Events by Divine Creations | June 2009
Events by Divine Creations

Just in Time for the Holidays

by Valerie DiVecchio 26. June 2009 14:00
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No, I don't mean the 4th of July, I'm talking about Thanksgiving, Christmas and Hanukkah!  Those who prepare well in advance save the most money!  Divine Creations is offering personalized holidays cards between now and September 30th for a 25% discount off the retail price plus free return address imprinting.  Many different selections to choose from and perfect for home or business!

Call today to set up a time to stop by, browse... and save!      

A Favor With A Cause

by Valerie DiVecchio 23. June 2009 21:23
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Wedding favors are great, but honestly a person only needs one wine stopper and all of that candy - although delicious - can lead you astray from the healthy eating lifestyle you keep vowing to stick to over and over.  For an alternative consider making a donation to a favorite charity - maybe one that you volunteer for or benefitted someone you know in the past or one that focus on research of a disease that you lost a loved one to.  To signify your donation, print up cards that let guests know you have made a donation in their honor to XYZ charity and a brief description about the services that they provide to those in need.  It's something that you, and your guests, can feel really good about.

A Penny Saved is a Penny Earned (Same Goes for Several Thousand Bucks!)

by Valerie DiVecchio 22. June 2009 10:38
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Recently I met with a couple who is getting married in the spring of 2010.  They were considering whether or not to hire a wedding planner.  The bride was a little skeptical, which I don't blame her with all of the reality television shows these days, wedding planners aren't always portrayed in a very positive light.  We spent about an hour and a half together one evening and at the end of the meeting they signed a contract.  And then came the phone call the next morning.

The groom called to tell me that it was "World War III" when the bride told her mother that they had hired me.  The mom, not knowing what value a planner can bring to the table, was very upset and thought that her daughter was only wanting her money and not wanting to include her mother in the planning process (so not true because she had told me that her mother was going to be very involved).  Under pressure, the bride buckled and the groom called to ask if they could get out of their contract.  "Not a problem", I said, after all I had only met with them about 12 hours before and I hadn't done any work for them as of yet. 

I saw the bride and groom again at a networking event recently and asked how the planning was going.  They commented on how expensive everything was, but they had finally found a venue.  I am very familiar with the venue that they selected and I have a great working relationship with the people there.  I asked if they were comfortable with the contract that they signed and she told me the details.  Come to find out, although they are getting married on a Sunday evening, they were charged with a Saturday evening food and beverage minimum!  Without a planner, they did not know that you can save money by having your event on a Friday or Sunday versus a Saturday.  I congratulated them and gave them my best wishes for a wonderful wedding.

What I didn't tell them was that I have a client who is getting married around the same time that they are at the SAME VENUE and I was able to negotiate a food and beverage minimum that was $5,000 LOWER than theirs.  And this couple IS having it on a Saturday night!  I knew better than to tell them about this because the last thing I want to do is make someone upset, but I did think that it would be good advice for my blog readers.  Sometimes when considering hiring a planner, look at it as an investment.  One that will save you time, stress and money... I don't know about you, but to me it sounds like a solid choice!

Cool Ideas for Hot Summer Ceremonies

by Valerie DiVecchio 16. June 2009 16:00
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As we enter into the hot Florida summer months, there are still plenty of brides who want to have their wedding ceremonies outside enjoying the sun, fresh air and the gorgeous view of the Gulf or garden.  And while it is picture perfect, the heat can sometimes be a little too hot to handle.  Here are some cool ideas on how to keep you and your guests more comfortable:

1)  It's not customary to serve drinks to your guests prior to a wedding ceremony, however, when the ceremony is outside it is a good idea to have pitchers of water (at a minimum) for guests to keep hydrated.  You can even get water bottles with customized labels.  Or consider spicing it up a bit by including lemonade, fruit punch or even a non-alcoholic signature drink. 

2) Turn your ceremony program into a fan.  There are lots of great styles of fans that serve a dual function - keep you cool and informed!  List your bridal party names, key information, the outline of the ceremony just like a normal program, but this one will let your guests keep a cool head!

3) Provide flips flops... ceremonies on the sand are a perk of having them in Florida, but that sand can be hot on the feet.  Purchasing a wide range of flip flops sizes that match your color scheme can help the feet and double as a favor.  You can even have them personalized with your names and wedding date!

Divine Creations On YouTube!

by Valerie DiVecchio 15. June 2009 15:34
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Earlier this month I was featured on Fox 13's Good Day Tampa Bay on a story about how to save money while planning your wedding.  Thanks to technology and my wonderful husband who understands that technology, the segment is now on YouTube.  Check it out:



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Felicia and Mike

by Valerie DiVecchio 9. June 2009 15:47
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This past Saturday, I had the honor and privilege of assisting with Felicia and Mike's wedding.  I have been working with them since last August and it's amazing to see a couple's vision come to reality and know that you helped play a part in it.  The wedding ceremony and reception was at the Sheraton Riverwalk Hotel in downtown Tampa.  Their new ballroom sits right along the water and has a great view of the University of Tampa.  Their colors were chocolate brown and pink, and they incorporated a lot of little touches that really made the wedding special.

