Listen to the Podcast About Simply Suited Planning

Podcast for Simply Suited Planning

Podcast Summary

In the insightful episode of Eventful Endeavors podcast, the host, Tina Naponelli had a profound interaction with Margaret O’Reilly, the creative genius behind Simply Suited Planning. The Michigan State University alumna with a specialty in hospitality business, Margaret shared her extraordinary journey in the event planning industry, which spans over seven years.

The discussion lighting up Margaret’s deep-seated passion for executing successful events navigates through the birth of Simply Suited Planning. This venture was her long-held dream actualized, born out of distinctive ideas and high expectations. Margaret expressed her commitment to delivering the best experiences for her clients and ensuring every detail of an event is impeccably covered by her team at Simply Suited.

Furthermore, Margaret confessed her focus on wedding events, but her repertoire isn’t limited to this segment alone. She also dabbles in organizing non-profit events, influenced by a significant number of clients from her network reaching out for wedding planning requests. Her philosophy is rooted in providing relief for people on their special day, an aspect she found more fulfilling compared to her previous stint in the corporate world.

The interview also revealed Margaret’s operating base in Dubuque, Iowa, and Galena, Illinois. Nevertheless, her services extend through Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Michigan. Apart from local events, Margaret has also participated in destination weddings, including one in the charming South Carolina town of Charleston. Her favorite, as she confessed, filled with the southern charm and the perfect weather that turned even work into a delightful vacation.

In conclusion, this episode provided a peek into Margaret O’Reilly’s powerhouse that is Simply Suited Planning, spotlighting her commitment to seamlessly guide clients through their event planning journey. Undoubtedly, she has brought a great impact to the event planning world and will certainly continue to awe us with her creativity and determination.

Learn more about Simply Suited Planning

This interview was provided by Felix and Fingers Dueling Pianos

Podcast Transcript

Tina (00:24)
All right, hello Margaret, how are you? Good, thanks so much for being here. Yes, so I’d like to welcome Margaret O’Reilly to the Eventful Endeavors podcast. Margaret created Simply Suited after she studied hospitality business at Michigan State University and spent seven years in the event planning world.

Margaret O’Reilly (00:26)
Hi, good, how are you?

Of course, thank you for having me.

Tina (00:47)
During that time, she always had a desire to create her own company that was built on passion for events and helping clients navigate the details and logistics of planning. Simply Suited is the realization of that dream. Margaret’s commitment to fighting for her clients to ensure the best experience forms the foundation of her company. Her unique ideas and high expectations led to the creation of Simply Suited, where innovative solutions ensure every detail is covered.

so do you strictly focus on weddings or do you plan other events as well, Margaret?

Margaret O’Reilly (01:20)
So a lot of my career, my professional career before Simply Suited was a lot of focus on corporate. I started in weddings, always had an itch and people reaching out about weddings. So now with Simply Suited, I really do focus more on weddings and then nonprofit events as well.

Tina (01:41)
Very cool, sounds good. What made you kind of steer more toward the weddings?

Margaret O’Reilly (01:47)
I would say just at the age I’m at, a lot of friends, a lot of friends of friends were reaching out and I just felt like it was a natural progression of being able to take on weddings as well as there’s just something that is so special about being able to take the relief away from somebody on their wedding day versus corporate is great but you know if something goes wrong they’re kind of like what’s the solution? You know I’m fine.

Tina (02:16)
Sure, sure. Definitely a good feeling to be able to help with people like that and takes a special person to be able to do that too. That’s kind of cool though. Yeah, definitely at our age we have kind of that built -in network almost, right? So that was nice to probably build your experience a bit, right? Nice. So where are you based out of? Do you travel to other events? Kind of what’s your scope?

Margaret O’Reilly (02:32)

Yeah, so I am based out of Dubuque, Iowa and Galena, Illinois. That’s really the area that I live within, but then I travel pretty much throughout Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin and Michigan. So I have kind of…

Moved throughout, obviously, you mentioned Michigan State, so that’s where I was born and raised and grew up in Michigan. So I have a lot of friends and, you know, friends of friends that have wanted to have my services. So I’ll make a trip back as well for Michigan.

