Amanda Scarpaci, Event Planner and Interior Designer
Who are some pioneers in the interior design industry that you look up to?
With today’s social media, I feel like I don’t look up to only one specific person or set of people. I follow so many interior designers and event planners on Instagram and at times, the content can be overwhelming. I mean, think about it- if you go on Instagram everyday like me, then there is an overflow of content posted daily. This is because everyone wants to keep their followers engaged constantly; the goal is to never bore them. So needless to say, I’m constantly discovering new pages and people who bring unique designs to the world of events and interiors. Some of the interior designers I love are Kierste Wade (@oldsaltfarm on Instagram), Dovetail Vintage Rentals (@dovetailrentals), Helm & Home (@helmandhome), and Inviting Interiors (@inviting_interiors). Check them out and give them a follow!
How did you get into event planning and interior design?
I went to Montclair State University for Communication and Media Arts. Throughout my years there, I had trouble finding my place within my major. I originally wanted to be a magazine editor, but then I was like, “print is dying. Everything is going to be online articles by the time I get a position in the realm of editing. Anyone can do that.” Then I joined my sorority, Sigma Sigma Sigma, and became their Recruitment Director. I was in charge of a three day formal recruitment where a minimum of 400 girls come out. For a college junior, it was a big deal and a lot of work, but I loved it. There’s nothing quite like seeing your ideas come to life, not to mention them being enjoyed by others. It was then that I knew planning events and coordinating rooms was something that I loved to do.
What project during your career are you most proud of?
For interior decorating wise, I think I am most proud of the first apartment I redecorated. Although it took a while (and a lot of trips to Hobby Lobby), I was determined to get it right. I really felt that I completely opened up the space for the owner, and transformed the room. It gave the whole apartment a new feel, and I was really proud of it! I mean just look at the before and after for the fireplace. (See photos below)
As for event planning, I think I am most proud of the Christening I did with the company I work for, NE Occasion. I have done more formal events with them before, but the Christening was one of my favorites! And of course the birthday brunch I did at Hatch44 Cafe! That was also a lot of fun for me. My favorite part was the mini bouquet favors that I made for everyone. I love a good personal favor, especially if it has to do with flowers!
How do you keep up with industry changes?
The only way I like to keep up with the industry changes are by constantly checking Instagram, like I talked about earlier. It’s the fastest and most accurate way to see what becomes popular that season, or to see the latest ways to decorate a tabletop. For example, I follow Styled Shoots Across America on Instagram, and they are a great business to follow because they travel all over the world to collaborate with event planners, photographers, venues, videographers, and florists. I think they do a fantastic job of keeping up with trends, yet still showcasing them in a unique way. And that’s the other thing: it’s one thing to know what’s popular at the time, but no one wants to see the same kind of event that so many others have done. It’s important to take things as inspiration, but always add your own flare into it. That’s one of my top concerns when it comes to my work.
Where do you draw your creative inspiration from?
I draw my creative inspiration from the things that make up my own personal style. You may be like duh, so does everyone else but that’s honestly what I do. I choose things for events that are light, chic, and earthy. I love greenery and light decor. I love venues with a lot of windows and an outdoor seating of some sort. I love rooms with lots of books and shelving. Places and things that make you feel magical. That’s just my style and with that comes inspiration for my work.
What are some of the hardest obstacles you face as an entrepreneur?
The hardest obstacle I’ve faced as a new entrepreneur has to be getting myself exposure. It’s hard to get people to want to hire you when you’re new, even though I know I’m capable! That’s why I focus so much on my social media presence, because it all comes down to the fact that the majority of people want to be able to look at a photo and be like, “yes, that’s exactly what I want!” and you are expected to recreate it. So I try and share as many things as I can to show people hey, I can make something beautiful, too.
How does culture play into a role for your business endeavors?
Culture plays a huge role for my business endeavors because if you are in the right place for it, then business will come. What I mean is, pretend I was based in New York City. That’s a completely different culture than where I live now in central Jersey. I would be able to charge a lot more for an event there than I would home, because people go there for that experience. There’s a demand for it. And that’s with any event planner, that’s why we’re willing to travel for the job. To be able to travel around and see the world, all while creating beautiful and memorable events? Sign me up.
Apartment Project: Fireplace
Apartment Project: Fireplace