As you know, I am now profiling various planners, designers, florists and artists on Friday’s as part of my Spotlight series. Today, I am sharing an interview I did with Tiffany Chalk, the owner of Tiffany Chalk Events, which is based in Delaware. As I mentioned, this series was started in the spirit of sharing and community, and I look forward to hearing all of your wonderful feedback.
I love hearing each person’s story, tell us when you discovered that working in events was your passion?
From a young age I’ve always had a love for event planning. At the age of 12, I planned a surprise birthday dinner for my mom and invited the whole family. I did everything myself from decorating to cooking the dinner (which included leaving the gizzards in the roasted chicken). I even baked a cake, which was pretty good. The opportunities I had during various gatherings and celebrations for family and friends allowed me to have fun in developing my creativity in event design. Therefore, after many years of assisting in planning weddings and spa birthday parties for those closest to me, I decided it was time to exchange my part-time dream for a full-time passion.
What did you do beforehand?
I started out in 1991 as a nail technician in the spa industry and I worked my way up to management. In 2006 I was off work for an extended period of time due maternal issues leading to the loss of multiple children. It was at that time I was able to reflect on what was important to me and returned to school to fulfill my hearts desire to be an event planner.
Tell us about your biggest event success
My ‘Girls Night Out’ inaugural event to support the March of Dimes in 2007, and a celebrity softball game I orchestrated for over 1200 attendees last summer both come to mind. However, I would personally have to say my biggest event success was when I was able to accommodate a wife’s request to celebrate her oh-so-deserving husband for his 75th birthday party on a limited budget. I was able to stretch my creativity beyond its normal parameters and execute a high-class event for over 200 guests fit for a king.
I believe that each of us have something unique and special to offer clients, what do you feel sets you apart?
I think the most unique is my ability to manifest my clients’ deepest desires and vision for their special occasions by transforming any given space on any budget.
Working in events is often a full time job, especially when you are committed to your clients. How do you find that balance between your personal and professional life?
Family has always been a priority of mine. Therefore, finding a work-life balance has been important to me. I do my best to stick to a set schedule although circumstances may sometimes dictate otherwise in order to make the client happy. Nevertheless, by adhering to a set schedule, it helps me to allot the time I need for family and personal activities. Whether it’s a day off or a date night with my husband, all business-related activities are put on hold until the next working day.
Finally, describe the event of your dreams. What are the budget, theme, and location?
The event of my dreams would be a romantic wedding—the kind that seems to only exists in a fairy tale. There would not be an established budget, as the clients would spare no expense in ensuring that their dreams become a reality. The theme for the nuptials would be inspired by the song, A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes from the Disney animated classic, Cinderella. Finally, there’s no better location for a fairy tale wedding than a castle—particularly one that sits high on a cliff with a beautiful view of the ocean.