Tina (03:03)

Absolutely, very nice. Do you do any like destination weddings?

Margaret O’Reilly (03:17)
Yeah, so I just got back from South Carolina. So I did a destination there and it was beautiful. You know, South Carolina, Charleston specifically is just a cute little town to have a destination wedding in.

Tina (03:20)

Absolutely. What’s your favorite place that you’ve had a destination wedding that you’ve been a part of?

Margaret O’Reilly (03:36)
I would say in terms of the events that I’ve done I would definitely say Charleston just because there’s something about that southern charm

as well as just like the weather was perfect and it was all centrally located like right downtown Charleston. So it was just a really nice experience. And then people made it a longer trip where they went to the beach and got an Airbnb to have a beach house. And so I think it was just really, yeah, I think it was really just a mix of the having a wedding, but then also making it a vacation.

Tina (03:46)


So much fun.

Absolutely, lots of things to do, very historic community I’ve heard. I’ve never been there, but it’s definitely top on my list. So maybe I’ll get married there or something. So you mentioned fighting for your clients. So those words really stuck out to me. I wanted to talk more, have you tell me a little bit more about like the importance of fighting for your clients.

Margaret O’Reilly (04:32)
Yeah, so I would say that something

that naturally happens within the wedding industry is that most of the customers and clients that we’re working with have never planned an event, let alone an event of this size. And so I think there’s a lot of unsolicited opinions that come from all spectrums, right? They have family, friends, unsolicited opinions there, as well as sometimes, you know, with good intention, but I think vendors also can really put their own opinion or saying, you know, you need to do


Tina (04:54)
Mm -hmm.

Margaret O’Reilly (05:07)
do it this way. And for somebody that’s never planned in a certain way or plan this type of event, it can be very overwhelming. And so I that’s where I like to step in and really say like, No, this is what you want. This is how you want your event. You don’t have to do what Aunt Suzy said has to be done or just making them feel like really it is your wedding day and it’s what you deserve to have and what you want and how you want it.

Tina (05:09)
Very true.


Absolutely, yeah. Unless people are paying for it, they don’t have an opinion, right? That’s what I always say. I always said there’s so much politics in wedding planning too, which it really should not be that way.

Margaret O’Reilly (05:42)
Thank you.

No, and you know, and I can understand why because there’s so many different avenues and it’s a big event and all that. But yeah, it’s really it’s easier said than done to say, well, I don’t need to listen to you, especially I’ve had the pleasure of working with some really like really nice people, really good people. And those are the people that are really like having a hard time saying I don’t need to listen to you.

Tina (06:13)
Mm -hmm. gosh. Yeah, I bet they need you as their advocate for sure and that can be super stressful at times So how do you ensure that the bride and groom stay stress -free? leading up to and on the wedding day

Margaret O’Reilly (06:28)

So depending on the level of services that I’m stepping in, even my coordination package, I’m usually stepping in about three months before. And really I designed it that way for the fact of being able to relieve stress. Because the closer you get to the wedding, the more stressful it gets, of course. And so making sure that I keep a pulse on where they’re at in their planning journey. So we’ll have an introduction call right after we book.

a timeline call which is where we build out the timeline and that’s typically going to be around that three month mark. It sometimes is earlier, sometimes later, just depending on how everything’s progressing. And then we do a 30 days out of two week and those are really to keep the pulse point to making sure that they’re not overwhelmed and they’re not stressed and I step in and I help and make sure, okay have you thought about this? Do you have this task? What about this? So it really keeping them on pace and or

organized with all the tasks that happen.

Tina (07:33)
Right? Yeah, I feel like we need you for, you know, the things that you don’t even think about because you’re going to be the one that thinks about it. Right.

