I have a unique take on this wedding because A is one of my best friends.
Allison, or Allie as I call her, and her fiancé Peter had been engaged for over 3.5 years before they finally tied the knot at Wychmere Beach Club in Harwich Port this past May. Allie and I had talked about her wedding plans multiple times over the course of the years. Now, to be honest, there were never cohesive plans as she would always jump from one idea to the next. We talked about a summer tented event, a NYE bash, I think a Valentine’s scenario was even considered at one point and I’m certain that there were more I don’t even recall.
Needless to say, plans were created and deserted many times over the course of their several year engagement. Even after a couple months spent perfecting the launch of my own planning business (Daylynn Designs), Allie still wasn’t showing any clear signs that it was the right place or time. The wedding continued to be talked about as something that she should start planning and maybe soon.
Then something happened, I personally think it was a culmination of my excitement for my upcoming business launch and her formal dental hygiene pinning that brought us to the crossroads – Allie was ready for a new chapter and so was I.
Oh and by the way, when Allie sets her mind to something she really sets her mind to it – her new plan was to host the wedding before the start of summer 2018. It’s one of those things, when you all know, you know. Now, queue our 3-month planning process.
Photo: Lindsay Hackney
WEDDING PLANNING PROCESS
This is totally a have your cake and eat it too situation. I was involved in Allie’s wedding planning process every step of the way from the initial meeting with Wychmere Beach Club to World Premier Band giving life to the dance floor. I was able to watch her walk down the aisle, from the front of the church, not the back.
Kicking off my business, with my best friend by my side, helped me to see some truly behind the scenes elements and emotions that had been shielded from me in my past wedding industry experiences. Walls didn’t exist between client and planner and it allowed for me to see this couple first and foremost as people (my fav people), clients second.
As all of you who know me are aware, I fit a bit of the perfectionist stereotype. I have a strong attention to detail, projects don’t leave my desk until all elements are perfect and I work tirelessly to make sure that each finished product I put out is both well done and unique. Yes, all of this is great for the job, but at the same time it doesn’t allow much room for professional peers or clients to be aware of weaknesses or even a lot about who I really am behind the scenes.
The moment that brought this refreshingly humanized planning process to a point was when I ended up in the ER, very early one morning, right before multiple deadlines were due for Allie’s wedding and with a vendor meeting scheduled for later the same day.
That morning I texted Allie about where I was and what was going on. I completely skipped over the work commitments we had because of the pain and my new, unexpected, set of priorities. It’s true, I was down and out and in that moment, I had no interest in being her planner – I was talking with my best friend.
BEST FRIEND GOALS
Here’s the part that leaves me speechless every time I think about our planning process: without me prompting, she emailed our commitments (because she had their contact info for the project, too) and told them that because something came up in HER life she would need to reschedule. She took the heat, protected me as a perfectionist and once she told me what she had done. I breathed easy as I head into surgery.
My BFF had my back without the slightest bit of direction. Allie knew that I was building a business and that my priority had been to showcase how dependable and professional I am so, in an instance where I wasn’t able to do it all, she shielded me from needing to lead with my health troubles explanation.
Her intuitive strength as a friend gave me an entirely different perspective on how planner and client relationships should be. In that moment, I realized that if I could be half as much intuitive as she had been with me, to my clients going forward, it would make all the difference. It’s not the perfect templates I have on file or the creative design proposals that I pride myself on – it ultimately revolves on everyone’s ability to be human in the process.
Photo: Lindsay Hackney
Since I’m now nearly in tears filled with so much gratitude for my best friend and the invaluable lesson she taught me, I feel like it’s time to shift a bit. As I clearly explained, I have the unique experience of understanding the couple as people first and clients second so here’s some fun facts about them:
- Their dog Honey, a mini golden-doodle, is their blonde baby and they spoil her in all the right ways: she eats healthy (no people food), plays plenty of fetch, takes day-trips to work, goes for top-down Jeep rides, spends lots of time basking in the sun and is thoroughly well cuddled on the couch.
- Allie and Peter love to travel and have grown their relationship through many wonderful trips abroad. Right before their wedding, they took a trip to Australia and enjoyed every minute they spent exploring the continent. Peter’s favorite part was all the speeding tickets he accumulated and eating delectable vegan food (kidding on both parts).
- Allie is an amazing cook and once she gets caught up in the kitchen – watch out. Peter jokes that some of the meals that Allie first cooked for him were “no bueno” but she’s come a long way over the course of their 7+ year relationship. Peter, now, thoroughly enjoys the meals that Allie whips up for both of them to enjoy. They range from meat and potatoes style, for Peter, to veggie inspired plates, for Allie.
