As we look back to the 10th Anniversary of the CHS Show in Leeds, our MD Liz Taylor wanted to share the highlights of her presentation, The Future of Event Design, delivered to a packed audience in the Leeds First Direct Arena.
Focussing around the Future of Event Design, Liz shared stories, anecdotes and advice to newly appointed event planners, and the more established event professionals who attended the event.
Entertaining. Inspiring. Motivational. The three essential ingredients to any successful event.
The transformation of Victoria Warehouse into a wedding overflowing with canopies of floral fabulousness and a sea of candle lit warmth. Credit: www.thelastword.tv
As you can see from the video clip, TLC work at a breakneck pace with a team of trusted suppliers to deliver productions that fulfil these three key elements…… and more. Creating the biggest showcases for a company brand or private individual , the TLC team work tirelessly to design and produce the very best. From large to small, the input of ideas and passion are the same. And the devil is very much in the detail. Let me explain…..
As MD of the Taylor Lynn Corporation I have been planning and producing corporate and private events for over 30 years – during which time the industry has obviously changed significantly! In the next 10 minutes I will give you the whistle stop tour of where I feel we have seen the biggest developments, and what to expect for the future of event design.
The TLC approach to event design is, in a word, holistic. When it comes to design plans, we look at the whole event and how individual aspects can work in synergy together. We see every individual element as an opportunity to reflect our uniquely creative design touch. Every detail, no matter how small, is thoughtfully crafted to reflect the theme and goal of the party. Venue to entertainment. Catering to décor. Each element being an integral part of the guest’s journey into our imagination. This combined with theatrical production and a keen eye for detail. From brand launch, to private celebration, a well curated design can reflect a business or personal message in a unique and, more importantly, eclectic way. Its what we do. And with an 85% repeat business rate and an order book stretching into 2025, I feel we do well.
But this is my time to share some of that experience and knowledge, which I hope you will find helpful in planning your events. For the sake of time today, let’s break this down a little and focus on just three of the key elements in designing an event; theming, entertainment and catering. And look at how this has evolved and what the future holds…….
Raise the Curtain
30 years ago, party décor was more literal. We took our inspiration and made incredible designs completely reflective of the idea. It was more, obvious, in its interpretation perhaps. Now, it’s is subtler and more styled. We focus less on themes and more on creating a stylish ‘journey’ for guests. Immersing them in the experience of the event; whether it be influenced by a corporate brand or lifestyle. And this is set to continue.
Let me Entertain You
From the DJ of the 70s, tribute acts of the 80s, Pop Idol contestants of the 90s to party bands of the 00s, the future certainly holds a more diverse range of entertainment. Artists immersed within the audience. Surprise elements that place the spotlight on talented artists of all kinds. Bespoke bands that blend international artists and musicians; for one night only.
Tempting the Taste Buds
The trend for less formal catering forges ahead. Catering is merging with theatre. Over the next few years, planners will be finding new ways to make food and drink more than just aspect of the design for your event – it delivers a creative message with drama and WOW factor. An example is:
There is one underpinning factor for all these elements, and indeed the future of event design; delivering a feeling of excited anticipation. If you take one thing home from my message today, remember this…. the future of event design will very much be focussed on delivering the unexpected.
Tales of the Unexpected
As an event planner, when you hear those gasps of excitement and mumblings of ‘wow – look at that’…. you know you have achieved something special. This is about generating a sense of engagement with the attendees from the beginning, to curtain call. Creating an eagerness to attend. And an excited anticipation of what is to come. Fulfilling their expectations on the night…. yet, leaving them contently wanting more.
Bespoke invitations that give a hint to the event design is akin to the opening chapter of a book. Room dressing. Lighting, Catering. Drinks. Entertainment. All elements to delivering a unique experience. And at the end of the event, a branded paper bag with carb filled savouries, fish and chips or kebab vans in situ in the car park to soak up the night.
Catering, entertainment and décor will certainly embrace the next 20 years and all it offers, but it is in this sense of anticipation that I can see the biggest development. Planners will be turning the cogs to develop bigger and bolder ideas to whet the appetite of delegates and revellers. As for TLC, well we are already working with the latest technology to look at holographic walls that separate reception and party – ready to explode as the band strikes up – yes, it’s not just in Star Trek!
After 30 years I get up event morning, decide what diet I am on that day, and then embrace the madness. I love it. And if you are in any doubt, the party is most definitely not over
For more TLC event inspiration, take a look at this ‘high octane’ idea!