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Getting to know Katie Brantley
Meet Katie Brantley. Currently the Wedding Sales Executive at Ovolo Wooloomooloo she loves nothing more than seeing a couple’s dream day come to life. Katie, a traveller at heart, grew up in California before moving to Oz. She dreams of planning an event in Lake Como in Italy and holidaying in the Maldives, all whilst feasting on Mexican fare. She has some great advice for those just starting out in events too. Join us as we get to know another Event Pro, Katie Brantley…
Give us a snap shot of your career to date.
My passion for weddings began back home in Southern California, where I worked as an Assistant Event Planner while finishing my Bachelor of Communications and Nutritional Sciences degree from the University of Arizona. I loved absolutely every minute of event planning and decided this was the career for me. Once I finished my degree, I worked part-time at The Pelican Hill Resort and part-time as an Assistant Wedding Stylist for Allure Events Atelier.
My love of travel inspired my move to Australia where I was employed as a Corporate Event Planner for a recruitment agency. It was an amazing experience and there was so much to learn from coordinating corporate events, but my real passion was weddings. The opportunity to join this fabulous industry came along in 2017 when I landed my current position as the Wedding Sales Executive at Ovolo Woolloomooloo and after trying out a few different roles, I have found my dream job.
The most memorable event you have worked on and why?
The most memorable event I have worked on would have to be a wedding I coordinated this past September for Rechelle and Nathan. I love working with couples who put a lot of heart and soul into their wedding and really try to make it as special as possible. The bride’s brother is a singer and recorded his own version of the song she walked down the aisle to…there wasn’t a dry eye in the room! Then, the bride kept to her fun and quirky nature by creating a scavenger hunt throughout our hotel lobby to entertain her guests during cocktail hour. Finally, the MC and one of the groomsmen dressed up as the couple’s favourite singers and did a surprise remake of two of their songs with lyrics relating to the couple! Harry Potter also made a special appearance that night (aka the maid of honour). You could tell there was a lot of love for these two from family and friends and after working with them for a year I could understand why!
What did you ‘learn the hard way’ when planning an event?
To always pay attention to the little details. There have been a few times when couples have given me placecards with nicknames that didn’t match the seating chart or forgot to bring batteries or even a wishing well! Sometimes you just have to think on your feet.
What are three personality traits that are required to succeed in the events industry?
I think you need to have strong time management skills, be able to anticipate the client’s needs, and handle pressure well.
If you could share one piece of advice to those starting out in the industry what would it be?
Try to gain as much experience in different roles as you can! From operations to sales to event styling, there are so many different areas of events to understand and being well rounded goes a long way. I’d also recommend going to any industry networking events as quite often it is all about who you know!
What song always gets you on the dance floor?
Marvin Gaye- Ain’t No Mountain High Enough
If you could plan an event anywhere in the world where would it be and why?
Lake Como! Italy is such an incredible destination for weddings and to plan one in Lake Como would be a dream.
Favourite type of food?
How would your friends describe your job?
Glamorous, romantic and that I am a bit of a therapist to my couples. (It’s much more fun to tell them about the exciting bits rather than the hard work and pressure that comes with the job).
How do you unwind after a big event?
A big glass of red wine and Netflix
Where do you go for creative inspiration?
Normally Instagram to stay up with current trends, but a lot of my inspiration comes from travelling as well.
When entertaining at home what do you cook?
I love baking, so probably an apple pie or lemon bars.
What do you prefer, cocktail party or sit-down dinner?
Sit-down dinner, it’s much more intimate and I love decorating dining tables and place settings.
What is your ideal holiday destination?
What’s your drink of choice at an event?
I love a good espresso martini
It’s event day – heels or flats?
Flats for the set-up and heels once it’s time for guest arrival
Why do you love your job?
I love my job because wedding planning is very personal, I get to interact with my couples for a year and to see their dream day come to life makes all the hard work worth it. Nothing makes me happier than when I receive a feedback email saying how much the newlyweds loved their day.