Celebrity Event Stylist
The wedding season is a yearlong season. It never ends! A celebrity wedding planner, to all the top notch stars and crème of the nation, Qasim Yar Tiwana sat down to discuss his favorite wedding trends. Take a look at his astonishing backdrops and majestic décor as you get inspired for your coming event. @qasimyar’
Let us about yourself and your background
I belong to a family with agricultural, army and police background. We belong to a village near Sargodha. My father was a DIG and my parents brought us up very strictly. Though they passed away while we were very young, their teachings have been with us throughout our lives. I have a brother and a sister, with whom I share a tight knit bond.
Everybody knows QYT and his work. What journey took you from Qasim to the name we’re all familiar with?
It was a long journey which started in 2000. Though I was a student back then, people were familiar with me and my love for décor. Though none of this would have been possible had it not been for Nilofer Shahid and her believe in me. It was her daughter’s wedding which she had asked me to manage. It was a wonderful affair with Roman themed décor. I don’t think I would have been here today had it not been for that one wedding. Entire Lahore was there and it was the first step for me in the industry. Though I did not pursue event management at that time as I was still studying, but I did not let the opportunity slip from my hand. I continued with smaller events and finally in 2003 I launched my own event management business
Who is your inspiration?
My inspiration is my mother. It won’t be wrong to say that I inherited my creativity it from her. She used to host dinners, events, teas and musical events at home. She always used to have fresh flowers in her house. This was during the late 80s to early 90s.
What is QYT offering its clients for this season? What are the different price ranges that you will be offering?
Event management unlike fashion does not go out of vogue. We can have the same thing going on for years, before it is done away with. QYT is a trendsetter in the industry. We do not simply tell our clients that this is what we are offering and you have to take it. Rather we go according to the wishes of our clients; we do what they expect of us, provided it does look the best. We educate our clients so that make the right decision when it comes to quality and quantity. We do not force them to follow any particular trend that is being followed in the industry. Most of the times since people come to us for our flawless designs they do listen to us and what we think would look the best for them on their event. There are different price ranges that we offer to our clients. To be honest our services are not as expensive as they are perceived. We are very flexible when it comes to our services and prices.
Most of your work involves shimmery curtains and mirror decor. Will you be bringing something different to the table this time?
As I said trends do not change as rapidly in the event management industry, most of the time there are minor changes that take place. Also our aim is to meet the demands of the client, rather than force them to follow any particular trends. If they have a theme I would usually explain everything to them, according to that. I think drapery and floral arrangements are going to stay, as they are still not being used en masse. I incorporate things until they are unique. Since we usually introduce certain trends, we have the first movers’ advantage. Once they start being copied that is when I give them up.
Then again, no wedding is complete without a few dholki’s and dance practices. Do you think overspending on simpler events like these has become a trend for us to follow?
I do not usually cater to smaller events, as I mostly focus on events like barat and walima. But I think that it depends on family to family. Personally I think one should not overspend. The purpose of such events is to enjoy and have a nice time. Overspending is not a wise thing to do, but if your budget and wallet allows it you can spend as much as you. These events should not become a source of competition among people.
What is required to book you for a wedding date? How many days before the event must the date be set?
It depends on my availability. Most of the time I get bookings 5-6 months ahead of time. But there are times when we have to do everything on a very short notice. I remember I had to manage Vaneeza Ahmed’s wedding. SO one day she called me and told me she was getting married and she wanted me to manage it for her. Naturally I was very excited, but when I asked her the date and venue, she said it is day after tomorrow with no venue in mind. That was an event which really tested my abilities. She had to come to Lahore from Karachi; by the time she had landed I had booked Polo Club for the event and was running other errands. However, since it was a small event we were able to pull it off impeccably within two days.
I think if you love something no matter how stressful or hard it is you will be able to achieve it. I love what I do and since I am an artist I love creating new things and managing these events.
Setting up luxury weddings can be hard on you and the team. How do you keep your team motivated?
We do not have a permanent team; it keeps on changing over time. So to keep them motivated and make sure they work to their capacity it is important to provide them with necessary training. I usually focus on retaining those employees who have a sense of ethics and arts. Those who have an aesthetic sense are usually easily motivated than others.
As for my own motivation I keep on working and getting inspired from various things. Travelling is the best thing that motivates me. It is what keeps me going and motivates me to do what I love.
What are the few things clients need to keep in mind when selecting the decor and color schemes?
When people come 5to me they usually have certain preconceived notions. They let me know what they want and how they want it. After listening to them and their view I tell them what I think would look the best and help them visualize it as it would look on the day. When helping them with color selection I make sure they can visualize the color palettes. Since I mostly use pastels, I recommend them to use colors from that palette; the only bright color that I use is red. Most of the time my clients leave it up to me, unless they have any particular theme in mind. This does put a lot of pressure on me, as I have to give my 100 percent, and having happy clients is my achievement.
Which is the most favorite wedding that QYT has catered to?
Hands down it would have to be the Bajwa wedding in Rawalpindi. It was an amazing event, and I felt honored and very special having been chosen to manage the event. It was a proud moment for me.
Any message for the upcoming talented individuals of your field?
New talent should be encouraged, as they are the future of the industry. They should learn to be inspired by others, rather than simply copying work of others. You should use your own creativity, and do not copy others.