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Designer vs. Planner - Knowing the Difference

June 25, 2014

Styling & designing a special occasion vs. planning & coordinating one... it can by a topic of confusion. Both play into the production and success of any event, but knowing the difference may help you select the right professional for your needs.

So - why is there confusion to begin with? 

 

Planning an event may include some décor and design work… its inevitable.
And styling doesn’t just mean designing and creating event eye-candy; it requires an understanding for the event plans and an ability to coordinate the smallest detail.

 

An understanding for each end of the spectrum is required when creating the perfect event. However, depending on the event professionals expertise, the overall service may be executed (and maybe, even communicated) differently during the process.


Both, designers and planners, are passionate about what they do and can be relied on for helping you host a fabulous occasion. Both can have expertise or experience that naturally overlap in the services they may provide.

An example of services that both Designers and/or Coordinators may provide:

  • Refer or introduce you to vendors

  • Recommend suitable venues

  • Assist with budgeting advice

  • Coordinate rentals

  • Help with layout and set-up



Let's discuss the differences:

Some Designers may also provide planning, but their services are built around their styling and decor strengths. While some Coordinators will offer design services, but their packages are cultivated from their expertise in planning.

Styling & Design:

Event Stylists and Designers bring cohesion to a theme and will tell a story, or create an experience, through visual impact. Its about enhancing the feeling of the event by including personal details and unique elements that heighten the senses. 

As a design-based service,  we offer Planning & Support options for our clients. We schedule, coordinate, and organize production details for them. But the focus of our services revolve around Styling & Design, specialty décor, and elements that make guests feel good. Personally, I tend to look at an event from a design perspective…then help our clients plan details around those elements to ensure everything is not only cohesive, but functional too.

 

Styling involves (but is not limited to):

  • Theme and brand development

  • Specialty Props and Décor

  • Unique Backdrops

  • Hand-made pieces

  • Stations & Booths (ie: welcome tables, photo booths, or dessert bars)

  • Custom crafts or designs

  • Layouts and venue flow (from a guest-use perspective)

 

 

Planning & Coordinating:

Planners and Coordinators make the event run smoothly. They orchestrate all the details, vendors, and schedules into a masterpiece. From pre-event details to final wrap-up, they are behind-the-scenes.. helping it all unfold. 

 

Planning involves (but is not limited to):

  • Communicating with vendors

  • Scheduling meetings leading up to event

  • Assisting in charts and seating arrangements

  • Managing the budget and payments

  • Navigating and/or handling contracts

  • Scheduling and logistics

  • On-site management

 

In the end, both Designers & Planners will help make your event a success. Both are full of creative ideas and the ability to think on their feet. And both services naturally complement one another. A Designer arranges visual details and brings glitter to the party....the Planner considers the function and scheduling while planning ahead for the glitter. 

 

Whether you have a planner who also does décor…or a stylist who helps with planning, you want someone who understands both sides of this coin. Someone who can fill in where you need the most help and who can help bring your vision to life.

 

 

 

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