Graduate Feature: Sydney Schatz
Olivia Burbidge Photography
Name: Sydney Schatz
Location: Post Falls, Idaho
QC Courses you’ve taken:
Your website: https://www.pieceofharmonyevents.com/
Tell us a little about yourself!
My name is Sydney Schatz (pronounced like the word ‘shots’), and I was born and raised in North Idaho. I attended Eastern Washington University in Cheney, Washington. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Communications, with an emphasis in Business Management, a leadership certificate, and a minor in Psychology. That’s also where I met my husband. We instantly clicked, and got married in the fall of 2018. Since college, we’ve planted our roots near where I grew up, in Post Falls, Idaho.
Other than planning events, I enjoy rock-climbing, riding my motorcycle or quad, hanging out with husband and dogs, or settling in with a good book. We have two spoiled pups whom we love very much: Kaiser (the gentle giant German Shepherd), and River (the spunky Chocolate Lab).
I’ve been in the wedding and event industry since 2014. In that time, I have been a coordinator for one venue, as well as managed two others. I’m very well-versed in the world of weddings, company holiday parties, and large corporate events. Some of the weddings I’ve organized have hosted as many as 300 people, while some of the corporate events have had upwards of 800!
I’ve been personally responsible for over 700 functions so far in my wedding and event planning.
Why did you decide to pursue a career in event planning?
It almost happened by accident! I attended college with the intention of becoming an athletic trainer, but that wasn’t where my passion truly was. After having a bit of a meltdown over not knowing what I truly wanted to study, I thought about what I actually enjoyed doing, what I’m good at, and what could be turned into a profession.
Ever since I was little, I’ve always enjoyed being in charge, and was always an extremely scheduled and detail-oriented person. Ultimately, it was my mom who brought up the idea of a career in event and wedding planning, which I then ran with. After college, I then found QC Event School, as I wanted more in-depth training in the event and wedding planning industry.
What’s the story behind your wedding planning business’ name, A Piece of Harmony Events?
Naming a business is hard! When the time came, I thought about words and symbols that mean something to me personally. I’ve always been drawn to peace signs and sunflowers. Over time, the name slowly evolved into what it is now, and the slogan became, “Because every event needs a little Piece of Harmony”.
Rachel Jordan Photography
You’ve graduated from FOUR of our courses (wow!), ranging from events, to weddings, to corporate event planning. Would you say you have caught the attention of more clients because of all your additional training?
I’m working hard to establish my own identity in the local wedding and event industry. I was always viewed before as being merely an extension of whatever venue I was managing at the time, so I know it’ll take a while for people to see my own name and brand.
However, yes, I believe it’ll easier for me because of all my QC training. These certifications will give me a definite advantage! Having these courses attached to my name and business shows the dedication I have for this industry; that I’m a true wedding and event professional. After I get a potential client in the door, I know the quality of work I produce for them will only further reiterate my professionalism.
Can you describe your event and wedding decorating style?
Keeping things fresh! I like to think that my strength is not having one particular style that I repeat over and over. For my clients, it’s my job to make their dream a reality, not my own.
But let’s just say I’m working with a bride who has no clue what she wants and is looking to me for direction. I’m really drawn to when things look natural, but have accented colors! I love using greenery, candles, and wood elements when I decorate. Then I’ll add in a pop of color, whether it be through the napkin, the candlesticks, or even the glassware.
I also enjoy bringing in vintage or distressed elements, such as a cozy lounge area or family heritage pieces.
You’ve gotten training in all areas of planning, so which would you say is your personal favorite: events, wedding, or corporate events? Why is it your #1 preference?
Even after doing over 100 weddings in my short career, I still say they are my favorite! I love how different each one is, how personal they are, and how emotional I get every dang time! Wedding planning starts a year or more before the big day. That is a good chunk of time to develop a connection and friendship with your clients.
Rachel Jordan Photography
Why did you decide to attend an online event planning school over a physical school to earn your event and wedding planner certification? Why made you choose QC Event School specifically?
Unfortunately, our area is pretty small, so there are no physical schools offering any kind of event or wedding planning degree/certification. Online schooling was my only option. I did a LOT of research on different event and wedding planning schools, and what stuck out the most to me about QC was the quality of the content put into each course.
Every course I took consisted of (for me anyways) 4-6 weeks of reading, multiple assignments per unit, and actual learning. I LOVE the books that came with each QC course. They take up one whole shelf on my bookshelf, and I’m continually referring back to them for advice and information! I also valued the fact that QC provides each student with a tutor who actually takes the time to not only grade each assignment, but give valuable feedback and criticism.
I feel so much more accomplished because I earned these certifications – they weren’t just given to me.
What has been your proudest moment during your professional career in wedding and event planning?
That’s easy! A couple years ago, one of the main structures at the venue I was managing had burned down. It was a gorgeous, historic, 100-year-old barn. It was right in the middle of our wedding/event season, and we were supposed to host 800 people the next day!
Obviously that event didn’t happen, but what did happen was quite incredible. After a lot of tears, we all picked ourselves up by our bootstraps and got started on crisis management. We had 8 contracted weddings left, so I worked very closely with the remaining brides over the next couple of weeks to help ease any stress and sorrow they were experiencing. With a lot of humbling help from the community, we got the property cleaned up and put back together.
10 days later, we were able to host another client’s wedding and celebrate the beginning of a new adventure! The rest of the wedding season went off without a hitch.
What do you have in store for A Piece of Harmony Events in 2020?
Good things, I hope! Even though this isn’t my first year in the industry, it’s the first FULL year for A Piece of Harmony Events. I’m excited to grow this little business. Right now, I’m enjoying getting out there; meeting so many new people, brides, and vendors, and really creating a name for myself. Beyond weddings, I have a couple of large contracts with different corporate companies, so I’m eager to see where that road leads me as well.
Mainly, my plan is to help create beautiful memories for the people I work with. At the end of the day, we all deserve to have some beauty that we can hold in our minds, and carry with us moving forward.
Rachel Jordan Photography