The Sweetheart Events team. Photo by Christine Pienaar Photography
By Brittany Tiplady
The wedding industry is a billion dollar, frightening world with endless options. When planning a wedding or a proposal, who do you turn to to make sure your event runs smoothly? Stephanie Reitsma and her team are the resolution for many couples in the lower mainland.
In 2013, Reitsma created Sweetheart Events: a proposal planning, wedding planning, and elopement business that caters not only to nervous brides and grooms, but also to all of those needing extra guidance in how to execute the perfect proposal. The team conquers roughly 10 proposal events per year, along with 20 weddings under their belt this year and another 20 already booked for 2017.
Loose Lips chatted with Sweetheart Events’ owner and principle planner Reitsma.
Q: When did you start Sweetheart events and why?
A: Sweetheart Events started in 2013 full-force. I have been a wedding planner for six going on seven years. The company I was formally with was going through a re-brand and I had the opportunity to go out on my own, so I did! My goal was to start my own company by the time I was 30, so instead I started at 26.
I now strictly only do full-wedding planning, and my girls take on day-of coordination and proposal planning.
Q: You have the cutest team. Tell me about them!
A: I swear I am the luckiest boss in the entire universe. I have an incredible team! We are a great little bunch, we are highly enthusiastic, and I swear sometimes we are more excited about our client’s weddings (and proposals) than they are. We do happy dances on a daily basis, and that’s not something we just write in our emails, we actually do them!
Q: What makes Sweetheart Events stand out amongst the crowd of wedding planners?
A: The market is highly saturated. What it really comes down to being different from all of the many other planning businesses is the personality. Personality fit is huge. We are the people that are guiding you through your entire day, and that trust needs to be there especially because 80% of our couples are [not local]. With our out of town couples we do Facetime, and Skype, and Google hangouts, and even though they may be miles away, they still get the full experience.
Q: Proposal planning! Tell me more about.
A: Proposal planning was a little baby that I created after sitting down with a business coach to sort out what I wanted to do in the off season. I am the original proposal planner in Vancouver. Sometimes, it’s not always about the girl, but, it’s more to highlight that experience and take some heat off the guy. A lot of gentleman have an incredible idea, but they get so overwhelmed with the execution of it that it delays the event.
I found that I was helping some of my guy friends pop the question to their girlfriends and I really just wanted to personalize the experience from before the “yes” and take them to “I do.”
Q: Life outside of business, where does that take you?
A: Every week is different and it is a roller coaster of challenges. As much as Instagram photos are all butterflies and rainbows and “my life is perfect,” Instagram stories now show the bags under my eyes: what being a wedding planner is all about.
Q: What’s new at Sweetheart Events right now?
A: I created Proposal in a box! I came up with the idea after getting lots of emails from guys who wanted a proposal service but it just wasn’t in their budget. Proposal services start at $1,000 and that includes full planning, full execution, onsite help and take down.
The proposal in a box is a [financial compromise], with all of my planning tools, and the celebration kit, for $275.00 for the Christmas theme that includes hot chocolate and Bailey’s and marshmallows and $300 for the box including champagne! [Everyone] deserves an incredible proposal. So why not pop the question Christmas eve, and Christmas morning have the box waiting with the love letter inside and have the celebration in a box?
Proposal in a box is available for local delivery (delivery costs included), with one week prep time needed. The boxes are currently available for 10% off with PROMOCODE MarryChristmas. Want to grab yours for the holiday? Email the team and learn more here.
Brittany Tiplady is a part-time poet, and a full-time goat cheese enthusiast. She loves the indoors, fast wifi, collecting maps, and a generous glass of red wine.