Santa Pays a visit to LJDJS!

Santa Pays a Visit to LJDJS!

xmas blog

T’was the week before Christmas, and all through the town not a party was stirring like LJDJS HOLIDAY PARTY! It is that time of year and what a better way to celebrate holiday cheer than to bring good old Saint Nick to town?

The room was filled with festive décor and popular movies playing such as “Elf” and “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”. And with the super chilly weather we have been experiencing this year, we decided to have a Hot Chocolate Bar. The smell of cookies, truffles, brownies, and hot cocoa galore filled the air. Hard to resist all of that temptation!

Guests arrived dressed and ready for their close-up with Santa! Upon his arrival, the sound of sleigh bells ringing and a loud “ho ho ho” brought joy and smiles to everyone’s face. Santa sang holiday classics like “Jingle Bells”, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer”, “Frosty the Snowman”, and all-time favorite “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”. Precious moments were captured on our Instagram wall. If you haven’t seen the photos, check it out @ljdjs and #Santalovesljdjs

Following the Meet and Greet with Santa event, the LJ crew was ready for the Company Party! We celebrated to a good year for the new LJDJS and toasted to many more. There was fun games and the occasional embarrassing moments. LOL. Nevertheless, we are thankful to have an amazing team and look forward to a fantastic year!

Kandy Cardoso

How to NOT get fired at your Company Holiday Party.

The holidays are here! As this joyous yet stressful time approaches so do holiday company parties. We’ve hosted many events this month and till this very day, we continue to see the same trend. We all have either been to one, or heard about the crazy behavior it brings out in its employees. The number one reason why people get out of hand is not because of a bad raffle prize they won! Its the booze they consume. So let us tell you what DJs and event planners see on the dance floor and how to not get fired at your holiday company party.

First, don’t get so wasted that a picture of you becomes an internet meme. A meme is a humorous image that spreads over the internet with changing words mocking the victim. Being a meme makes you an f-list celebrity in which you would never be able to live down that embarrassing moment at your company holiday party. Don’t pass out in the office bathroom with your bare ass showing, so the office jackass doesn’t snap a picture and ruin your life.

If you like the idea of being a Kim Kardashian of the web where your dream has always been to “break the internet” then by all means go ahead and make a literal ass out of yourself and risk getting fired.


The next subject is attire. It may be acceptable to get smashed off of egg nog, but it doesn’t mean your outfit should be revealing just because the other rules of professionalism are being alleviated for the evening. An office party should not turn into the game of “who whore it best.”

This applies more so to the women who want to show off their ass-sets to finally get so-and-so’s attention from another company department. Don’t!!! Stay away from the idea of an office romance, because when you both wake up you’re both going to have to deal with a lot of awkwardness.

Sure the egg-nog loosens up some tension, but it shouldn’t loosen up your lips. A few months later it is almost certain you will hear, “Remember when Bob and Karen were tongue punching on the bosses’ desk?”

Go ahead and get tipsy, but don’t be a drunk mess. You are still in the presence of your company so class should still be upheld. You still want your job on Monday morning, don’t get fired! No one will respect you the next day when you were running down the hallway naked with nothing but a Santa hat on.

It is more than acceptable to get a little loose, but don’t take it too far. Stay classy and covered up. So don’t get fired at your Company Holiday party. Keep your tongue in your mouth. Don’t wind up as an internet meme. Just show up, show some personality and at least wait to the after party at the bar down the street to get hog wild.

By: Danny Micucci


Is Saint Nick really coming this year?

santa coverYOU BETTER BELIEVE IT!! Well it’s that time again, were we want to recognize all who helped LJDJs to become where we are at. This time around we are calling all of our newest and previous clients from years past to come join us in a holiday get together with your little ones. We managed to somehow change the scheduled of Saint Nick so he can make a quick stop at our new office located at 549 Washington Avenue in Belleville, NJ 07109. Santa will be here taking photos and speaking to all children that come. Our Event Designer Kandy will be serving up some delicious hot Chocolate at our COOL HOT Chocolate Bar just for you. So come through with your little elves and don’t be shy to tell a friend!! Please make a reservation to meet the big guy at 973.751.8850.

