About

Bride Interview with Kate Vanderlugt

{Please take a moment to read this before hiring Kate and The Little White Dress}

1.  How long have you been a wedding planner? And why did you become one?

I have always been passionate about weddings. I love following trends and finding inspiration in unlikely places. I love the emotion, the sincerity, and the little details that showcase a couple’s personality. I pride myself on being able to introduce unique, yet cost effective elements into each of my couple’s wedding days. With my tagline being “no two couples are alike, and no two weddings should be either” – I think it is so important to have your wedding truly showcase who you are as a couple!!

I graduated with a Biomedical Sciences degree from the University of Waterloo in 2008. Not really knowing what I wanted to do with my life at that point I decided to take some time off from school and work and see the world. So on a whim, after graduation, I went to Thailand for a month – volunteered at an orphanage and traveled! It was an amazing and life altering experience, and I would go back in a heartbeat. That is definitely where my love for volunteer work stemmed, as well as my enjoyment in serving others. Since then I’ve had the opportunity to travel to Guatemala on a missionary venture, which was also incredible. I returned from Thailand in June of 2008 and started working at a consulting firm in September of that year. I enjoyed the work for the most part, but it just wasn’t able to provide me with the creative outlet that I needed. So in September of 2009, after multiple discussions with my now husband, about how unsatisfying my day job was etc. and him asking the question “well if you could do anything in the world, what would you want to do” – my answer was “look at wedding magazines all day – but I really love working with people too!” – from there my next steps were pretty obvious ones. I researched what I would have to do in order to become a wedding planner, found the Wedding Planners Institute of Canada course online, and learned that they were offering it in Waterloo just three weekends later. So I took the course, and just a month and a half after that The Little White Dress was in full swing. I have loved every moment of every wedding that I’ve been involved with, and feel absolutely blessed when a couple lets me into their lives, whether just for a day, or for several months.

Here are some of my ‘secret’ quirks: I am addicted to gummy candies. I like fashion and trends. I drink a soya Tazo® Chai tea latte. I strongly dislike Styrofoam. I like chocolate…but 70% cocoa is my fave. I shop (too much). I like to be where the action is. The fall is without a doubt my favourite season. i enjoy cocktail parties. I am passionate about volunteer work and will always have a place in my heart for a good cause. I play basketball for fun. I love my friends. I’m always cold, regardless of how warm it is outside. I dance.
I adore my husband and our fur baby, Lindor (she’s a chocolate lab!)
I am in heaven when a vision comes to life. And I love weddings.

That’s me. I love what I do.

2.  We love your wedding planning services and your portfolio, everything sounds fantastic…tell me what sets you apart from all the other wedding planners out there?

I approach every wedding as its own unique entity. From one couple to the next, I take the time to really get to know you, find out what makes you tick, and build a relationship from the beginning. This allows me to understand your tastes and your interests which then get incorporated into your grand wedding scheme. It’s all about you guys…your passions…and your love for each other!

My couples enjoy my fresh “anything goes” attitude, and appreciate my straight forward feedback when asking for an opinion or suggestion. I also serve as a bit of an emotional crutch for you and your families as you move through your engagement and wedding plans. No matter how much help you have, it is almost inevitable that something (perhaps nothing to do with the wedding) will throw you off, and you’ll just need a bit of a pick me up…I’m here for that too. Everyone needs support – and having recently been through the process I can appreciate what you’re feeling, and will do everything I can to relieve your stress! And no matter what – as important as it is to respect your family’s wishes on your wedding day – my loyalty is, and will always be, with you, and doing whatever it takes to make your day absolutely perfect!

Finally, my biggest pet peeve in the entire world is not getting a response from someone – whether that is an insurance company, a friend or a wedding vendor! I pride myself on my efficiency in responding to emails from my brides. Your wedding is going to be the most important day of your life, to date, and I promise to treat it as such!

3.  This all sounds wonderful, but it also seems expensive – are we able to afford this?

Absolutely!  There is a very common misconception that wedding planners are expensive, and are going to cost you an arm and a leg, but that’s not the case! Not only are the services offered by The Little White Dress very affordable, but they are worth every penny!

Have you ever been to a wedding that wasn’t professionally coordinated? Do you remember it feeling disjointed? Were guests confused as to where they were supposed to be? Did the bride seem uber stressed, running around like a crazy person and constantly asking what time it was? We’ve all been to at least one of those weddings, and they’re no fun! In fact, a poorly coordinated wedding doesn’t just add stress to your day; it ends up stressing your guests out too! You DEFINITELY do not want your wedding day experience to be anything like this!

With my experience and expertise in this industry I am able to suggest vendors that are going to be the right fit for your wedding, based on your needs, personalities, style, and vision! I am able to help couples save money by implementing innovative ideas, or perhaps things that you hadn’t ever thought of! There are so many great ways to create the look and feel of your dream wedding, and you won’t even have to sell your kidney’s to do so!

Hiring a wedding consultant is a wise decision for many reasons – but mostly so that I can alleviate a lot of the stress that you may have throughout the planning process, and make sure that everything is executed the way you have envisioned on the wedding day!

My favourite part of every wedding (other than the “I Do’s” of course) is seeing the look on the faces of the couple, as they enter the reception venue for the first time! Super big smiles, often a few happy tears, and usually an overwhelming amount of hugs! It means that their vision has come to fruition and they are absolutely beaming from that moment on. All of the anxieties and nerves thinking about how it would all come together, how it would all get done, and what the final product would end up looking like are washed away. Can you put a price tag on that feeling?

