Trendy Wedding – Marble

Trendy Wedding – Marble Everything!

I’m starting off this first edition of Trendy Wedding with what is one of the most popular trends for weddings coming into 2017. Marble! If you have been planning your wedding for a while already, and you’ve looked at Pinterest, even just once, you have likely seen this trend before. This is because the marble pattern itself is so easily applied to any wedding décor.

So why has marble become such a big trend in weddings? Even though today, marble has become much more accessible to the everyday person, historically, it has carried a very luxurious reputation with it. This was partly due to its lack of accessability and high cost. You often see marble used for museum floors or as the base of grand staircases. In fact, it has been used as a material for sculptures even as far back as Ancient Greece. Fast forward to today and even though, due to the impracticality of making a cake out of marble, we’ve been relegated to often using just the pattern, it still screams elegance and class.

I’d like to share with you some great ways to integrate this trend into your upcoming wedding!

 

Food

If you’ve already seen the marble trend floating around the internet, you’ve most likely seen it on cakes. Marble wedding cakes are huge right now, and because the pattern is not overly obnoxious, it’s really easy to mix with other cake décor trends such as gold foiling or sugar flowers. If you really want to get creative, you can also use the pattern on sugar cookies and French macaroons!

Marble Cake
Created by The Statement Cake in Vancouver! Check out her Instagram at thestatementcake https://www.instagram.com/thestatementcake/?hl=en
Sugar cookie with marble icing and gold foiling
This sugar cookie also by The Statement Cake is too pretty to eat! https://www.instagram.com/thestatementcake/?hl=en

 

Stationary

Your stationary is a great way to carry the marble trend throughout the entire wedding. Start by using it in your invitations. This will give your guests a taste of what’s to come. Then bring it back in your place cards, menus, and pull it all together with thank-you cards. Since the pattern is so trendy right now, you can easily find it on prefabricated stationary if you want to save a dollar.

 

DécorTwo hexagon marble plates

Another great way to showcase this trend is in the little details at your wedding. For instance, you could have marble candle holders, marble plant pots (these look really great with succulents in them), and even gift marble coasters to your wedding party. Having the marble print on your charger plates is also a beautiful touch.

 

Venue

Marble staircase decorated with floral and candles
The Vancouver Club lobby staircase

Finally, what better way to bring this elegant design into your wedding, than with your venue? Vancouver is lucky enough to have numerous beautiful, elegant venues with marble features. One of my favourites being The Vancouver Art Gallery. The gallery has a ceremony space with marble staircases that curve down on either side of the room. The space is enhanced with natural light pouring down from the glass dome above. Imagine walking down the staircase as a beautiful bride, all done up, and descending toward your guests and fiancé! Another favourite of mine is The Vancouver Club. This venue makes an incredible impact when you first walk in. Not only are the floors and stairs marble, but even the concierge desk is made out of marble! It is truly a beautiful sight to behold and it will really make a statement as your ceremony space.

The Vancouver Club lobby

Of course, there are an endless number of ways to incorporate this trend into your special day, and I’m always astonished at the creative ways I see people using it. Great places to find more inspiration would be Pinterest and Instagram, and please, share your ideas and images with me!

Have a berry great day!

How to Own the New Year – Part 5/5 Fail and Move On

Well, it is finally here! Part 5/5 of “How to Own the New Year”! If you’ve been reading since the beginning thank you so much for being a part of this! If you are just joining now, go check out tips 1-4 and let me know what you think!

 

5. Fail and Move On

Today’s tip to success addresses something that I think most people have had at least one encounter with in their life, if not many. And that is failure. Failing sucks. It hurts your pride, your confidence, and sometimes even how the people around you perceive you. Over and over again people set goals for themselves in the new year and at one point or another they fail. They then doubt whether they are capable of completing the goal and give up. But giving up is not the solution!

