love letters, wedding vendors, wedding day details, wedding suppliers,

Should I Hire A Wedding Planner?

Being awarded Wedding Planner Of The Year and receiving recognition from Bridebook has been one of Pamella’s highlights since launching her business nearly 10 years ago. One of the questions she frequently gets asked is why do I need a wedding planner, and as we are about to launch our brand spanky new website we thought we’d share our thoughts on why you need a wedding planner.

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Hiring a wedding planner …..

Well the truth is, not everyone does, so we put together this article looking at areas to consider when planning your wedding. Which we hope uncovers some of the mystery surrounding the role of a planner.

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Candles and cake …

Where you begin your personal wedding planning journey really depends on how you visualise your marriage taking shape. Most of us live in an era where we struggle to find extra hours as we rush from one demand on our precious time to another, where often just finding time to even think about what you might like for your significant celebration is tricky.  Consider this short list and step into the magical world of wedding planning confident you are heading in the right direction.

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Wedding Dress Dreams

6 key wedding planner questions Pamella asks:

1 – Have you chosen a date, place and venue?

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Wedding Venue Searching …

2 – Have you a budget you will work to?

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When your venue is a blank canvas

3 – Are you a creative looking to DIY your wedding, with support from family & friends?

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Creative wedding decor lighting

4 – Do you need help with the design and styling?

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Pamella shares her vision for wedding designing

5 – Do you need help with the administration, the coordination and on the day management?

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When it all comes together on the day …

6 – Have you identified key suppliers who you can work with?

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Wedding Vendors sent with love

These considerations will help you highlight where you will want additional support, advice and guidance. The answers will be quite different for every couple, but using the services of experienced professional planners for all or part of the above will allow you those moments to reflect, and take in the whole experience confident in the knowledge you are in safe hands.

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Wedding Planning, Saving You Time And Money ….

Wedding planning with expert advice is the secret, book a complimentary consultation you’ll be pleased you did!

Pamella x

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A Destination Wedding Tour

Portofino to Alassio

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The Italian Riviera

Throughout my career as a luxury wedding planner, it has always been my goal from the very beginning to travel, travel, and travel some more. And with the International Wedding Retreat 2018 being planned as we speak, my wanderlust has been greater than ever before. So you can imagine how happy I was when the exclusive invitation from Love Me In Liguria landed in my inbox one working day. An invitation, that was sending me, along with nine other international luxury wedding planners, to the Italian coast to experience first-hand the romance and breathtakingly beautiful vistas that couples can witness on their own wedding day. I really didn’t need asking twice!

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Incredible views

Fast forward through the exciting stages of packing, planning and pinching myself and I was on my way, ready to meet my travel companions for the next four days. Arriving in Genoa, the first destination on our agenda for the week, the port provided the picture-perfect location to meet everyone for the first time over a welcome lunch at our boutique hotel.

Sitting and soaking up the rays under an ocean of blue skies we were given a very warm welcome by the organisers of this incredible adventure: Francesca and Valentina of Love Me in Italy and the Lunargento Publishing House and wedding and event planner Simona Chiavaccini. Safe to say we were in very good company! And glancing around the table I could tell it was going to be a week full of swapping stories, discussing all-things-weddings and genuinely spending time in some very good company.

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Marco, Pamella & Daria with Portofino in the background

And with that, let me introduce you to my new friends: Simona the PR and Marketing Manager from Zankyou – an online magazine reigning large in 23 countries and the largest wedding portal worldwide. Elisabetta of Intimately Inspired Events, Rui of Rui Mota Pinto Tailor & Planner, Froonck from Froonck of Der Wedding Planner, Olivia of Love Circus, Millie from Matthew Oliver Weddings, Daria of Caramel Events Wedding, Mirjam Wedding Guru, Marco from Ihr Hochzeitsplaner und Trauredner, and Mihai of High Emotion Weddings,

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Rui, Foonck & Marco

The welcome lunch swiftly gave way into a four day blur of guided tours, meeting expert wedding suppliers, dining on Michelin-starred meals and raising champagne to toast the trip. I guess it is just the way things go when 10 international wedding planners meet 55 Ligurian Vendors in the country of love.

