Tips Tuesday from David Merrell

Tips Tuesday from David Merrell
 

We had a deep dive interview with David Merrell, CEO and Creative Director of AOO Events, to get inside the mind of an incredible wedding and event planner. David just recently gave a riveting presentation at our Aphrodisiac Affair Event, and we are extremely fortunate to have him as a guest on today’s Tips Tuesday.

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Q - What is your favorite style of the location where you prefer to plan client weddings?

A - Because we are in southern California, we love outdoor locations. The weather is predictable, and so “rain weather” options are the exception, not the norm. Plus you don’t really deal with bugs out here either, which makes it perfect for outdoor celebrations. Vineyards, parks and beach locations are always the best for a unique experience, but there are many great properties, clubs and hotels that offer just as unique an outdoor opportunity.

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Q - What is your #1 top piece of advice you give to couples before they hire you?

A - Look at the (company for hire's) portfolio for sure, as it gives you a good idea of what they have done. Don’t expect your ideal event to be in their portfolio. More importantly, spend time learning the “process” of the company. How do they charge? What is their infrastructure and how do they work? What is the process the vendor goes through? Great design companies can create anything, so don’t worry about that as much as how it gets done and what is the process.

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Q - What is trending with your couples?

A - Mixing metallic with white floral is very much on trend. And mixing metallic isn’t just limited to floral containers and tabletop décor. Linens, cake icings, furniture all have metallic choices. Lace is still big, as is satin. The combination is killer. The trend in design seems to be most popular the “Vintage” (30-40’s) look to Retro (50-60’s) design.

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Q - What are 2 things you wish couples would do for every wedding?

A - 1) Trust your planner and designer. You spend a lot of time vetting the decision to hire them, at some point you have to let go and let them do their job. The more you have your “thumb” on them, the less effective they become. Plus, you really need to just relax, and take in this once in a lifetime experience which is more about your significant other, your family and your friends.

2) Make sure you get tons of pictures, not just the posed wedding pictures, but also the decor and candid shots. Get cameras somehow in the hands of your guests or provide a social media tool for everyone to share pictures, sometime the best shots come at the strangest times, angles and situations.

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Q - To date, what wedding have you planned that made the top of your favorite list, and why?

A - My favorite is a “Carousel Wedding” we designed and planned at the Santa Monica pier at the historic Carousel building there. It was quirky, non-traditional, striking and just plain fun from the ceremony, reception, dinner and after party that ALL happened in the same spot. It was nominated and won many awards for its out of the box format and décor.

Photography courtesy of: Kelsey Crews Photo