Zaakira Harris, the Perfect Wedding Coordinator for Your Special Day
Say ‘I do’ to a perfect wedding with the help of Zaakira Harris, your ultimate wedding coordinator from Details Made Simple!!!
Your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life, and it’s essential that everything runs smoothly and is perfect. A perfect coordinator is the key to ensuring that your day is stress-free and that your plans come together seamlessly.
With a perfect coordinator, you can relax and enjoy your day knowing that everything is taken care of and that your day will be everything you have ever imagined.
That’s why in this episode, we are going to find out all about Zaakira Harris of Details Made Simple. We will learn about what she does, and how she can help you with your wedding needs.
Gillian de Souza: Hi, welcome to DC Weddings with Gillian. Thanks for joining me. Today, we have a special guest. No matter what you want to put together for your wedding, she can make that happen for you. Whether it’s taking a puppy down the aisle or planning a Halloween themed wedding, she really listens to your desires and will help you put together that wedding literally of a lifetime. I can attest to that with all the weddings that she’s done with Caribbean Caterers. So, here we have today, Zaakira Harris with Details Made Simple.
Hello folks! Welcome again to DC Weddings with Gillian. I am so excited to present you with my friend Zaakira Harris at Details Made Simple. She is a wedding coordinator. We are going to find out all about her and what she does at Details Made Simple. Most importantly, how she can help you. So, welcome Zaakira!
Zaakira Harris : Thank you, Gillian. Thank you for having me.
Gillian de Souza: You are very welcome. Now, this is all about you. I am so happy and blessed to have worked with you before. So, I know all about your expertise, but I want you to tell our audience, how did your wedding journey begin in this industry? What brought you here?
Zaakira Harris : I’ve always had a love or passion for the wedding industry. From when I was a girl, I used to play online on the knots.com and make my own registries and pick out napkins and linens. And then, my background is actually in the hospitality industry in hotels. I got an opportunity here and there to assist with coordinating weddings.
And then, about five years ago, Details Made Simple was expanding to the DC area and I was granted an opportunity to assist with coordinating more weddings in the DMV area.
Gillian de Souza: Fantastic! Now, you do have to tell me about a little girl who is going on the knot, planning weddings. Talk about being able to really be in your client’s shoes. Expand on that a little bit for, I can’t leave that there.
Zaakira Harris : I always loved weddings. I love just being around people. It’s such a joyous occasion, people getting the opportunity to celebrate, finding their significant other, the love of their life and family and friends coming together at a younger age.
Then, when I saw the wedding planner and how she put together all those details, I was like, I’m sold. That’s going to be me when I’m older. When I had free time and the computer was available, I would go on the knot.com and look up different napkins and different shades of pink or blue.
One time I did a project in school with a PowerPoint for a wedding for each season. So, winter theme, winter wonderland and spring and summer. I love everything, all the details about that.
Fantastic! How does that joy that you have for weddings translate into how you help your clients best?
I think it translates into all of the details when I’m going over their big day. They spend a lot of time planning and they wanna have a really amazing day, and I’m there to make sure that happens. Really listening to things that are important for them, whether it is a family member that’s going to sing a special song for them, or if it’s important that they have a certain cupcake there, or that their dog is in the processional. Making sure that we have all those details accounted for. So, that day, I’m able to make sure that’s executed.
Gillian de Souza: Fantastic. You talked about including a dog in the ceremony. I think when we see that a lot of people say, “Do people really do that?” Are you doing just day-of planning for your clients, or are you full service coordinators as well?
Zaakira Harris : So, we just provide day-of coordinating services. So, we typically work with our clients three to six months out. And then, really begin to go in detail with all of their vendors and confirming arrival times and beginning to put in those details, three to six months out.
Fantastic! As a day-of or couple months of coordinator, I imagine that your clients would already have had their vendors, their florist and their DJ, photographer, catering, venue and so on. Do you provide any services of assisting people finding vendors or would clients come to you with vendors already selected and you just put the package? Make sure the package works on the wedding day. Tell us about that.
We have actually a mix of both. We have clients that come to us and have most of their vendors secured. And then, we have other clients who have just booked their venue and are looking at coordinators, and don’t have any other vendors and are looking for recommendations. We do also assist with giving vendor recommendations as well.
Gillian de Souza: Fantastic! It sounds like you do it all for the customers, no matter what stage of planning they’re in. A couple that really gave you joy to work with, if you have the liberty of telling us about that wedding. And, what we were able to help that couple achieve something very special for them.
Zaakira Harris : I would say one couple that stands out to me. I love all of my couples, but they stood out to me the most. They really went out of their way to make their wedding very unique and very special to them, which I think is very important on your big day. So, they love Halloween. It’s their favorite holiday.
So, they had their wedding on Halloween weekend, and it was a Halloween themed wedding. So, centerpiece is with skulls, looks like webs and cupcakes with all different Halloween designs and fall florals, goblins and LED bats. Just all of these intricate different details, that really showcase their favorite holiday.
