The Magic in October

Reviewing our first year as ThistleBEA

Not going to lie, I love my review posts, it helps me to reflect on experiences and helps to solidifies memories in my brain! While we haven’t gotten all the amazing photos from the fantastic photographers we’ve worked with this year (so we haven’t blogged all our weddings, yet) but this year has just been so awesome I need to share now!

I started ThistleBEA last year – October 15th was the last day at my full time, m-f, 9-5 job. Little did I know, I was moving into a 24/7/365 job. Much to my husband’s chagrin, ThistleBEA is always on my mind – things I can do to make my business more phenomenal, ideas to up my services, and of course, upcoming weddings are always on my mind!

Bride and groom standing under an umbrella with their uncle acting as officiant.
Me and my Hubby on our happiest day, captured by Jelger & Tanja Photographers

Along with running ThistleBEA, I spent this last year working with Nuba Natural Foods, a local Lebanese restaurant, as their Wedding Catering Coordinator, working alongside the fabulous Brianna Needoba with her wedding planning company – Brianna Lindsey Events, and a few other gigs here and there as a consultant. It’s been a busy year and I’ve had the opportunity to work with so many outstanding people. So I thought I would do a quick review on all the weddings I did with ThistleBEA this year!

 

S&K

For privacy reasons, this couple asked that I refrain from using their names and images with their faces – which is something I ensure to respect with any couple who asks it of me.

This couple came to ThistleBEA as a referral from another wedding planning because they had a low budget and we definitely spent our first year doing everything to help couples who were on small budgets. They utilized our “I Want to Hold Your Hand” package (which was called With a Little Help) and we met up with the couple a few times to help them along with the planning process. They were married at the super beautiful Roedde House Museum outside at the gazebo. The day of the wedding I was speaking with a few of the Museum Volunteers and they indicated that not enough people use the gazebo because it can look a bit grungy. I am not exaggerating when I say a ThistleBEA volunteer and I spent over an hour scrubbing that gazebo to clean it up and strip off all that nasty dirt and it was SO worth it.

couple standing at a gazebo at the Roede House Museum
Image captured by David An

This couple were fantastic to work with and I got on so well with their families, I sincerely hope to hear from them to see where their marriage takes them!

From the Bride:

During the planning process, what I really liked about Breanne is 1) her response time was quick and her attitude was consistent. Whenever I email her with a million questions, she always take the time to answer my questions and keep me on the right track. 2) she always keep us in mind when there is any bridal events/sales in town; she also shares DIY ideas and wholesale information with us, so we can save wherever we can. 3) I had trouble finding a good catering company that fit my needs on my own and I was getting frustrated. Breanne was able to find Fiesta catering for me in 3 days after I turned to her for help and we worked out a menu and price that fit my needs and wants.

Colleen & JC

This couple started looking for a day of coordinator after their first choice (whom they had already hired) found out she was pregnant and was due near the wedding date so they went on the search for a new planner and found me! This couple is super authentic and they ensured to really bring their personalities out on their wedding day.

Couple kissing at a tree
These two lovers made their DIY Wedding Day purrrfection! Image captured by Sweet Inspirations Photography

My absolute favorite part about Colleen & JC’s wedding day was catching JC looking at Colleen with this look of just utter love. Like you know that look you see created in movies between the leads who are “in love” but is still so magical that it warms your heart? Well it was that look but magnified and in real life. I, no kidding, almost cried in happiness when I caught this look for the first time.

From the bride:

Day of the wedding she was super calm and made sure we ate between pictures after the ceremony (so important!!) She was also there to tear down the venue and did that with a smile on her face and she was calling for cabs for the guests.

M&A

This couple was a different one for me because I knew the couple! My husband and M used to live together and A pretty much lived in that house too, as did I. There were 5 boys and us two girls. I haven known them both almost as long as I’ve known my husband.

This was my second out of three weddings in 2017 that was held at UBC Botanical gardens. While they just hired me for the “A Day in the Life” package, I helped with about a zillion other questions leading up to the wedding.