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Thank you and Happy Holidays to you and your families from the entire crew of LJDJs


West Coast DJ Entertainment Experience!!!


It is mentioned that there are two main factors that make a great party: the food and the music. For any wedding couple, they want to make sure their night is memorable and their guests are happy. How far would you go to hire the right entertainment for your special day? Would you just stick around to what is available in your local area? Or would you go cross-country?

Pauline and Chris were recently married at the Luxe Hotels in Los Angeles, California. After seeing Jack Bermeo’s performance at a wedding in 2008, they immediately new that he was the one to help create their wedding dream. Five years later, the couple reached out to LJDJS, hoping to book Jack for their wedding day. Pauline had so much fun planning with Jack, she even stated “Even if I wasn’t marrying Chris, I would have hired you to do my future wedding.” as she chuckles and laughs.


Jack mentions “What makes this wedding even more special, is that the guests and couple… didn’t treat their vendors like paid employees. They made all the vendors feel like we were family. This made all the planning process and visions come to life more genuinely.”   LJDJs hosts several destination events a year from Costa Rica, Mexico, Colombia just to name a few. Since the west coast exposure, Los Angeles is starting to look more like a second office thanks to our large Latino and Philippino clientele base.

LJDJs also had the honor working with Susan Tosounian of Especially for You Event Planning Services. Susan’s attention to details was on point and truly noticed by our staff and our couple.


So the questions remain…. How far would you go to hire the right entertainment for your special day? Let is provide the east coast energy and give the west coast entertainment a twist in entertainment.


How far will men go to propose?

Since the posting of the video “Fake Wedding, Real Engagement”, we here at LJDJS have been receiving attention from soon to be grooms of all ages, ethnicities, and sexual orientations looking for new-age proposal ideas, and questions of “How can I plan my proposal?”  This motivated our company to create a division to help plan real engagements!

The video has been featured by Cosmopolitan, Huffington Post, People, Yahoo, and other large social news sites.


So the question remains, How far will men go to propose? Before you consider asking your loved one for his or her hand in marriage, have a seat. Let’s talk. We want to get to know you. We have our happy couples fill out an e-survey. Making sure we get every detail possible. For 17 years we focused on couples who are already engaged and are seeking entertainment for their special day. Since this viral hit we had to change gears on our inquiry towards our grooms to be. It’s great hearing first hand what goes through the mind of men and even some woman for their proposal ideas. Here are some sample questions we like to ask.

What makes him or her laugh? Sense of humor reveals a lot about a person. More than you think. It’s a universal language shared by everyone. A good sense of humor goes a long way in a relationship.

Where did you meet? The moment you first crossed paths with each other. Every story has it’s unique way of how it all began. Was it fate? Was it by coincidence? Or completely unexpected?

What was your first date like? Ahh the first date. Reminiscing on the beginning stages of the relationship. How the fire sparked and how you won the heart of your lover.

Do you remember the first time you said “I love you”? Was there something special about that moment that you wanted to re-create? Maybe it was in front of the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center, or while watching fireworks, or while on vacation in Italy.

What is his or her interests? This question can give a great proposal idea to what your partner loves to do. Can do a proposal in a sports arena, or on the rooftop of the MET, or at a Beyonce concert, or even on a tv show like Wendy Williams/ Ellen Degeneres.

View More:

 In the entertainment industry, clients are always looking for something new and innovative to make an everlasting impression.  Since we caught the attention of many soon to be fiancés. We have a full time staff with many creative proposal ideas to fit everyones personality. We are thrilled to assist those willing to let us help, but most importantly, making your proposal just as important as your Wedding Day! That is why we are so proud to have Kandy Cardoso, our event designer at LJDJS to help create those amazing proposals for men/women planning their important day. Can this be the new trend? Only time will tell!