We were welcomed into castles and villas, palaces and restaurants and truly educated on the hospitality of this Italian paradise. Love Me In Italy excelled themselves in bringing together the area’s industry finest to firmly place Liguria on the map as a land of weddings and love. Not too much of a stretch for a region that is known and loved all over the world. And what’s not to love? Marinas, blue skies, sunshine and wine – it’s all right here.

However, even with its reputation preceding itself it was a wonderful opportunity to experience the beauty, scenery, culture and history of this enchanting region up close. Mountain view after mountain view, each one a worthy postcard picture, signed sealed and delivered with the promise of the most breathtakingly beautiful wedding one could ever hope for. Along with the fine dining, perfect wine selection, and impeccable customer service that we knew our clients would certainly be treated too as well, this trip was one we will never forget.

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Exclusive Villas

When we weren’t indulging in canapes and aperitifs, we were winding our way through the streets of Portofino and Alassio where we could marvel at the villas and private gardens which hinted at the affluent lifestyle of Liguria’s locals.

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Exquisite Gardens With Breathtaking Views

Our journey took us onto Santa Margherita Ligure and Zoagli – all offering something totally different from the last, boasting their own appeal and sentiments, but all jostling for that special place in our memories that we would fondly recall once back in the UK.

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Italy

I cannot thank Love Me In Liguria enough for their incredible welcome, hospitality and enlightening trip through the Ligurian region of Italy. I can firmly conclude that anyone lucky enough to be loved in Liguria should certainly take the chance. I am already itching to share the details with our international clients who are searching for their dream wedding location. Liguria truly is the land of the loved.

 

Until our next adventure …

Much love Pamella x

wedding business training, flower training, makeup masterclass, on location, shoot experience,

How To Get Into The World Of Weddings With Pamella Dunn

When you’re interviewed by the gorgeous talent that is the Wedding Enthusiast Ellie Kime ……

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Ellie Kime

We know, we know, it’s the last day of August. We get it, we just don’t like it – so instead, we’ve made it indulgent cream and luxe sparkles with a Q&A from the amazing Pamella Dunn.

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International Award Winning Luxury Wedding Planner and Stylist Transforming Venues With Killer Effects And Exquisite Details

Pamella is the Fairy Godmother of weddings, having been planning countless glamorous events over the years, keeping her trademark look locked down whilst constantly predicting upcoming wedding trends, evolving her style and working her magic on the most sublime venues across the country. As well, Pam has always been keeping her doors open to advise, nurture and support upcoming businesses in the industry. Even if you haven’t hired Pamella Dunn Weddings (or if you haven’t been able to – she’s super in demand!), there’s a very high chance that your wedding has been in some way inspired, influenced or affected by Pamella.

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Image credit: Soniya Zeb at Rudding Park

All of this has culminated in a SUPER exciting opportunity, coming this November – a 5-day intensive masterclass run by Pamella Dunn teaching you everything you need to know (and so, so much more) about the wedding industry. EEEEEEEEP! How incredible does that sound?! It’s five days crammed with insider info on how to grow your successful wedding business, with tips on bossing social media, branding, and making effective first impressions, as well as hands-on guidance in positioning, floral design and venue styling. On top of that, there’s an on-location shoot day included, and a make-up masterclass. Every single aspect of the full week course has been handpicked to maximise the potential of your wedding business, and help it unlock goals that never even seemed a possibility before. As well as taking away all of this new-found genius, you’ll also be able to get the answers to any burning questions you may have in a completely safe and supportive environment, AND professional images for your portfolio and business. You will also leave with new friends, an award winning mentor, a clear idea of how to develop your business and lifetime membership to the private members club My Wedding Business Club. Ok, we’re finally done – I mean, come on guys, we’ve only got five days!

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My Wedding Business Intensive Masterclass

To find out more about this insane opportunity, we sat down with the queen that is Pamella Dunn to get behind the name and squeeze some more details about the exclusive event:

You’ve spent so many years as an incredible wedding planner & stylist and are THE name in the industry – how come you’ve also turned to business mentoring?