I know, having been a bride myself, that you can’t do it all. (And I really thought that I could!) Even being a fairly experienced planner at the time of my wedding – the build up and stress of everything was just too much come the wedding day. I will admit to having a minor breakdown at one point, and truthfully, it couldn’t have been avoided. I had worn myself so thin trying to be the bride and the coordinator that it just was too much. It does not matter how well you think you have everything organized in your head, nothing will ever go off 100% as planned – and that’s ok, that’s life. But when your plans are steered off course, you don’t want to be the one dealing with it – and in fact, when you have me there you likely won’t even know anything has happened, because I will be there to redirect things and get them back on track. Let The Little White Dress take care of the nitty gritty details so you can do your job – be fabulous!

4.  Who do you work best with?

My ideal couple knows what they like, and what they don’t, and has an opinion when an idea or decision is presented. This couple is newly engaged and has not delved too far into the planning process, but has realized that their busy lives aren’t going to let up for the next year while they plan their wedding. They just don’t have the time or the expertise to create the wedding that they’ve been dreaming of. This couple is open to suggestions, and can roll with the punches; they value having a professional by their side guiding them through the process and will be able to accept help and trust that I always have their best interest at heart. Most of all they really want to enjoy their engagement!

5.  Who is NOT going to benefit from working with you?

I love nothing more than helping an amazing couple bring their wedding dreams to life, and I’d like to say that absolutely everyone will benefit from my services on their wedding day! And, the majority of people will!! But the truth is – you have to have an amazing working relationship with your wedding planner. I want to be the ultimate de-stressor to you, your fiancé and your families so that you can truly enjoy making all of the fun decisions that go into bringing your wedding to life! So if you have a tendency to see things in a negative light and have unrealistic expectations, don’t appreciate/realize the value of a wedding planner, or don’t trust that everything I do is going to be in your best interest, then we’re not going to be a good fit. If you are the kind of person that doesn’t easily give up control (don’t worry, I’m one of them!) then I need to know that from the beginning and we have to work on that right away in order to make sure our working relationship is the fun and carefree experience that we want it to be!!

This is such a crazy time – not only are you planning likely the largest event of your adult life, but you’re also transitioning from being single to being married! I will be your shoulder to cry on when you need to get it out, your confidante when you really just need to vent, and mostly I will be that friend that you can endlessly talk to about your wedding and I will NEVER get sick of it! I promise!!

Not only will I be there for every step of the wedding process, but on your wedding day I will be the go-between for every vendor that has been hired. I truly believe that everyone on site on your wedding day will benefit from my being there as I have worked so closely with you throughout the planning that I know all of the answers to their questions without them ever having to bother you.

6.  Will I lose control of my wedding if you’re planning it for me?

Of course not! You can take on as much, or as little of your wedding planning process as you would like, and I will be whatever you need me to be. My goal is to collaboratively work with you – helping dream up fabulous ideas, providing insight if you ever need it, offering support if a venting session is in order, and anything else that comes along. Remember – I’ve not only done a number of weddings on the professional side, but I’ve also been a bride myself, and completely understand whatever it is that you’re feeling! In the end, it’s your wedding, your money, and you make the final decisions!

7.  What if you get sick or there is an unforeseeable situation that occurs, and you are unable to make our wedding?

If by some chance an emergency occurs on your wedding day, and I am unable to be there in person (which has never happened as of yet, so fingers crossed!) – I will hand the reigns over to one of my associate coordinators, who would be thrilled to be a part of your special day! It is my duty to find you a replacement that I trust and will pick up right where I left off with a seamless transition!

8.  Will you work with vendors we’ve already found?

Absolutely! If you have vendors that you’ve been swooning over since before you were engaged, that’s fantastic! I would love to meet with the vendors you already have in mind, and will work with you to find the other vendors that you still need.

9.  Do you offer a payment plan?

A 50% non-refundable deposit is necessary to get started. We offer the convenience of monthly payments for the remainder of the fee.

10.  Do you take more than one wedding per day?

I will never take more than one wedding per day, or per weekend for that matter. Your wedding day deserves 100% of my attention, and that is exactly what it will get!

11.  We have a few more questions before getting started. Can I contact you to discuss this further?   

Yes, of course! I want you to be comfortable with me, and I’d love to get to know you a little bit better! Just send me an email at kate@thelittlewhitedress.ca and we’ll set up a complimentary one (1) hour consultation where we’ll get acquainted, chat about your wedding visions, and see if we will be a good fit! If you live a great distance from Kitchener-Waterloo we can set up a time to chat on the phone for our initial consultation, or even over Skype if you’re overseas! (Wouldn’t be the first time!) I’m so excited to hear from you, and really look forward to setting up our meeting!

12.  This sounds like everything we’ve been looking for – what happens next to start the process?

Great! You should take a moment to review our services to learn a bit more about what we offer. Then, the next step would be to set up our one (1) hour complimentary “get acquainted” consultation where we’ll go over any details, ideas, or dreams that you have for your wedding day – and get to know each other better of course! To set up this meeting, you can email me at kate@thelittlewhitedress.ca or give me a call at 519-573-6367. Please make sure that you have fully read this interview prior to our meeting.

I can’t wait to sit down with you, and to be a part of your wedding day!

Keep smiling, loving, and planning!
Your Wedding Planner, Kate Vanderlugt
The Little White Dress

If you’d like to get to know me even better – like me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, and check out by Blog!

 

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