Tips and Tricks: Band-aid Solutions for the Event Planner

In the 2001 movie The Wedding Planner, we watch JLo with her calm professional demeanour and her bag of tricks (or belt in this case) solve multiple last minute crises seconds before the wedding ceremony is about to begin. While not all event professionals have an item to fix every problem underneath their suit jacket, I have learned about a few essential items to have stocked just in case.

At a minimum one should always have dark grey or black duct tape (insert chuckle here). While this may seem like an odd solution to most, I have used duct tape to solve many problems over the years. It is great for taping down audio-visual wires or for posting signs to podiums and walls. The more unusual uses for duct tape that I have seen in action are taping the hem of a pant leg that was just stepped on and pulled out, placing the tape on the back side of socks that have a hole to make it less noticeable and using duct tape as a lint roller (something that I have been frequently known to do—it works like a charm!).

The next item on my list would be sandpaper. It can be used in a pinch as an emery board, to remove fuzzy pills on a sweater, to open a stuck jar, but more often to sharpen dull scissors (after trimming your flower centerpieces) and also to add a little “wear” to the bottom of a new pair of shoes. If your venue isn’t carpeted, a little scuff on those new stilettos can prevent a slip and fall!

Fishing line also has its many uses. It is excellent for hanging items as it is fairly strong and not very visible. Fishing line can also be used to sew heavy material (like a wedding dress train) with minimal visual impact. My favourite however is for those of us who wear glasses. It could be minutes before your meeting presentation is scheduled to start when the presenter loses the screw that holds the lenses in his/her glasses in place. Fishing line will fit through the small hole and is strong enough to hold the frame together until the end of the presentation when a visit to the repair shop can be made.

When time is of the essence and “the show must go on,” it is always helpful to have a band-aid solution at the ready.  I love being an event professional because each day is different with new clients, events, problems to solve and the need to continuously be thinking outside the box.

What are your favourite tried and tested band-aid solutions?


Lauren Patterson

Lauren Patterson is the Facility Rentals Manager at the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21. She joined the Pier 21 Society in 2003 and has watched the organization evolve into a national museum. Lauren is also the President of the Meeting Professionals International (MPI) Atlantic Canada Chapter Board of Directors and a travel and planning guru.