Keep reading for all the details of their day because 7-years of engagement truly brought about one genuine celebration of love and admiration for these two.
Photo: Lindsay Hackney
- WYCHMERE: Being involved in the first stages of this event meant that I was able to include each and every vendor that I felt would be a good fit for Allie. She and I first started by talking about her style and how she wanted that reflected throughout the event. Allie is led by gray, platinums and whites in her personal taste so we carried that color story throughout. Silver and gray tones both worked beautifully in the space at Wychmere Beach Club so it was easy to turn the space into something that was true to Allie’s style.
- PHOTOGRAPHY: One of the first conversations that I had with Allie was about her photography style. I showed her a couple portfolio examples … all the while knowing that she’s obsessed with Lindsay Hackney. A couple years before, during my time at Be Our Guest, I had shown her a gallery that Lindsay shot during a styled shoot at the Hampshire House. Allie was obsessed with it and I completely get why – Lindsay’s work is absolute perfection and she has a knack for capturing each detail impeccably. Allie and Peter found comfort in Lindsay on their big day and have repeatedly told me just how much they loved her and her day-of-presence.
- VIDEOGRAPHY: I had seen a video a few years back that I was so completely in love with, but the videographer never popped back up in my sphere. What local vendor could it have been? I could see the Maine or New Hampshire cliffs from their drone footage so vividly – I was determined to track it down. With what little recollection I had I was able to use Google’s powers to my favor on this one (a rare feat these days). There they are, Happy Camper Film & Photo … they’re not local but they’re available and they even have a New England package!!! Done and done. Oh, and the final product from them is an absolute tear jerker that completely exceeded everyone’e expectations. I definitely account for over 50% of the views on the video and I still cry every. single. time.
- FLORAL: For anyone who as ever met Allie, you also know that she is obsessed with flowers. She will receive a dozen roses as a gift and will display them through all phases: thriving, dying and drying. No matter the stage, they bring her joy and she appreciates their beauty for much longer than most. I felt that Fleur Events was the perfect choice for Allie because they do an exceptional job working within a neutral palette all while keeping their creations so totally unique and locally sourced. Allie’s design meeting with them went seamlessly and she was thrilled by the product they delivered on her wedding day. They even found a way to make the baby’s breath arrangements that she had been dreaming of come to life with more texture and volume than she ever could have imagined in the Harbor Room at Wychmere.
- RENTALS: For the rentals, I went back to my roots. My favorite gray/silver linen and napkins from Be Our Guest just had to be included along with a new line of gray furniture they carry. All of these details paired perfectly with Allie’s vision. Nantucket driftwood tables from True North were a must to help break up the space at Wychmere and to create distinction for the head table, all while holding true to the gray palette.
- BAND: The band was a no brainer because Allie had come with me to an industry event back in January and had so much fun listening and dancing along to World Premier Band. She didn’t know it then, but she was listening to the band that she would ultimately book for her event. Who better than World Premier Band to get everyone on the dance floor? People’s heads pivot immediately when they start to play – their boundless energy and great repertoire pairs perfectly with an extended reception celebration on the dance floor at Wychmere.
- HAIR AND MAKEUP: Oh, and as you can see below, Allie’s hair and makeup remained flawless all night long thanks to Kacie Corbelle’s experienced talent at play. The braided style worked perfectly through Allie’s outfit changes and even held up against the coastal winds of Wychmere Harbor.
Photo: Lindsay Hackney
One last note: The team at Wychmere, led by Lindsay Grimes, helped tremendously in absorbing the roles that I would normally attend to as the planner for a wedding. With Lindsay’s help the cocktail and reception timeline ran smoothly with the dance floor opening right on schedule – seamless effort.
I am so lucky that I was able to celebrate both my business and the love of my friends: Allie and Peter. Cheers to a lifetime of happiness for the most loyal and caring people I know!
For more photos of Allie and Peters Wychmere wedding click here.
Venue: Wychmere Beach Club
Photographer: Lindsay Hackney
Videographer: Happy Camper Wedding Films
Linen and Furniture Rental: Be Our Guest, Inc.
Table Rentals: True North Event Rentals
Floral: Fleur Events
Band: World Premier Band
Photo Booth: Wicked Booth
Invitation Suite: Fete Collection
Planning and Design: Daylynn Designs