 

When you look at someone who has a lot of success in their life, you might think how incredibly lucky they are that everything they have tried has gone their way. But I can guarantee you that no matter who you pick out, and no matter what level of success they have now, at some point or another they have failed! In fact, their past failures have most likely been great contributors to their current success. There is this common perception in society, that people who are successful (whatever you define that to be) have either had a lot of dumb luck or that they are impossibly perfect. However, the truth is, anyone who has success, (and I mean long lasting success, not a one hit wonder) has reached it with one thing only, hard work. And hard work means failing and then getting up and continuing to push to accomplish your goals. Failure is inevitable, simply because we can’t predict the future and no one knows 100% what the result of their actions will be. But what you can rely on is your work ethic. So the next time you fail, rather than looking at it as a negative, telling yourself you’re a failure, and then giving up, look at it as a lesson. Think about what caused things to go wrong and how you could have done it differently. Then try again and take another approach! Remember what I said in tip 3, negative thinking will get you nowhere. Failing and then reevaluating, however, will teach you the most valuable lessons in life and in turn, lead to your success.

 

And that’s it! Today’s tip was short but important. My final piece of advice is this: the five tips I have given you this week are only half of the solution. The other half is actually implementing them and putting in the hard work. Pick goals that will make you happy and the journey there will be a lot easier. But you will still have to take steps that may be less enjoyable to get there. Just remind yourself of why you’re doing it all and keep a smile on your face! I know you’re all capable of doing amazing things.

 

Please share your thoughts about these tips with me on social media, and share the articles with friends if you think they can benefit too! All the best in the new year and keep checking back for more content!

How to Own the New Year – Part 4/5 Do What You Love

Hello again! I’m back with part 4/5 on owning the new year and I believe that this is the most important one so let’s get right into it!

4. Do What You Love

Today’s tip may seem incredibly obvious. Of course, you should be doing what makes you happy right? But unfortunately for many people, doing what makes them happy remains a pipe dream for their whole lives. I am here to stop you from becoming that person and to convince you that you can do what you love and that you should!

All of the steps I have mentioned to you over the past 3 days (and especially tomorrow’s tip!) will be very difficult if the goal you are using them to reach is not something that you really want. Yesterday, I said that the reason many people do not attain their new year’s goals is because they don’t think they are capable of doing so. Another reason, however,  is that the idea of those goals doesn’t really make them happy and therefore they are unmotivated to reach them.

So why are we setting goals for ourselves that we don’t really want? There are a number of answers to this. The first being, that certain goals have been so normalized by society, that we set them for ourselves, simply because everyone else is doing so. Examples of this would be, eating healthy, getting fit, or even going to university. These goals are certainly not bad ones, but they are very difficult to stick to if you don’t want to be doing them. Now I’m not saying that you need to throw all your new year’s resolutions out the door and start completely fresh. First take a look at how you plan to fulfill your goals this year. If you are planning to get into shape by running every day or by buying a gym membership but you hate both running and the gym, chances are you will lose the motivation to do both pretty quickly. Explore your options a little more! Running might be what all your friends are doing but maybe that recreational hip hop class at your community centre sounds way more fun to you!

The second reason many people set goals for themselves that they don’t love is because they don’t feel the goals they really want are ambitious enough. Maybe this means you’ve decided to go on a juice cleanse because it sounds really hardcore, but you’d actually rather continue to eat chocolate every day and just add more vegetables to your diet. Or maybe, you’re like me and you’ve pushed your dream job aside because it doesn’t sound as realistic or ambitious as going into something like law or finances. I have wanted to be a wedding planner ever since my grade 11 business class where I created a fake event planning business for my end of year project. But somehow I ended up getting a degree in history! I pushed the job of event planner out of my mind because I thought it wouldn’t be as accepted as something like a teacher. And to be honest, I wasn’t entirely wrong. Now when I tell people what I do, I often get comments like “but who needs someone to plan events for them?” or my personal favourite, “I thought you would choose to do something more challenging”. But the only thing these comments do is make me even more motivated to excel in my chosen career. And that is the key! Motivation! I don’t let these comments defeat me because I love what I do, I want to be doing it and I know that I can be successful at it because of that.

So here is what I want you to get out of this article: set goals for yourself because they excite and motivate you, and no matter how difficult they seem to attain, your motivation will get you there. Do not allow external pressures to direct your life because you only have one and you want to enjoy it. And most importantly, if you set goals for yourself that make you happy, it doesn’t matter how unambitious they may sound to other people, you can make any goal as challenging and rewarding as you want it to be. You just have to love it enough to put all of your time and effort into it! So take a moment to have a second look at your goals for this year. Do they really truly get you excited to complete them? If not, either rewrite the execution plan or the goal entirely. It doesn’t matter if it sounds completely underwhelming or out of this world difficult, if you love it, you will own it!

