We recently caught up with Jac from Darling Don’t Panic, to talk all things weddings. Jac runs a wedding planning and styling business, operating across New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia. With press recognition across titles such as Hello May, White Mag, GT Bride, Modern Wedding, Wedding Playbook (just to name a few), Darling Don’t Panic have established an unrivalled reputation as a modern-minded, dynamic and creative-to-the-core wedding company that mixes style with substance.

You can read all about our chat with Jac below. Happy reading!

The wedBooker Team xo

Styling: Darling Don’t Panic, Venue: The Farm Yarra Valley, Photography: Anitra Wells Weddings, Florals: Sassafras Flower Design

Jac, please tell us a little about Darling Don’t Panic. 

Originally named Oh Perfect Day, and a gorgeous boutique wedding planning business servicing Geelong and surrounds, I purchased the business from (the very lovely!) Jane Lovejoy in 2017. We rebranded a few months later to “Darling Don’t Panic” and the new brand has just been embraced, everyone loves the new look and feel.

We are still a boutique agency, where clients get a dedicated planner and personalised service, but we also pride ourselves on our ability to deliver utterly stunning, drop dead  gorgeous weddings on budget. Our team of planners across New South Wales and Victoria have an impressive set of skills and experience – but also truly are passionate about creating events that are PERFECT for the couple and what’s important to them.

We love the name ‘Darling Don’t Panic’, what was the inspiration behind it?

What a stoke of luck that was huh? After almost giving myself a migraine trying to think of the perfect name (it’s all been done before in this industry!) I started to think about the names I liked that were cheeky and different. Stop Staring came to mind (a favourite dress shop of mine) and it got me thinking – what do we say to brides to let them know “it’s ok!”, “everything’s sorted!”, “it’s all under control”. I instantly thought of what my husband kept saying to me “Darling, Don’t Panic!” and there it was!

What are couples asking you for at the moment? 

We’re getting a lot of foliage / or white+foliage, boho weddings (in and out of tipis!), marquees and wineries. With myself being based near the Great Ocean Road, I also get requests for beach weddings a a fair bit! 

What do you predict will be trending in terms of wedding styles in 2019? More DIY, Destination, or other?

I think foliage and boho will stay, but it’s getting more unstructured. Food will continue be a “moment” whether an impressive grazing table, share plates or personalised cocktails. I think backyard weddings / farm / marquees will stay big, but people are really wanting something more intentional as an overall style and less DIY looking.

Is there a venue/location that has really stood out to you recently?

I really love a good Tipi on a private property – Tipikata did an amazing one for us a few months back at a private farm in Winchelsea. It was just magical. 

You now service New Caledonia as well! Would you mind telling us a little about weddings you have planned in New Caledonia and what is drawing couples to this destination?

Whilst weddings there is new (this year!), I’m a former travel agent with specialist certification from the Tourism Board in New Caledonia, so I do have a wealth of knowledge when it comes to venues, suppliers, travel, day trips etc. It’s always made sense for us to offer this, but the timing had to be right and there’s been a few trips and many hours researching in french – let me tell you! I’m taking a client over next month for her venue inspection there and it’s just such a wonderful option. It’s cheap to get there, looks like paradise with french sophistication – and it can quite often be cheaper than an Aussie alternative – why not consider it?

If you could give couples just one tip for planning their wedding, what would it be?

Book your planner early, ideally even before the venue, that way he/she can come along and be a part of that negotiation / meeting as well – and flag any logistical issues.

Also, a planner these days really isn’t a huge expense suited to big budget weddings only. Planners will make your budget work harder, get you great deals and save you potential disasters from bad contracts / suppliers and logistical mistakes. A wedding is a big investment, and hiring a planner is a great way to protect it and get the most out of your budget.