Just some off beat ideas.

THE 5K ENGAGEMENT PLAN: Maybe you can propose to your partner at the end of completing a 5K because you both enjoy athletics. When she turns around… she will then discover that the entire 5K was all of her friends and family.

HAUNTED PROPOSAL: Perhaps you can propose to your partner in a haunted house because they love the concept of the paranormal, and have family and friends come in dressed as ghouls surrounding you in a corner and then bam.

MEDIEVAL KNIGHT PROPOSAL: What if you played the knight of shinning armor at Medieval Times while your girlfriend is hanging out with her girlfriends watching a dramatic fight. Then the knight walks towards his girlfriend and then unveils his mask in front of everyone.

Here is link to the Top Ten Extreme Engagement Videos! 

The sky is the limit for such ideas and eccentric notions are allowed. A proposal should be about the couple who is getting engaged and we support elaborate and unique ideas to the max just as much as the normal ideas.

We would love to hear more about your BEST PROPOSAL EVER, so feel free to comment and share with us.


By: Danny M

The Most Creative Proposal EVER!

The Wedding Proposal Idea

          Imagine: A woman standing on a beach while here face is being angelically lit by the champagne pink sunset flashing its glorious glow. Just then, as she is staring into the distance of nature’s beauty her soon to be husband gets down on one knee and proposes. Also keep in mind the thoughts of being barefoot amongst sand, the white clothes, and the most other stereotypical thoughts a beach proposal would be comprised of. The word stereotypical lies in the previous sentence because a beach proposal is now sadly stereotypical. It has been done before, and it floats around social media like a bag in the wind. Time itself and social media has made some of the “classic” wedding proposals just a sad “cliché” in a world begging for attention with an X-factor. Some examples of the classic proposals include but are not limited to, asking: at the first place the couple went on a date, at a family gathering in a nice restaurant, on a picnic date, on a major holiday such as Christmas, etc. (Just Blahhh)

Nonetheless: Rejoice! New age wedding proposals are upon us.

          New age proposals are beginning to pop-up everywhere with elaborate setups and weeks of planning that were needed to make the event happen. They are now viewable on sites such as YouTube making so many people smile and rejoice that love is alive in such a grand way. One example of a new age proposal is the dance flash mob engagement where elaborate choreographed setups in the middle of large public places commence where the proposal will happen. Another new age idea is at a movie theater where a trailer is the engagement question to an unexpected soon to be bride thinking she was just going to the movies with her boyfriend. After she says yes, unbeknownst to her, she turns around and sees all her family and friends sitting in the audience which adds even more of a dramatic beauty to the experience making the whole setup priceless. Those are just two small examples of new age proposals; however, one just recently happened at an LJDJS event involving a spectacular undertaking and flawless execution. Not to mention the owner of , Jack Bermeo, was the man who asked his girlfriend Sophia to be his bride.


The Wedding Proposal Idea: Ask Sophia to be married at another wedding.

        In this moment you may be slightly confused, which is understandable to anyone not accustomed to the new age of exciting proposals, but here is a quick yet elaborate breakdown. The set up began ONLY seven days in advance when actor Daniel Micucci begun playing his role of coming back into town as one of Jack’s “friends from the clubbing days.” Daniel made his “reappearance” at Jack’s son’s first birthday party, where he pretended to have conversations with the people in the room “he hadn’t seen in so long.” Eventually, he made his rounds and spoke to Sophia about his fictional and elaborate back story of how he is having a wedding reception in New Jersey, but having a small ceremony in New York City with his soon to be husband. His New York home and career was the reasoning of him leaving his friends for a few years, and of course good ol’ Jack and his family would be invited to come to his wedding reception. It was a potentially difficult sell, but after the birthday party had ended the plans were right on track as Sophia expected nothing suspicious. On a side note, yes, you heard right. The fake wedding reception was for that of a gay couple. Being that love is love no matter what, LJDJS had no fear in pushing the fading societal norms and welcoming the new age ideology for this event. A few weeks after the first birthday party setup, it was show time. The event was set to happen in Woodridge N.J at The Fiesta. ( Upon first walking into the venue, actors Christopher Ghanem and Micucci’s faces were on a giant blown up fake engagement photo. Upon turning the corner past the table with fake name cards into the lavishly decorated room with beautiful floral center pieces a fake four tier wedding cake (done by Sarah Belote and Daniel Micucci at The at Liberty Corner N.J.) was perched high on a satin covered table in a side corner. As the music played during cocktail hour by a violinist, so did large video screens playing a collage of the grooms from younger years to when they first met each other. Of course all was captured by our AWESOME friends at MPW Media Group.