Thanks again for reading and share if it’s helped! Tomorrow will be the last tip of this 5 part series and I can’t wait to share it with you!

How to Own the New Year – Part 3/5 Fake it Until You Make it

Here I am back with part 3 of “How to Own the New Year”! Parts 1 and 2 focused on investing in yourself and networking and if you haven’t read them yet please go check them out! Lots of us set goals or resolutions for the new year and they end up being forgotten or abandoned by spring. This 5-part article is not about what goals to set, but rather, what techniques you can implement to make sure they are fulfilled.

3. Fake it Until You Make it

One of the biggest reasons we set goals for ourselves and then never complete them is that we don’t really think we are capable of achieving them in the first place. At least, that’s how it used to be for me. I would set a goal because it sounded great, but then just as I started to work toward it I would see all of these people around me who had already achieved it and convince myself that I just wasn’t capable. These people who had already mastered the goal I was going for seemed to have all these qualities and traits that I did not. And they had so much confidence!

 

The problem with this kind of thinking is that it gets you nowhere. Telling yourself that you aren’t capable of something is not going to solve the problem. In fact, negativity has never solved any sort of problem. It’s a waste of your time and it is seriously detrimental to your mental health. Unfortunately, when you’ve been stuck in this rut of negative thinking for a decade or more, to simply stop doing it, is a lot easier said than done. This is where “faking it until you make it” comes in.

 

Chances are, you’ve heard the term “fake it until you make it” before reading this article. You may have even heard it from people who are very successful. So why is everyone telling you to fake it? Because 90% of the time, your lack of confidence in yourself is completely unfounded. This, in part, comes from comparing yourself to others. And there are two problems with this. The first being, you have no real idea of what is going on in that person’s head. They may seem like they have it all together, but they could be faking it too! The second problem is that even if that person isn’t faking it, and they really do have it all together, it is completely irrelevant to you. Just because one person is good at something does not mean that you can no longer be good at that thing as well. So I have a challenge for you this month. Start paying attention to that negative voice in your head. When you find that you’re comparing yourself to others, rather than thinking “I will never be like that”, break down what it is that they are doing which makes them seem so confident. Are they smiling and nodding a lot? Are they making a lot of eye contact? Are they offering their opinion and engaging in the conversation? Write these things down and then start doing them yourself. Even if you feel uncomfortable holding eye contact or you think your opinion isn’t valid, do it anyway! That’s why it’s called faking it! After doing this for a month, even if you still feel like you’re faking it, it will become more natural, and eventually, you’ll realize you are completely capable and that the confidence you’re exuding is well deserved.

I hope that if steps 1 and 2, Investing in Yourself and Networking, seemed a little daunting before, step 3 has given you the boost of confidence to try them out anyway. Or at least that it has given you the ability to pretend like you’re confident enough! Remember that to be successful not just this year but in life, you need to focus on yourself and know what you’re best at, not the people around you. Please share this article if it’s been helpful to you as I think many of us can use this to our advantage in the new year. Also, keep and eye out for tip 4 tomorrow!

5 Steps to Owning the New Year – Part 2/5 Network

Today I am excited to share with you tip number 2 from my article “How to Own the New Year” which is about networking. If you haven’t read tip 1 “invest in yourself” I would recommend going to check that out first. But without any further ado, here is tip number 2 for getting what you want out of the new year!

 

  1. Network, Network, Network!

The first time I was ever introduced to the concept of networking, I was at my university’s career office and I came across a number of pamphlets on how to properly network. At the time I grabbed all of the pamphlets, ready to educate myself and become the best networker that I could be! After that, I was convinced that networking was an artform one had to spend a lot of time perfecting and that only a few could really master. This is an idea that I think society really pushes as well. We put a lot of pressure on people to be great networkers, and I think it scares a lot of people out of trying. This is a tragedy, as networking really is, in my mind, the best and most effective way of getting where you want in life and doing so at a good pace.

