Hari Indah stylishly landed on the Bali Wedding Planning scene two years ago. Since then, head planner and stylist Elvira and her team have produced a spectacular portfolio of work. The detail, passion and love oozes from each wedding – and those deliriously happy couples…
PS Hari Indah translates to Beautiful Day in Indonesian, isn’t that perfect x
Name: Elvira Nawrocka, Lead Stylist and Planner
Business Name: Hari Indah Wedding Planning & Design
In a coconut shell, tell us about your lovely self?
I am originally from Poland. After uni, where I studied Politics, I moved to the UK, where I lived for 15 years. It was in London that I got into events. I started in political fundraising. Once realised I was very good at it and how much I enjoyed that job, it quickly developed into full on corporate events, followed by wedding planning.
How did it all begin?
Corporate events are, how to say diplomatically, challenging and not in a good way. There is little space for creativity and pleasing business people is actually the hardest thing a planner can do. So I branched out into weddings. UK home market is very different to Bali and destination weddings as brides don’t yet see the value on bringing a planner and stylist in early stages. Instead they hire a coordinator to hand the day. I was getting tired of those gigs, where you end up picking up a mess and trying to make it work with what you’ve got. It was a lot of work with little room for personal growth. I was bored out of my mind.
And what happened then?
I spent some time travelling and discovered Bali and its opportunities to grow business here. I could see myself further developing my passion for design, as you can do so much more with destination weddings.
How did it start?
It took 2 years of research and travelling back and forth before we were ready to launch. We wanted to know who we can work with and who we can really rely on, before we started. After all, the planner is helpless without the team and the vendors! We organised a few styling shoots and other small events before we decided we were ready to take on real destination weddings in Bali.
Was it hard to find your first clients?
Starting from literally ZERO was a very difficult task. We had no portfolio, apart from the styling photos, there were no reviews on TripAdviser or anything remotely related. We were so blessed to find clients who decided to trust us based only on our Skype calls and meetings in Bali. They all decided to take a leap of faith to entrust us in styling and planning their big day. We are so grateful to them! You know who you are! :))
What’s unique about your business?
We identified some gaps in the already saturated wedding planner market. No one seemed to offer a truly personal service. It was all about packages and quotes, without taking into account who the couples were and what mattered to them. Like a wedding supermarket.
What makes us different is that personal approach. We create concepts based on client’s style, ethnic background, their personalities and vision. We also want to be different and versatile, so no wedding will ever look the same. From classic white wedding to an ethnic boho, we love how it gets our creative juices flowing!
What is your super-power?
Listening skills. It can take you very far when you take time to listen.
Attention to detail. I am super picky and very particular.
Relationships. Our clients become our friends. This is more than a business when you are passionate about the people.
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
Inspiration? It’s everywhere. We all know Pinterest, Instagram et all but in reality I find it on a simple walkway to my yoga studio, a lamp shop, or when brushing my teeth. It simply comes when concepts are developing.
What was the nicest compliment you’ve ever received?
One of our fave weddings last year was ‘Catch Your Dreams’, a Beach Boho Affair. One of the wedding guests said: “I have never seen magic, until today. What you created was magical”. It was then topped by the Bride who said she dreamt about this wedding since she was a little girl and we turned it into reality. I cried that night.
Who is your creative muse?
There are a few people I look up to. My favourite is Nomad Styling from Australia, who specialises in boho / industrial style weddings. I LOVE what she does!
Why is it important to have a wedding planner in Bali?
Professionals will know best who to work with. Consistency is still an issue with many vendors so we only work with those who deliver 100% and every time. A bride on a DIY project won’t know this from Google search or even a TripAdvisor. Vendors also know if they mess up, chances are that we won’t work with them again, so they try a little harder to keep us happy.
If you could give one piece of advice to couples planning a Bali wedding, what would it be?
To be open minded. Sometime it is hard to find a venue which ticks all the boxes. The planner will know how to translate your vision into reality.
How big a part do your couples play in the creative process – or are they generally happy for you to run the show?
It really depends on the client. We love receiving cohesive briefs from brides who have a clear vision on what they want but this is rare. Usually it’s somewhere in between and sometimes clients want us to take complete control over the design and create something on their behalf. All of them are fun to work with, just a little different.
What’s the trickiest part about being a destination wedding planner?
Time zones. Our clients happen to be from all over the world, from New Zealand to the West coast of the US. Managing those Skype calls can be a little tricky. It is also nerve-racking when your clients see their wedding venue for the first time, as they booked it based on photos and our recommendations. Luckily, they were never disappointed!
What is the BEST part of your job?
Seeing our clients tying the knot. They are no longer clients, they are good friends so it is always emotional.
Little List of Loves
Best coffee in Bali? Almond milk flat white at Alchemy in Ubud
Favourite Cocktail? Too many to choose from
Best Sunset Spot? My garden
Yoga or Gym? Yoga, although I can’t remember last time I went….
Scooter or Car? Always a scooter, car only if it’s a must!
Best place in Bali to relax and unwind? My garden
Any secret spots or hidden gems you’d care to share? Around Ubud, but I won’t share them so they can remain secret.
Favourite Insta account? Too many to name
What quote or mantra do you live by? Follow your heart, always.