My background in the corporate world involved business development, recruitment and training of hundreds of small business owners. I coached and mentored them, training in areas they may not have had experience of before, such as social media and marketing, customer service and finance. My role also involved conferencing and events and I was able to draw on this to support businesses in the wedding industry. It’s where my passion lies in helping others be the best they possible can be and raising the bar promoting excellence within the wedding industry. To be able to bring together my skill set and my passion has been a dream come true, and I really feel that I’ve found the role I’ve been searching for throughout my varied career.

What’s more rewarding – planning a wedding or watching brand ambassadors go on and do amazing things?

Well, I really love weddings. They are all so very different, meaning I’m never bored, and meaning each one involves my personal investment. I genuinely could not be happier when I see the months of planning finally come together for the client, and their reaction!. But I also adore the mentoring; the growth of the brand ambassadors is an on going relationship of support that gives me so much joy and makes me immeasurably proud of the brands as they continue to grow and dominate the industry.

Can you tell us a little more about the bits included?

The masterclass brings together really exciting practical training in styling, florals as well as on location for a shoot which will be published and everyone will be credited and delegates will receive the professional images. There will be education workshops covering social media, marketing, and advertising, as well as guest appearances from industry experts. The week will be exciting and full of surprises, culminating in a makeup masterclass and fabulous lunch.

What about the masterclass are you most excited about? 

The makeup masterclass I think. Under the guidance of the highly sought after artist Aimee Akbar, it’s an opportunity for us all to learn techniques we can use ourselves as well as what is involved in wedding day makeup – which is useful for all involved in the industry whether it be for big days, shoots or editorials! Having said that, the flower and design seminar will be world-class too, so I’m torn between the two…ask me tomorrow and it’ll probably change!

What do you think is the single most important thing for those starting out in the industry?

 

Vision.

Definitely a dream vision of the most incredible business and brand they would like to create. It will keep them focused as the business begins to grow and the time to continue planning and developing becomes more and more limited. Competitors and challenges will distract along the way but with a clear vision and end goal you remember why you started and push through in pursuit of that long term dream.

With that in mind, what else is in your vision? What else have you got in the pipeline for stage 2 of world wedding domination?

It’s funny that you should say world domination, actually, because my long held dream and my vision when I began the courses was to take the fabulous masterclasses across the globe. I absolutely love to travel and an adventure that involves meeting and mentoring gorgeous wedding and style conscious friends around the world is planned for 2018. With the first incredible event planned for Sydney we are ridiculously excited and busy behind the scenes planning the schedule for new year and beyond. They know a thing or ten about weddings, the Aussies, and I can’t wait to soak up the wedding feels over there and also spread some of mine!

Who’s this course ideally aimed at?

The course is aimed at style conscious, sassy business owners and interior lovers looking to take it to the next level. Whether that next level is a business launch, to create impact and develop your already successful business, or taking the plunge on a vocational personal investment to realise your life-long dreams, everyone will benefit. Other than that, the only requisites are people who are looking to enjoy a fun and informative week where they will take away new skills, professional images, and a network of supportive like minded friends.

Anita (20)

If you’d like any more details about the Intensive Masterclass, view the event here or get in touch with the lovely Pamella Dunn. We can’t wait to see what magic you make with her!

Thank you to Ellie for taking the time out to interview me, and thank you for this recent comment on your Facebook page.

“One of the best, most door-opening things I’ve ever done was apply to be one of Pamella Dunn Weddings‘s interns. Her tutelage, inspiration, and constant support (and the giggles!) have got me where I am today, and I’m so lucky to have such an incredible lady as a boss, friend, and mentor. Which is why I was SO happy to interview her for the And so to Wed blog, chatting about her uber exciting new venture – the My Wedding Business 5 day Intensive Masterclass for people just like me! Eeeeeeep!”

Luxury Retreat Preview Woodlands Boutique Hotel Leeds

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Our eagerly awaited preview to the International luxury retreats was last Sunday, it was a truly fabulous day and here Charlotte from award winning blog Redamancy shares all the fabulous details ….

