Boston Wedding Vendor Spotlight – M&M Elite Events

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(Photo Courtesy of Eric Laurits Weddings)

One of my favorite things about being a wedding writer is meeting fellow Boston area wedding professionals – especially wedding planners.  I just LOVE seeing their creativity in action –  essentially creating the most important day of your life from scratch and ensuring you don’t have to worry about a single detail other than enjoying every minute of your special day.  There are a few main things Boston brides should look for when hiring a wedding planner – talent, reputation, creativity, vision, and confidence.  I’m going to save you a lot of research time and simply say, check out M&M Elite Events.

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Chances are, you have already heard about this fab wedding planning firm.  Owner Myriam Michel has handled almost every type of wedding imaginable in the Greater Boston area and is known for going above and beyond for her clients.  (Yes, you can say it, that’s what you want in a planner, isn’t it?)  Past clients continuously say that Myriam keeps them up to date, involves them in the planning process, and ensures a wedding is yours and yours alone (no cookie cutter weddings here!)  You can check out the galleries of photos from her past events on her newly launched website (I LOVE that blue background design, don’t you? )

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So, as usual, when I meet a terrific wedding pro, I have to tell you about it!  I recently had the pleasure to speak with Myriam about her work and some of the wedding trends she is seeing in the Boston area.  Here’s what she had to say:

Bridalista:  Tell me a little bit about yourself – your background and what made you decide to get into wedding planning.

Myriam:  I truly believe in the power of love and marriage, so the wedding business was only natural for me. I love meeting people and helping others see their dream wedding come together. With a background in event planning and budgeting for diplomatic events, I wanted to apply my skills in the bridal world. I just love the pretty details that go into planning an event, and solving the not so pretty details.

Bridalista:  What trends are you seeing in local Boston area weddings this year?

Myriam:  Emerald green is the color this year, and we’re seeing that as a color theme. The not-so-white wedding dress is becoming more poplar, think blush pinks like Jessica Biel’s wedding dress. Other trends are lots of bling and sparkle, bold patterns like chevron on linens or invitations, and food with major personality demonstrating a bride and groom’s taste. We’re seeing lots of food trucks, specialty homemade goodies as favors, and signature drinks.  Some couples are even rethinking the wedding cake in favor of their favorite dessert.

Bridalista:  What is your service area?  How far will you travel for a wedding?

Myriam:  My service area is primarily Massachusetts and Rhode Island, but I will travel beyond if you want me too! I’ve traveled to Africa and Europe to coordinate events, so traveling far is so not a problem.

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(Photo courtesy of Click Imagery)

Bridalista:  What types of weddings do you enjoy planning?  Traditional?  Outdoor?  Modern?

Myriam: My favorite types of weddings to plan are the ones where I can collaborate with the couple, bounce ideas off of each other, and go above and beyond to exceed their expectations. I love the little details and truly believe that when a couple incorporates something personal to them, it makes their day that much more special. Couples who let their guests know about them through these personalized details create an ambiance and atmosphere that is intimate and inviting. I also love planning outdoor, modern, and DIY weddings.

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Bridalista:  Why should brides hire a planner?

Myriam:  To tell you the truth, I encounter a lot of brides who have no idea why they should hire a planner. Some think it’s a luxury they can’t afford, while others don’t know what I really do and why I would be of value to them. The majority of couples feel that if they book a venue and it comes with coordinators that should be sufficient for their overall bridal experience.  Not true! For example, one couple I had was convinced that just because they had a church coordinator and a caterer, that would be all that they needed for the day. I educated them by giving them an analogy. Think of your wedding as a movie set. There are the actors (the couple), the lighting guy, the sound guy, make-up, etc. Each of these people are the best at what they do, and that’s why you’ve hired them up to this point, but who is managing all these people? Who is the director? That’s when a planner comes in. I handle the family drama and play peacemaker. I provide direction. I’m a sounding board. I’m you’re neutral cheerleader and handle all the nitty gritty of the wedding planning process like budgets, wedding day schedules, checklists, and provide you with all the reminders. All in all, a planner is your fairy godmother!

