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We are so happy that you came to visit our blog! Bella Signature Design focuses on creating a custom, stylish event that is highly personal, with details that synergistically come together to create an atmosphere that is a direct reflection of you. My passion, as a designer, is to infuse your event with all the little things that speak to who you are, and to share that with your guests in a stylish, unexpected way. Our blog will be changing in the next few weeks to reflect our vision and our passion, so hang on for the ride and enjoy!

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Monday, June 29, 2009

Recap of Engage09 Part 2

Day 3 of Engage09 was again, fabulous. The panel discussion started off bright and early, and I was excited to be sitting in front of Michelle Rago, Abby Larsen (Style me Pretty) and Randy Fenoli. (Kleinfeld Bridal). Michelle Rago, of course is an amazing designer/planner out of New York – I love her point of view. It made me wonder why here in Seattle, so many vendors and clients alike don’t understand the idea of a designer/planner – I often get the questions “So, are you a florist or coordinator?” where in New York or Los Angeles, some of the best producers of weddings are those that plan and design the event as a whole. Abby didn’t talk much, but it was fun to hear about her new projects for Style Me Pretty. It was Randy that stole the show in our panel however, talking about how much he loves his brides, finding them the perfect gown, etc – he was very enigmatic, and wants to make me get married again just so he can find me “the Gown” If you’ve never been to Kleinfeld’s in New York, you have to check it out while there – it is an amazing experience – they even have video cameras so family member s who can’t make it can see you in your gowns. I’ve got a special invitation from Randy to bring a few brides down, so if you are needing a gown and want to fly to New York, I know we can find the perfect one, and have a fabulous time doing it.

Our second panel was all about Destination Weddings, and although we do not do a lot of these, I feel very comfortable now with several island of Hawaii, Virgin Gorda (where I married myself), Anguilla and of course, Grand Cayman, where we got the rundown on everything on how to get work permits for the photographer and how to bring linens in.

The third panel was one of those where I rushed to get a seat up front! Lara Casey (editor of Southern Weddings), Kim Bee (Wedding Bee) and the brilliant Liene Stevens). The Smartplanner/Think Splendid). I got some great tidbits overall (ie, as a business don’t have a facebook page if you don’t keep it up, makes you look sloppy – good point) and some real sold advice about blogging, twittering, etc. As vendors, if you are not already reading Liene’s thinksplendid blog, go now and catch up (After you finish mine of course! J

Our last panel consisted of Laura Novak (Laura Novak photography), Harmony Walton (the Bridal Bar) and the brains behind Preston Bailey Designs, Sean Low. I’ve had a few email interactions with Sean, who is just incredibly kind and most of brilliant. Anyone who has had the chance to consult with him says it’s completely altered their business. I set my mind on “sponge mode” and just took it all in, from how to structure one’s business, how to brand yourself etc.

I could go on – my mind is SO full of all the things I learned. I think what surprised me the most were the fabulous connections I made with other attendees – some fabulous designers out of Texas and Arizona, planners from all over the country…and all those twitter friends I had never actually met. That alone was worth it, not to mention all the speakers, amazing attendees like Tara Guerard of Soiree and Karen Tran of Karen Tran florals…Great five days, and best money ever spent invigorating my company. I would do it again in a heartbeat!

I can't thank those enough who had a hand in me attending Engage09 and those who opened my mind to new opportunities and possibilities.

Daniela

3 comments:

Jennifer Ederer June 29, 2009 at 8:49 PM  

Thanks for taking the time to write such a great recap from Engage09! I absolutely loved reading every tiny morsel and look forward to attending next year. May you be blessed with greatness and grow through this amazing opportunity. You are so incredibly talented and I expect to continue to see unbelievable things happening for you in Seattle!!!

Lara July 2, 2009 at 8:35 PM  

SO great meeting you Daniela! Loved reading your recap. Can we please go back to Cayman now?!?

Bella Signature Design July 2, 2009 at 9:23 PM  

Lara - got to read your new magazine on the plane ride home - what a great repertoire of people to showcase!! And yes, my mind is STILL in Cayman!