but beautiful island captured my heart 4 years ago and it hasn’t let go since. Small in size but LARGE in beauty. The sea here is STELLAR STELLAR STELLAR! In comparison to some of the islands I’ve visited I find Barbados to be more modern than most without losing it’s island vibes and cultural appeal. I just love this place.

Check out the Crane Hotel if you want to explore more. Trust me you will love it. – and ask Tony to double spike your freshly picked jelly coconut.

(The Crane)

Anguilla:
I have never been to Anguilla (YET) but recently while researching destinations I fell in love with the possibilities of potentially getting lost on this island. Something about this island appeals to me.

Take a look at The Viceroy which has quickly been added to my bucket list.

(The Viceroy)

*notice which island I haven’t mentioned…YET…we are getting there though. just one second*

St. Lucia:
As I mentioned before I visited for the first time this year and was extremely pleased. I love a hilly island with beautiful scenery and lush land. And St. Lucia fits the bill.  A beautiful island get-away. This location will be specifically exciting for your guests as there are sooooo many things to do in St. Lucia. So if you choose this option make sure your guests stay for an extra couple of days ( or 3).

Check out Sandals Grande and Jade Mountains yeah…thank me later:)

(Jade Mountain)
DRUM ROLL PLEASE…

Jamaica (oh island in the sun):
My home, my land, the country of my birth. I LOVE MY COUNTRY and you will too. The Land, The Sea, The Air. The People, The Places & The Things. Also another great destination for you to turn your wedding DAY into a wedding weekend extravaganza. The lush landscape and the calming sea make this a toss up for me. Is it it best for an ocean side wedding, or something secluded up in the hills. Either choice is the right choice. You can’t go wrong. Fill up on fruits and seafood, eat jerk EVERYTHING, and enjoy the sweet sounds of reggae music. Have I rambled enough?

Because I am so close to this island I have so many choices for venue options but to throw just a few out at you try The Rockhouse Hotel Strawberry Hill , Trident Port Antonio, and Geejam Hotel. Thank me later (with some juneplums)

(Geejam Hotel)

Some great options for you to start your search so renew your passport, pack your sun screen and put the phone on silent. There is FUN waiting for you.