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Bridalista:  How soon should a bride hire a planner?

Myriam:  A bride must do their due diligence. Every planner is not a designer, and you have to decide what is most important to you. What keeps you up at night? Are you looking to create an ambiance for your guests with lots of DIY details, glitz, and glamour? Then you would work best with a planner who’s strongest point is design. Personality, budget, and experience is also what you need to consider when you are hiring a planner. With that being said, it depends on your needs on how soon you should hire a planner. Are you a full time employee and part time grad student who has limited time to compare vendor quotes? Then you should book your planner at the beginning of your planning, usually six to eight months out. Are you a super involved bride who needs help putting all the details together? Booking four to six months out is perfectly acceptable. Obviously, take note that just like popular venues, the planner you want to hire may be booked out way in advance.

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Bridalista:  What types of wedding services do you offer?  Full service?  Day of coordination?

Myriam:  I customize packages for my clients dependent upon their needs. It’s pretty easy. If you are a bride with bountiful ideas, but have no idea how to streamline them and have them come together on the day of, then I create a package for you based on that. If you just have no idea what step comes next in the planning phase up to the day of, we customize a package for that. I strongly believe that no event is cookie-cutter, so why should you have a package that doesn’t suit you? It’s my philosophy to spotlight your problems and create a solution – plain and simple.

Bridalista:  What is your competitive edge for wedding planning in the Boston area?  Why should a bride choose you?

Myriam:  My vast experience ranges from planning events with hundreds of diplomats and international business leaders in attendance to coordinating small and intimate dinner parties. Planning these types of events has heightened my sensitivity to the needs of others. Brides are planning the most important day of their lives, and there are a lot of emotions and decisions involved. From planning my own wedding and other couples’, I know how stressful it can be. I believe a bride should fall in love with my personality first and what I can offer them second.

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(Photo coutesy of Boston Wedding Photographer Nicole Chan Photography)

Bridalista:   What do you like to do for fun?  Do you have any crazy hobbies or something your clients would love to know about you?

Myriam:  I am an avid Law in Order (all of them) series fan. I can watch the same episode over and over again. I also love a good workout from pole fitness to kickboxing. I also have TLC and HGTV on rotation at my house! I belong to surrounding adult education centers around Waltham and go to activities there like bike tours or kayaking around this beautiful city. I also love to travel.

Bridalista:  How do you keep up to date in the wedding industry?

Myriam:   I attend monthly industry meetings, keep myself in the know by surrounding myself with industry friends that I meet regularly, and belong to groups on LinkedIn that have active discussions with planners from all over the world.

Bridalista:  Tell me about wedding after-parties.  Is this a growing trend in Boston?  What do they normally consist of?

Myriam:  After-parties are a growing trend, because we know Boston is not considered a party city even though most people don’t want the fun to end! The awesome thing with having an after-party is that you have the option of having a band and a DJ.  For example, one of my brides had a reception dinner with a band and played music that would be pleasing for the older generation in her crowd, and a DJ played for the younger guests at her after-party. To have a successful wedding after-party, I would suggest a great DJ that would keep the wedding party off their feet most of the night; fun props such as feathered boas, Mardi Gras beads, hats, and fun glasses – the possibilities are endless; late night snacks such as pizzas, burger sliders, or my fav, Fenway hot dogs; and of course a bar – it doesn’t have to be an open bar if you have hosted an open bar for the night. Do consider that the after-party is an extension of your wedding theme, so don’t forget to decorate and add accessories such as a lounge seating, high top tables, and lighting. A couple can also invite people to their after-party that weren’t invited to the wedding reception because of budget constraints. This way, they can still be part of the festivities.

For more information, visit M&M Elite Events online, on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.  Tell her the Bridalista sent you!

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