“These days, everyone wants a unique event that reflects their personal style. The issue becomes how to bring that personalized uniqueness out in a way guests understand and can enjoy.” Whitney Pizzale 

What are some of the ways that you as an event planner and designer help a couple find their personal style, as well as their joint vision.

I really try to listen to my clients. I like finding out what types of hobbies they have, the things they love to do together, what they enjoy doing on the weekend, do they have a favourite food, is there a certain activity they love to do. Then it is just coming up with fun ways to bring that into the wedding. Sometimes you have to think outside of the box. Food is always an easy one to bring in. I try to have at least one element that represents the bride and one that represents the groom.

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Your wedding reception at Airship37 included some fun interactive guest experiences. How did you come up with these ideas and how did you create the right balance of decor touches to strike this joyful environment.

We knew we wanted it to be a really fun party so we sat down and wrote out a list of all the things we enjoy surrounding food, drinks and entertainment. These are the things most guests remember and I knew that the décor part would come easy once we had our list. We thought about our favourite food and discussed ways to put those into the passed hors d’oeuvres and stations. Poutine and oysters were a must!

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What is your personal favourite part of planning an event and how do you continue to evolve in your profession?

Definitely the décor. I love taking thoughts and ideas from a client and turning them into reality. Whether a client knows the exact look they want or only has a feeling, it is so much fun to come up with unique and creative ideas. I really try to stay on top of trends and read blogs and magazines, but I also love being different and going with my gut for the next big trend. Events and décor are really influenced by so many elements, whether it is the latest fashion trend, interior design, architecture, nature or even the next big movie.

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As a planner and event stylist how did you chose the venue of Airship37 and what informed your choice?

I loved that Airship37 was a blank white space, but it still had a warmth to it that a lot of industrial venues are missing. Airship also had facilities that made the planning easier (kitchen, washrooms, furniture, staffing, etc.). I knew I wanted a space that could handle a fun and crazy colour palette but still feel like a wedding. Airship37 was perfect!

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Your wedding graphics and invites were so beautifully designed. What were your visual inspirations for your lovely wedding?

I would tell people that my party was “Dr. Seuss” themed, but I never meant that literally. It was more that I wanted it to have a fun, weird side. I had my wedding ceremony in New York City and it was designed to be very formal and romantic. Our party in Toronto was a chance to let our creative side out. Visually, colour was the biggest inspiration. I knew I wanted to have multiple colours, it was just figuring out what ones. I started with one colour to keep everything centred (hot pink) and then added in the right shades of yellow, blue and green.

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Mango Studios beautifully captured your wedding party in a candid whimsical collection. How did you communicate your vision of your event with them and arrive at a shared vision?

Mango is amazing. It is so helpful to spend time with your photographer so they can get a feel for who you are. That is why I think engagement photos are so important: and as a bonus engagement photos give you a chance to practice in front of the camera! There are a lot of incredible photographers out there. You want to pick someone who’s shooting style matches your vision.

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Your wedding reception had such a fun lounge party feeling where you had guests dancing and mingling and enjoying themselves. Which of these choices were key in achieving this?

Finding that right balance of seating is important. You certainly want to have enough seating so that guests can rest their feet (especially older guests), but you don’t want so much seating that it clutters the room or makes it difficult for guests to move around. At Airship 37, we included a seating area at the back of the venue to give guests a quiet place to rest their feet, and included couches close to the dance floor to make it easy for guests to take a quick break between dancing and grabbing a drink from the bar. When placing the couches, we made sure that there were wide pathways on either side so that guests wouldn’t get caught in a traffic jam!

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Your outfit was stunning, how did you arrive at this beautiful choice and what was your inspiration for it?

I wore my actual wedding dress at the very beginning (the one I got married in in NYC) and then wanted to change into something that reflected the atmosphere and was a little more fashion-forward. I knew I wanted something a bit “edgy” but still “wedding-like”. It took a lot of time to search for the perfect pieces. Pinterest is such a fantastic tool. I think I had around 100 inspiration photos pinned and then I just narrowed down my look and started searching. My top was actually a swimsuit!

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You write articles about the particular aspects of a wedding. One that sticks out is where you discuss the critical role of the MC at a wedding. What other key areas of a wedding are often overlooked?

I think people often are not realistic about timing. There is a lot to get done in a small amount of time and if you think that dress change is only going to take 5 minutes when in reality it takes 30, that can really mess up the flow. Or your father promises his speech is only 5 minutes but he actually speaks for 20. That can cause a lot of issues for the kitchen and can ruin a meal. Obviously, if you have good vendors they are going to make it work no matter what, but if you can properly and realistically plan for these things in advance, even better.

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What were the best choices you made that had the biggest payoff in terms of your enjoyment and that of your wedding party?

Hiring good vendors and making sure there was someone there to run the show! There is nothing worse than having to deal with an issue on your wedding day and it sucks having to ask good friends or family to do it. The peace of mind knowing that there is someone there to just deal with issues and that your vendors are at the top of their game makes a huge difference.

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The pictures that Mango Studio took are unique and stylized. “I like nonsense it wakes up my brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living.” – Dr. Seuss. You had this inspiration quote printed on your party napkins. How does the energy and spirit of Dr. Seuss relate to your philosophy of events?

Events are meant to be fun!! Of course there is a seriousness to a wedding but remember you are there to celebrate love!

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Where do you go to find inspiration for the events you are planning and designing?

I start with my client. I find out as much about them as I can and go from there. After that I turn to a lot of different sources. It can be anything from the colours and architecture of the event space, to the latest trends in fashion. They key is tying it back to the client and making it personal. You can have the most “trendy” wedding in the world, but 20 years from now it could seem dated. What survives over time are the personal touches that make the event special and unique to the couple.

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Whitney Pizale W Events — Event Planner/Owner

Venue: Airship37

Photographer : Mango Studios