We’re proud to say: Dusty Blue is extremely proud of its favorite vendors! They are all Dutch-speaking professionals who are passionate about their beloved profession and amazing couples. But what exactly does a wedding vendor do? What activities do they perform for you and let’s just say it out loud: what are you actually paying for?
We visited Eline Koemans, who tells you everything about her work as a wedding stylist and her company Feline Styling.
As a wedding stylist, Eline provides the complete styling for weddings. She goes for nothing less than the very best and takes every couple on an intensive, but very fun styling process for their wedding.
“My couples deserve my 100% of my attention! I’m really on a journey with them to find the best way to shape their day.”
From her home office in Schoonrewoerd, which is beautifully styled especially for the occasion, Eline also runs the rental of a wide range of products that can be rented through her webshop. In the midst of all these nice and beautiful things, we ask Eline everything about her business, what a couple can expect when working with her and of course her tips for you.
Can you tell us something about how Feline Styling came about?
“Ever since I was a kid I’ve always been changing my room (and now our interior). Painting furniture and changing places. Styling has always had my interest. To my parents’ surprise, I could really furnish my room in a thousand ways!
During high school I really wanted to become an interior designer. Creating atmosphere and working with colors, that was what I liked the most.
By the time I entered college, I was completely convinced of my choice to become a secretary. I was and still am fond of lists, creating an overview and adding structure. After my education I started working as a secretary and at one point the company I worked for celebrated the opening of a new building, with 350 guests. For weeks I dived into all the details, the decoration and little surprises for the guests. I enjoyed it so much! It was then that I realized that I wanted to create parties where everyone feels comfortable and where people are pleased by the personal attention that makes a party special. And that’s what I’m allowed to do now!
I started with a combination of wedding planner and styling, because of the planning, organizing and arranging I loved so much. But at one point I received so many requests from couples that the combination was becoming impossible. I chose then to really only do what made my heart beat faster: styling! Giving personal attention to create a nice atmosphere, that is what I love to do!
And that administrative basis actually comes in handy now! Couples always say that my styling plans are so structured!”
Your name is Eline, but your company is ‘Feline’. How did that happen?
“That can indeed be confusing! I added the F because my christening name is Florina. I just liked the F! Words with an F are always fun for one reason or another: parties, fries, flowers. I often get called Feline now, but I answer to that name as well!”
Eline’s office is full of beautiful styling materials that can be rented through her webshop
How beautiful that styling has always been a common thread in your life! How do you distinguish yourself as a stylist now?
“In a number of things! For example, I only accept up to seven weddings per year. I am present all day on the day of the wedding and buy all the materials and products necessary for the styling. Also I really include the personality of the bride and groom in the styling. I think the latter is the most important; that I really tell their story!
Furthermore, I consciously choose to style only entire weddings instead of, for example, just the ceremony. In this way I can guarantee a total picture that is right down to the last detail.
Based on my experience, my relationship with couples and transparency, I sometimes tell a couple that they should reconsider some thing they’re thinking of doing. But then I also immediately make sure that I have a great alternative! And I always have a backup! If something happens to me or my family, I always have a back-up who knows what to do.”
And do you have a certain style? How would you describe it?
“For me, it’s primarily about discovering what suits the couple during the process we go through. So I don’t have one specific style, but my couples are often more of the romantic, elegant and pastels in terms of style. You will of course see my personal signature in every wedding that I style.”
You are talking about a process that you go through with a couple. What does that look like exactly? What can a couple expect?
“When a bridal couple wants to book me, we schedule an introductory meeting at my office. This is an extensive introduction, in which we immediately dive into their wedding. During that first meeting I want to find their style and determine what I need to be able to style their wedding as beautiful as possible and according to their wishes. A couple can view materials and give their opinion on them. There is a lot of information for me to collect; I want to know everything!
For example, do they like symmetry or more casual? Lots of details or minimalist? This and much more becomes clear to me during this first meeting. And I make sure that the groom is also fully involved in this!
When I know what I need to make the styling plan, I prepare a quote. If the couple agrees, we plan a visit to the wedding venue(s). I like to check on the spot what is already there and whether it is possible to implement the styling plan. Often the spaces at the location inspire to get even more out of the plan and I like to look at things like: what does the driveway look like? What cutlery does the venue have? You name it.
