Meet Wedding Planner Abby Gallagher of Blue Orchid Events & Design!

Hello there, brides to be! Today I am going to introduce you to Abby Gallagher of Blue Orchid Events and Design. Abby is a passionate luxury wedding planner servicing the South Florida area and based out of Fort Lauderdale.

I found Abby online and was immediately drawn to her passion for wedding planning. She got her start in the Luxury Yacht industry before deciding to jump ship and start her own business (Blue Orchid Events & Design) doing what she loves. I just couldn’t help myself. I wanted to learn more about this warm and passionate wedding vendor. So I reached out to Abby for a virtual interview, and she agreed.

So, without further ado, meet Abby Gallaher of Blue Orchid Events & Designs!

Who are you – what do you like to do, and what makes you happy?

Hey! My name is Abby Gallagher. I’m the owner and lead planner of Blue Orchid Events & Design. I absolutely love helping my clients plan and design their weddings, and I truly thrive off of the deeper level of communication and details that it takes to pull off this career. 

In terms of things that make me happy, a logistically sound wedding that goes on time with happy clients. I love a good spreadsheet and a beautiful design board. Aside from weddings, my interests include hosting dinner parties, traveling, motorcycling, scuba diving, gardening, my puppy, and a good bottle of wine or champagne with friends!

What was the thought process behind starting Blue Orchid Events & Design, and how did you come up with your business name?

Before I launched my business in the wedding industry, I was a Chief Stewardess on private luxury yachts for almost 5 years. I used to put on a themed breakfast, lunch, and dinner or private events on multi-million dollar yachts all around in the world (ie. Mediterranean, Caribbean, and New York/ Newport). 

On the 5th year, I needed some freedom, and to take control of my own destiny. So I explored my skillsets with demanding clients, detail oriented service, creativity, and a right eye for photography and videography and launched my business. 

My business name is based on my favorite color and reminds me of the ocean where I came from. Blue Orchid Events are my land-based events in South Florida, and Blue Ocean Events are my yacht-based weddings at sea.

What services do you provide & what locations do you serve?

I offer full planning services starting with budget assessments, venue scouting, and a 3-phase planning system booking vendors, contract negotiations, planning, design, and logistics. I also offer a partial plan for meeting clients part way. And finally, I offer a management package for couples who have planned it themselves but need someone to coordinate it. I specialize in South Florida, but I offer destination weddings worldwide!

What do you like most about wedding planning?

To preface my answer, did you know that there are about 5000 details per wedding? My favorite part is logistics. Keeping track of all of those details and weaving in the timeline, item responsibility sheets, to-scale layouts, and vendor coordination to be seamless. It’s the satisfaction of finishing a really epic jigsaw puzzle!

What education, schooling, or skills are needed to become a Wedding Planner?

I personally have my Bachelor of Arts from the University of Michigan, which I can thank for my writing, communication, and organization skills. I also am certified by the Bridal Society. These are not requirements, but they help tremendously for a successful wedding planning business.

What is most challenging about being a Wedding Planner?

Rain calls. You can plan a whole wedding for a year or more, have all your ducks in a row, but mother nature will always have a mind of her own.

Who are your most ideal clients, and why?

My ideal clients are fun, energetic, down to earth, drama-free couples with good budgets. I have been so lucky that I don’t attract “bridezillas,” my brand tends to attract really amazing people that I become quite close to over the process!

What is the number one question couples looking for a wedding planner should ask?

Do you absolutely love your wedding planner? You will be working with your planner for 6-12 months of your life. They’ll be like a personal assistant and best friend to you. Make sure you bond with them and enjoy their personality and sense of humor.

What’s one piece of wedding planning conventional advice that you disagree with & why?

Wedding cake… I would say about half of my clients don’t actually like cake, but they get it anyway for the traditional “cake cutting shot.” You totally don’t have to! There are so many amazing dessert station ideas to replace it with that people will actually love- try a donut wall, cupcake tier, mini pies or macaroons, live s’mores station, or gourmet cookies.

What is the number one mistake you see couples make when planning their wedding?

Not planning on a decent Plan B if it’s an outdoor wedding. Also, not adjusting their rental or floral quantities once you have your final RSVP. Not having a layout and just hoping for the best, forgetting about ceremony music and microphone. Honestly, when couples book me for just management, I see it all! It is really best to have your wedding professionally planned from the very start.

Can you share a little about the current wedding planning trend?

Many people are opting for renting softwood furniture and a more natural floral design utilizing local and botanical products!

How do you prefer for couples to get in touch with you?

I love starting out the conversation with an email so that I can share my Wedding Investment Guide with you first. Once you get an idea of pricing and what we offer, then a follow up call for a complimentary consultation and getting to know you is essential!

Have questions? Let’s connect here.

If you like this post, you may also be interested in these other posts:

5 Luxury Miami Wedding Venues For Your Magical Wedding!

Destination Wedding Photographers – What You Need to Know Before Hiring 

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