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Video Blog: Using Pinterest for Wedding Inspiration

Shari Zatman, Owner and Principal Event Planner and Designer of Perfectly Planned by Shari, discusses the use of Pinterest as a tool for wedding inspiration.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Planning Your Wedding

May 17, 2018

If there’s one thing we’ve learned in the event industry, it’s that some things are unpredictable. As much as we’d like to say that the planning process is easy, the reality is that you’re bound to run into some inevitable difficulties. We’re here to help you avoid some potential mistakes that can be managed by proper planning.

Here are three common mistakes to avoid when planning your wedding:

Selecting the wrong venue

Choosing a venue is as important to your vision as it is to your budget.  There are several factors to consider when choosing your venue – guest capacity, pricing, etc. Consider if the venue needs a lot of transformation to fit your aesthetic vision, or if you like it the way it is. If it needs transformation, make sure you can budget for that. Find out what is included at the venue, and what you would need to bring in on your own.

Also, make sure that it holds the right capacity for you. Be sure to find out how many guests can be seated with a dance floor and that there is ample room to include a large enough dance floor and additional elements like your entertainment, bars and food tables.

Keeping a flexible budget

Be sure that you’re leaving enough space in your wedding budget for last minute needs and unexpected expenses. While the venue, flowers food/beverage and vendors are all important elements of your wedding day, there may be some items that have not been considered. Event space fees, transportation costs and taxes and service charges are just a few examples.

Also, keep in mind, when looking at your options, you may prefer the more expensive options to the lesser expensive ones in several potential categories of the planning. If you want some flexibility to be able to include some upgrades then allow for that room in your budget.

Thinking everything on Pinterest can be yours

Pinterest is a great tool for event design and décor ideas; however, it can also be misleading to be able recreate what you see within your own budget. Look through your wedding board and consider what design elements you love and what elements you can live without. Is there a common theme in all of your pins? You may have to choose between that beautiful ceremony backdrop or that fabulous escort card display. You will have to decide what your priorities are.

Video Blog: Wedding Design and Branding

May 5, 2018

Shari Zatman, Owner and Principal Event Planner & Designer of Perfectly Planned by Shari, discusses elements of custom wedding design and branding.


Wedding Elements We Love: Designed Eclectic

Wedding Elements We Love: Designed Eclectic

April 27, 2018

We’re highlighting some of our favorite wedding elements, starting with a style that allows you to combine many of your favorite components into one design.

We call it “Designed Eclectic”- An unexpected mixture of furniture, linens and décor that can give your event an impressive style. This allows you to tastefully combine your favorite colors and textures and also gives you comfortable flexibility with what you can incorporate into your special day.

Choose one color palette and then build off of those colors with a few different shades, hues, textures or patterns. You can incorporate these styles into your tablescapes with varied linens or dinnerware. For example, select several different combinations of charger plates, table cloths and flatware patterns that all work well together. Mix varied centerpieces with similar elements such as the color palette, but incorporate a different mixture of flowers and candles at varied heights, shapes and compositions.

With the many styles of furniture available for your event, it’s difficult to choose just one. Alternate two or three different types of dining chairs at your tables to create a carefully selected mix. For a little twist on traditional seating, you may consider incorporating upholstered banquettes and bench seating at your tables in place of chairs.

If you’re anything like us, you’ve looked through Pinterest and have fallen in love with several different event décor ideas. You may want to incorporate several elements that you aren’t yet sure work together. Seek help from a professional Event Designer to make sure your eclectic design ideas are cohesive and well executed. As long as your elements are harmonious, you have the opportunity to include as much or as little variation as you see fit for your special day.

The Do’s & Don’ts of Wedding Planning

The Do’s & Don’ts of Wedding Planning

March 14, 2018

Planning your wedding will be one of the most special (and possibly stressful) times of your life. We’ve laid out a few of our top “Do’s” and “Don’ts” to help smooth out the planning process and hopefully avoid some roadblocks along the way.

The Do’s:

1) Do rely on the professionals
Pinterest is full of great concepts, but bringing those ideas to life can be difficult. Pittsburgh is full of experienced vendors that want to help make your special day exactly what you are envisioning. What if you don’t yet have a vision for your event? They can help you brainstorm and use your Pinterest photos for inspiration.

2) Do incorporate your interests in your event
There are so many ways to integrate your interests and personality into an event. Whether that’s through your color palette, branding, or a special dessert, your event should be a reflection of who you as a couple.

3) Do enjoy the process
Engagements are a special time for not only you and your fiancée, but for your friends and family as well. Be sure to soak in the process and celebrate your small victories (i.e. choosing some stellar centerpieces or picking your perfect cake.)

The Don’ts:

1) Don’t sweat the small stuff
Think big picture – location, vendors, guest list, etc. We’re not saying to forget about the details (especially because we LOVE details,) but try not to focus on them until the larger aspects of your event are covered.

