Tag Archives: event

Skills South West

11 Mar

UWE Bristol Exhibition & Conference Centre
Wednesday 19 March 9.30am – 3pm and 5pm – 8pm
Thursday 20 March 9.30am – 3pm

“Skills South West is the biggest skills and careers event happening in the region. Aimed at 15-24 year olds this free event will inspire and motivate.  Hands on interactive features will give you a chance to get a real taste of different future career options whatever your dreams or ambitions.

Whether you’re at school or college, starting work, a teacher, parent/carer or family this is the one event that could change your future.  Visit and be inspired, motivated and thrilled with over 70 organisations providing interactive features from every major career sector imaginable.”

Visit http://www.skillssw.co.uk for more information.

Some businesses to check out if you’re planning an event

8 Apr

On Saturday I was lucky enough to marry Steve – the wonderful man who makes it possible for me to have two kids, a part time job, and my own business, and still have time for the occasional shopping trip and night out.  I won’t bore you with all the details of our wedding, but I thought I would use this opportunity to share with you some of the wonderful small businesses that helped make our wedding so special.  If you are planning any kind of event, please do check out some of these great businesses.  We tried to use local businesses, run by people we already knew, to make our day really personal.

The Very Vintage Hire Company – we hired all sorts including a Post Box, Deck Chairs, Crazy Golf Course (made just for us after I suggested it to them!).  Make sure you get hold of their gorgeous e-catalogue!  Find out more about the young entrepreneur that started the company in our interview, here, and check out her new shop, the Attic, based on Exeter Quay.

Virginia’s Vintage Hire – we hired our tables and chairs from this lovely company.

Angel Face – I bought my dress from this shop in Buckfastleigh, the staff were so friendly and helpful.

Perspectives Photography – amazing, beautiful photographer, definitely worth checking out.  Steal the Stage Photography also provided us with a second photographer and different point of view.

Il Vulcano – a pizza van with a real wood burning oven inside!

Red Rock Brewery – the local brewery provided the bar on the day.

Our friends created a band just for us, including members from These Reigning Days and Baskerville.

A Paper Rose – a friend did our fresh flowers but I bought my bouquet from here, as well as windmills for the kids, and decorations for our cake, which was made by Cakes Delicious.

Party Lights – masses of pretty lighting made our day look truly magical.

East Teign Nursery – our children’s nursery provided friendly staff to help entertain the hordes of children we invited!

Cliffden Hotel – Cliffden Hotel in Teignmouth is run by Action for Blind People and has beautiful grounds.

Liza Kane – Liza runs L.A Barbers and took on the mammoth task of calming my unruly hair!

Newton Print – Newton Print printed the invitations that Steve designed for us – everyone commented on the great quality of the printing (and of course the design!)

Love My Dress – this blog inspired me in my wedding planning.  They have just released their first book, which immediately went to Number One on the Amazon chart for weddings.

The Natural Wedding Company is another wedding blog, which featured an amazing wedding that I was lucky enough to attend.

Kate Garey – I bought lovely little hand mirrors as thank you gifts for my bridesmaids.

Linds from Shaldon Bakery (and the band Bad Mojo) is a friend and made us a fabulous picnic.

Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin – one of my favourite bands rewrote one of their classic songs, which Steve used to propose.

The Wedding Reporter – although we didn’t use this in the end, I just think it’s the most fantastic idea so I wanted to share it with you.  As an alternative/addition to photography and videography, The Wedding Reporter takes notes on the day which they write up into a beautiful and unique book to remember your day.

A massive thank you to all of the businesses mentioned above, and everyone else who was involved in the day.  Sorry if we have missed anyone out!

Party Planning

1 Apr

On Saturday I will be marrying my super-Steve.  Wedding planning has been an interesting process with two young children in tow – I can understand why most people choose the more traditional route of getting married before having babies!  Here at Opportunity Plus South West, we have met several people who are interested in starting their own business as a wedding/party planner.  Generally this happens after they have planned an event of their own and enjoyed the process.  Other times, we have worked with people who offer a service that is used at events (for example DJing, floristry, hairdressing, photography) who want to add another string to their bow.

Party planning is hard work (believe me!) and having an extra person on board (other than your fiancé) would have been extremely helpful at times.  However, it is vital that you have a good rapport with your customers, and know that you are on the same wavelength.  Brides are typically difficult customers with a very specific vision – which they may or may not be able to articulate!  As a party planner you have to be prepared for your clients to have sudden and dramatic changes of heart!  It could mean having to scrap work that you have worked hard on, so you need to find a balance between being passionate about someone else’s vision and being able to let it go or change it if necessary.

Party planning is a great business to start up alongside employment, as you can work as and when needed at evenings and weekends.  Most wedding fayres and events happen at weekends, and many suppliers are small businesses who will be able to deal with you by email any time.  Though through the recession people have been cutting back on their spending, weddings are still big business – noone wants to scrimp on their big day.

If you think you have got what it takes to become a professional party planner, why not get in touch and have a chat with us about your business idea?  Call us on 0800 043 2440.

Oh, and I just have to share my top wedding planning tip, as I came up with it all by myself and am very proud of it!  Write your thank you cards at the same time as your invitations, that way there’s no risk of missing anyone out, and you have them ready to post out straight after the wedding!