After this we have another meeting at my office and we dot the i’s. We discuss all the details, after which I create a product list, mood board and time schedule for the styling. I send this to the couple and when they agree I start collecting all products.
On the day of the wedding, I arrive with at least two assistants and sometimes up to four fully loaded cars at the wedding venue and we are there all day. As I mentioned earlier, I only accept full wedding bookings. Only then can I create something that is perfect and in harmony. Only then can I completely unburden a couple.”
How do you ensure that the styling plan provides “the complete picture” at the wedding?
“I often work with two florists and one of them is Let Love Blossom. I always propose a florist to the couple without obligation, depending on the style that suits them. Then I also know which flowers we need.
As far as styling materials are concerned, I prefer to purchase products so that I can rent them out later. This is how my webshop came about.
I also advise couples on, for example, the cake and the stationery. Styling goes much further than just decorating the venue. It’s about the complete picture. So I arrange most of it myself, then I have complete control and overview. We visit the location together. I think it is important to treat the location with respect, so I always ask in advance what is and what is not possible there.”
What does your workday look like on the day of the wedding?
“We arrive as early as possible. Together with my assistant(s) we start unloading and distributing all our stuff. We categorize everything in order and by space. The tablecloths etc. have already been ironed, so we don’t have to worry about that anymore. I have already lit the tea lights a first time at home and the napkins are tied. That is all preparation, but it is still a lot of work on a wedding day! Every minute is filled with activities.
We are always setting up somewhere and cleaning up somewhere else. I see the result coming together on the day itself and know that it is beautiful, but I usually completely enjoy the day with the photos afterwards. Sometimes we are so busy and full of adrenaline that we don’t drive home until two in the morning with our fully loaded cars. Then the work is not quite done yet. The day after the wedding I clean all products and the day after that I’m really finished!”
What is the ideal couple for you to work with like? And what do you expect from them during the process with Feline Styling?
“It is indeed always a bridal couple. I think the groom is just as important as the bride! In the end, I focus a little more on the bride, because it is almost always the bride who chooses me.
My bride knows very well what she wants, but not so much how to get to it. She is sensitive to atmosphere, likes interiors for example and finds it very important that her guests feel at ease. Together they really want to make a memory and a celebration of their wedding. They are open and have a spontaneous character. Often they have also saved for their wedding. They are really looking forward to it and really want to invest in it.
They really have to dare to say what they think of something. It’s nice if they already know what they want, but if not, it’s okay. We’ll figure it out anyway! During the process, we get closer to the end result one step at the time.”
Our intern Theresia received a mini styling advice for her wedding
How far in advance can a couple hire Feline Styling for their wedding?
“One year to nine months in advance is the most common. It is of course also possible three months in advance, but earlier is better. Because we go through a process, we can really get everything out of it and I also get to know a couple better. And my ideas have to grow too. That can be done in three months, but it is better around nine months in advance.”
What budget do couples need to hire Feline Styling?
“Between 3500 and 5000 euros, excluding flowers. It’s quite an investment for the styling and the entire process, but I regularly hear from couples that it was really worth it. They sometimes write in reviews “Eline gave everything” and my couples are really entitled to that! Even if there is a virus in between, or I have a baby or something else: they deserve my full commitment! That’s why I only style seven weddings a year. I want to feel like I gave them 1000%.”
What is your golden tip for (future) couples?
“Take a good look around before you hire someone. Feel with whom you have a good connection and who really gives you a confident feeling. As a couple you should feel like you dare to hand over everything to someone. By hiring someone you really invest in some peace of mind for yourself.”
The result of Eline’s mini styling advice for Theresia
The footage during this interview was shot by Dusty Blue
Are you curious about what Eline can do for your wedding? View her portfolio with photos of real weddings, read the reviews and contact her via the personal vendor page of Feline Styling!
You will also see more of Eline’s work in a beautifully styled ‘Dusty Blue’ wedding and the wedding of Diederick & Christine at Castle Duurstede. Please note these blogs are only available in Dutch at this time, but that won’t stop you from enjoying the wedding photo’s!