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A Champagne Reception – the perfect way to start a sunshiny Sunday

What do the words ‘luxury’ and ‘styling’ have in common? It’s a pretty straightforward answer; Pamella Dunn. Pam, or Pami to friends (which I am so lucky to be able to call her), has been stirring up styling sensations in the wedding industry for the last 7 years. I first met Pamella when I was given the enviable title of intern and brand ambassador, along with 6 other fabulous ladies, back in June 2016 and getting to know her and her business has been an absolute delight. The number one thing I have learnt? If Pam asks you to go on an adventure, you don’t even hesitate. It will be the best ride of your life.

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Tall tropical floral designs made conversation easy across the banquet table

Ever since I first met Pam I knew that one of her dreams was to take off around the world, inspiring little wedding wannabes (and I use that in the nicest sense of the world, as I too was a wedding wannabe) with her sparkling style and creative coaching methods. I love it when people hustle for their dream above and beyond anything else, and so when Pam mentioned to me that she was putting on a Preview of the Luxury Styling Retreat in Leeds before it headed to SYDNEY (!!!) I was practically happy dancing around my kitchen. Actually, I was literally happy dancing around my kitchen. Would I like to assist in planning it? Boy, would I!

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Place setting details were carefully considered

Cue excited emails passed back and forth between myself, Pam, and all-round wunderkind Ellie Kime, a brainstorming session, a very delightful meeting in Filmore and Union (still dreaming about that Pistachio Rose Latte) and lots of instagram promotion. Sunday 14th of May had certainly seemed like a long way off when we were planning it but as with all majorly exciting things it soon came around quickly!

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Sponsors were featured on arrival surrounded by this showstopping organic balloon arch

The night before the event I couldn’t sleep. I know this sounds like a terribly clichéd thing to say but it’s true. Not even the thought of setting my alarm for 5:45am could dampen my spirits (I’m more of a 8:45 girl myself). The next morning at 6:37 – I’m always 7 minutes behind schedule, potential future clients look away now – I was in my car, downing coffee in world-record time, and hot-footing it along the motorway.

YSL, Yves saint Laurent, Leeds YSL, Harvey Nichols Leeds,
The gorgeous YSL consultants Steph and steph from Harvey Nichols leeds

I arrived at the beautiful Woodlands Hotel to find Pam doing what Pam does best – styling up a storm. It was a golden botanical haven, and the marquee styled to the nines really felt like a place where plans would be made and goals would be set. Exactly the type of place you want to be if you’ve got a hunger and passion for all things wedding biz. I immediately set to work helping recreate Pam’s vision, and as more of the LSRT (Luxury Styling Retreat Team) arrived it began to sink in that this was really happening.

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Chloe and Javie catching up at the drinks reception

This event was all about style, so I’m going to have to go into lots of adoring detail and descriptions and you’re just going to have to bear with me! Gold sequin tablecloths bathed the banqueting table running down one length of the room, lined with chivari chairs standing proudly dressed in their sashes. Golden glass charger plates, luxe golden cutlery and gold-rimmed goblets from Whitehouse crockery delivered opulence at its very best. Leafy green tropical table centrepieces stood high on golden plinths and candles filled every available gap. Palms reinforced the botanical look and balloons from Swoon Balloons provided some luxury fun. Pam’s favourite detail from the event was the stunning name plaque hoops she’d had designed to sit above each keynote speaker’s chair and I have to say it was an inspired idea which really added something a little bit special. Sofas created a chill-out area (3 course fine-dining experiences can be tiring, you know) and the table lined with gift bags just made me want to squeal.

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Tropical gold tablescape styling

By 10:00am setup was pretty much complete, which gave us half an hour before the guests were due to arrive. It was just enough time to revel in what Pam had created and take in the incredible atmosphere, which stayed with everyone for the rest of the day. During this time I met Kylie, the CEO of the Wedding Academy – with whom I completed my Advanced Diploma in Planning and Design – and Brand Manager for the Academy, Martha. After chatting with them for just 10 minutes I already felt totally inspired, so how the heck was I going to feel after the inspirational speeches?!