Margaret O’Reilly (07:41)
Exactly, well and why should that, you know, why should a couple? You know, because of the fact that you’ve never done it before. So when you’re trying to do anything for the first time, you’re never gonna be 100 % knowing everything.

Tina (07:43)
Very true.

Mm -hmm. Yep. Agreed. For sure. Now, so how do you handle like unexpected challenges, last minute changes during an event?

Margaret O’Reilly (08:03)
Yeah, realistically, I think this is more.

experience, right? It comes with time and being able to know and manage that challenges are going to happen and you only plan so much and then essentially have a calm head when those challenges arise and making sure that you can make the best decision. Another reason why I like to step in so early is so I really can get to know the couple because I am and I am very transparent with them to say that on your wedding day, I

Tina (08:16)
Mm -hmm.

Margaret O’Reilly (08:38)
want to make sure that I am your advocate and I’m able to make decisions without bothering you, right? So that’s where it’s like, they’re busy getting ready, they’re busy enjoying their time with their family and friends, and they’re just excited for the day. And so that’s where it’s like, I really try to make it feel like I can make a decision based on them. Obviously, of course, if there’s big decisions, I make sure that they’re involved.

Tina (08:45)

Yes, yes.

Margaret O’Reilly (09:07)
But that’s really what I like to do is to make sure that I can kind of advocate on that way with them every single question.

Tina (09:14)

Well, I think that’s so important. So it doesn’t just feel like a transaction or a job, right? Like you truly are there to help them and be their, you know, right hand man or, you know, whatever way you want to put it, right?

Margaret O’Reilly (09:30)
Well, and that’s the thing. I think sometimes too, it can get lost on the importance of the role. This is somebody’s biggest day of their life, right? It’s also the most expensive and stressful day of their life, but up until that point most likely. And so that’s where I don’t take that lightly. I want to make sure that with each couple that I’m working with, that it’s very apparent that that is forefront.

Tina (09:36)
Mm -hmm.


Margaret O’Reilly (10:00)
and making sure that it’s not you know just like brush up to the side like another wedding another couple

Tina (10:06)
Right. Totally. Yep. And they’re your number one focus for the day. For sure. So Day Of, I feel like, you know, in this day and age, couples are really trying to stand out, you know, getting these content creators, things like that, especially on social media. So I just wanted to see what kind of like current trends that you’re seeing and liking in the industry right now.

Margaret O’Reilly (10:12)
Mm -hmm.

Yeah, so, I don’t know if it’s necessarily, specific trends. I think the, the ones that I really like are really unique to the couple. one that I think is really, cool that I really liked to see is, like thank you cards that are handwritten or personal pictures that are given to the guests the day of. And so, you know, incorporating that in with your seating chart.

Tina (10:42)


Margaret O’Reilly (10:59)
I think that’s a really nice touch for the guests, right? It’s a big day. There’s a lot going on. You definitely don’t get to talk to everybody that you want to, but they still took the time to travel, to come from wherever, and having that little sentimental piece to me is really cool. I really like that.

Tina (11:16)
All right.

Mm -hmm.

Margaret O’Reilly (11:25)
as well as just, you know, kind of having a wow. So I know sometimes there’s like the painters, like the live painters that will either do like couples or just like a scene of the wedding, unique entertainment, obviously, you know, like having different like dueling pianos. It’s just, it just, it doesn’t need to be the same, same old deal every time you go to a wedding.

Tina (11:32)

Mm -hmm.


Right, I’m loving the kind of like non -traditional things. I feel like it’s much more memorable too, you know. Not that you need everybody to remember your wedding, but it’s great to give other people ideas and whatnot as well. Now, so when you work with couples, do you like recommend these ideas to them or how do you ensure that, you know, they incorporate some unique and special things in their day?

Margaret O’Reilly (11:58)

Yeah, I would say that it’s really a gauge based off of the couple if they’re interested. Depending on the stage I come in and planning, I really like to listen to what they’re looking for and ask the right questions, make sure I’m fully understanding their vision. And that way it’s like, okay, if I hear that a couple is like, I really want to make sure we have great entertainment, we have music throughout.