One example of those special touches were the way they did the place cards.  Felicia's mom, Pat, put in a lot of blood, sweat and tears working on those place cards, but it was well worth it for they were a huge hit.  Each place card was actually a pink votive candle in a glass holder.  On the glass had the guest's name and table number as well as a ribbon that indicated their entree selection (all color coordinated with the wedding colors, of course).  As the guests picked up their place card and came into the room, the staff lit their candles as they were seated which created a very romantic and elegant atmosphere.  As I was setting up the room on Saturday, there was a site tour being done for another bride who was considering using the venue and her parents were fascinated with the place cards.  As I've said before, it's often the little touches that leave a lasting impression.

Felicia and Mike wanted it to be a party after dinner was finished and partied they did!  They purchased fun props and gave them to the DJ to distribute.  As the evening went on and so did the drinking, out came the fun sunglasses, glow sticks and Hawaiian leis. The guests had a ball and the dance floor was hopping!  I even sported a pair of funky blue sunglasses that the photographer caught on camera... I know I'm going to have to bribe him to delete that one!

At the end of the evening was my favorite part... huge smiles and thank yous from Felicia and Mike, as well as their parents and guests.  I love what I do, and to be able to help make someone's wedding day be memorable and stress-free is an amazing feeling!

                             

    

Here Comes the Rain!

by Valerie DiVecchio 5. June 2009 13:28
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As we all know, hurricane season started this week.  As for me, I'm very thankful we've been having some rain (my lawn was starting to look like straw with the City's sprinkler ban!)... as long as Mother Nature keeps it dry on the weekends.  But as much as I do my rain dances to keep the rain away when I have events, for some reason they don't always work!  That's when insurance comes into play.

If you're looking for a great deal in Florida, you look at our summer months to hold your special events.  Obviously there is some risk associated with that.. the two "H's" - heat and hurricanes.  With the heat, you can't do much about it - except turn up the air conditioning and stay inside.  With the hurricanes, well, you can't do much about those either except pray that they go somewhere else and get some peace of mind by purchasing event insurance.  These insurance policies, depending on the level you select, will usually compensate you for money lost if your venue closes due to an evacuation and the event has to be cancelled or postponed.  In addition, you can also purchase liability insurance which offers protection regarding alcohol-related accidents, property damage, bodily injury, as well as insurance for those venues that require you to have it just to hold your event there.

I highly recommend event insurance to my clients, particularly if they are having their event during the summer months, but it's not a bad idea to have anytime.  Often you will receive the best quote through your homeowner's insurance, but if they do not offer it you can try: www.wedsafe.com or Traveler's Insurance.  It's just like health insurance... it's a good idea to have it, you just hope you don't have to use it!

The Joys of Live Television

by Valerie DiVecchio 2. June 2009 20:55
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As I blogged a few days ago, I was on Fox 13 Good Day Tampa Bay yesterday morning.  Knowing that it was being televised live, the "normal" thoughts go though your head before heading out on the set... what if I trip and fall or open my mouth and nothing comes out; you know, the stereotypical live television things that you see on, well television, and kind of chuckle at while sitting comfortably on the couch in the privacy of your own home.  Of course, then there are those unexpected things that can happen that just don't even cross your mind... like the anchor's microphone suddenly stops working.

Good news is that I didn't fall and the words came out of my mouth just fine.  Bad news is that the anchor's microphone suddenly stopped working.  So the segment started right after a commercial break and there was the music to the "Wedding March" and then Ann Dwyer started to speak.  Of course it sounded fine to me, but then again, I was sitting right next to her.  Unbeknownst to either of us, those of you watching at home saw her lips moving, but heard nothing.  Fortunately it only lasted a couple of sentences.  So Ann introduced me and dived into her first question about ways you can save when looking for a wedding dress.  As I started to answer, the camera person walked over and told Ann that she needed to change out the battery on her microphone.  So needless to say, there were some distractions.  Fortunately I was able to stay fairly focused and answer the question (I can't really remember what I even said!), but unfortunately it was taking a while to change the battery.  So Ann, being the professional that she is, explained that they were having some technical difficulties and asked me to hang on a minute.  It was probably about 10-15 seconds of silence (which felt like 10-15 minutes!) and then Ann continued on with the interview and let the camera person continue to mess around with the microphone. 

Fortunately the rest of the interview went very well and Ann was absolutely wonderful when it was all over.  She apologized about the microphone mishap and commented on how well I did.  As a matter of fact, the producer called me and read me a message she sent him after the show.  It read "the wedding planner was goood (he stressed there were three o's!), very informative and calm even during the microphone disaster".  I appreciate her kind words, and actually what she said was very meaningful to me.  No matter what's going on around you, during an event or on live television, a professional planner has to take everything in stride and run with it.  It may have been a rocky start - which by the way has NEVER happened before during a segment... lucky me! - but the ultimate outcome was fantastic.  I'm glad I did my profession proud!

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Valerie DiVecchio Valerie DiVecchio

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Divine Creations

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