Sometimes, in the industry, you get the pleasure of working closely with the same person across many events, months, and years! Today we'd like to introduce you, dear reader, to a planner who is organized, talented, straight-up hilarious and just got the cutest puppy ever.
Meet one of our favorite people on the planet, Rajul Pillai!
years with the company?
what do you specialize in?
Wedding planning, coordinating, and designing
what is your favorite thing about the event industry?
I love being part of the different wedding ceremonies. I love when the bride makes her way into the wedding ceremony; that moment, to me, is very magical.
describe your favorite collaboration with colonial events.
I have done too many amazing events with Colonial; I don't have just one favorite. But one is when The Henry ballroom was first renovated, we created a yellow mandap for a client. We were all not sure about the color since it was so bold, but that color looked stunning in the new ballroom. Another moment was creating a full crystal ceiling with crystal panels, chandeliers, and lighting this past fall at Suburban Showplace - which was also another show stopper!
if you were stranded on a desert island, what three things would you bring?
My phone, a lip balm, and a boat because I will eventually get bored and need to hit the mall.
what would you do if you were invisible for a day?
I would definitely play some tricks on people and scare the shit out of people.
what's your biggest pet peeve?
who would play you in the movie of your life?
check out some of our favorite collaborations with rajul
Interested in learning more? Check out the Blissful Weddings and Events website and follow her on Instagram!
We know that you're dying to get to know us on a personal level, so once in a while we'll give you a glimpse into who we are as individuals and Colonial Events employees. First up, Lauren!
What is your official position at colonial?
Receptionist turned Chief Phone Answerer + Tiny Ball of Talent
what do you really do at colonial?
Answer phones, write up quotes, design things, take photos
How long have you worked here?
A little over a year
What would your spirit animal be?
A cat that is trapped in a bag, gets riled up, and then gets let out
Who would play you in the movie of your life?
Mila Kunis, but they would have to make her shorter in post production
What is your biggest pet peeve?
if you could have any fictional set of parents, who would you choose?
Danny Tanner, Jesse Katsopolis, Joey Gladstone
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Either a veterinarian, an FBI agent, or a Crime Scene Investigator
CANDY: All except black licorice
WAY TO RELAX: I am addicted to television. Comedy, documentary, drama, everything
TYPE OF BABY ANIMAL: Baby foxes
BEVERAGE: Ginger beer
VACATION SPOT: The beach. Any beach. Anywhere.
Draw a self portrait!
A few months ago, Amanda was approached by a childhood schoolmate turned fabulous photographer, Raelani, about designing the decor for a styled shoot. So Amanda rounded up her creative partner-in-crime, Lindsay, and on April 22, they traveled a little ways from home base in Troy to the former London's Dairy Farm in Burtchville.
You'd never know by the photos or the models, April and Clayton (a real-life couple!), that the North wind coming off Lake Huron made our sunny day a chilly 45 degrees! Ah, Spring in Michigan. Despite the wind, everything came together and the photos are breathtaking.
We achieved a unique Spring theme by mixing industrial and pastoral elements with crystals and brass. Greenery garlands, Edison bulbs, vintage glassware, crystal chandeliers, and French-style soft seating completed the look. While the gunmetal industrial chairs and gold flatware added a contemporary edge.
A vintage tray, hand-painted with a Jane Austen quote from the classic romance, Pride and Prejudice, was created by Gilded Flora Studios. As were the meticulously created invitations with envelopes featuring hand-written addresses.
Also adding to our theme, were the beautiful, gold wedding rings belonging to April's grandparents.
The gorgeous bouquet by Christopher's added a pop of color to the early Spring day. And don't you wish you had a reason to wear a flower crown every day?
This scene, set in a long-ago old chicken coop, features some of the newest additions to our inventory: the Ellington Sofa and Fitzgerald Arm Chairs. Insert heart-eye emoji here.
View all the photos from this shoot here.
rentals from this shoot
credits + Special thanks
We are excited to announce the arrival of our container from India and share all our new specialty stuff available to rent!
Our story begins last January, when one of our fearless leaders, Todd, took a trip to India to experience the culture and procure new rental items for our South Asian clients. He came back excited about all he saw and all he ordered to be shipped to the U.S.
Well, all of his mystery items have finally arrived!
Here's a tour of some of the newest additions to our inventory...
Don't be deceived by these tiny pictures. These items are surprisingly large. Most of the panel items are 10' tall!
For pricing, check out the newly added South Asian Items page! And keep checking back as we continue to add pictures of the items in use!
