Image for #WeddingWednesday: San Francisco Wedding Planner Amy Nichols Special Events

#WeddingWednesday: San Francisco Wedding Planner Amy Nichols Special Events


If I’ve learned anything from my wedding planning experience, it’s that it’s crucial you curate a team of vendors who understand your relationship and your vision for the day. Which is why I’m so grateful that our Love List is stocked with some seriously amazing, not to mention talented, teams and individuals. So in an attempt to allow you to get to know them a bit better, I’ve started an ongoing series for #WeddingWednesday, highlighting a different vendor each week in which they can share professional and personal tidbits about themselves. And, lucky for us, first up is Amy Nichols of Amy Nichols Special Events!

Amy and Love Inc.’s Love Story: Amy is a full service event planner based in San Francisco. I had long stalked her gorgeous work on Instagram and wedding blogs so when she emailed me about becoming a Love Lister, I was positively giddy. We quickly realized that we were both passionate about equality and later realized that we shared an affinity for certain TV shows (The Bachelorette and OITNB FTW!). Her talent for creating the most picturesque scenes for a wedding continues to blow my mind — it’s no wonder you often find her work in the likes of Style Me Pretty, Martha Stewart and BRIDES. So without further ado, let’s get to know a bit more about her, shall we?

5-minutes-with

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Happy #WeddingWednesday! What’s been your favorite thing to happen so far this week?

I’m putting the finishing touches on this Saturday’s wedding in San Francisco — it is always so fun when the couple is really excited and full of anticipation to see all of the beautiful things we’ve been working on come to life! 

Okay, loaded question — what inspires you? 

I get a lot of inspiration from ever day life — so things like flowers, wallpaper at a friend’s house, a cool color combo I might see in a store. Flowers always inspire me, I swear in another life I would have been a floral designer but I have horrible allergies, so I think it’s a good idea that I am a planner!

What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

For exercise, I love SoulCycle! It is one of the hardest workouts I’ve ever done, but I love how much you sweat and how motivating the classes are. They play fantastic music, and people of all levels can work out together. I also just love downtime at home with my boyfriend, recharging is important to me. 

**Shameless plug — I am hosting a SoulCycle ride for San Francisco couples at the end of July — it is a free class for brides and grooms — details here www.amynichols.com/brideride.

{Editor’s Note: I’m obsessed with SoulCycle — can you please host one in NYC, Amy?!}

A little birdie told me about a new month-of coordination biz you’ve started— what’s the scoop?

Yes! My business partner, Kate Whelan, who is based in Sacramento, and I decided to join forces late last year to start a new endeavor, The Poppy Group! Many venues throughout California require a month-of coordinator at a minimum, and while Kate and I both provide full service, we knew that not all couples want to hire a full service planner, which means there is definitely the need in the market for a reliable, experienced, month-of coordinator option. Using technology tools and our respective year’s of experience, we founded The Poppy Group to connect couples with a month-of coordinator that’s a perfect fit for their wedding. The Poppy Group is committed to providing our clients with a dependable wedding planning solution so that couples (and their friends and family!) can celebrate and relax on the wedding day! 

What’s your number one piece of advice to couples?

Besides hiring a coordinator? That’s of course my go-to advice!. But beyond that, really know what your budget is, and who is contributing before you get too far along in the planning process. Don’t commit to a venue until you have an idea of how much it will REALLY cost to get married there. You might find that by the time you’ve paid a site fee and hired your caterer, you only have a small amount of money left for music, flowers, a photographer, etc. Do the math before you commit and make sure that the budget will really work in the place you want to get married.  Consider a wedding in your hometown if you’re on a tighter budget, it might be more affordable than say a big city wedding. For example, weddings here in the Bay Area and Napa/Sonoma are significantly more expensive than the national wedding budget averages you read about online.  

Out of all the industries in the world, why did you choose weddings?

I have always loved events for as long as I can remember, but never really thought of it as a career option when I was in college. I remember picking up my first issue of Martha Stewart Weddings in 1997 with my mom (even though I was nowhere near getting married) and we were both hooked on how beautiful everything was. My mom is a born entertainer, and can whip up dinner for 20 people with about 30 minutes notice, so I definitely get the entertaining gene from her. After college, while working in finance in New York City, I tried to get as much event experience as I could during my free time. In 2005, I got laid off from a job with JPMorgan Chase, and that was the push I needed to start my own wedding planning business. 

What is your absolute favorite venue to plan an event at? 

This is a tough one!!! There are so many, but I’ll pick a San Francisco one since I live here. The Ferry Building is a spot that never ceases to wow me. The architecture is stunning and when it is lit up at night, I can’t think of a prettier place to dance on your wedding night! 

What would you say your “style” would be? 

Classic, and timeless. And I love color, too.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with us, Amy! For those of you who are now as obsessed with her as I am, check out her website for more info: www.amynichols.com.

Photo credits: Headshot by Elisa Ciccinelli; Photo 1: Christoph Genty; Photo 2: Jose Villa Fine Art Photography as seen on Style Me Pretty; Photo 3: Sylvie Gil Photography as seen on 100 Layer Cake; Photo 4: Jose Villa Fine Art Photography; Photo 5: Leah Photography as seen on Snippet & Ink; Photo 6: Stephanie Pool Photography as seen on Style Me Pretty

brittny-drye-love-incBrittny Drye is the founder and editor-in-chief of Love Inc. magazine. A fierce cheerleader for marriage equality, she launched loveincmag.com in 2013 as a way to to celebrate both straight and same-sex love, equally. She lives in New York City with her fiancé and their cat, Scout.