Real advice from the best wedding planners in Detroit!
Today we are highlighting six amazing Detroit wedding planners who are serving black girl magic and timeless wedding glamour. Read more about their journey through the wedding industry and their advice for navigating wedding planning during the pandemic.
You hear Collaboration over Competition, but what does that really mean? Detroit, Michigan is a metropolis – full of people from a diverse line of professionals, blue collar workers, politicians and entrepreneurs. Along with that, the wedding industry is growing and thriving with couples choosing to have elaborate, lavish, and unique wedding celebrations in various venues within and outside of the city limits.
Six Wedding Planners, or as they affectionately refer to each other as the “Planner Posse”, collaborate and share stories to continue evolving in the industry and meeting the needs of their ideal clients. Instead of fostering a competitive spirit, they instead embrace the fact that each offers a unique service and appeals to their Bride and/or Groom. Some offer decor and design services and some offer destination wedding services, and they don’t hesitate to refer each other to couples who require services they individually don’t offer. Because their focus/objective is to ensure a couple’s Wedding is the most memorable and enjoyable day of their lives.
Even during this global pandemic, they each have been able to execute elaborate, over-the-top weddings for clients who felt love was NOT cancelled. In an industry that seems saturated by Wedding Planners and Wedding Coordinators, this Planner Posse focuses on the fact every couple needs a Planner, and they need the one that fits their needs.
They laugh, they problem solve, they set budgets, they collaborate with other wedding professionals, they brainstorm, they share stories, they get frustrated about industry challenges, but, most importantly, they love this ever evolving industry that allows them to constantly evolve, be creative and hone their skills.
Call them the Planner Posse, or the Real Wedding Planners of Detroit! Each offers unique talents and services that’s a match for a couple’s personality, wedding vision and style.
Intro by Lori Lewis
Meisha Pigford of Dream Celebrations
Meisha Pigford is the owner of the award-winning planning & design firm, Dream Celebrations, Inc., who creates premium experiences for her clients that leave them and their guests saying WOW! Through her work as a Marriage Planner and WOW Expert, Meisha assists couples with not only preparing for their big day, but also their marriage. Dream Celebrations, Inc. helps couples identify their strengths and growth areas then provides resources to fill in the gaps. In addition to helping couples, Meisha also makes it a priority to give back to the events industry by being an Educator to help new Planners & Designers build a sustainable business and avoid common mistakes. She launched the W.O.W. Academy that offers hands-on workshops, digital courses and 1-1 coaching. To date, Meisha has won the Couple’s Choice award through WeddingWire for 5 consecutive years, been featured on ABC’s Ultimate Wedding Show, honored as 2019’s top “40 under 40” by Michigan Chronicle and recognized by Real Times Media as “Who’s Who in Black Detroit” in 2020.
Hire professional vendors, (not “friendors”), be flexible and opt for a smaller guest count with elaborate decor and a virtual option for everyone else.Meisha Pigford
Social media: @dreamcelebrations4u
Brandi Peart of B Posh Events
Brandi Peart is the owner and lead planner of B Posh Events. She is a wife and mother of 3 who has mastered the art of balancing family and entrepreneurship. B Posh Events, a couples choice award winner for Weddingwire, 5 years in a row is a Metro Detroit Wedding Planning Company that specializes in producing upscale weddings and events. Brandi’s professional and dedicated team consists of 2 lead planners, 3 assistant coordinators and 1 certified officiant offering full wedding planning and design services. With over 10 years of wedding planning, Brandi and her team have been able to successfully plan over 300 events and serve over 150 bridal couples. With their ability to produce fabulous, upscale events, they have become one of the most sought after wedding planning firms in Metro Detroit and has been featured on WDIV Channel 4 news as a professional event planner contributor. B Posh Events has evolved into an all inclusive wedding service, adding on Posh Destinations and Travel accredited as a certified Honeymoon and Destination Wedding Specialist producing weddings in destinations such as Mexico, Jamaica, Miami and California. Brandi also owns My Posh Soles, which is foldable footwear for brides, bridal parties and guests. Her comfy flats were featured in The B Collective print magazine listed as a best gift item for bridesmaids.
Be sure to hire a professional wedding planner/coordinator to help you navigate through these times. They will assist in keeping you updated on current executive orders, help you pivot your plans if needed and guide you on quick decision making. It’s not a matter of if you are able to have your wedding, it’s a matter of when. And when it is able to happen, it will be an amazing dayBrandi Peart
Social media: @bposhevents
Lorris Lewis of DirectHer
Lorri Lewis or as she’s affectionately called The DirectHer, is a Wedding Expert who has been in the industry for over 20 years, including as the Wedding Coordinator at Oak Grove A.M.E. Church in Detroit, Michigan. She’s been a featured writer in several publications, the Bridal section of the Jewish News, and the 2018 and 2019 editions of Detroit Wedding Day magazine , and in the Michigan Chronicle. As a logistics major she prides herself for starting all weddings on time and ensuring everyone involved in and with the wedding are operating off the same page. As an Educator, she believes in providing resources for couples to educate and to enjoy their wedding planning journey, so she just published her first wedding book, 7 Must Do’s Before I Do: Making Wedding Planning Memorable and Easy; she genuinely believes couples don’t have to be stressed before or during their Big Day. She hosts a weekly podcast “Before the Big Day” available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and iHeartRadio. Her motto for all couples is your “Big Day should be memorable, stress free and flawless”!