A was a real DIY bride, she assembled so much of the decor and was super hands on for the entire wedding planning process!

From the bride:

Breanne, you did such an amazing job at coordinating out wedding, we could not have done it without you.

Jenn & Ashley

Jenn & Ashley were an amazing couple to work with. I knew I wanted to work their wedding the second the theme was decided on – Rainbow Disney. YASSSS

They were actually the first couple to book our services and while they started with only ceremony coordination (which yes, is a service we offer!) but as they planned more they realized they might need more help, and I was so excited to be able to help them with what they needed! And it was a good thing they had me around for that extra time too, because their venue ended up being booked for an event the night before so they were unable to utilize that time to set-up so myself and two of their friends set up the reception JUST before the ceremony started.

Couple on the beach
Image captured by Leanne Sims Photography

I still think about this wedding and smile. These women are surrounded by so many amazing people and loving family – I practically felt like one of their own by the end of the wedding.

From the bride:

However, Breanne blew us away with her outstanding service and dedication to making this day one of the best of our lives. So many of our guests kept asking, “who is that amazing woman?” Breanne took initiative with every part of our day and I lost count of how many times me or our wedding party said how much we love her… Honestly I felt spoiled having Breanne be apart of our wedding and hiring her as our day of coordinator proved to be the best wedding planning decision we made.

Wedding Planner with the couple
I got to pose with these two beautiful women! Image by Leanne Sims Photography

B&L

This couple are some of the first people I met when I moved to Vancouver over 5 years ago because I worked with them! When they asked me to be a part of their wedding day this summer on Salt Spring Island, I couldn’t say yes fast enough.

This wedding was put together by a lot of different people, the couple enlisted a whole lot of friends and family to help them make their day perfection – from hiring an ex-roommate as the photographer to having work buddies cater the dinner – it really was a testimony to just how much love surrounded them!

From the Bride:

Breanne was there right until the end of the night. She worked tirelessly to give us her best possible work. Thank you!

Shahroo & Farnam

Sharhoo and Farnam had this image or incorporating both their Persian heritage and their Canadian nationality into their amazing wedding day and boy, did they accomplish this! They incorporated all sorts of aspects from both cultures to build a fantastic foundation for their marriage. While their wedding day might have gone a little off schedule, it ended up resolving in a beautiful way.

And I loved to see all these traditions first hand!

From the bride:

Breanne also stayed late and made sure one of my bridesmaids got home safely! She went above and beyond to help make our dream wedding come alive. Thank you!

Brent & Patrick

These two are flooded with creativity – I just loved being a part of their wedding!

When I met Brent and Patrick, they were still unsure on a lot of aspects for their wedding day – specifically their theme or colour scheme. But they ended up with this amazing Travel and movie themed wedding where they got the best of their favorite interests as a couple. While the Lower Mainland was shrouded with smoke for weeks because of the crazy forest fires, the smoke cleared for their wedding so that they could have a perfect view of downtown behind them as they said their I Dos on the patio of The View on Lonsdale.

From the groom:

Breanne went above and beyond in her role, and always put me and my husband’s needs first and foremost. Everyone should have a Breanne at their wedding.

Gary & Tara

Gary & Tara’s wedding was the first full Jewish wedding I had the pleasure to be a part of, which was super amazing to witness. I love learning more about the different religion and cultural traditions that couples incorporate into their weddings.

These two are one of the sweetest, most genuine people I have ever met – they just have this indescribable factor to who they are. They were clearly meant to end up together because they just fit so well.

Tara & Gary kissing in the sun
This is by far my favorite image captured by Michael Wheatley Photography

Their wedding just screamed Gary & Tara, from their decor to the words read at their ceremony. I wish I could have spent more time with these two because they really and truly feel like people everyone should have in their lives.

