Event Stylist.  Wedding Planner.  Special Occasion Decorator.  You have probably heard all those terms and many more, but do you know what they are and what they do?   

Event Designers

The term ‘decorator’ is pretty straightforward.  They . . .well . . . decorate.  It’s differences between ‘stylists’ and ‘planners’ that confuse brides and even people starting businesses in the field of weddings and special events.

They confused me, too, until I read Leah McLaren’s 2006 novel, The Continuity Girl.  The story – which has nothing to do with a wedding planner or event designer – follows the life of Meredith Moore, a film script supervisor whose job it is to collaborate with the director, props and costume managers to make sure every frame in a movie is consistent with the one before and the one following it. 

As the script supervisor, Moore sees that actions, scenes, and characters follow the same themes throughout the film.  So if the movie was set in 2003, the continuity person would not allow Coca-Cola Zero to be in a scene.  If the main character of the movie was a die-hard Stella McCartney devotee, she would not be married in an off-the-rack wedding dress from a discount retailer.     

And those qualities, characteristics and job descriptions highlight the 3 Cs of an Event Stylist:

1.  COLLABORATION

Event Designers Working With the Couple

Event Stylists work directly with brides and grooms or corporate clients to determine the overall theme or ambiance of an event.  They listen carefully to what their customer is dreaming of so they can bring those dreams to fruition. Successful collaboration is essential for an Event Stylist.  But working with clients is not the Event Stylist’s only collaboration. 

Stylists – not always but often – work directly with Event Planners.  This is because a planner is usually hired to ensure that all the pieces of an event fit together well while Event Stylists are hired to ensure the event looks and feels amazing.

2.  CREATIVITY

Although a planner ensures the venue is ready when the bride and groom arrive and the event goes off without a hitch, event styling focuses on the development of the client’s vision. This is where Event Stylists excel, bringing together themes and designs to create an atmosphere that reflects the dreams of the client. Anyone can throw a tablecloth and a candle on a table, but an Event Stylist uses her (or his) creative powers to make the table settings look sensational!

3.  CONTINUITY

More than anyone else in the event process, the Event Stylist is there to ensure continuity.  Continuity, unfortunately, is like cleaning your house.  No one notices when you do it but everyone sees when you don’t do it.  The Event Stylist uses her eye for detail to make sure everything from invitations to table settings and center pieces, from clothing and lighting to flowers and furniture to the overall aesthetics of the event is the same theme from the beginning to the very end. 

A space designed by event designers

Event Stylist = Collaboration + Creativity + Continuity