Meet Philip Carr

If you’re anything like me, you’ll be constantly saving beautiful images from Instagram and Pinterest feeds for inspiration – especially events! From floral arrangements and  table settings, to centerpieces and favours, you name it, I’ve saved it! Believe me, all my screenshots or saved items on Instagram come in handy (even though my partner may disagree!). I refused to get rid of 16k photos from my last iPhone – but that’s a story for another time. 

With great pleasure, I have had the opportunity to interview Philip Carr . For those who don’t know, Philip Carr is one of Australia’s leading event architects and stylists. You might have heard of a few of his big name clients, ya know President Bill Clinton and the Princess Mary of Denmark? Lets not forget Nelson Mandela’s Birthday – yep, seriously! Surely I have to book Philip for my wedding right?

I am still confused weather a tablecloth or placement is more fitting for my basic gal pal lunch at home, but I got some tips from the best in the biz that I can’t wait to share with you all.

Enjoy my interview below.

What made you get into event planning?

I was involved in a catering business with my mother and in those days (1980’s) food + drink was the function. As time went on more and more “demands” were put on a function as people became aware of the overall experience. Lighting, decor, running orders, valet, all moved from catering aspect into the whole event experience as we know it today. So my catering business evolved into an event business.

How do you stay calm if something don’t go to plan?

The running order is an outline of how we want the function to run. We always have contingency plans for issues such as rain, 2nd generators, heavy traffic, heat, flies, sun etc. I often say the running order can also be seen as a guideline for the event.
Sometime speeches go on longer than the client has told us or a dance session goes on longer but that’s what often makes the function work and keeps it organic.

What would be the most proud moment of your career?

When I first immigrated and people didn’t know me and I was doing smaller lower budget parties, an overseas company asked me to do an event overseas with what was then a huge budget. This was the beginning of doing the events I was capable of. Also working for President Mandela was an unbelievable honor and highlight of my career.

I absolutely love throwing a girly lunch home – 5 tips?

  • Girls seem to love champagne at parties. We often use a pink champagne to make it really girly.
    If you have cocktails, don’t make them too strong. Girls that are too drunk are not good for a party.
  • Serve light healthy food that girls feel comfortable to eat in front of their friends, but have something “chocolate and naughty” that they will succumb too as the day goes on.
  • Good looking but also efficient waiters always notches up the look of the party.
  • Lots of seating areas that the girls can mix and mingle and move around the party. Girls don’t want to miss out or be stuck in one place.
  • Great schmoozy music, to keep the mood going.
Roxy Jacenko’s wedding. Image via Blumenthal Photography

Table cloth or place mat?

Placemats keeps party more casual, but tablecloths could end up being more fun!!

To find out more about Philip Carr visit his website here.