Something like that. That’s when we can look at okay. Well, what does that mean for you? Do you you know want a saxophone player taking people from one part of the wedding to the next or do you want? Do you just want like really good food and you kind of have a different culinary experience? Maybe that’s incorporating food trucks non -traditional or things like that. So so really listening to their top most important items and then Spinning that and giving my recommendation

based off that because you can recommend so many different aspects right and then it becomes overwhelming because it’s like well which one am i supposed to choose and what’s staying within my budget right not like overboard and just saying yeah let’s do it all and then whoa we can

Tina (13:19)
Very true.

Yep, also that. Yeah, yes. Listening is very important for sure. And it makes, you know, each each couple different too, you know, you can’t be recommending the same thing. It’s not cut and paste, right?

Margaret O’Reilly (13:46)
Exactly. That’s my approach at least is a very tailored and customized based off of who I’m working with.

Tina (13:53)
Very nice. Now how do you incorporate like a couple’s personal story into their wedding?

Margaret O’Reilly (13:59)
So that is where typically at the beginning of working with them sort of in the introduction, I really try to ask questions about like who are you having involved in your wedding party? Who are your family members, your VIPs? How did you meet? Things like that just to really get an understanding of who they are. Really, I found that as a planner, coordinator, whoever on that day of, that’s when you really see a different side of people that maybe people don’t ever really see.

get to see. So I want to, and not just the couple, it’s also the family. So just really making sure that I’m understanding the role that all the couple has with each other and the story that they have and then trying to incorporate, you know, delicate pieces such as maybe there’s a dog involved and wanting to have a dog on the seating chart or

Tina (14:47)
Nice. Yeah.

Margaret O’Reilly (14:53)
Maybe there’s a love of a hobby that they have and maybe incorporating pieces like that. I’ve had where people will do custom, like their family was very Italian, so they would wanna do their own wine, so their family’s made wine, and that was like a gift, a favor. So pieces and aspects like that is really just, because at the end of the day, that’s what’s really important, it’s an event of your love.

Tina (15:22)
Mm -hmm, absolutely.

Margaret O’Reilly (15:23)
and bringing two families together. So taking those pieces and incorporating them so subtly or as loud as you want into the wedding.

Tina (15:26)
Mm -hmm.

Yeah, yeah, I love that. I’ve never I mean, it makes total sense. I’ve never kind of heard it, you know, said that way out. So that’s awesome. Love that. And that’s why also, you know, important to have planners to be able to help them do these things and create these ideas as well. Now, I’ll kind of go ahead. No, they’re fine.

Margaret O’Reilly (15:52)
Yeah, I think I was just gonna say I think it’s a little bit of a confidence thing as well of If you don’t have the confidence to be like I have this crazy idea It helps having a professional to kind of boot you’d be like, yeah, absolutely we can do that

Tina (16:04)

Sure, bounce things off. Yeah, that’s that’s possible or not possible. Okay, so what trends are you not loving right now? It’s not finding cringe trends right now.

Margaret O’Reilly (16:16)
That’s a little outside of the realm of weddings.

So I would say anything that’s really like unrealistic that really seems very for the Instagram photo, like a champagne tower. There’s the cutest photos. Don’t get me wrong. But.

Tina (16:40)

I’m sorry.

Margaret O’Reilly (16:48)
When you think about it, it’s like, okay, so I’m doing a champagne toast and then the glasses are all sticky. And then is it, are we drinking the champagne or like, are you actually handing out the champagne to gasp or a champagne toast like normal or traditional? That and then things such as like exits, sparkler exits. I don’t love either just again, they’re great photos, but how often do you have a photographer that’s there until 11 PM at night?

Tina (16:55)
So true.


So true, yeah.