danny and crhi

(Grooms: Miccucci and Ghanem Fake Engagement Shoot)

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(Left: Actors and Client)

(Right: Fake Names)

(Bottom Left: Ring Bearer)

(Bottom Right: Fake Centerpieces)

 (Fake Wedding Cake)

        The fake bridal party was made up of friends, family, and complete strangers who were all wearing matching corsages, and colors. The grooms were dressed in pink Tuxedos looking “fabulous.” When Jack and Sophia arrived to the event and entered the room admiring the fake engagement photo, the actors began working the room. They said hello to every person there like they had known them for years, and alas it was time to greet Sophia. The conversation was vague, but poignant leaving off with a, “so glad you could make it” as Ghanem smiled and walked away. The bridal party then left the room to make their entrance. As the DJ called out names the bridal party entered the room being introduced as bridesmaids, groomsmen, and family. We even purposely asked one of the bridesmaid to trip two times to deter from the perfection factor making the reception more realistic. Finally, it was time for Ghanem and Micucci to have their first dance. Their names were called and they walked onto the floor initially dancing for fun, but then got more serious when All of Me by John Legend began to play. The grooms slow danced, smooched, and pretended to tear selling the audience, but more importantly Sophia. About thirty seconds into the playing of the song the DJ asked all members attending the wedding to join the grooms on the dance floor, in which everyone did. The entire crowd danced for a moment and then slowly moved out to the edges leaving only Jack and Sophia standing center stage. At this moment, the video screens switched over to photos of Jack and Sophia, simultaneously while the couple’s true friends and family began sneaking out of the side door from the upstairs. As Sophia and Jack were entangled in a moment of passion, dry ice rolled over the dance floor making it appear as if the couple was dancing on a cloud. That is when Jack whispered words to Sophia and got down on his one knee and asked for her hand in marriage. It took a few moments for Sophia to understand the surprise occurring, but she accepted which brought the room to tears of joy. After the acceptance of the ring she turned around seeing her friends and family who were flew in from Las Vegas which brought on an even deeper level of beautiful emotion in the room. From that moment on it was the surprise engagement party for Jack and Sophia. With an elaborate setup, a great group of cooperative people, and the use of The LJDJS company a modern day wedding proposal was accomplished. From the defiance of societal norms about a gay couple to the ultimate surprise of proposing at someone else’s wedding it was exciting and will be spoken about for a lifetime amongst the participants. It was not just a moment: it was an experience.

In conclusion, congratulations Jack and Sophia.



 danny chris soohia and jack

(Ghanem, Micucci, Jack, Sophia)


It’s Showtime! The rebranding of LJ Productions

LJ Productions/Entertainment is growing and so are the visions of each client. The rebranding of our company only comes naturally since reality shows are flooding clients dreams with silly ideas and the newer generation of Brides and Sweet Sixteens are more inspired by social media for their special day. Why not join the movement!

LJDJS has made a move into a new office space of 2,500 square feet located in Belleville, NJ.  The space is cohesive with the company itself. How so?  LJDJS new space is modern and unrestrained fitting to their “Redefining Life’s Celebrations” standard for event planning. Their space is decorated with a sleek black and white color scheme making any client feel like a V.I.P. as soon as they walk through the door. The new headquarters for LJDJS has personality everywhere you turn! BUT FIRST… take a look at the old space.