Don’t let a smaller guest size, reduced as a result of covid restrictions, ruin your Big Day celebration; a group of 25 or 50 can be just as exciting and fun as 200. For more wedding planning tips, listen to the Before the Big Day podcast every #WeddingWednesday available on Apple Podcast and Spotify, and the Before the Big Day podcast YouTube channel.Lorri Lewis
Social Media: @thedirecther and @beforethebigdaypodcast
Brandy Lane of WillUParty Event Planning
Brandy Lane– owner of WillUParty Event Planning named after her parents Willie and Lucille. She is full of energy and loves what she does. Do not be surprised if she will jump on the microphone (or dance floor) at the party and get the crowd moving if need be. Specializing in Destination weddings and very out of the box guest experiences. The more outrageous and over the top the better. As a true Detroiter to the core, she mentors other small business owners and wedding professionals. Her community events and community activism has earned her recognition as a community leader and received a Testimonial Resolution from Detroit City Council. Her biggest accomplishment to date was accepting a job as the community event planner for Congresswoman Rashida Talib. Her events have been featured on Essence online, The Shade Room, local news channels, and magazines. Recognized by WDIV Channel as Best in Detroit Wedding Planning in 2016, 2017, and 2020; Best of Knot weddings 2018 and 2019. Michigan Chronicle’s 313 Best in Black winner- Best in Weddings; Recognized as one of the Top 3 Wedding Planners in Detroit 2018, 2019, and 2020. She is currently an Accredited Wedding Planner and the Michigan State Manager for the Association of Bridal Consultants. Next year she plans on pursuing a dream of becoming a Master Wedding Planner. So if you want to enjoy your special day, Brandy and her staff would love to make it happen. “We plan so you can party!”
If it is too good to be true, it probably is. So many couples have lost money due to a wedding vendor’s unethical business practice. Be careful of the scammers during the pandemic. Look into hiring vendors that are members of professional industry organizations such as the Association of Bridal Consultants – ABC, International Live Events Association – ILEA, and/or National Association for Catering and Events – NACE.Brandy Lane
Social media: @willuparty
Pilar Doakes of The Four Seasons Event Group
Pilar Doakes owner and planning specialist of The Four Seasons Event Group. Specializes in weddings for the busy millennial couple and has had the pleasure of working with some of the most amazing families throughout her tenure. Wedding planning packages range from day-of coordination to full-service planning, as well as event design and execution. This native Detroiter, is a certified Professional Bridal Consultant and Wedding Coordinator with 19 years of experience in wedding and event planning. Pilar has not only the know-how but the creative eye for design to make each event a unique and memorable one. With wedding planning at the forefront of her company, Pilar and her team have transformed some of the most beautiful venues in Detroit and across the country. Having been in business since 2008, Pilar has recently decided to add to her brand by opening an online bridal boutique called The Four Seasons Bridal Boutique. They offer specialty bridal items and accessories to enhance your wedding experience. The Four Seasons Event Group is also famously known for designing and executing jaw-dropping styled wedding shoots tailored to display different holidays, themes and settings.
Planning a wedding during Covid is an extreme undertaking but with the right team in place, the journey should still be seamless. Hire a wedding planner that you trust to navigate you through all of the ever-changing rules and continuous pivots. You are still more than capable of having the wedding of your dreamsPilar Doakes
Social Media: @fourseasonsevents
Crystal Marie Young of Crystal Marie Events
Crystal Marie Young has established a visible signature service of Destination Weddings and proves that you can stand out in the event industry as a destination wedding expert—and attract the right clients—by embracing your true self. Her destination weddings have been featured in national publications such as Essence.com. In 2020 she pivoted her company and added virtual wedding services in order to better serve her clients during the pandemic. She founded Crystal Marie Events LLC (CME), a Certified Woman Owned Small Business (WOSB) has been “Turning Events Into Experiences” for 12 years and was awarded the Best of Detroit Event Planners in 2015 and 2019, Wedding Wire’s Couple Choice Awards recipient 2017-2020 and recently ranked #1 as Best Wedding Planner in Detroit for 2020. She’s known as “the peacock” and fully embraces being “a bird of a different feather.” Author of the Amazon Top 100 Bestseller, “Crystal Clear Bride Guide,” her e-book “Become A Powerhouse Planner”, where she reveals how to always get paid for your time and she also co-authored Planners Unplugged: Secrets of The Worlds Greatest Event Planners and So You’re Engaged…. Now What? a wedding planning journal that keeps the bride organized during the planning process. She has been mentoring and educating novice event planners and business owners as an international speaker for over 5 years. Crystal Marie is known for her no-nonsense wedding planning tips, zest for life as a small business owner, commitment to her clients, love of travel and out-of-the-box lifestyle brand “Fear Doesn’t Go With My Outfit™. Other services CME excutes include: social events, corporate events, memorial services and event design. So, if you happen to bump into her, please excuse the glitter.
In the midst of Covid, now is the time to step out of the box of traditional wedding planning and really showcase you and your partners personalities. I DO BBQ’s, macroweddings, virtual weddings and destination weddings can really extend your vision and budget. With the right wedding planner in place, your event can be transformed into an experience.Crystal Marie Young
There you have it, The Real Wedding Planners of Detroit. We don’t know when Rona will go away for good, but these professionals have persevered through it and delivered beautiful, memorable weddings despite it.
If it’s not you getting married, then consider giving one of the best gifts you can this year – the Gift of a Wedding Planner!
Lorri Lewis is a 20 year Wedding Expert and Podcast Host located in the metropolitan Detroit area serving Brides and Grooms throughout the state of Michigan, affectionately known as The DirectHer. You can reach Lorri at email@example.com or via Facebook and Instagram @thedirecther. Tune in every Wednesday to Before The Big Day podcast, a Wedding Planning podcast available on Apple podcasts, Spotify, and iHeartRadio.
Photography by Q11 Photography