10 Questions with Terri Gilbreath

WeddingRule Interviewed one of the most popular and highly sought-after wedding planners in Florida, Terri Gilbreath of G.G. Events. Jacksonville based Terri is the founder and owner of G.G. Events.

G.G. Events

Planner - Terri Gilbreath

10 Questions with Terri Gilbreath

1. Introduction: What's your story?

Hello, I am Terri Gilbreath owner and lead planner. I have been working in the wedding industry for over 19 years now. I love a great party and feel your event should reflect your style and personality. We work together to combine the best of our experience with what you want. Our company has become a leader in building from the ground up events (Basically building an event space in the middle of nowhere or home/estate based.)

I have always loved weddings and events. From drawing out wedding dresses as a kid to throwing themed parties in high school, I have been immersed in the world of events, especially weddings. I started working for a local bridal shop when I was 18 and went on to work for the first one stop bridal shop in our area at the time. I have background in fashion, invites, florals, catering and more due to the unique opportunities provided in my working experience. I have been certified through the Association of Bridal Consultants since I open my business in 2010. I always belive I will learn something new with event I do and contuine to pursue new ways to make planning easier and fun. We are one of the few companies that work with 3d floor layout, 3d floral design and virtual walkthroughs.

2. What's your experience as a wedding planner? How many weddings have you planned?

I have been in the wedding industry over 19 years now. With working for another planning company in the beginning and then opening my own company in 2010, its been over 100+ weddings. We only take on a select number of weddings a year to be able to give our couples the best service possible. It leaves a smaller number of weddings a year, but allows my clients to be able to work with me directly and be more flexible with appointment needs since most of clients are super busy professionals. I can remember when I got married in 2006, I was planning 7 other weddings at the same time.

3. What sorts of services do you offer (month-of coordination, full-service planning, or à la carte planning)?

We offer:
Full Planning: This is for couples who wish to have a partner in every aspect of their wedding day. Together, I will guide you as we determine your wedding budget, select a venue, choose every member of your wedding professional team, completely design your wedding from concept to implementation, and much more. I’ll also be onsite to manage your wedding day as it unfolds.

Design: The colors, textures, and details of your wedding day are what make your celebration come alive with your story. Allow us to pour over florals, stationery, and more to curate plans that allow us to elevate the things you love into wedding day moments that speak to your unique taste and style.

Event Management: If you have heard of “day of” or “month of” event planning, you have heard of event management! This type of planning is ideal for couples who intend to plan their wedding day but want to partner with us during the final weeks before they recite their vows. We’ll create a wedding day timeline, act as a liaison between you and your wedding professional team, and manage your wedding day from start to finish. Your venue coordinator works for your venue, but you are our focus!

4. How do payments work (a percentage of the wedding budget, a flat fee etc.)? What are the different packages that you offer and which one is your most popular package?

We offer flat rate for almost services. Full Planning and Event Management are flat rates, while Design is flat, plus percentage. If you book Design with Event Management then the percentage fee is waived and its a flat rate.
Couples will pay a 25% non-refundable retainer to hold their date and for us to being working on their wedding. We then break up the remaining payments into monthly payments to make it easier on our clients.
Full Planning is our most popular, followed by Event Management. Design is included in Full Service so most couples find it a better deal to go ahead and get all the benefits from Full Service.

5. Who else is in your team and how many people on your staff will be at the wedding?

My company is a family business. My dad has been by my side since the beginning. He started to step back prior to 2019, but every now and then you will find him helping with set up.
Amanda is my main assistant and will help out in office and on wedding days. You can't really miss any of us since we all look alike and have red hair.
Every event is different and depending on the size, production scale and logistics will effect how many assistants we bring. There is at a minimum always two of us. We will added a third as needed for set up. We once had 5 assistants at wedding all of them other planners themselves to make sure the event went off with out any issues.

6. What happens if you're sick or otherwise unable to be there on the day of the wedding?

I am really luck to be apart of an amazing community of planners. We have plans in place for another planner to step in and take over with my assistant if needed. We keep online management systems and hard folders (I am old school) to keep all details in place. I am very detailed so there very little besides someone coming in day to execute the production list and help my couples have the best day possible.

7. How many meetings will you have with the couple and how will they be involved?

We meet via Zoom, face to face or phone every month with all our clients to make sure they are on track. Full Service clients can end up with multiple meetings a month as we go to as many appointments as possible with them as part of planning service. When we work on design its a pretty involved process which means tons of emails, calls and meetings to make sure we get it just right.
All of our couples are very involved in the process (it's their wedding) we are just the guiding hand and experts that help them navigate this process a little easier.

8. Will you handle the invitations, from wording and ordering to the addressing and mailing? What about guest list coordination and RSVPs?

We can help our clients that require it. We give them advice on working with either professional stationary designers or going with an alternate option. With Full Service clients we will help with wording, getting the correct items orders, double checking their proof with them, stuffing envelopes, taking them to the calligrapher for addressing and dropping at the post office. We do help with tracking RSVPs as most of clients prefer a plated dinner and meal selection is a detailed process. One of the first things we ask for is a copy of their guest list.

9. Do you handle rentals? Will you coordinate delivery, arrival and set up times with the photographer, the florist, the musicians and the caterer/banquet manager?

We handle it all. Rentals are something we offer to help all of our clients with as it can be very confusing and it can lead to problems on event day if not done correctly. Coordination of all vendors is a part of our services. We start coordinating with vendors as early as possible to make sure everyone has clear idea of how the event with proceed. We try to do team meetings with vendors prior to event days, so everyone needs are addressed. We follow up two weeks out and the week of to make sure there are no changes. Then on event day we are the point of contact and the overseers and we pitch in whenever someone needs a helping hand.

10. Can you create a timeline that tells everyone involved in the planning process (other pros, members of the wedding party, to-be-weds and families) what to do and when to do it? How will you make sure everyone sticks to the schedule?

Timeline are my jam! I am planner before anything else. We use a system that allows me to make extremely detailed timelines that we are able to share with everyone. Event days we bring extra copies. One of our main jobs is to make sure things are starting on time and everyone is on point. We will do time checks through the day to make sure everyone is where they need to be and doing what needs to get done. We are almost always the first one to arrive on event day and the last ones to leave.

Gallery

Awards

WeddingRule Editor’s Choice 2021