The Curator is an online planning platform that we wish was around when we got married over 10 years ago. An amazing tool to keep and organise all your planning, budgets, guest list in one place with a directory of amazing and talented vendors from across New Zealand.
In this week’s Wedding Series feature, we meet Marica from The Curator.
Please tell us a bit about you and how you started your amazing business.
I'm Marica, Founder of The Curator, an online wedding planning platform for New Zealand couples. I started building the site just under 2 years ago after discovering how difficult it was to find vendors and manage the many tasks involved in planning a wedding. I wanted to build a beautiful and curated digital space that would streamline and guide couples through every single step in the wedding planning process and hence, The Curator was born!
What wedding services do you offer?
The Curator provides a comprehensive directory of the best New Zealand wedding vendors, some big names, some boutique names and some brand new names. It also incorporates a digital budget tracker, RSVP manager and a pre-populated, fully customisable wedding checklist. Couples can create their own personalised Curator account specific to their wedding date, budget and guest count. We're always on hand via our integrated chat system to answer questions, provide guidance and recommend vendors - we know how stressful this process can be and really pride ourselves on going above and beyond for every user.
Describe your style and aesthetics in 3 words.
Oh gosh, three words is never enough! Relatable, Contemporary, Fun.
Where are you based and are you available nationwide?
We are based in Auckland but our platform is globally accessible.
Advice for couples when choosing vendors to work with?
Look for vendors who are pushing boundaries within their specific industry as they will be able to create a day that is unique and personal to you. Always check their websites and social channels as well as any Google or Facebook reviews.
What is your most commonly asked question from wedding couples?
We're ALWAYS asked for musician recommendations! Fortunately, there are a bunch who will (and love to) travel anywhere in New Zealand - many of whom are listed on The Curator directory! Ask friends and family for recommendations too - there's always someone who attended a wedding where the dance-floor was the highlight of the day.
How can couples get started on setting priorities and budgets for their big day?
It's hard to know how much things will cost when you haven't planned a wedding before. The venue and food will generally be the most expensive so begin by gathering quotes to get a feel for the average pricing and work from there. Don't ever let your wedding become a financial burden. Talk to your families about contributing and work out what your max spend is. You definitely don't need to spend thousands to have a beautiful day. In terms of priorities, think about what's important for you as a couple. Are you both foodies? Are you floral obsessed? Have you been dreaming of getting married on top of a mountain in Queenstown? Think about what would make your day memorable and special for you as a couple and prioritise those things.
Tips for how a wedding couple can inject their personalities into their big day?
There are so many ways to do this and we highly recommend having a think about how you can make different elements of the day your own. Think about the things that link you together as a couple, for example, time spent overseas, favourite foods and types of music, a love for fishing, where you both grew up etc. Maybe you're from the South Island but getting married in the North - cheese rolls for the bus trip home anyone? Table names might be named after places you've visited, streets you've lived on, your pets, favourite restaurants - anything that reflects shared memories or things you've enjoyed together. Incorporate family vehicles as the wedding cars, have your dog as the ring bearer, learn a unique first-dance, have your grandmother as the flower girl. Start with tradition and then make it your own!
What is your favourite part of your job and being in the New Zealand wedding industry?
With busy lives, a wedding can quickly become rather overwhelming and I genuinely love being able to make the planning process just that little bit easier for couples. I get such joy out of helping a couple find a vendor who will make their day or just providing them with a bit of advice on how many wine glasses they should order. It's also really fun being a part of an industry that's so incredibly creative.
Your favourite wedding trend at the moment?
Breaking tradition. For years we've been sticking to the standard structure of a wedding but, other than 'I Do", there really is no specific formula you need to follow. Plan a day that works for you and celebrates the things you love with the people you love.
Best wedding song to kickstart the dance floor?
Loud Places - Jamie XX
When you are not working, you are.......?
I love travelling but that's out of the question at the moment! Walking/chasing my dog around various inner city parks, boxing, working on other businesses, visiting family in Wanaka and spending time with friends in Auckland.