2) Don’t procrastinate
Waiting until the last minute is a big “no-no” when it comes to wedding planning. Not only does it cause unnecessary stress, but it can also take away from your special day.
Are you a natural procrastinator? Give yourself 2 to 3 larger components to take on each month. Before you know it, you’ll have handled all of your major tasks and will be left with only smaller details to manage.

3) Don’t try to handle everything yourself
Avoid looking back on your wedding planning as a never-ending to-do list. It’s essential to delegate some of the planning to your trusted loved ones, a professional, or both!
If you’re a “control freak,” make a list of the aspects that aren’t as important to you and your fiancé, and start to delegate those pieces first. If you don’t hire a Full-Service Wedding Planner, then we believe that every wedding should have a Day-Of Coordinator. This way you have a dedicated professional attending to only you and your wedding all day.

Video Blog Series: Why Hire a Wedding Planner?

March 7, 2018

Hear from Shari Zatman, Owner and Principal Event Planner and Designer of Perfectly Planned by Shari on the benefits of hiring a wedding planner.

Video Blog Series: Get to Know Shari Zatman

February 23, 2018

Get to know Owner and Principal Event Planner and Designer, Shari Zatman, of Perfectly Planned by Shari. This is the first in the series of upcoming videos.

For the Romantic Procrastinator: Last-Minute Valentine’s Day Date Ideas

For the Romantic Procrastinator: Last-Minute Valentine’s Day Date Ideas

February 12, 2018

The most romantic holiday of the year is just two days away. We trust that you’ve already planned out a perfect night full of dreamy surprises, BUT just in case you haven’t, here are some great last-minute date options in or around Pittsburgh:

For the Adventurer
Pittsburgh offers tons of great museums and unique activities, if your Valentine is looking for a fun-filled holiday. Visit the Schenley Park Ice Skating Rink for a special night under the stars or Phipps Conservatory for a romantic day time date surrounded by the beautiful botanical gardens. If you are planning to celebrate over the weekend, Phipps Conservatory is open on Saturday evening.

For the Art-Inspired
Express your creativity by blowing your own glass art at the Pittsburgh Glass Center, or stop by the Candle Lab in Lawrenceville to pour your own scented soy candles. These options are a fun way to make memories while enjoying each other’s company.

For the Hopeless Romantic
Surprise your loved one with a night’s stay at one of the wonderful local hotels. Pamper them with a spa treatment at the Fairmont hotel in Downtown Pittsburgh or share a candlelit dinner at the Commoner in Hotel Monaco.

For the Sweet Tooth
We all know that the real way to your loved-one’s heart is through their stomach. Take your sweetheart on a trip to Duck Donuts in Upper St. Clair for a treat.  These made-to-order customizable donuts are sure to satisfy any sweet tooth. Head to Waffallonia in Squirrel Hill for freshly made Belgian waffles or make a pit stop at Naturoll Creamery for rolled ice cream!

Last Minute Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas

Last Minute Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas

February 11, 2018

We’re celebrating the most romantic holiday of the year by sharing some of our favorite gift ideas for your special someone. The best part? These gifts are all local to Pittsburgh – our favorite city.

Delightful Desserts
If you’re buying for someone who loves sweets, you won’t want to pass up the beautiful hand painted chocolate truffles from A519 Chocolate (who now have a pop up store in Lawrenceville) or the colorful macarons at the new Macaron Bar in Ross Park Mall. Sweet treats are a simple yet thoughtful gift, and Pittsburgh is full of awesome dessert vendors who are looking to help you find the perfect indulgence.

Edward Marc Chocolatier is another great option for a sweet gift. This company is owned and operated by the same owner of The Milkshake Factory. It’s no surprise that their desserts are irresistible; they use only sustainably-sourced ingredients for their delicious products. They not only sell hand-made chocolates, but a delicious variety of caramel dipped apples as well.

Fresh Flowers
Flowers are feminine, fun and fragrant. They’re a feel-good gift that reminds your loved one how much you care. Visit Allison McGeary Florist’s storefront in Lawrenceville for a beautiful bouquet or call Hens and Chicks in the Strip District for an impressive arrangement! Want to surprise your loved one with a flower delivery? Both Hens and Chicks and Allison McGeary can deliver one-of-a-kind arrangements right to your door.

Blissful Beauty Products
Pamper your loved one with a hand-crafted product from Una Biologicals in Lawrenceville. Their shop features organic lotions, soaps, essential oils and much more. Not sure which product to buy? You can also purchase a gift card for one of Una’s upcoming workshops!

Introducing: Perfectly Planned by Shari’s Video Blog Series

January 30, 2018

We are excited to announce a new video blog series featuring Shari Zatman, Owner of Perfectly Planned by Shari. Shari is an award winning Event Planner and designer with more than 20 years of experience in the industry.