One thing that I thought was really special too, is the groom, Philip always bought Hailey a bouquet of flowers every week from the time that they met. He actually went out, he insisted instead of the florist doing her bouquet or having a florist come in for her bouquet. He picked out her bouquet for their wedding, which I thought was very sweet.
Gillian de Souza: Yes, indeed. These are the moments that make memories for our couples. Just being able to showcase you on how you are able to do things for your clients, ’cause I’ve seen you do it already. So, a bride is listening to you now. Give her a tip that she might need that would tell her that you are the coordinator that she should have for her wedding.
Zaakira Harris : Yes, I would say that I’m extremely detail-oriented. So, if we were to have a perspective call, just listening to the things that are important for you, that will make you feel at ease on your big day. Most couples are already a little bit anxious because it’s such a huge day for them and their family and friends. So, anything that I can do to alleviate that stress from them so they can just enjoy and celebrate their love for each other, with their family and friends. That is what I’m there to do.
Gillian de Souza: Fantastic! I love the name of the company, Details Made Simple. Because those of us in the industry know that the devil is in the details, literally. The details are enormous. Yes, they’re numerous. They never stop coming even right up to the execution. As a professional, when I hear Details Made Simple, that resonates with me because I want to simplify this that I know has so much. How does a client know how you are going to simplify the time that they’re going to spend with you in terms of putting together all the details for their event?
Zaakira Harris : It really is just us working together when we have our calls, our in person meetings, and I am asking them all of these questions and sometimes there are questions that they haven’t even thought of.
For example, if they are getting ready somewhere else, other than the venue, have they thought about transportation? If they do not have a limo service, will they do an Uber? If so, then we need to schedule that ahead of time. If they’re looking to do a first look before the ceremony, we need to shift hair and makeup to make sure that we have enough time set aside for those photos before the ceremony. Any detail that they think is too small, it is literally not small enough. I have entered in things into the timeline outfit changes, if a bride has her bustle, because that may take some time before the reception. All of those details are important and to make sure that they are not stressed the day of, we add all of those items into our timeline.
Gillian de Souza: Fantastic! So, the best customer that you would love to work with is listening to you on this podcast right now. Talk to them, whatever it is you would like them to know about Details Made Simple.
Zaakira Harris : A tip that I would want them to know is that no detail is too small. So, if there is something that you’re thinking of doing, something that’s important to you, please let me know. We will add it into the timeline. We will make it work. But, any and everything that you can think of, let us know and we’ll make sure that it gets done and it’s included in the timeline and it’s accounted for, so that you don’t have to worry about it. We’ll make sure it’s taken care.
Gillian de Souza: Can you think of a detail that bride or groom thought was a minor detail, but that you were able to really turn it into something that meant something for them? Give us an example.
Zaakira Harris : Yes. I had a couple, he actually wanted to do a surprise song for his bride. So, making sure that the DJ knew the song and that all of the guests were around on the dance floor, when he did that song for her. And, that ended up being such a great highlight. Everyone talked about it for the rest of the night.
Gillian de Souza: Wonderful idea! So, what else would you like the listening audience to know about working with you at Details Made Simple or just about planning their wedding? Most people come to us and they think they know, or think that they either can maybe even do the wedding planning themselves because they have done it before or help somebody else. So, tell us what would make a client, say “I’ve got to find Zaakira, so she can help me with my wedding.”
Zaakira Harris : There are so many logistical details day-of, that is something you do not want to handle yourself on your big day or leave that to a family member, because they are also there to celebrate you and your significant other. So, working with all of the vendors, making sure people that are arriving on time, making sure that the photographer is ready when the ceremony starts, that the DJ is ready to cue the songs for the processional, to make sure that the plates and the knife and fork and the champagne flutes are at the cake table before your cake cutting. Those are all things that we are doing behind the scene to make sure that the day is running smoothly.
Gillian de Souza: I am sure that once our audience has heard all the great things that you can do for them for their big day, they’ll be clamoring to get in touch with you. How can someone find you to help them put on a fabulous wedding with Details Made Simple?
Zaakira Harris : Yes, they can reach us. Our website is detailsmadesimple.com or on Instagram @detailsmadesimple.
Gillian de Souza: Easy. You made everything simple. Zaarkira, I am so happy to introduce you to our DC Wedding market. Like I said, our work with you was wonderful at the wedding. Are there any parting words that you would have for our audience?
Zaakira Harris : I would say during the planning process, to think about things that you all love and incorporate that into your big day. It’s your day to showcase your love for each other and the things that you like to do together. So, make sure that’s incorporated some way in your big day.
Gillian de Souza: Thank you so much! We’ve been talking here with Zaakira Harris of Details Made Simple. It’s been a pleasure and I see you at another wedding soon.
Zaakira Harris : Yes. Thank you so much, Gillian. I look forward to it.
You’re very welcome, we’ll talk soon.