So this year I think we need to strip down networking and see it for what it really is, which is talking to people. Of course, there are techniques and tricks for being effective and really connecting with someone when you speak to them, but if you’re someone who is already nervous putting yourself out there, don’t let those things overwhelm you. Just take the first step and chat with someone about what your goals are this year. It doesn’t even have to be at a networking event. Tell your parents’ friends, and your coworkers. Tell anyone who you start having a conversation with, even if it’s the barista at your local coffee shop! The more people who know what you do and where you want to go, the more opportunities will come your way. If you’re new to networking I would also highly recommend going to networking specific meetups. The goal at these is of course, to network and make some connections, but the atmosphere at them is often a little more laid back. Meetups are also usually themed (women in business, tech-oriented, etc.) which gives you something in common with everyone there right off the bat. I will insert a link for meetups at the end of this article.

Finally, I have a little advice for those of you who are already feeling pretty good about your networking skills, and who really want to focus this year on getting your name out there and making some really personal, meaningful connections. When you’re networking, it’s important that whoever you’re speaking with knows what you do and what your goals are, but it is even more important that they see you in action. So the next time you’re networking with someone and they are telling out about what they do and what their goals are, start thinking about how you can help them. How can what you do best, be of use to them? And then offer to help. The most important part of this tip is that when you make the offer to help someone, you don’t expect anything in return! This is how a lot of networking plays out. Someone offers to help someone else, but only with the expectation that they get something in return. This, however, takes the meaningful connection out of networking. If you show people that you do what you do, not only because you’re good at it, but because you genuinely enjoy doing it and not because you want something in return, they will respect you. Connections which are built on respect last a lot longer than those which come from a give and take transaction.

 

So now whether you’re totally new to networking, or you just want to sharpen up your skills, you’ve got a place to start. I wish you luck and many connections in the new year and I will be back tomorrow with tip number 3 for owning 2017!

Meetup Website: https://www.meetup.com/

Five Steps to Owning the New Year – Part 1/5 Investing in Yourself

 

2016 was a year that for many, was full of disappointments. People were upset about election results, referendums, and of course, numerous celebrity deaths. But for me, 2016 was a year of major changes and a lot of learning. The year started in my last semester of my BA in History. I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do after school and, of course, none of those options had anything to do with history. I went from thinking I would get another degree abroad in psychology to applying to teach English in Germany to deciding I would be a web developer and taking numerous coding courses, to where I am now, owning my own event planning company. That’s a lot of change and uncertainty for one year! So why take advice from someone like me? Well, through all those changes, not only have I learned a lot, but I’ve also made some pretty big steps in my career in a very short period of time. I’m certain that I’ve made the right decisions, and even more certain that anybody can do the same. I feel that in the end, I kicked 2016 in the butt, and both you and I can do the same to 2017. To help you, I’ve put together 5 principles that I feel are necessary to live a successful and very happy life and I will share one with you each day of this week. Enjoy!

 

1. Invest in Yourself

I mean this both figuratively and literally. In the literal sense, if you want to be successful, you have to take a hard look at your spending habits. There is nothing wrong with spending money, but you have to make sure you’re putting it in the right places. Eating out might make your tummy happy in the short term, but it will cut through your monthly budget pretty fast! And those new boots? Unless they are going to walk you into your dream job, they’re probably not worth it. When spending money we often look only at the price tag and then make a decision as to whether we will spend or not based on that alone. But a new habit to get into is looking at the price tag and then looking at what you get for it. What is the value of this purchase to you? We often have a hard time justifying large purchases such as an educational course, or tickets to a conference or workshop, but we don’t think twice about

A very happy moment from my DreamGroup graduation

ordering take out every second day. It’s time to change that and start thinking about the money you spend as an investment in yourself. What kind of a return will you get on a trip to the mall vs. going to a networking event? Keep in mind, this doesn’t mean you have to spend $30,000 plus on a university degree to be successful. I spent 5 years getting a university degree which, although does has value, did not give me the best return. However, after graduating and playing around with a few different career choices I got serious about event planning. I did a lot of research and I decided to invest in the DreamGroup Wedding Planning course, knowing I needed to do something to get my foot in the door. The return on this was massive! Not only did I land multiple jobs but I also made many strong connections with vendors and industry professionals. Do your research, find out what will benefit you the most, and then invest.

 

An example of my “healthy eating” while still sneaking in some chocolate!

