Wedding Vendors We Love: Tips from Marie Leach of Heart Over Heels Event Planning
Like most Hampton Roads transplants, Marie Leach is making a name for herself in her new home. Originally from Germany, Leach is the owner and event planner at Heart Over Heels Event Planning, planning events for every occasion worth celebrating, whether it’s baby showers, bridal showers or birthday parties. Weddings, however, are her sweet spot. “I like being a true confidante and friend to my brides,” Leach explains. "Being from Germany, I also bring a different perspective to my brides. Through my many travels, I enjoy picking up different ideas and traditions wherever I go.”
CoVa: What questions should a couple ask when they're choosing a wedding planner, to make sure it's the right fit?
Leach: It is always a good idea to ask a wedding planner for the general information like their usual wedding size, style and pricing. In my opinion it is most important that you really like and click with your wedding planner. As a couple you will work closely with your planner, so having a good relationship with them helps. I always suggest taking the planner up on the offer of a complimentary planning session where both sides can get to know each other.
CoVa: How should a bride and groom prepare before meeting with a wedding planner?
Leach: As a wedding planner, I love getting to know my couple and their vision for their wedding day. Bring along notes and pictures of ideas you have to the first planning session. Pinterest is a great way to communicate your ideas with your wedding planner. Also, I love questions, so please do not be shy and ask away!
CoVa: Many couples forgo wedding planners altogether. Why do you think it's important to hire one?
Leach: When talking to former brides, one of the biggest regrets I hear again and again is not hiring a wedding planner. Some brides decide to put a friend or aunt in charge of coordinating. This is better than not having a planner at all, but your friends and family should simply enjoy and relax at your wedding. A professional wedding planner knows how to handle any planning or day-of emergencies quickly and effectively because of their experience. If you have to stick to a smaller budget and can’t afford a full-time wedding planner, consider day-of coordination. It will make all the difference and put your mind at ease.
CoVa: Where do you typically draw inspiration from when planning an event?
Leach: My inspiration comes from my clients. Although I love surfing through Pinterest and flipping through magazines, I think the best inspiration is the happy couple. I like to really get to know my bride and groom. Their story and personalities are the inspiration for design elements and wedding details that make the event unique.
CoVa: What are some current wedding trends you expect to carry into the fall?
Leach: I personally adore the 2015 Pantone color Marsala (a deep red). This color looks beautiful with metallic accents like gold, copper or rose gold (another trend) and is perfect for a fall wedding! As a foodie I also love the trend that wedding food is becoming more creative, social and local. One of my recent couples opted for a Mexican food truck to match their laid-back summer wedding. For a fall wedding, a pie station (think homemade pumpkin pie) could replace the traditional wedding cake! Your imagination is the limit!
CoVa: Do you have any advice for the summer wedding?
Leach: Most couple’s main concern when getting married in summer is the heat, but it is smart to have a plan B for stormy weather and rain as well. Also, since Coastal Virginia is a beautiful vacation spot, hotel rooms fill up fast in the summer. Make sure guests book their hotel rooms early or block rooms for out-of-town guests.
CoVa: Do you have any other advice for local brides?
Leach: From living in Virginia Beach, I can say that this area has a lot to offer. There are beautiful beaches, historic sites, museums and more. Local brides should take advantage of the great variety. Couples getting married in this area are lucky to have many great local wedding vendors to choose from. A good way of getting to know them is by visiting one of the many bridal shows held throughout the year.