Looking for helping planning your big day, check out this recommended supplier feature with Val Mattinson, one of Nottingham’s leading wedding planners.
Val Mattinson – Creative Director and Wedding Planner
Benessamy Weddings & Events
Tell us a bit about yourself and your business?
I am the Creative Director and Planner at Benessamy Weddings & Events – a multi award winning wedding and event planning company based in Nottingham. We provide personal, creative and inspired events for busy clients.
How did you get started as a wedding planner?
I began my career as a solicitor in the public sector before moving into external and corporate affairs where I gained my event planning and organisational experience organising corporate, ministerial and special events.
I enjoyed organising many special occasion events over the years but I think the one which helped me to realise that it was time to put my energy, passion, organisation (and list making!) skills into business was my brother and sister in law’s wedding in Barbados back in 2008.
My initial curiosity and interest in the detail of their plans turned into the need to literally roll up my sleeves and assist with the on the day co-ordination to ensure their dream wedding ran smoothly and in accordance with their plans. I loved every minute of it!
In 2010 I decided to leave the world of corporate affairs to set up Benessamy Weddings & Events. Having trained with the UK Alliance of Wedding Planners (UKAWP) I launched Benessamy in 2011 and am now a Level 2 Member of the UKAWP and have been appointed as their Regional Ambassador for the Midlands.
I love being part of the UK wedding industry and was thrilled to be awarded the Best Wedding Planner in the East Midlands in The Wedding Industry Awards 2015 and 2016 following client nominations and voting and Highly Commended in the Nationals in 2015.
Reasons couples should consider hiring a wedding planner?
Many of my clients who choose the full wedding planning service have busy working lives. With our full wedding planning service I’m on hand at the earliest stage of your wedding planning journey to reduce the stress you may feel by managing all the details from start to finish.
This service provides you with the satisfaction of knowing you have help with finding the right venue, reliable suppliers and ensuring you get the most for their wedding budget.
I work closely with you to ensure you make all the decisions and maintain absolute control with support to ensure you have a day that truly reflects you.
For couples who maybe feeling overwhelmed by their wedding planning, are running out of time or steam and just need a little extra help we have the Rescue Service. As the name suggests, this service is designed to help clients complete their plans.
I can look closely at the plans you have made so far, make recommendations on anything that is outstanding and tie up any loose ends to ensure everything runs smoothly.
If you’ve planned everything yourselves and want to ‘hand over the reins’ in the final 2-3 weeks leading up to your wedding we have our Wedding day Management service. Following a detailed meeting with you to discuss all the logistical details, schedule, seating plan, etc. we contact the venue and all suppliers to introduce ourselves and finalise the set up and wedding day plan.
We attend on the wedding day for the whole set up usually right through to the start of the evening reception (the exact hours are tailored to suit you). This is a great option particularly for marquee weddings where there may not be an overall manager of the day, multi venue weddings or weddings with lots of design details to be incorporated.
How do you ensure a bride and groom’s personality is reflected in the wedding?
I like to work closely with my clients and enjoy getting to know them during their wedding planning journey – From as early as the initial consultation, finding out about their hobbies, work and lifestyle interests to ensure that your personality is reflected in the special day we plan with you.
You make all the decisions and maintain absolute control with support to ensure you have a day that truly reflects you.
Top tips for wedding couples planning their day.
1. Agree a budget and stick to it!
This is so important. If you don’t get this right you may find yourselves in all sorts of difficult conversations later down the line. Before you buy or book anything or visit any venues, agree and decide on your budget envelope. This is so important – all your wedding planning decisions will depend on it – when you want to get married, where, who you want to invite, the style, the size of your wedding party…….the list goes on. Be clear how much and from where and understand if any contributions come with ‘strings or conditions attached or expectations.
2. Be You
Remember who you are and choose a wedding style that suits you – if you’re comfortable with formality and formal is what you’re looking for that’s fine but don’t be pressured into opting for a style that just doesn’t reflect you. This goes for choosing your suppliers too!
3. Draw up a Planning Schedule To do list/Action List/Timeline – call it what you like – This will help you with what you need to do and by when. It’s important to be organised but also be realistic about the time and the skills you have. If the ‘blank canvas’ wedding appeals to you do your homework to find out what will actually be involved in painting the picture – can you do it on your own? What help do you need? Do you have access to the level and type of help you need?
4. Draw on as many sources of inspiration as you can. There are lots of fabulous wedding blogs, the treasure trove of inspiration that is Pinterest, wedding shows and of course, wedding magazines, books and recommendations or referrals from friends, family and venue recommendations. However, be careful! Don’t get distracted away from the type and style of wedding that YOU want.
5. Look After Yourselves!
Try not to get too obsessed with wedding planning – (I know that sounds a little strange coming from a wedding planner!) but take regular breaks from your plans to spend time with each other – enjoy being engaged rather than seeing it as just a gap between being single and married!
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