Margaret O’Reilly (17:20)
And so if you don’t have a photographer that’s there until 11 p at night, that means that you need to show a sparkler exit earlier, and then are you having an exit when it’s not actually an exit? Yeah.

Tina (17:24)
Mm -hmm.

Then you go back. Party more, right? Or just a bunch of like, not great cell phone footage, right?

Margaret O’Reilly (17:34)

Exactly. And so, you know, and again, they’re cute, but it’s just, I think, logistic. When things are like logistically not making sense, that’s where I’m like, I don’t like that trend. It doesn’t make sense.

Tina (17:50)
Right, I’m trying a little too hard or something, right? Have you ever seen like a champagne tower fall? I feel like those are so risky. That’s good. Knock on wood.

Margaret O’Reilly (17:58)
right? no, I have not, but that like every time you’re just like, cause like it’s all set up. So like, let’s say somebody like there was one where the like groom of the sister was like, hopefully I don’t knock it over. Yeah. Like, please don’t, please don’t even joke. I don’t want to think about it.

Tina (18:06)

God, I had a few too many mimosas already. Right? Not funny. All right, so I kind of want to talk a little bit more about you specifically. Tell me a bit more about your planning process from start to finish.

Margaret O’Reilly (18:35)
Yeah, with couples, right? So,

Tina (18:37)
Mm -hmm. Yeah.

Margaret O’Reilly (18:41)
Again, it kind of depends on where I step in, but we’ll just use a coordination package, for example. Once a couple of books with me and agrees to go and move forward, we will do an introduction call. And that’s really just to get the nitty gritty, just understanding what vendors do you already have? What vendors do you still need? Is there any recommendations I can provide just to get a lay of the land, just tips on what to

do, how to navigate communication because sometimes that can get a little tricky. Just trying to be there as a resource and then really hands off, so let’s say they hire me a year before their wedding, hands off from that moment and then we’ll do a timeline conversation and that’s really where we get into the full details of

Who is gonna have the rings? Or where are you getting ready? Or how long is it gonna take from the ceremony to the reception? And is there gonna be traffic? Things like that. That’s where we really go through that timeline and really nail everything down till they have a good understanding to tell their photographer, to tell their DJ or their musicians at venue, all of that.

And then from there, we’ll kind of just be in communication. If they have any questions, I’m always available. But then turning around at that 30 days, probably more like six weeks before and starting to do the reach out with the vendors before the vendors start reaching out to them. Right. And because it’s always about that 30 day mark is when it’s like everything.

Tina (20:24)
Yep, totally.

Mm -hmm. All right. Everything’s due, all the final deposit. All of it, for sure.

Margaret O’Reilly (20:34)
Yeah, exactly.

So then we’ll do the 30 day conversation and making sure that we’re in a good spot. There are three PS are starting to roll in, making sure everything’s good with their with that. And then once we do the final numbers and everything, we’ll do a two week conversation just to make sure no changes have happened because there most likely is going to be something that’s changed or something that still needs to be figured out. So have that conversation then on the weekend.

Tina (21:00)

Margaret O’Reilly (21:08)
end of, I’ll step in and I’ll do the rehearsal. Most of the time I run it, but if there is an officiant or a priest or somebody that is very comfortable or very used to and likes doing it, I let them run with it, but I’m still there and available for questions. And then on the wedding day, you know, whenever, whenever I start, you know, whatever time it makes sense for me to start, I usually come in around nine, 10 o ‘clock.

Tina (21:21)

Margaret O’Reilly (21:37)
and then I’ll stay the whole day. I don’t like to really leave until you start tearing things down, make sure all the pieces that need to go need to go where they need to go. And because I think that that’s a big piece of just making sure that the things are organized even to the last minute.

Tina (21:37)
Mm -hmm.


Right? Start to finish.

Margaret O’Reilly (22:02)
Well, I mean, because at that point, I feel like once the dance floor starts happening and maybe the photographer leaves, that’s when you start getting a little bit more comfortable and you’re just really focusing on celebrating. And so there’s nothing worse than maybe having a drink or two at the end of the evening. And then you have to figure out like, well, wait, where is all this supposed to go? It’s just.

