New Orleans Wedding: Madeleine & Jacob

Madeleine & Jacob are officially married (well they have been for a while but  I won't give myself too hard a time :)

Madeleine's wedding was so pretty and so much fun and she and Ms. Sarah were both great to work with! The colors are amazing and I loved how she pulled the navy of the dresses into her lovely bouquets by using anemones!

This awesome couple is the definition of six degrees of separation. Madeleine and Jacob grew up in different parts of the state, but their paths crossed throughout their earlier years, and they made sure to point it out! The bride's grandpa and the groom's grandmother went to high school together in Abbeville. Madeleine's brother went to camp with Jacob when they were younger; and long before they started dating, Madeleine sent Jacob an admissions postcard asking him to come visit the school! It was really neat how they could literally display connections that ultimately brought them together at Millsaps. Keep an eye out as you scroll through; Studio Tran did a great job of capturing every one of those details that brought these two sweethearts together! 

From beginning to end, the colors in the flowers by NOLA Flora were gorgeous! 

Increasingly I am loving it when a bride does a reveal to her dad. He's the one who watched her grow up and he's the one giving her away (along with her mom of course).


I wish all the best to Madeleine & Jacob!

Quick word to the vendors: you are all awesome! Crescent City Soul hit it out of the park as they had everyone truly on the dance floor all night! I can't thank my vendors enough for making Madeleine & Jacob's day all that they wanted.

Stationery - Scriptura 
Ceremony - Trinity Episcopal Church (Church Coordinator Ms. Beverly is wonderful!)
Reception - Federal Ballroom
Catering - Cap d'bosq
Flowers - NOLA Flora
Entertainment/Band - Crescent City Soul
Transportation - Luxe Limos
Bride's Dress by Jim Hjelm from Town & Country
Bridesmaids' dresses by Mamie + James
Wedding Planner Erin with It's Your Time Events

Business vs Personal

I'm sure most of you have seen The Godfather...and if not that then you've definitely seen You've Got Mail, and heard the characters refer to business as not being "personal." In The Godfather Michael Corleone says, "It's not's strictly business." And in You've Got Mail Tom Hanks' character quotes it: The Godfather is the I Ching. The Godfather is the sum of all wisdom. The Godfather is the answer to any question. What should I pack for my summer vacation? 'Leave the gun, take the cannoli.' What day of the week is it? 'Maunday, Tuesday, Thursday, Wednesday.' And the answer to your question is 'Go to the mattresses.' You're at war. 'It's not personal, it's business. It's not personal it's business.' 

But it is personal. It's personal to me. This is my business and these are my clients. It's Your Time Events is based on me, the owner, and the way I feel and live life and work with others. I've had vendors tell me to learn to focus more on the business, to separate my personal from my business, but I don't know how and I honestly don't know if I want to. 

I never wanted my clients to ever be just a number. I wanted relationships. I wanted to be there for my clients every step of the way. I want to get to know them and their families and those most important to them so the wedding day I can do my job! How am I going to do my job successfully if I don't form that relationship with my clients?  

I recently spent some time doing a lot of introspective analysis. Creme Brands was helping me to get to know myself and my clients better. Who am I and who is my business? Who is my ideal client and how do we work together? Where do I see myself and my business in several years. What do I want? What sets me apart from others in this very populated New Orleans wedding industry? I think I was pretty clear and it only confirmed what I already knew about myself and my business, it is personal. 

And when I try to act like it's not as personal, I may fool those who do not know me or my clients, but I am definitely not fooling myself or my client. We recently coordinated two weddings for one day. It was not originally planned that way, but it happened. And I have to say it was definitely a confirmation of who we are not. We are not a wedding planning company that just wants clients. We are not a company that just sees the numbers. We are not a two and three weddings in one day wedding planning company. We are not big and we are fancy, but we are personal and we are real and we do feel. This blog is a huge apology to some very special deserved more. 

I didn't get to see you walk down the aisle. I didn't get to see you get dressed or even help you get dressed. I didn't get to help bustle you. I didn't get to know your families and friends. And I don't know if you wanted that type of relationship, but it's what I want and it's what my business is based on and I was very disappointed with how I felt after executing both weddings on the same day.  

To the outside, and to many of the vendors, things looked great...I know, because I've gotten many compliments. But on the me, I know they weren't perfect on your day. I know, I did my "job" and it wasn't like things went horribly wrong or things weren't planned out completely or I didn't technically give you the hours you paid for. And I know both venues had absolutely wonderful venue coordinators to help and that Brandi and Rebecca did their jobs and made sure you were taken care of, but it wasn't me. What you didn't get was my undivided attention on your day. What you didn't get was that person you had in your corner every second of the day. What  you didn't get is what I absolutely love about my job, being there for you ever step of the way. 

To all of my clients, and especially to those who feel they didn't get the coordinator they signed up for, I am so incredibly sorry and I hope your days were and are all that you wanted them to be! I hope that whatever hiccups there may have been are dim in comparison to the brightness of the rest of the day. You are truly beautiful people and couples and I love working with each of you! 

I absolutely cannot wait to see what your photographers captured that I may have missed! I cannot wait to see the entire day unfold through those captured memories! Hugs to both of you ladies and to your husbands!

And to Creme Brands, thank you for helping us put into words, what we are truly all about!!

New Orleans Wedding: Ashley and Colin Video by Montoto Productions

Ashley + Colin | Trailer from Montoto Productions on Vimeo.
Flowers - NOLA Flora Hair and Make up - Doll House Salon Photography - Twirl Photography Video - Montoto Productions Furniture decor - Mrs. Vintage Lighting and decor - Luminous Events Wedding Cake - Haydels Coordinator - Erin St Pierre England with It's Your Time Events

Expectations and standards - personal growth

I recently came across an email and LOVED what it had to say. I've gotten busy and bent some of my own standards or rules of professionalism. This was a good reminder of how to work professionally during events. From time to time, I need some reminding so if you see or hear me doing any of these things, go ahead and smack me on the back of the head (GK this means you!). 
1. Smoke, drink, or eat. If I want to continue booking events with a professional reputation intact, I always consider when I drink alcohol near clients (I don't smoke but I'm pretty sure I'd be the same way). I'm not an attendee, so partying with my clients is most of the time a no go. And while the host may offer me a meal, eating on the job almost always winds up looking messy and unprofessional (especially because we're usually scarfing it quickly so we can get back to work). My recommendation to myself (and what I've seen many reputable vendors do) get a bite and bring it to a hidden corner or back room during a slow moment in the event. 
2. Talking or texting on my phone. It shows that I'm not truly present and that I lack professionalism. Even if it’s just a quick glance or a post to Facebook or Instagram, if the client thinks they aren't my number one focus, then I risk setting myself up for a poor review after the fact. I have gotten a bit caught up in this one....posting as it's happening, but really what is the rush? Focus on the here and now and our client and we can't go wrong. 
3. Talking smack about competition. No matter how much I may dislike competition, I should never belittle anyone in front of a client. In dissing them, I'm only doing myself a disservice by coming across as petty and impolite. We're all small businesses and we're in this together. I need to remember there is always another side to a story. I need to talk to other vendors more as opposed to about them later after the event. I'm all about learning and constructive critiques. 
4. Siting down. Events can span multiple hours at a time, and in those cases it’s certainly acceptable to take brief breaks (but I'm never going to leave the premises during one!). However, letting clients catch me lounging around or gathered in a vendor pack before or during an event is a big no-no. I always feel guilty after being caught in such a state. I need to remember my focus is on my client, not my friends (other vendors).