It’s safe to say that wedding planning can be overwhelming, but not when you put your trust in a wedding planner and stylist who can make the entire process seamless and stress-free. Enter Paradise Hunter, an expert in wedding planning and styling who specialises in outdoor private property weddings. Caitlin has all her best tips here for you, regardless of your wedding style. If you’re still deciding whether you need a planner or stylist, check out my interview with her!
How did you become a wedding planner and stylist?
I am a Graphic Designer by trade, and over the years I have done more and more design in the Events space. I was ALWAYS the planner and organiser in my group growing up and I just loved it. So after successfully planning, styling and organising my own wedding in 2017, which was a private property festival style wedding that required everything to be built from scratch, the incredible feedback I received from all of my guests and all the suppliers involved was that I really should be creating these type of full scale, end to end events for other people. I realised there was a real opportunity there to combine both of my passions of design and planning and so Paradise Hunter was born.
Why should couples hire a wedding planner and/or stylist?
Couples should look to engage a planner if they are time poor, don’t enjoy organising things, don’t have the confidence or know-how, get really overwhelmed and/or stressed or they simply want a professional to guide and support them along the journey, so they can actually enjoy the planning process and lead up. With a planner by your side, I guarantee you’ll feel in control, calm, present and you’ll never want the journey to end!
Couples should look to hire a stylist if as a whole – the look, the feel and the story of their day is really important to them. They have a dream aesthetic in mind that they want brought to life or they have a blank canvas and need help finding clarity and direction to transform a space. A stylist will do this in a way that reflects the two of them and their individual couple style and will ensure it flows consistently throughout the day, down to the smallest detail.
What services do you offer couples?
I offer wedding planning, styling and coordination packages as well as a Concept Consult. The Concept Consult is a 1:1 session with me, the perfect first step, to give couples clarity around their ideas, expert advice and recommendations and have them walk away with one clear vision and an action plan to implement their style and plan their dream day with confidence.
What’s the difference between wedding planning and coordination?
The main difference between planning and coordination is that a Planner will lead the overall planning process from start to finish, whereas a Coordinator is engaged when a couple has organised their wedding and need someone to step in about 4 weeks out, to ensure everything goes to plan exactly how they imagined on the day.
What should couples look for or ask when they are choosing the wedding planner for them?
The main thing is that you feel a connection with your Planner, after all, you are going to be spending quite a bit of time with them and you want to trust that they can deliver exactly what you are wanting for one of your biggest life milestones. Check out their previous work on Instagram and their website and if you like the look of what they have produced, fantastic. Finally, read some of their testimonials and reviews and see what other couples have said about them and how they helped with their day and how they made them feel. If all those things are aligned with what you’re wanting, then away you go!
What budget should couples be putting aside for wedding planning, coordination, and styling?
It can really vary from service to service and vendor to vendor, especially given the amount of variables between every wedding. You will definitely find a suitable price point for all budgets and as long as you feel comfortable with the price, then it really shouldn’t matter. Roughly I would suggest putting aside between $1500-2000 for a Coordinator, $2000-$4000 for a Stylist and a minimum of $4000 for a Planner.
What is your best tip for working with your wedding planner and/or stylist?
My best tip when working with a Wedding Planner and/or Stylist is to make sure you get them 110% across your vision and dreams for your day. The more they know, the better, as they will become your advocate for bringing your vision to life! If they know exactly what is important to you, they will then share your passion in making sure it all happens. Always keep them in the loop with any changes, concerns, worries you are having, as they are not mind readers, but they are damn good at solving problems and will be totally solution focused if any bumps arise!
What’s your personal favourite wedding style?
It’s so hard to choose just one favourite wedding style, as I really do love so many and I believe all wedding styles can be incredible, if executed well. If I had to choose just one though, I am a little bias here, but I do love a really relaxed and laid back private property festival style wedding. You just cannot beat an epic open air set up, that allows your guests to really relax into the festival vibe, where the day rolls into night, dancing under the stars to amazing entertainment and then retreating to a stunning and cosy glamping village with your nearest and dearest. Then waking up together the following morning, debriefing and reminiscing about the previous days events, allows your big day to feel like it will never end!
What’s your favourite thing about working in the wedding industry?
I’m a sucker for a good love story and I love hearing people’s stories and making connections with couples in the lead up to one of the biggest days of their lives and then witnessing all those special moments come to life on the big day. It is truly a privileged position to be in and I feel very grateful every time a couple books me to help them with this huge occasion.
What do you do when you’re not planning weddings?
When I am not planning and styling weddings, I am usually spending time with my family made up of my husband Damien and two sons – Henry, 3.5 and Jake, 1.5 – they definitely keep me on my toes! Paradise Hunter still has a large Graphic Design arm to the business, which is my first love and I still really enjoy working with my design clients. I also have the ‘Your Day, Your Way Weddings + Events podcast’ which I thoroughly enjoy recording to help couples gain the confidence and know-how to create, design, plan and nail their dream wedding or event from scratch. I love keeping fit at the gym, socialising with friends and family and cannot get enough of travelling, both locally and overseas!
Paradise Hunter was founded by Caitlin, a passionate Event Planner, Stylist and Designer who helps couples create, design, plan and nail their dream wedding or event from scratch. Offering full end to end wedding planning, styling and design services, as well as on the day coordination, she works alongside her couples to create something that truly reflects them and their personalities, while also creating a unique experience for their guests that will be remembered long after the day is over. Connect with her on Instagram.
If you’d like to see work that Paradise Hunter and A Tactile Perception have done together, check out the Spring Joy styled shoot here.