10 Questions with Kari Brockmeyer

WeddingRule Interviewed one of the most passionate and highly sought-after wedding planners in Maryland, Kari Brockmeyer of K. L. Planning Company. Baltimore based Kari is the founder and owner of K. L. Planning Company.

K. L. Planning Company

Planner - Kari Brockmeyer

10 Questions with Kari Brockmeyer

1. Introduction: What's your story?

Hi! Im Kari, founder and lead planner at K. L. Planning Company. As a young teenager, I always enjoyed planning events from birthday parties to holiday parties to family vacations. It was just always fun to me. My family kept telling me that I should get into event planning and I continued to tell them that it was just a hobby for me. But then in 2015, I figured why not give it a shot, so I started interning for two different event planning companies which helped mold me into the planner I am today. In 2017, with the help of my family, my dream became a reality and I began the owner of K. L. Planning Company. I started slow to gain more experience by doing a few weddings for friends and then began booking new clients and getting my name out there. I went from doing 15 weddings a year to 25 weddings a year to just about 60 weddings a year. I have a great team that helps me on wedding days as well as an incredible support group being my family and friends. I absolutely love what I do for a living and wouldn't change it for the world.

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

I plan a lot of events but I specialize in weddings planning which I absolutely love. It's so much fun as every wedding is so different then the next. I have planned 87 weddings since starting my own company in 2017.

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

Some of the services we offer are:
-Full Planning which is guiding you through the entire process as well as book all of your vendors for you from start to finish.
-Partial Planning which is helping you book some final vendors and giving you recommendations on details as well.
-The most popular is Day of Coordination which we call "Month of" Coordination since we like to meet with our brides a month before to go over all logistics which helps us create their super detailed day of timeline.
-Reception Management which is for some of our couples who may have already tied the knot and are just needing us for the reception part.

All but the reception management package includes rehearsal coordination.

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?

Some of the services we offer are:
-Full Planning which is guiding you through the entire process as well as book all of your vendors for you from start to finish.
-Partial Planning which is helping you book some final vendors and giving you recommendations on details as well.
-The most popular is Day of Coordination which we call "Month of" Coordination since we like to meet with our brides a month before to go over all logistics which helps us create their super detailed day of timeline.
-Reception Management which is for some of our couples who may have already tied the knot and are just needing us for the reception part.

All but the reception management package includes rehearsal coordination. 20% is due to book your date on our calendar and the balance is due a month prior to wedding day.

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

We currently have a team of 8 planners and are in the process of bringing on more as our company is continuing to grow. Our other lead planners besides myself are...Kelly N who has been with us since 2017, Terry who has been with us since 2019 and Tina who has been with us since 2020. Our other planners are Kelly P (my sister) who has been with me since day one in 2017, Molly who has been with us since 2020 and Sam who is our newest member to our team. My mom Cynde helps us with every bridal show that we do and I have to give some credit to my husband Tom as he built most of the arches in our rental inventory and who also gave up most of his shed space.

Can't forget our Planner In Training my 2 year old daughter Emma who attended her first rehearsal coordination with me at just 3 weeks old.

We have 2 planners on each wedding to make sure everything is taken care of before the first guest arrives.

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

If for any reason I am not able to attend a wedding, I quickly find another planner from our large team, have a phone call to go over all logistics and have them take over my responsibilities. It's been rare for me to not work a wedding. A funny story I tell to show how committed I am as a wedding planner is when I was working a wedding on August 24, 2018. I was 38 weeks pregnant and feeling great that day. I was having occasional back spasms during the wedding day but nothing I couldn't handle. Little did I know I was in labor. I worked that wedding until the very end, boxed up all her decor with my team, loaded the boxes in the couples truck. Then hours later, had our daughter Emma. The shock from my couple when I texted them a picture of me in the hospital holding Emma was priceless. 11 days later I was back to running rehearsals and coordinating weddings.

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

It depends on what package is booked. Basically, once they book with us with any package, they have unlimited access to contacting us. We feel that it helps us build trust and a better relationship with our couples and we get to know them more before wedding day. But each package has a different amount of in person meetings and venue walkthroughs.

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

So usually I leave this up to the couple unless they ask me for advice or my opinion on wording or layout. The same goes for guest list and rsvp's. I try to follow up with my couples to see how their rsvp list is coming along so that I can help with getting final numbers to catering and venue.

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?

So after a month out meeting with a couple, I reach out to all of their vendors and get their arrival times, departure times, and details. This is what helps me build their super detailed day of timeline. Sometimes it takes a little back and forth to make sure deliveries and pickups meet the venues availability.

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?

Yes, creating timelines is my favorite thing to do. Ours is a very detailed timeline down to the minute but I always explain that the wedding day will not go minute by minute but its just put on the timeline so that nothing is forgotten. Usually once the couple approves the final timeline, I send out a copy to all their vendors so that everyone is on the same page which can make for a seamless day.

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Awards

WeddingRule Editor’s Choice 2021