Today’s post is special since it is the first interview on this blog. I feel so delighted and honored to be featuring a professional and seasoned event planner for this segment. Jolene Greenbaum Peterson is one of the lead curators & stylists at Calluna Events– an established and renowned wedding and event planning company in Boulder, Colorado.
Jolene, tied-the-knot in Autumn, so we also get to see some stunning photos from her wedding day by Cary Jobe Photography, as she talks about her experiences in the wedding planning industry, and gives first-hand tips on planning a wedding, especially a fall wedding.
Jolene and Chad had a romantic fall wedding at Beaver Creek’s new Wedding Deck. The ceremony was held outdoors so their out of town guests were treated to a spectacular view of the Colorado Mountains. The gorgeous fall colors was the perfect backdrop for the occasion.
The reception took place at the nearby Westin Riverfront Hotel & Spa where guests warmed themselves and enjoyed hearty food in the hotel’s stylish & modern restaurant. The food on the menu were produced from a local farm, 5 miles way.
Personal touches made theirs a unique wedding. For instance, each bridesmaid wore her chosen gray dress; love notes hang from the chuppah; and each table were given their own cake to cut along with the bride & groom.
How did you get started in the event planning business?
I was actually inspired by my own Bat Mitzvah and the entire planning process when I was just 13. I was so curious about how a simple idea and vision is actually brought to life. So, while applying for college,
I investigated a few areas that I was interested in and reached out to a family friend, Mindy Weiss, about interning with her for a semester. Well, a semester turned into three and a half years… I was hooked! I loved being a part of the planning process and meeting new people with different ideas and approaches.
Did you plan your own wedding?
We decided we didn’t want a long engagement because I knew I would obsess over every new idea, approach, trend, etc. We planned our wedding in a matter of months and it was definitely a collaborative effort between my husband and I.
I was so impressed with his level of creativity and it was very nice to have such a lovely planning partner. We knew our top priorities: family and friends being able to come together in the mountains, excellent food and drink, and a fun night with great music. In the end, it was all perfect.
What has been your biggest challenge in planning a wedding?
Sometimes the biggest challenge is to work with couples that are just going through the motions. We love to work with clients that are excited about celebrating their love and commitment and have a creative approach in the planning process.
It doesn’t always take a lot of money or time to plan a wedding, but it always feels so much more authentic when the couple injects their own personality and passions into the planning process.
What tip would you give couples who want an Autumn wedding?
This is a great question. I would say that the most important tip I can give is to prepare for all types of weather.
In Colorado, on our October wedding day, we had a little snow, a little rain, and a lot of sunshine. The temperatures varied by about 45 degrees throughout the day and we made sure we kept our guests comfort in mind the entire time. We had blankets and pashminas available for the ceremony and hot chocolate waiting for them as soon as the ceremony concluded.
Definitely spend time talking through a Plan A, B, and C for any drastic weather changes. And, make sure you can “roll with the punches” as they say. It takes some level of letting go to appreciate the fact that the weather is out of your control. My favorite quote is, “There is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing.”
Have you ever encountered an unexpected dilemma and how did you manage to smoothen things out?
At almost every single event, regardless of how long we have been planning, there is always an “unknown” factor. I think as a planner we want to try to control everything we are able to but also have to assume some risk that things don’t always go as planned. The bride may have red wine spilled on her dress and you just have to be ready to tackle each and every little “hurdle” that comes your way with a smile.
How long have you been with Calluna Events and what has been your most memorable experience?
I have been with Calluna Events since January 2013, having just recently relocated back to Colorado. I absolutely love being here and have had SO many memorable experiences this past wedding season. I think every time I meet with clients for the first time and hear their vision together, it still gives me butterflies and I just get so excited to begin the entire process with them.
What kinds of services do you offer?
We offer everything from Hourly Consulting to Day-of Coordination, to our Full Service Planning packages, and everything in between. We don’t believe that you can just offer “Package A, B or C” to clients because everyone’s needs are so unique and different.
We really take time to get to know our couples and work with them to create a completely custom package for their wedding. Calluna Events has assisted with everything from custom invitations to venue research to welcome bag assembling to next-day brunch planning. We love to be included in all of the fun details along the way!
Is it possible to hire a wedding planner with a limited budget?
Absolutely! A wedding planner is not just for the high-end weddings but can be an excellent resource for couples with any budget, guest count, location, and preferences. At Calluna Events we offer hourly consulting to help couples get started and can work with them on the items they most need assistance with.
What do you love most about what you do?
I feel so fortunate to have such a creative and unique job. Most days it doesn’t ever feel like “work”because I am so thrilled to be planning weddings and events for people.
I think if I had to summarize my favorite thing about what I do is that I really get to see people at their best and be a part of their celebrations in life.
So often we are consumed with our smart phones, email, texting, blogging, instagramming, whatever it may be – and I get to see people come together to celebrate, in person, together as a community. It is a beautiful thing to be a part of, and just knowing that I helped create that event is fulfilling beyond belief.
Thank You So Much, Jolene!
Contact Calluna Events:
Address: 1435 Yarmouth Ave #101, Boulder, CO 80304, United States