Instagram & Pinterest are to blame. The endless sources of  creative content breeds an inner confidence. It ignites untapped potential and gives us a sense that somehow, we missed our calling to be Sydney’s leading event stylist.  As a popular DIY venue we feel it’s time to talk DIY events. It is an incredible chance to style an event 100% to your theme and budget. It can also be a time of great learning. Here are our tips to guide you on the DIY event journey.

Minimise The Number Of Suppliers

Each supplier is different. Generally speaking, all suppliers charge delivery fees for bump in and bump out. These charges truly add up. Where possible, try to keep the number of suppliers to a select few. Can the marquee supplier also provide tables and chairs? Can the florist provide table props and décor etc. You’ll save money, time and enjoy liaising with fewer people.

DIY Only What You Love

Each event is unique, yet all events follow a similar formula. There is food, drinks, music, furniture, styling and props. Save time and stress. DIY only the things you love to do. (Or things that you have talented friends and family!) You might decide to make place cards and personalised bonbonniere. Think twice whether it’s worth DIY the hanging flower installation for the first time in your life! It will 100% take longer than you think.

What You Set Up, You Pack Up!

Leading up to the event, the adrenalin soars. You’re functioning on no sleep. The night before there are friends and family helping with the set up. Post event, it is a tad different. You are exhausted. The support team has dwindled. Venues who permit DIY events require you to pack up, whatever you set up.  If the last thing you feel like doing is taking down 150 metres of fairy lights, be sure to outsource certain tasks to a stylist, supplier or have a bump out plan that allocates tasks for the bump out. Keep life stress-free after the event!

Pick The 3 Things That Matter Most

Any budget can only stretch so far. Before you get sucked into the vortex of Instagram and Pinterest decide on what matters most. What are the 3 things you MUST HAVE to make it a memorable night? Giving up the blue velvet lounges and ottomans under the verandah is never easy, but there will be great food, music and table décor or whatever you value most to make it a fabulous night!

Keep Budget For Staff 

DIY venues offer endless choices but do require a little more consideration for ‘behind the scenes’ on the night. There is nothing worse than when guests wait hours behind the bar for a single glass of wine. Our advice is keep a budget for wait staff on the night. Also remember, there are clever ways to have your guests to help themselves, allowing you to leverage staff hours on the night. Design a non-alcoholic drink stand, or position pre-poured drinks on arrival. This means everyone has a drink from the moment they arrive. Be a ‘hostess with the mostess’ and indulge your guests!

Until next time . . . Petunia Finks xoxo

PS – follow The Residences on Instagram @residences_cp for styling inspiration and DIY tips.


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