Tina (22:13)
Mm -hmm.

Absolutely. Packing up cars, like that stinks. Yeah.

Margaret O’Reilly (22:29)
I know when I’ve done events for other organizations and I’m in charge of setup and teardown, it’s never a fun task. That’s the last thing I would want to be doing at the last moment of my wedding.

Tina (22:37)


Absolutely. Now you mentioned some packages. Do you want to go into a little bit of detail about your packages?

Margaret O’Reilly (22:51)
Yeah, absolutely. So I have everything from full planning all the way to coordination. So it’s basically full planning, partial planning, and coordination, as well as I offer virtual services such as like maybe you don’t need somebody at the wedding because you have…

You know, you have somebody that’s super organized and a co -worker that you trust with your life or somebody that is a project manager in real life maybe. And you just really need a checklist and somebody to keep you organized. So I also have those virtual services too. So my packages for the onsite with me being at the wedding and everything start at 2000 with the coordination and go on up to there from there. And then my

Tina (23:24)

Margaret O’Reilly (23:42)
virtual services are really it’s it’s $500 and we go through and like I said we have a monthly meeting and kind of touch base from there just to build everything for you and then hand it off to whoever you determine because I as much as I obviously value what I do and I think that it’s so important to have somebody a professional day out it’s just not for everyone it’s even it’s not in everyone’s budget so

Tina (23:56)

Yes, agreed.

Margaret O’Reilly (24:11)
accounting for that and understanding that and just giving another solution to help you stay on top of everything.

Tina (24:19)
That’s nice. Love that. But I firmly agree that you, you, I think are one of the most important vendors that people can, people can hire. kind of, I guess, going off that then, what advice and tips can you offer couples starting their planning journey? You know, like what are the important questions to ask the essential things that you see couples forgetting?

Margaret O’Reilly (24:44)

So this obviously I could go on a whole lengthy conversation about this, but if we’re going to narrow it down and focus in on a few things, I would say number one most critical is get another email, build a wedding email so you stay organized because you’re going to get bogged down in your personal emails and it just becomes overwhelming. So that is number one from I always tell people email.


Tina (24:50)
Go ahead.


That’s a good idea.

Margaret O’Reilly (25:15)
Separate email, do it, don’t even think twice about it. And then take a moment, just be with each other, you and your fiance, and figure out what’s important. What do you really want? What do you, you know, before you get too much into the noise and opinions, sitting down and making sure that…

you understand where you’re going so that when you’re on the same page with each other when it comes to harder decisions you can go back to what is really important. I really care about the entertainment of the evening. Okay, and maybe you’re going to scourge a little bit more on that than another vendor.

Tina (25:52)
Mm -hmm.

Right. Right.

Margaret O’Reilly (25:56)
things like that. So email, understanding what’s really important, and then figuring out a budget because there really is nothing that you can do else in planning unless you have those key pieces, I believe.

Tina (26:13)
Absolutely, 100%. And whatever your budget is, it’s probably going to be completely different than what the real world is, unfortunately.

Margaret O’Reilly (26:20)

Yeah, and the last couple years, it’s also changed so much too. So that’s another thing for couples to have to navigate as well.

Tina (26:28)

Yeah, well, that’s why also it’s important to have somebody like you because you’re staying up on the trends and the changes, you know, that’s your job. And so people then know what to expect because because you know, you know, you’re up up with all of it. Right. So did you so you mentioned, are you currently planning your own wedding or you are married?

Margaret O’Reilly (26:47)

So I am currently in the process of planning my own wedding. Thank you. It is a lot harder than I thought, but not for the fact that like hard, like how I would say like most of my friends have explained to me of like how it’s hard. It’s actually hard to like narrow down what I want to do, right? Because…

Tina (27:00)
Congratulations. What is that like?

