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Montreal, Quebec

514.978.7871

Journal

Filtering by Category: Business

Reserve the Date Events : : new and improved website!

Maxine Bertrand

Hello bloggers and blogettes! I've been away for quite some time now and I am sure some of you began to think that I gave up on blogging. Heck no! I've actually been up day and night working on my new and improved website over here. OH EM GEEE! I could not be any more thrilled about this! I mean don't get me wrong, while my old site did serve it's purpose for the last year it wasn't up to par with my standards and felt like it lacked pizzazz. I'm not saying this will be my all time final website, however it will be my new home for a duration of time. Since the launch of my site and company back in April 2012, so many great things have happened and I have had the opportunity to gain more and more experience. I've also received some praises from clients, which has helped me add some more content to my site. I have to say 2012 was really good to me, however I think 2013 is looking pretty darn good.

Here is a little before and after.... Ready?

Old Site

Old-Site

Again, I don't want to cut this one down because I worked darn hard to build that website from scratch. However, I'm totally in love with my new one... Here goes!

New Site

New-Site

This one has more colour and pictures which makes it so much more enjoyable to browse through. It still contains my favourite pink and grey but has a brighter feel to it. Here you have it, my new and improved look! Make sure to go by the my site today!

I'd be more that happy to hear what you think of my new site, so don't be shy to leave some love.

Have a great Thursday all

Max xoxo

Reserve the Date Events : : 2012 wrap-up

Maxine Bertrand

Here we are, December 31st, 2012… already. This year seemed like it just flew by. It seems like just yesterday it was January 11th, 2012 when I decided to take the big leap and register my company officially with the government of Quebec.

It feels like yesterday when I launched my website in April of this year.

It feels like just yesterday when I decided to start this blog.

It feels like just yesterday when I received my first inquiry through my website’s contact page and signed on my first client’s Amy and Sathy.

It seems like just yesterday I was traveling through Southern Spain.

It seems like just yesterday I turned 34 (uggghhh).

It seems like just yesterday I received a last minute call for a day-of coordination which turned out to be a lot more!

It seems like just yesterday I was soaking up the sun in Jamaica.

IMG_1105 IMG_1157 IMG_1162

It seems like just yesterday the biggest storm in a very long time hit Montreal, the day before Jenn and Alex’s wedding at L’Auberge Saint Gabriel (stay tune for some beautiful pictures!).

WOW and here we are, today December 31st, 2012 with clearly so much to be grateful for. My personal life is filled with people I love and bring me joy and laughter every single day. I’m healthy and still feel young. My professional life just keeps getting busier and I’m thankful for all the new people I have met along the way during my launch.

Last but not least I’m appreciative for every single one of you, my followers and supporters, that have taken the time to read my blog and share your kind thoughts through your comments.

I truly feel blessed and look forward to 2013 being nothing but a great follow-up to 2012.

I wish every single one of you out there a Happy New Year filled with love, joy, happiness, friendships, success and health!

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With love,

Maxine xoxo

Advice : : wedding coordinator, planner or designer?

Maxine Bertrand

Don’t you just hate when you are searching the web for a service or a business and an entire list of different titles appear and you ask yourself “Really? What is the difference?” Well I can tell you that this question has come up often in my mind when I was deciding to become a wedding planner and was trying to identify which services I wanted to offer my clients. This was quite tricky to breakdown and to figure out how to price these services. Whether you are a bride looking for someone to help you with your wedding or you are looking to work in this industry, the below will surely be helpful.

Wedding Planner

A wedding planner is your advocate every step of the way of your wedding planning.  Your wedding planner is responsible for the planning, organization and coordination of all aspects of your wedding, from A to Z. In most cases, the full service planner is hired right after she said yes! Everything from creating a budget, researching vendors and venues to creating your timeline and assisting with any etiquette inquiries you may have. The wedding planner takes care of ensuring your big day runs smoothly and is responsible for managing all vendors involved, ensuring a solution is found for any issues that may arise and will make sure all payments are distributed on your behalf. By the time you walk down the aisle your wedding planner will have become somewhat of a close friend and will be by far be the most valued investment you will have made.