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 (Before the makeover back in November 2013)

Within the office they have a bilingual capability speaking English, Italian and Spanish. So bring your niña for her Quinceañera consultation, or just feel free to speak in your native tongue. The talented, and in high demand, DJS being represented by LJDJS offer a list of services. Each event host has their specialty and like any event planned at LJDJS the right event host will be chosen for yours and you will personally get to meet your host. The stylization of the DJS range from EDM to Bachata, to electronic dance beats with a live percussionist and/or violinist playing along.

CO2 Screen Shot 2014-09-04 at 11.30.35 AM

Besides the music, the high end equipment LJDJS use adds a flair to any event only they can accomplish. From light shows to “living tables” their ability is undeniable coated in talented and wrapped with innovation. No detail from an event goes unnoticed by the team. LJDJS has learned with plenty of experience how to cover the basics, and then add final touches making the event unforgettable lasting as a positive lifetime memory.

LJDJS offers a list of services from Weddings, Sweet Sixteens, Bar/Bat Mitzvah’s, or any other untraditional type of event. The new office space represents just that within its design: The ability to uphold to the classic styles while simultaneously taking it to the next level of futuristic concepts. That is why we have a full time event coordinator in house to help you in the right direction with your planning.

Within the office no client should ever be fearful to ask a “silly” question, as that question may just get the family like team at LJDJS to jump for joy at the chance of continuing their innovate and new age approach to event planning. They love to plan both typical and eccentric events equally.

The ability to bring joy to their clients is always their main prioritization. Personalized approach is an understatement. No phone call or request is ever ignored from a client as LJDJS is a proud believer in accommodating the client to the utmost possible degree.

The new office and official grand opening is the beginning to a new and exciting professional journey for the company and its employees. Requests and inquiries from individuals are pouring in, so contact LJDJS sooner rather than later for a one on one personal meeting with your event host where we can help make your dream event into a reality.

CLICK HERE to see our Video Demo of LJDJS Entertainment and Event Design


2014-6-19 Belleville NJ. LJDJs. Photos by: Greg Pallante

 (The makeover that everyone is talking about)

2014-6-19 Belleville NJ. LJDJs. Photos by: Greg Pallante

2014-6-19 Belleville NJ. LJDJs. Photos by: Greg Pallante

(Las Vegas inspired and created by todays market)
2014-6-19 Belleville NJ. LJDJs. Photos by: Greg Pallante

 (LJDJS offers 2 identical conference rooms that can be partitioned along with a 50 inch touch screen monitors)

2014-6-19 Belleville NJ. LJDJs. Photos by: Greg Pallante

 (Each door represents our character)


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 (Each door represents our character)

CLICK HERE to see our Video Demo of LJDJS Entertainment and Event Design

Gibraltar Hardware and LJDJS create a buzz at DJ EXPO 2014

Gibraltar and LJDJS are in the works of a groundbreaking undertaking in the form of an endorsement. Gibraltar is a company that specializes in making various drumming hardware. Pulled directly from their website.

“We’re not into maple, beech or birch. We’re not drum builders. We’re not into bronze alloys and hand hammering. We’re not cymbal-smiths. We are Gibraltar. And Gibraltar is hardware. This undeniable focus makes us better at what we do and who we do it for. No matter what brand of kit you play, Gibraltar supports them all. Rock Solid isn’t just our slogan. It’s our mission.” (


This year at the 2014 Atlantic City DJ Expo, two-time winner of DJ of the year (2011 and 2012) Jack Bermeo, and percussionist and friend Crystal Vargas put their talents together where the International Hardware Company Gibraltar took notice and worked closely with the duo beginning a new entrepreneurial journey into helping create a buzz for Gibraltar’s new line called “DJ Racks”.

