Daylene Wilson PhotographicPhoto Credit: Daylene Wilson Photographic

Today’s wedding planner interview is with Stacy of Juniper and Lace Events, based in Traverse City, Michigan! Enjoy:

Tell us a bit about yourself and your company.

Juniper & Lace Events offers custom planning, stylish design, and day-of coordination for destination weddings in Michigan.  As founder and principal planner, I have one of the best jobs on the planet!  I get to work for the some of the most gracious & inspiring clients.  I get to design events that celebrate one of life’s most remarkable experiences (love).  And, I get to collaborate with creative professionals in truly beautiful places.  It’s a dream job on many levels.

Read the full interview after the cut!

Photo Credit: David Lynn Photography

How did you get into wedding planning?

I became a wedding planner three years ago, after working for almost four years in wedding venues as an event sales associate and then as a wedding sales manager.  My move to wedding planning was a combination of timely opportunity and a desire to work directly for clients and be more involved in their planning experience.  Working for JA Special Events (voted “Best of Colorado 2016, Event Planning Company”) really expanded my understanding of event elements and gave me the privilege of working with remarkable clients in over forty different venues.  When my husband and I decided to move closer to our families in Michigan, I knew I wanted to continue planning weddings and thus, Juniper and Lace Events was launched!

Photo Credit: Daylene Wilson Photographic

What’s your favorite part of the job?

I love so many aspects of being a wedding planner–the creativity of styling personal details, crafting the guest experience in a timeline, finding just the right vendors that also meet our budget, and cake tastings (of course).  But I think the part I enjoy the most is having the privilege of journeying with my clients thru the decisions, emotions, and excitement that are part of planning and celebrating such a big life moment.  I enjoy the relationship we build thru that process and the sense of accomplishment and happiness at the end of a successful event.

Photo Credit: From the Hip Photo

What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned, and would pass along to other new wedding planners just getting started?

Listen to your clients.  Some of the most interesting and exciting ideas come from conversations over a cup of coffee or a glass of wine.  Random comments or sincere requests that seem far-fetched, combined with your resources and willingness to take creative risks can result in some of the most unforgettable events, some of the happiest clients, and some of the most trend-setting designs.

What are your hobbies or non-work-related activities?

I enjoy hiking with my husband and dog, reading, and skiing.  Now that I live in Michigan, I’m looking forward to exploring the area wineries, acquiring some paddleboarding skills, and bbqs with the family.

Photo Credit: Studio JK

Any great stories from working with a client?

One of my favorite wedding stories (that didn’t involve shenanigans) came from Laura & Greg’s wedding.  We had planned a thoughtful weekend of activities, welcoming destination guests into a relaxed ranch setting with plenty of adventures and spa time available at their leisure.

The wedding day was gorgeous and during the meadow ceremony, Laura & Greg’s officiant filled three (environmentally friendly) balloons with air from a helium tank so that two of the balloons were inside the third clear balloon–a unity ceremony that had required some technique practice to perfect.  As a guitarist sang “Somewhere, Over the Rainbow”, Laura & Greg released their unity balloon and guests gazed into the sky as it floated out of view.  A poetic moment.

The real magic, though, came just after filet mignon was served to guests.  Someone spotted a rainbow outside and the photographer excitedly whisked Laura & Greg across the meadow for a backdrop of split rail fence, horses, and mountain peaks.  As they made their way to the fence, the rainbow became full, spanning the full meadow vista.  Guests had now rushed out to the patio to take their own photos and then the rainbow became a double rainbow, both sections fully framing the distant peaks and newlywed couple.  It was breathtaking and unforgettable.  Filet mignon grew cold but when guests finally returned to their seats, they couldn’t stop talking about the experience.  No one complained about cold entrees and I concluded that the best part of an event is sometimes the unplanned unexpected part, the part that makes it feel a bit magical.

What is your current favorite color combination?

I’ve enjoyed the romantic palette of blush and peach tones with metallic accents.  I like the airy fresh look of white flowers and lots of greenery (pops of burgundy in fall or winter add some warmth and depth).  And more recently, I’m liking the return of bold colors, both the multi-hued wildflower inspiration (tastefully done) and orange paired with yellows, reds, pinks, or turquoise.

Are there any trends that you absolutely love or would love to see brides leave behind?

I love the trend toward interactive entertainment.  I had three clients last year book caricature artists and the guests LOVED it!  I also love the food truck trend for late night snacks or dessert.  And I’m loving paper flowers, especially the giant ones, for their unique high impact effect.

What tips or advice can you give to couples who are in the midst of planning?

Remember the point of it all–you’re marrying someone you love and adore.  Make sure you take time to nurture your relationship with activities and conversations that don’t involve wedding details occasionally.  It’s a good investment in your sanity and in life after the wedding.

Choose a photographer whose style you love, (and ask to look at a few full wedding galleries, not just the “best of the best” photos) but also who you can be relaxed and have fun with.  An engagement session is the best way to test that.  Your photos will turn out better if you’re relaxed and having fun.

Be in the moment, or as I like to say, “Revel in your moment”.  The wedding day is full of activities, friends, family members, and emotions.  Let yourself experience all of that; take in the details, the significance, the love of each other and of your guests.  Trust your wedding planner (or appointed friend or family member) to handle the details and just be in the moments that make up your day.

Photo Credit: Kelly Lemon Photography

Thanks Stacy! For more information about Juniper and Lace Events, please visit their WeddingLovely Vendor Guide profile or head straight to their website.

Do you have any questions or comments for Stacy? Add them to the comments below!