Over the dance floor, over the entire reception, from ballroom ceilings, and tents, hanging décor is something we get asked about for almost every event. Nothing makes a dramatic statement quite like something interesting or beautiful floating above the heads of your guests. Here are a few of our favorite examples and what you need to know about getting there.
Photography: ANNE-CLAIRE BRUN
Photography: COTTRELL PHOTOGRAPHY
A ceiling height best suited for hanging décor is 14’ or higher. If a ceiling is too low, the hanging décor would significantly shrink the room and make it feel confining. On the other hand, with a ceiling that is very tall (say 20 feet), it would be best to use long or large pieces, otherwise the ceiling might gobble up the dramatic effect.
Talk to your venue and do a site visit. Every venue has a different ceiling and different rules on hanging décor. Some venues only allow small items that can be hung with magnets, while others have an endless supply of grab points, power, and a lift on site.
Be unique. Since hanging décor has become so popular, be open minded and prepared to do something that stands out!
Not sure where to start? Contact us!
It’s that time of year again! The sun is coming out, the chill is leaving the air, and you know what that means. Tent Season is upon us! Colonial Events has been in the tenting business since 1985 and our tent game is strong! Read below to finally get all your tenting questions answered.
Cleaning + Maintenance
We pride ourselves on having the best quality tents and a lot of that has to do with the maintenance. We have a tent washer and every tent of ours that goes out, comes back and is washed then hung to dry. We despise mold and dirt and combat it from the beginning. That’s why our tents last longer, have less stains, and probably smell better!
Why Choose a Tent for Your Event?
Whether for a rain plan or the main event, a graduation party, corporate picnic, or wedding, tents are very versatile and can meet any of your event needs. Take a look at some of the ways we’ve made tents into a unique space!
Frame vs. Pole Tents
A question that we get a lot is, what is the difference between a frame and pole tent? Well, a pole tent is a common style that requires interior poles, or center poles, to help hold it up. A frame tent is freestanding with no poles on the inside, which allows for a more open space. So why choose one over the other? A pole tent is less expensive, but must be staked into the ground, and therefore cannot be placed on a concrete surface. A frame tent, though more expensive, allows for an unobstructed interior and can be placed on any surface, including but not limited to driveways, patios and grass.
Choosing a Tent Size
Tents come in many different sizes and it may be hard to decide which size you may need. It all depends on what you want to put in the tent and how much space is available on the property. Here’s a quick guide to help you decide which tent size might work best for you.
Staking vs. Water Barrels vs. Cement Blocks
At Colonial Events, we are very conscious of your safety and we take the securing of the tent very seriously. If the tent is on grass, or sometimes concrete, we will stake the tent directly into the ground. When the surface is unable to be staked, we use 500 lb. water barrels or 2000 lb. cement blocks on the side poles. The largest tent we will water barrel is a 20x30. Anything over that size, we use cement blocks on the side poles and the amount needed depends on the size of the tent. A few tedious details about the block process. We can only get six blocks on a truck; a tent that requires a few more than that, will require additional trips. If the tent needs many more blocks than that, we bring in a special truck with a driver that can hold up to 42 blocks.
Now, we’ve gotten a little bit of backlash on the fact that we won’t water barrel larger tents, but we truly believe that tent safety is not something to be taken lightly. For more information on the consequences of improperly securing a tent, please read this article from the American Rental Association.
There’s nothing quite like the wow factor of noteworthy lighting at an event, and it’s not hard to accomplish! Good lighting can transform a space, tie in a theme, and add ambiance. With so many options, no matter your budget, there is sure to be a lighting option that works for you. Let’s take a look at some of our favorite ways to light an event.
And if you’re looking for more awe-inspiring uplighting, take a look at the blues and purples that are hitting the ceiling of the Henry Ford Museum. With your eyes already moving up because of the spectacular airplane, the lighting only highlights the scene, really making it pop.
A few different factors determine cost with uplighting. How big of a space are you looking to uplight? If you’re looking to do all or most of the room, a good rule of thumb is to place a light every ten feet. If you’re looking for a specific shade of a specific color, your best bet is to go with our RGBA uplights. If you’re less concerned about color, a par can with a colored gel might work just fine for you.
String lighting is a fan favorite and can be used in so many different ways. Twinkle lights can hang with fabric for a soft glow, string in a circle to a point, or wrap a pole. Bistro lights, especially outside, make a space more intimate and are perfect for cocktail hour. They can also be strung above the tables for a Tuscan Villa feel.