A quick statement to express what the DJ Expo is:

“In 1990, DJ Times first presented DJ Expo—and 24 years later, it remains the industry’s longest-running and best-attended trade show. Each August, DJ Expo presents more than two-dozen educational seminars, an exhibit hall jammed with the latest DJ-related gear, and three evenings of sponsored events. This year’s show, set for Aug. 11-14 at the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, N.J., will bring all of this and more!”

The flair of a fiery percussionist with the beats of a new age DJ was a sound that can only be best described by seeing for yourself. As you may already know, “DJs are todays Rock Stars!”


#crystalandjack DJ Expo 2014 Crystal Vargas & Jack Bermeo GIBRALTAR Booth

The reason why this is so exciting is because Gibraltar is seeing the artistry of the duo DJing, considering Jack Bermeo and Crystal to be called a DJ Artist. At the expo this was the hardware companies first time to ever make an appearance for something in the field of DJing. Making an appearance was a field test experiment for Gibraltar, just as the artist duo’s combination of lavish beats was; however, the entrepreneurial risk taken to make this happen was well worth it. People were smiling and enjoying the infectious music while DJs admired the hardware that held Bermeo’s set. We wish Gibraltar a lot of luck with their new product. We know it will be a big hit in the DJ industry and we look forward being part of Gibraltars growth.


In time we will see where this exciting experimentation will take the two companies. Gibraltar is considering Jack Bermeo to be put on their website roster making him the first DJ to ever be labeled as an artist for their company.

Only time and hard work will be able to show the world what LJDJs and Gibraltar will be able to develop together, but it’s more than just excitement for LJDJs to be stepping into the direction of growth, as it is also solidifying the relevance and artistry of what it takes to truly be a good DJ.

Post by Danny Micucci

Wedding Vendor Scams: LJDJS Clients Tell All

A couple’s wedding day is one of the most important and magical days of their lives…or so it should be. The disasters we see play out on reality shows like Bridezillas actually happen in real life to good, innocent people. In an effort to help future brides and grooms protect themselves from getting scammed from wedding vendors, some of our own clients have shared their horrifying stories from their own wedding days. Taking notes from these brides’ stories may help you to avoid a dilemma on your big day.


Disappointing DJ

Alicia M. – Bridgewater, NJ

“I didn’t have the consumer knowledge and research skills I have now back when I was planning my wedding, not to mention the internet wasn’t available.  When my husband and I got married in 1995, we hired a young and energetic DJ who had a nice office. Mistake number one: don’t be fooled by a nice office. Our DJ sounded very knowledgeable and business-like with a great deal of experience. Mistake number 2: we should have asked for the last 5 wedding events he’d DJ-ed, not just references, which could have been his relatives.  Our DJ had no back-up plan when he lost his voice, and no back up DJ for a replacement.  So we ended up having a DJ orchestrating our event with barely any voice. The equipment also was not what was promised.  We chose, with a lot of care, our special wedding song entrance for our Bridal Party and for us to walk into the recpetion and the DJ played the wrong songs.  Looking back I wish we would have had a stronger contract with guarantees as well as more research in what DJs should provide.”


Runaway Photographer

Tracy G. – Belleville, NJ

“We are getting married August 9, 2014.  We met our photographer at a bridal expo.  We saw him at two different expos before choosing him.  He was working with his wife and they both were extremely nice and friendly.  We made an appointment to sit with him at his office in Little Falls.  My fiancé and I loved his pictures and still thought they were good people.  We really wanted Michael and his wife to shoot our wedding.   We never saw any red flags.  One day I was at work and my fiance texted me with a link for and he asked me if that was our photographer.  There was an article stating that he has been arrested for fraud.  He used to work in New York, but he got caught scamming people so he came to New Jersey and used a different last name.  I was fuming! We actually found out so much information about this fraud because we went to the police station to file a complaint and the cop told us so much.  Even that the guy’s son owned a collection agency in New York. How ironic, right? Well, we were told that we can’t file a complaint because he hasn’t done anything to us yet. He hadn’t not shown up to our wedding or owed us pictures.  So I figured that we are out of luck with our money (initial deposit and second payment.)  Now we had to find a different photographer even while on a budget in the first place.  Advice to other couples getting married, use vendors that were recommended to you by people who have used them before!”