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Kylie with wedding academy students past and present

There was no time to dwell on that though as I shot off to the conservatory to be on hand to greet guests when they arrived. Champagne, anyone? This little welcome soiree was made even better by Liz Keeting doing her thing, performing some of the top wedding songs to ever exist. L is for the way you look at me… O is for… “Omg that balloon arch looks incredible!” I said in my inside voice, because I did not want to drown out Liz’s beautiful voice for a single second. Claire from Swoon Balloons had created an amazing display of white and gold balloons that really set the tone for the day as soon as guests arrived. My favourite detail? The printed banner displaying all of the suppliers involved in the event, from the lovely Zoe at The Golden Letter who designed the most stunning stationery suite ever, to YSL who sponsored the gift bags. Yes, you read that correctly – Yves. Saint. Laurent. There were also these super gorge quotation cards on the welcome table, inscribed with motivational sayings to get everyone in the mood. “Work until you no longer have to introduce yourself” is my favourite quote of all time and I’m very happy to say it made the cut.

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The amazing voice of Liz Keeting

After guests had enjoyed a little bit of bubbly in the sunshine, we all headed inside to commence the day. Liz, who was also acting as super-glam MC, had a special announcement for our guests. Hidden under 5 chairs were golden tickets that awarded the lucky recipient a free consultation with the lovely ladies from YSL in Harvey Nichols in Leeds, as well as a £50 voucher for a beauty makeover. What a prize, is what I thought when Pam told me, which was definitely echoed by the girls in the audience who threw themselves on the floor to check under chairs!

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Helen Davies Curator at Sarah Beeny’s Rise Hall

Bums firmly back on seats, it was time for the speakers. First up, Helen Davies of Rise Hall. It sounds like an incredibly fancy title, and this lady deserves every single bit of it. ‘H’ is for Helen, but it’s also for Hustle and she has this in abundance. Helen started her own wedding planning company, The Wedding Concierge, 5 years ago. Within 12 months, Helen had been approached by Sarah Beeny (yes, the very one) who asked her to take over the wedding side of things at Rise Hall, which up until this point had been pretty poor, and turn it into a wedding venue of dreams. Helen was unsure at first, as anyone would be, but six days later she moved into Rise Hall with just a computer and a suitcase. What she has accomplished is quite frankly astonishing, or it would be if it wasn’t the result of sheer graft and determination. Because that’s the real reason Rise Hall is now a top wedding venue and hotel, hosting around 40 weddings a year – Helen quite simply worked her arse off. Her talk provided inspiration in bucket-loads and you could tell there was a buzz amongst the guests once she’d finished.

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Keynote speakers Helen Davies and Anita Massarella

Next up, couture dress designer Anita Massarella. Now, let me tell you, this woman has a wicked sense of humour! – she had us all in absolute stitches! She’s a fantastic speaker and storyteller, and you want her to keep reeling off amazing anecdotes all day! She happened to mention that she had designed a wardrobe for Margaret Thatcher and I swear every single jaw in the audience dropped. Imagine being able to say that?! Anita also brought along some of her stunning dresses, and it’s not hard for one second to see why people pay the prices they do for Anita’s designs. To put it simply – they are bloody gorgeous! Anita is one of the most focussed and driven people you could hope to meet, and I’m very glad I got the chance.

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Haute Couture designer Anita Massarella

Kylie Carlson, Director and Founder of The Wedding Academy rounded up the inspirational talks. I was really intrigued to hear Kylie speak because I’d already heard what a charismatic and engaging speaker she is, and she did not disappoint. I even lent over to Pam during Kylie’s talk to comment on what a ‘ball-buster’ she is, because when Kylie sets her mind to something – she achieves it. She doesn’t let anything stand in her way, and if there is an obstacle of some sort then she quickly susses out the most efficient way around it and achieves her goal. Which is why it’s not hard to see why The Wedding Academy has received the international acclaim it has. With Kylie at the helm how could it have achieved anything less?

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Academy CEO Kylie Carlson with academy students past and present

That rounded up the morning’s events, and as the guests seated themselves at the table for lunch, the suppliers quickly headed off to the bar for a well-deserved glass of vino and a bit of a chin-wag. You just can’t beat it on a summer’s day! I did ask the guests how they enjoyed their food though, and I was met with lots of faces that resembled the heart-eyed emoji. However, with this being an industry event, it’s safe to say that this bunch of lovelies enjoyed the networking opportunity just as much as the food!