It’s so funny.


my god, I bet. You have so many resources.

Margaret O’Reilly (27:23)
Yeah, because you see so much you like I know what I don’t want but there’s still been so many things and I’m like, this is so cool. I would love this and then it’s like, okay, we need to like reel it in like we can’t go too crazy. So so yeah, that’s where we’re it’s been it was really hard to lock in a location for us because I always knew we were never gonna get married like where we currently

Tina (27:25)


Margaret O’Reilly (27:53)

Tina (27:54)

Margaret O’Reilly (27:55)
Because my fiance is from, so right where we live actually is where Illinois, Wisconsin and Iowa meet. So we met on the Illinois side, which is Galena, Illinois. We live on the Iowa side in Dubuque and then he’s from a small town on the Wisconsin side. So, so, you know, working in the area, I, and, and just kind of wanting to like have a central location for everyone. We kind of always knew we weren’t going to get married here.

Tina (28:02)



Margaret O’Reilly (28:25)
but the hardest part was figuring out where we were going to get married. So we love Chicago. We spend so much time in Chicago, but obviously, you know, there’s a lot going on in Chicago. Yeah, it’s a little pricier in Chicago. And we really did not want to cut our guest list.

Tina (28:25)
Mm -hmm.



That’s a little pricier. It’s different.


Margaret O’Reilly (28:49)
but we still were spending a lot of time. It was a serious consideration for us because we love that city so much. But also with our friends and where they’re from and our family and being from smaller areas and smaller town, we also felt that it really was just not be a comfortable guest experience either being in the city, dealing with the child.

Tina (28:55)

Mm -hmm. Mm -hmm.

Margaret O’Reilly (29:13)
and especially if you’re not used to it, not comfortable with it. So those were just some aspects that we really kind of were weighing, I guess you could say. But we settled on Lake Geneva, so we’re actually going to be getting married in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. Yeah.

Tina (29:28)
Ooh, beautiful.

Margaret O’Reilly (29:32)
Yeah, and it’ll be in June next year, so it’s gonna be beautiful and it’s gonna be great. And I think once we got the location that we both, it was also very important for me to have his say because I can obviously come in and take over really easily. But I was very aware and conscious of making sure that what we picked was gonna be for both of us and we both really wanted it. And the venue that we picked is a place that

Tina (29:58)

Margaret O’Reilly (30:02)
we both were very like, this is it. Like, as soon as we walked away from the meeting, we were like, this is it. So, it made it easier.

Tina (30:05)
That was good.

That’s good, yeah, I bet you have a lot of opinions and wants and stuff, but yeah, there’s two of you in the relationship, I guess. Yeah, I guess.

Margaret O’Reilly (30:18)
Exactly. It is not Margaret’s wedding. No, he is not a planner either, so that also kind of helps.

Tina (30:27)
Right. He probably knows, yeah, that you can pick this one.

Margaret O’Reilly (30:33)
So he planned our engagement and he did such a good job, but poor guy was just so stressed. He was like, he’s like, this is the best day of my life, but this is also the worst day of my life. I do not like this. Yeah.

Tina (30:40)

Right. He’s not meant to do it. He probably has a little bit more respect for you now, right? Right. That’s it for me. Just the engagement. my gosh. So you mentioned like your friends finding certain aspects of the wedding planning process as hard. What were those? Like, I know you kind of mentioned what was hard for you, but then what do you find that your friends are having a hard time with?

Margaret O’Reilly (30:54)
Yeah. He was just like, I don’t get it.


Yeah, I would say that just not knowing what the steps are, right?

Tina (31:23)
Mm -hmm.

Margaret O’Reilly (31:24)
not really understanding what do I need to do? What’s the next step? Okay, I did this, but now what do I do here? And then not having the full scope of everything that actually entails. Eventually, I think that there just becomes like kind of like a decision paralysis almost, where you’re just so sick of making decisions and you’re like, when is this ever going to stop? And am I going to stop spending money ever? Or like, is this, this like,

Tina (31:32)

Right. Yeah. And just like the unfamiliar.