Hair Stylist Horror

Maria V.- Fair Lawn, NJ

“I hired a hair stylist to do mine and my bridesmaids’ hair for my wedding. My first red flag should’ve been the fact that she took forever to get back to me. The second red flag should’ve been the fact that while I was getting my hair trial she kept talking to her friend about the grand opening of her hair salon. This was a red flag because it was scheduled for the day before my wedding and I had a feeling that would be an issue. Fast tracking to the day of my wedding. The lead stylist and her team were supposed to arrive at 8am but instead arrived at 10am with half her team to do 13 girls’ hair, including mine. This caused me to be two hours late to my ceremony, which in turn caused my entire wedding day to be delayed. The time for our pictures was cut short, I missed my cocktail hour and surprise Mariachi band, and had to pay an additional $1,300 for the limo which waited longer than originally planned. My hair stylist was rude, inconsiderate and unapologetic.”

How to Avoid Being Scammed

Wondering how you can avoid being scammed on your big day? Here are professional tips to keep in mind when shopping for your wedding vendors:

1. Pick apart the vendor’s website. Check for unprofessional things like misspellings and poor site design. Any serious vendor invests well in their site—the primary representation of their business. Another crucial point is to check how long the site has been in existence. Very recent sites should raise a red flag. You can learn how to verify a site’s age here.

2. Check online reviews for the vendor. Granted, not every vendor will have 100% positive reviews, but use your judgment to see how far back the reviews go to help verify the credibility of the vendor. If possible, reach out personally to prior clients of theirs.

3. Look them up on social media like Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest or LinkedIn. It’s difficult to fake true followers and likes.

4. Ask the vendor if they’re willing to use a contract. Many couples overlook this, but it’s necessary to protect yourself legally. And any vendor who is serious about their business will want to be protected as well.

5. Ask them what kind of payment they accept. If it’s only cash, be sure to ask for a receipt. Vendors should be willing to accept check and credit cards—which can be disputed in case of fraud.

6. Compare prices. If a price is considerably lower than the competition, that should raise some issues. A good vendor will charge a fair price for their services.

7. Buy insurance! Although this doesn’t prevent a scam, it’s a good safety net to give yourself.

8. Don’t hesitate to contact the Better Business Bureau. Even if a company isn’t an outright scam, any shady practices should be reported.


Post by Izabella De Souza

Kisha Barner of Pure Ambiance Shares All!


Pure Ambiance Team. Photo by The Wedding Central

LJ Productions is proud to spotlight some of our most talented vendors and affiliates.  Kisha Barner of Pure Ambiance Event Design is a great resource for not just wedding planning advice, but she can also tell you a thing or two about following your dreams. Get to know Kisha as she shares everything from how she got into event planning to how you can pull off your perfect wedding.


LJDJS: How did you know you wanted to be a wedding planner?

Kisha: Event design and planning wasn’t the career I always dreamt of.  For a long time I actually wanted to be an attorney.  As I got older I realized how long I had to stay in school and decided to pass on it. Regardless of what career I was considering, I always knew I wanted to have my own business (check!), wear nice clothes (check!), and carry a briefcase (does a cute purse count?). Two out of three isn’t bad!

I got a big promotion with a company I had been with for a few years, two days before I graduated from college! At first, I loved it… then, I didn’t. I dreaded going to work and didn’t like the way I was being treated. I remembered one of my business Professors telling us to always do what we love and to not chase the money because happiness is more important. I started thinking about what I was good at and what I enjoyed. I realized I was always planning things for people and enjoyed doing so.

