The 3 Most Effective Ways To Start the Event Planning Process!
1. Write out everything!
Take some time to deep dive into all the possibilities for your event and write them down. The details, the menu options, the color scheme, the headcount, the design and decor, what type of venue you're looking for, ideal date/time of year for the event, the budget - all of it!
Getting all of the possible options you're looking at onto paper is the perfect first step in planning your event. This brain dump of all the choices will get you started so you can cover all the bases.
This will also force you to think of the event start to finish! Turning your dream event into a reality starts here.
2. Organize your thoughts.
This step is a little tougher. This is where you really need to envision what you want from the event – how you want it to start all the way through the last song. Do you want a cocktail hour? Is it essential to have a dessert station? Is there dancing? Live band or D.J.? The details that you brain dumped in step #1 need to be organized here. This is where the game plan starts to take effect.
This is also where you start to nix the things you don't care too much about. Maybe you don't think it's necessary to have an ice sculpture and you would rather have a chocolate fountain. Or maybe you really think a taco station would be the perfect touch! Whatever your instincts are - go with them! This is where your event idea starts to become a real thing - filled with all the unique details and specifics you desire.
Making 3 lists, "Must-Have", "Maybe" and "Not For This Party", is a very helpful technique as you start to sort through these ideas.
Also, as you're sorting, it's important to think about the event as a whole. There are a lot of details that are appealing and exciting to envision, but sometimes all of them combined can be a bit overwhelming. Try to picture your event as a whole and what vibes you want to go for.
3. Bring it to life!
Now is when the action really begins! After you've written out all the "essentials" and "maybe's" - it's time to start figuring out your action steps.
Picking a venue and a date are crucial. A lot of the other details will fall into place once the date and venue are booked so that's a great place to start taking action.
Go on tours and gather all the information and if you have multiple venues in mind, figure out what really sets them apart and what vibes you got when you were there. Also be sure that the date availability aligns with what you want.
With the venue comes specifics such as menu decisions, type of bar, dessert options and floor plan. Different venues' packages will contain a variety of things included as well as additional enhancements so it's important to go into the venue search with what you're looking for clear in mind.
Do you want a photographer, videographer, D.J. or band? Maybe you're eyeing up a particular vendor you've encountered at another event? Finding out the vendors' availability is important before booking at the venue so you can make sure they're availability aligns. If you're flexible and open - then don't fret! It'll work itself out.
Once you have the date picked at the venue, the fun can really kick off! Make sure you're checking back in with your "Must-Have" and "Maybe" lists to iron out the rest of the aesthetic, decor, and more finite details. Referencing your lists will keep you in check and focused on the actual decisions that need to be made.
* As you're moving through the planning process and working to bring your event to life, remember to enjoy the journey! Planning events can take time and work - but at the end of the day, it's a memorable experience that will lead to your dream event! *
What's next on your calendar to celebrate? Let's get to planning!