Figuratively, investing in yourself can take many forms. But the main idea is this: take care of yourself both physically and mentally, and your body will reward you by being happy and feeling good. This is just as important as investing in yourself financially. You can’t be on top of your game if you’re feeling sluggish or unhappy and believe me, people can tell if you are! Chances are, you will need some help to get where you want in life. People are going to be a lot more willing to invest their time and money in you if you show them that you are sharp and confident about what you are doing. Take some time this week to sit down and decide what your body and mind need to be happy and perform the best that they can. For me, this means getting 7 hours of sleep every day, staying active, eating healthy, and occasionally treating myself to some chocolate and unnecessary youtube binges.

 

Well, that’s it for tip number 1 to owning 2017! I hope you’ve been able to take something from what I’ve written and I would love to get your thoughts too! Let me know what you’ve been doing to invest in yourself, or even what you plan to do in the new year. I can’t wait to hear from you and I will be back tomorrow with tip number 2.

DreamGroup Wedding Planning 101 Course: http://www.dgacademy.ca/weddingplanning101/

 

Why You Need to Throw a Costume Party

So, you’re throwing a party. It may be for a birthday, holiday, or you’re just in the mood to celebrate, but you know you want to make it special and you’re stuck on how exactly to do that. Have you thought about throwing a costume party? Once we become adults we generally push costume parties out of our minds, reserving them only for our kids birthdays or Halloween. I was in the same mindset until I recently planned a 70’s themed costume party for a 50th birthday. I assumed as it was adults only, that guests would feel silly or not put in the effort. However, the date of the event arrived and I was completely surprised! The event was a total hit, and I am now convinced that adult costume parties are where it’s at. Here are the top three reasons that you too, should throw a costume party.

 

1. Your friends are way more creative and fun than you think.

We know our friends are busy with families, jobs, and life in general, and so we figure that if we label a party as a costume party our guests will automatically think, “too much work, not coming”. But it is the opposite that is true! Our friends are so busy that they are just waiting for an excuse to let loose! At the 70’s party I planned, when parents RSVP’d they often wanted to know if they could bring their kids. When I told them it was an adults only party I expected them to say they couldn’t come, but I was often met with excitement! This event gave them the excuse they needed to get a babysitter and get creative. I was astonished by the costumes they showed up in. They put in so much effort and had a ton of fun getting dressed up. It made for great pictures and an automatic ice breaker for guests who didn’t know each other.

 

2. We all love a little nostalgia.

When you’re planning a costume party, it is usually a good idea to pick a theme. This gives your guests a place to start when thinking about what they want to wear. Whether it be a decade or even a movie series such as Star Wars or Harry Potter, we all love reminiscing about years gone by. Somehow it is easy to forget the negative things that have happened in the past, hence why your grandma always talks about how “Things were always better in the good old days.”. Giving your party a theme that creates nostalgic feelings is a great way to get your guests pumped for the party. In addition, once you know your theme you can then find decor items that match it and place them in all the little nooks and crannies of your venue. This way everywhere your guests turn they are delightfully surprised and pleasant memories are aroused. At this event, in particular, we asked guests to dress up as their favourite 70’s personalities. When they arrived we had name tags for them on which they wrote who they were supposed to be. Every time a guest met someone new, they were also met with a character from their childhood!

 

3. It is a memory that will last for both you and your guests.

For the above reasons, you know your guests are going to have a blast at your costume party. (Especially if a few drinks have been passed around!) If you add in some fun games such as a costume contest, the memories and laughs will only increase. Your party will be talked about and looked back upon for years to come. A great way to savour these memories is to have a photographer present to capture all the fun and important moments. However, if that’s out of your budget, create a hashtag for your event. Ask guests to take photos and post them on Instagram with the hashtag you created. This creates a free online album which both you and your guests can look back on. Having a costume party makes your event stand out from all others in the year, and if you’re up for it, you can even make it annual, changing the theme each year. Knowing how fun the first event was will ensure that guests book that date off for following years and it gives your friends something to look forward to!

 

No matter what way you look at it, having a costume party is a great idea and will always guarantee your guests have a fun time. You certainly don’t have to make every event that you put on a costume event, but it’s definitely worth trying out once! I hope I’ve inspired in you some fun and exciting ideas for your next party. And please, if you put on a great event, I would love to see what you created! Share your images and stories with me on Instagram or Twitter! I can’t wait to see what you create.

To see more photos from this event: http://berryevents.ca/portfolio/#38

 

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