Day-of Coordinator

A Day-of Coordinator (DOC) is hired by the future bride and groom who are already well advanced in the preparation of their wedding or wish to do everything on their own, but require support for the coordination of the wedding day to ensure that everything goes as planned and smoothly. Couples usually hire the DOC anywhere from 2 months to 3 weeks before their wedding day. During the meeting the DOC is brought up to speed on what has already been planned and booked. The DOC prepares the timeline of the wedding day events and manages the activities of the key players on the wedding day: Bride, Groom, Vendors, Bridal party and family members. These are typically the same services as the wedding planner, however, much more limited and for this reason, the cost for a DOC is considerably less.

Wedding Designer

There are wedding planners such as myself who also offer design services in their full service packages. Essentially the designer is responsible the decor of your wedding which includes, tablescapes, favor ideas, floor plans, lighting, centerpieces, etc… basically the designer marries all your ideas and all the components mentioned to bring your envisioned wedding to life. It’s important to know that not all designers are planners and not all planners are designers. The designer will guide you throughout the design portion of your wedding. A wedding and design planner will provide the ultimate experience for their clients to ensure that they can worry about nothing other than saying “I do".

For the brides that did get assistance with their wedding, which did you hire, a planner, coordinator or designer? And for the ladies getting married, are you looking for help?

Happy Wednesday lovelies xoxo

Advice : : tipping your vendors - part I

Maxine Bertrand

Right about now you are saying “Is this woman mad?!?! Now we have to include tips on top of everything else???”. Perhaps if you look at it from another point of view, you might see things differently. When you go to a fancy and expensive restaurant you expect nothing shy of perfection when it comes to the wait staff right? And unless you get absolute horrible service, you still leave a tip as a courtesy for that service even though you just paid a heap load for the meal itself. The same goes for your vendors. Here is some general advice on which vendors should be tipped and how much. One of the first steps would be to find out from your vendors if tipping is allowed. There are several vendors that include the wages of their staff in their price. Also, some vendors add gratuities to their final price so ensure to double check the contract and not to tip twice.

{image via Kate Spade New York}

If you have hired a wedding planner or coordinator, this person should be the task owner for delivering the tips and payments to these vendors. Someone should be assigned such as the best man or one of the fathers in the event that you do not have a planner or coordinator. All tips must be calculated and prepared in separate envelopes ahead of time, making it easier for the person responsible to deliver the tips. Also, the gratuity should either be handed out at the time of service (hair and makeup), at the end of the wedding (this allows you to adjust based on the service provided) or at the beginning of the wedding. Chances are if you hand out your gratuity envelopes before, the vendors will be more likely to go above and beyond for you.

Here is a tipping cheat sheet:

Limousine or Bus Drivers:  10-15 percent of the limousine bill, given at the end of the evening

Valet Parking Attendants: $1 to $2 per car and a sign should be posted to guests that the gratuity is taken care of

Wait staff: 15 percent of the total catering bill, if the tip is not stipulated in the contract already

Maître d’hôtel or headwaiter: 1 to 3 percent of food and beverage fees

Bartenders – 10 percent of the total liquor bill (split among them). Make sure that a tip hasn't been added to your contract already

Bathroom attendants: $1 to $2 per guest Coat check attendants: $1 to $2 per guest

Makeup artist: or Hair Stylists:  15 to 20 percent Makeup artist: 15 to 20 percent

DJ: If the DJ owns the company then the tip is optional but if the DJ is an employee, $50 to $100. If you have 2 DJs (DJ & MC), give each person $50 in separate envelopes. When your guests rave about your reception later, it's the DJ that had everything to do with the fun

Musicians:15 percent of fee for ceremony musicians; $25 to $50 per musician for reception, with the sum given to the person in charge.

Please note, these are examples and are an average based on region. Prices will vary from major cities to suburban towns.

Stay tuned for Part Deux soon!

Max xoxo

Hello 2013 Brides! : : book your wedding planner

Maxine Bertrand

So you're engaged? Congrats! Now what?!?! Exactly, now what! You call Reserve the Date Events and book your wedding planner today!

We are still taking on new brides-to-be for the 2013 season. Make sure to book your consultation now by calling us at 514-978-7871, emailing us at info@reservethedate.ca or by filling out our online form here or here.

Please note, we take on a limited number of weddings every year due to our weddings being hand-crafted and dates are booking up fast!