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Woman in business doing what they do best – networking with a glass of champagne in hand

The afternoon kicked back off with a floral styling demonstration, from florist support on the event – Jade from Flowers By Jade. I think the guests were a bit disbelieving when it was explained to them that Jade was going to demonstrate how they could recreate a very similar centrepiece to those on display, at home, however her easy way of explaining things made us all realise that it’s actually possible. That’s the great thing about Jade; she’s down-to-earth, she’s bubbly and she’s very approachable. I find flowers quite daunting, because there are so many different types and I can never remember their names let alone their appropriate seasons. But Jade put us all at ease with her demonstration, and then it was time for everyone to try out these tips and tricks by styling their own greenery display in a gorgeous white vase. Bonus – they got to take it home too. And there were some absolutely fabulous creations!

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Tall centrepiece tropical florals

Once everyone had arranged their own floral display, and after a very inspirational note to end on from the woman herself – Pam, it was time for mojitos and a dessert table selection to wind down the afternoon. One way to move 24 women into another room fast is to mention ‘cocktails and cake’, just FYI. It was so lovely to see everyone chatting to the people who they’d met during the day, swapping Instagram handles and friending each other on Facebook, especially as many of them had turned up alone without knowing anyone else.

wedding indi=ustry professionals, wedding industry business woman,
Fabulous wedding industry professionals, L-R Ella, Katie, Louise and Laura.

I couldn’t believe how fast the day had flown by when everyone started coming to say thank you and goodbye, laden with the luxury goody bags stuffed full of treats. I met some truly wonderful people who I know I will stay in touch with, and it was definitely a sentiment that I could see a lot of people shared. There was such a positive tingle in the air come 4:00pm that day. It’s like when you’re little and you go to a children’s party – you’ve had the best time playing with all of your friends and you’re so chock-full of sugar that you genuinely feel that life is better than it ever has been, and you can’t wait for tomorrow. That’s the feeling that the Luxury Stylist Retreat gave me. And with a conclusion like that, you can’t possibly tell me that you don’t want to come to Sydney and do it with us all over again? I’ll see you down under. G’day Mate.

A fabulous day and a wonderful article, thank you Charlotte. I’ll finish with the highlights from the day by hugely talented photographer Soniya Zeb, including the super stylish gold foil stationery suite from The Golden Letter, gold chargers, tableware and glassware from luxury event hire company Whitehouse Crockery, all styled to perfection by Rebecca from Pop Up Weddings and Charlotte of course from Redamancy. 

Soon to follow, a fabulous film from Ash at To Have And To Hold Films

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A very warm welcome for all the guests at the champagne drinks reception
friends, networking, garden party, outdoor celebrations, woodlands boutique hotel,
Sunday sunshine networking
tableware, gold glasses, gold stationery, navy and gold foil stationery,
Luxe tableware place setting, with luxury gold foil stationery and gold glass chargers
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Candle lit details on the mirrored gold tablescape
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Bride to be and her gorgeous Mum
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Luxury Retreat guests L-R Chloe, Javie and Dee
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Exquisite gowns from Anita Massarella
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There was a wonderful buzz in the room as speakers shared inspirational stories
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Lucky winners of the 5 golden tickets
style challenge, flower class, flower arranging demonstration,
Mini bouquets and vases for the afternoons guest Style Challenge
chair sash, banquet tablescape, tall centrepieces,
Banquet tablescape and chiffon drop chair sashes
rose gold, balloons, swoon balloons,
Hello Love rose gold balloons decorate the marquee wall
rose gold balloons, script balloons,
hello – love balloons from Swoon Balloons

 

chair details, wedding chairs, chiavari chairs, hire chair sashes, luxury wedding chair detail
Luxury chiffon drop and diamante tie chair detail
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Thank you gifts for the wonderful support team
Pamella dunn, luxury wedding planner, luxury wedding stylist,
Pamella Dunn finishing the final styling
business trainer, wedding business mentor, luxury wedding planner,
Pamella Dunn Luxury Wedding Planner, wedding business trainer and mentor

 

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All props available to hire from My Wedding Hire email pam@pamelladunn.co.uk or call 07900 216132