Margaret O’Reilly (31:54)
and less at this point. So I think a little bit of all of that.

Tina (32:01)
Yeah, I get that. Yeah, I can see that for sure. Just being unfamiliar with the territories. cool. Thanks for going into a little bit more detail about that. So let’s chat a little bit more about social media. So first off, I wanted to mention too that you are offering, for being on the podcast today, you’re offering 20 % off all digital products. So what does that exactly entail?

Margaret O’Reilly (32:02)


Yeah, so.

Something that I recently, it’s actually been in the works for probably about two years. I’ve been working on a template. But I think since I’ve gotten engaged, I had a whole different perspective and I was kind of waiting for that to really become the bride. I can do all the planning and have all of that perspective in my head. But until I became a bride, I wanted to make sure that I had all the pieces that I needed in this template.

So that’s where I started. I plan to elaborate on digital products. Again, kind of going back to the aspect of it is very important to have a planner, but sometimes it’s just not in everybody’s budget. So trying to build resources that are helpful.

that can lead you through the planning process just by following along. So the digital product that I have right now currently launched is exactly that. It’s a 15 tab Google Sheet template that has your budgeting is one of the main pieces, your guest contact and guest management. So there’s a tab in there that helps you build your guest list.

Tina (33:28)

Margaret O’Reilly (33:38)
So I know a lot of tabs that are templates that I’ve seen, they just have the contact information and maybe a little bit of RSVP tracking. But I took it to the step before that and, but you know, figuring out who are you going to invite? Because every single couple I’ve ever worked with always says, well I’m going to invite 400 people. And then they start seeing prices and all the details. Or you have a limitation.

Tina (34:01)
Yep, gotta edit that down.

Margaret O’Reilly (34:06)
then you gotta cut the guest list down. So that’s one of the tabs. And then another main piece is the checklist. So just helping people go through that. So yeah, that’s kind of something else just to add resources.

Tina (34:17)

Yeah. And that’ll be offered like separately from your services. So people could even just, you know, buy that and, or do both and hire you and do that as well.

Margaret O’Reilly (34:33)
Absolutely, yeah, so and the code is Felix and finger Felix fingers 20 for anybody who wants to get that but yes, that’s where it’s It’s separate. You don’t have to hire me You can just buy that product but just knowing that it comes from somebody with industry experience is as a bride herself

Tina (34:54)
That’s awesome. Very nice and all concise and in one document. Now, so is this separate from your new social media strategy that you were telling me about?

Margaret O’Reilly (35:03)
Yeah, so that is so previously I have to be honest social media. I love it, but I also hate it, right? It’s so

Tina (35:12)
But it’s so necessary. It was difficult though. Wait.

Margaret O’Reilly (35:15)
Very. So I recently hired a brand strategist and I kind of, she kind of basically recommended, she was like, just get rid of, you know, archive your old stuff. So I, and kind of to piggyback off the digital resources, I just wanted to kind of provide resources, right? You always see the wedding TikToks and all that, and there’s great resources that way.

But so I wanted to just provide knowledge and information because it really does upset me or like hurts my heart when I do talk to people and they’re like, this just sucks.

Tina (35:52)
You shouldn’t feel that way. Right?

Margaret O’Reilly (35:56)
Yeah, like how sad is that? It’s supposed to be like the happiest time and the stress of it can get very overwhelming. So just trying to provide an avenue and insights with my social media and providing those resources.

Tina (36:13)
Cool, I love that. So then to end things, how can clients find you? How do they reach out?

Margaret O’Reilly (36:18)
Yeah, so, so, my website is and then all of my handles you can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, TikTok, even YouTube, all at Simply Suited Planning.

Tina (36:35)
Awesome. Well, thanks so much for hopping on, Margaret.

Margaret O’Reilly (36:38)
Yeah, thank you, Tina. I appreciate it.

Tina (36:40)

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