From the bride:

She was a treasure to work with and help plan our wedding. Right from the beginning she helped us get organized, was always very responsive to e-mails and full of tips and helpful suggestions. The few weeks and days leading up the wedding and of course the day of she was just incredible. She helped us sort out the final details and really helped us with self care in the craziness of the final days before the wedding.

From the Groom:

She was always on hand when we had a question, or ready to supply us with suggestions. She managed to make sure all family and friends were on the same page when it came to what we wanted for our wedding, she coordinated and organised and worked hard to make sure our special day was extra special. Really she blew us away with how much work she put into making our day amazing. If I could give a rating of 10 out of 5 stars I would

Jenny & Brian

While I was working another wedding on the day of their wedding, I was still able to help out in the morning of their big day and I came back for the end and from what I saw, I was just so thrilled with their love.

This couple took the normal wedding and threw it out the window. They made it all about who they are as a couple and did some MAJOR DIY, including having a good friend of theirs grow their flowers and hops that they used for decor. They ate their favorite pizza for dinner and served crem brulee and doughnuts for dessert.

From the groom:

 Leading up to the wedding they handled all the final details in order to ensure things would arrive. After the wedding, they packed up all the decor, alcohol, gifts, misc. items, and loaded most of it into their cars, which they delivered for us the next day. The excess boxes I needed to pick up took under 10 minutes to load into my car because they organized the clean-up so well. They were incredibly hospitable and dependable, and a calming presence the day of.

Brenda & James

Brenda and James were just a pleasure to work with this year! They had been friends for years before starting to date and you could just see that they were exactly who the other person needed.

They put a lot of work in their planning and definitely had more decor than I have seen at any other wedding (except maybe my own!) which resulted in a lot of work that totally paid of!! I loved this wedding so much and it felt so special.

From the Bride:

Breanne took care of every little detail. One advice to every bride to be would be to hire a day of coordinator especially Breanne to ensure everything runs smoothly. Breanne went above and beyond and exceeded my expectation. Thank you so much for everything!

Shira & Tyler

Again, I wasn’t at this wedding myself, Winnie, our other coordinator, ran this show for the couple. Because I was at a family wedding I wasn’t able to be a part of their bid day but I heard some amazing things! These two took some aspects of both of their roots (Judaism and Canadian First Nations) and ensured to include blessings from both sides of the families.

From the bride:

Breanne continued to do all the behind the scenes work (creating a day of timeline and contacting our vendors the week of) and made sure to keep Winnie in the loop the whole time… Before hiring ThistleBEA, I wasn’t sure we needed a DOC but it was honestly the best decision we made as it totally helped our day flow smoothly allowing all our guests to just to enjoy the day and making sure myself (and family members) didn’t need to worry about anything! Thank you Breanne for your behind the scenes work and thank you Winnie for being there on the day of!!

Katy & Ben

Katy and Ben had this totally authentic wedding, it just really was full of their energy. This couple are super outdoorsy and randomly nerdy in the best way (there was an engagement photo of these two where she was holding him with his legs up in the air). Their wedding favours were wooden coasters Katy’s dad made, the tables were named after mountains the couple climbed together and places they’ve visited together, and we went from having an outdoor ceremony, to setting up for an indoor one because rain, to setting up outside because the sun was pokling through. We ended up with an outdoor ceremony, which was amazing because indoor just seemed so wrong for these two!

From the bride:

Breanne and her helper Winnie worked about 17 hours on our wedding day, with huge smiles the whole time. They were at the venue when we arrived in the morning and were the last to leave… She was competent, calm, accommodating and intuitive. She was always one step ahead, knowing exactly what might be needed. Breanne and Winnie did anything and everything to make our day run smoothly, including bussing tables, handing out tissues during speeches, redecorating tables as they got moved after dinner, and thoughtfully packing up our uhaul full of our decorations.

 

We still have two more weddings in 2017 and we are booking more and more for 2018, and just can’t wait to be a part of more couples’ perfect day!

Much love, Breanne Dodge, ThistleBEA your wedding

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