{un}convention BROOKLYN Panelist: Katie Wannen

We have three more speakers for (un)convention BROOKLYN to brag about, and we're mega thankful to get to share space with and learn from these powerhouses. First, we'd like to introduce you to Katie of The Plannery, a DC-based wedding planner and coordinator who is firmly on Team Wedding Pants for Women. We couldn't agree more. 

Katie Wannen of The Plannery

Company Name: The Plannery
Owner: Katie Wannen
City: Washington, DC 

Brief description of your hustle: The Plannery is a boutique wedding planning and coordination company where there are no “shoulds” — we are here to support and nurture each unique client. As practical, down-to-earth planners and coordinators, we shoulder the stress and insanity so clients can relax, enjoy, and party their asses off! Our business style reflects my Brooklyn background and my current Del Ray, Alexandria neighborhood — friendly, real, creative, and open-minded, where inspiration is more important than aspiration and where the priority is spending money in a smart and conscious way.

How are you a “game-changer” in the wedding industry? I question and analyze the wedding industry as much as possible — myself included. But most importantly, I support. That’s my job. I support every client and their ideas and wants and needs — I give them real advice but never judge, and provide solid perspective (something sorely lacking in the wedding industry).

When I started The Plannery five years ago, serving everyone — men, women, LGBTQ couples — was my primary mission. I deliberately designed my website to be fun but not overly girly (the pink and purple and cursive on all wedding planner sites at the time gave me hives), used inclusive language, and openly championed LGBTQ couples and groom participation. Though we’ve had huge triumphs with marriage equality recently, I still wish more wedding vendors would be enthusiastic, open LGBTQ supporters. And I continue to see lots of bride-focused language and attitudes out there - so I don’t think game has been changed quite yet!

What inspires you to do weddings differently? I started my business years ago, frustrated by the fact that most planners were seen as pushy, aggressive, intimidating and tied to the latest “trends” and what one “has” to do when getting married. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out how a role that should be grounded, friendly, and supportive had morphed to have such a nightmare reputation. I wanted to change that. I also knew there were people out there who wanted their untraditional choices validated and I wanted to be that support system for them.  

What is one of your favorite creative projects you’ve worked on? I worked with a couple who had an over 200 person wedding on a local farm. We had a non-traditional structure that I loved — started with some welcome snacks and a pre-ceremony “hang” where the bride and groom sang songs along with the crowd, read poetry, and signed their ketubah. Proceeded to ceremony, followed by cocktails in which people were invited to go play mini golf on the course we’d set up and play other yards games (including touch football). Dinner and dancing, with a massive hora, followed. And the day ended with s’mores by the fire and more guitar playing. It was an excellent mix of some tradition, lots of the couple’s personality, and a relaxed, fun celebration.

What are three ingredients for a perfect day in your life?
Clear communication, laughter with my family, and efficiency

If you were in charge, what would the next big wedding trend be?
Brides in pants!! Brides in pants!!! Nothing makes me happier. That and non-white wedding dresses.

What are you most looking forward to at {un}convention? Meeting fellow kindred spirits, getting inspired (as I know I will be), and branching out to network beyond the DC area. Also, because I have a 9.5 month old, I am very excited to have a night out on my own!

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