The thought of playing such a big role in creating and executing the most important days in people’s lives excited me and was something I wanted to explore. I started helping family and friends with events they were having, took an online course in event planning, quit my job, and started Pure Ambiance. It was a bold and crazy move! It was challenging at first but thankfully, I love it!



Kisha Barner. Photo by The Wedding Central


LJDJS: What do you think are the most crucial elements that go into planning a wedding?

Kisha: Staying in budget, creating your guest list, finding the perfect venue, and creating a beautiful design that is cohesive and reflects both of you. All of these things actually go hand-in-hand, as they can all have an impact on one another.


LJDJS: What are some things people don’t focus on enough when planning a wedding?

Kisha: I find that some couples get so caught up in the details of the wedding that they forget that the marriage is what’s most important.  They’re so focused on the details of the wedding that they bicker over details, which can cause unnecessary tension. Of course it’s important for everything to look beautiful and go smoothly, but I think couples should always keep in mind that making a life commitment to one another and expressing love is what’s most important.

I also find that some couples are so stuck on what their parents want or what their friends think, or what another person did at their wedding. At the end of the day, the things your parents want should be taken into consideration, what your friends think, shouldn’t matter and what the other person did, worked for them and it’s time to find what works for you. You can’t please everyone all the time. This is YOUR day! Do what is best for you and your partner. If you hate lilies, why should you have to go with them because your mom likes them? No offense moms! Give her a mini bouquet of lilies to carry down the aisle and go with the hydrangeas you’ve always dreamt of.  Of course, I mean no disrespect to loved ones. I’m simply saying to remember whose day it really is, and enjoy it.



Table Design by Pure Ambiance. Photo by The Wedding Central


LJDJS: What are some of the major mistakes people make when planning a wedding?

Kisha: The most crucial elements in planning a wedding seem to be the areas where couples are most challenged.  Many people have never planned a wedding before, so it’s completely understandable that they are not sure what to do. That’s where we come in! We would help take all of the guesswork out of the planning experience. Nevertheless, here are some tips on those problem areas:

Guest List – Create a guest list that is made up of people that really matter to you, like close friends and family.  Don’t feel obligated to invite a bunch of associates, “just because.” This is your special day, so you should share it with those close to you. Always remember, the more people you have, the more people you have to pay for at the venue, the more tables you will need, more favors, more everything.  So, less will save you more!

Budget – Figure out what your budget is before booking/buying anything wedding related. Find out if anyone in your family is contributing and figure out your grand total.  Set your budget amount and leave a little room for just-in-cases.  You should not spend more than 50% of your budget on your venue because you are almost guaranteed to go over with all of the other things you have to take care of – Photographer, Videographer, DJ, Florist, etc.

Finding the perfect venue – Do your research! Look at several different venues that fit your vision as well as your budget. Don’t get caught up in the joy of getting married that you book the second place you see or you settle for this one because it’s “nice.” You want to find the place that is perfect for both of you and one you won’t regret. I’ve definitely had couples come to me with their venue already booked and say, I don’t really like the venue, but we already put a deposit down. You definitely don’t want to go through that, so make a decision you’ll be thrilled with 10 years from now!

Design –There are so many amazing design concepts and ideas out there that it can be challenging to figure out the vision for your day and narrow your selections down. Overall, try to make sure that there is a cohesive design concept that is clear and used from start to finish. Don’t be afraid to take risks and implement an idea that is outside of the box… that’s part of what makes your wedding special. If you are budget-conscious and you have to choose between, let’s say… renting linens, renting chairs, or uplighting, consider what would make the biggest impact visually and go with that one.


LJDJS: What’s the best advice you can give couples who are getting ready to or are in the middle of planning their big day?

Kisha: Have fun during the process, enjoy your day, don’t sweat the small stuff, make sure you and your fiancé are reflected in your day, and finally… dance the night away!



Gwen and Bryan’s Wedding by Pure Ambiance. Photo by Joseph Lin Photography


Post by Izabella De Souza

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