“Success is the sum of details.”
Harvey S. Firestone
While deciding on décor, look around your venue. Note the colours of carpets, floor, chairs, and walls. Also look at the entire range of tableware and see how well different pieces gel together. Make a budget before finalizing the décor because this is an item that can suck a lot of your dollars unless you begin with a limit in mind. Usually it is better to focus your budget on a particular area -for example linens or floral arrangements- rather than peppering it in bits on several areas. When creating a look, keep in mind the feel and the mood you want to engender.
Good organization goes a long way in enhancing the décor. For example, nicely presented menus, place cards, program, name cards, table numbers are a cost-effective way to lend beauty to your event. In Canada almost every item is available for rent and you can rent lighting, chairs, chair covers, tables, linens, cutlery, china, glassware, and any other items exactly as per the taste of your event. In terms of delivery, set-up, tear-down, and return of the rented items; determine exactly in advance what the rental company will be responsible for, what the facility staff will do, and what you will have to get done on your own.
The centerpieces on the tables must be small enough for the guests to see one another and talk over them. There is a huge range of ideas for centerpieces and you can afford to be highly imaginative. If you choose flowers, make sure that there is a theme to them all across the event.
Think how many photographers will you need and also if you need a video too. Also think at what spots will the photographers be placed. Brief your photographers in advance about any specific pictures to be taken or people to be specially covered. Inform the photographers when you want them to arrive and what time they can leave. Decide on the price and the turnaround time beforehand. Keep photographers’ requirements, like lighting or staging, in mind. Arrange for a prior site visit for the photographers. Inform them of the dress code and make sure they are familiar with the guests you consider important. Always seek references and check the quality of a photographer’s previous work.
There is no doubt that live entertainment can play an important part in enhancing an event. You need to be very careful in choosing the type of entertainment for your event. Is your event a family, community, cultural, arts, or corporate affair? Also keep in mind the age profile of the guests. What may be a hit with one age profile may not appeal at all to another age profile. Use your judgement and accordingly set guidelines for the comedians, MCs, or other performers at your event. Do some homework on the people you choose, check references. Prepare a detailed schedule of the happenings during the event and specify all important details in the contract. Find out about the entertainers’ requirements. Do they require a dressing room? Are there any other special requirements – lighting, sound, stage, refreshments etc.? What insurance coverage does the performance require and who will provide for it – you, supplier, or the facility? Inform the entertainers of the dress requirements for the event.
LAST BUT NOT LEAST
Parting gifts are always a nice way to send your guests away with a memory. These gifts do not have to be expensive but they must be relevant and must demonstrate good taste.
Remember to say thank you in the days immediately after your event. Thank your guests, thank all volunteers, and thank everyone who went out of their way to make sure that your event was a success. Make it personal and mention them by name. Try and be specific rather than making people feel that they are merely receiving a form letter as a formality.
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