The Plant Venue Co.

Our next vendor needs no introduction as she is well known in the wedding community – running not only one but THREE different services!

A self proclaimed perfectionist, Lucy started her wedding career back in 2004 in her first Cafe and Patisserie, Vanille, but with what seems like unlimited energy and spark, Lucy is now the owner of The Plant Venue Co., Renegade Kitchen AND The CakeLab.

Lucy is sharing a bit more about her day to day life with us today as well as her thoughts on running a venue, how she juggles it all as well as her plans for world domination 😉 

Hey! Please introduce yourself to the Hooray readers. 
My name is Lucy and I run a venue called The Plant Venue Co. as well as The CakeLab and Renegade Kitchen.

Misha Lee Photography
Conway Photography

Hooray: A women of many talents! Tell us about yourself
Lucy: I’m a Jesus loving, caffeine addicted, work-aholic who’s favourite past times include horse riding, the ocean and car jamming to my favourite tunes of the moment. I run a catering company and an online bespoke cake business on top of The Plant and in between I fit in some food styling…… also I am mum to the most beautiful and witty tween named Esme and a Boston Terrier named Layla!!!

Hooray: Tell us more about how you juggle running The Plant, Renegade Kitchen and The CakeLab.
Lucy: The hustle is real and the rewards are too!!! At any one given time I am juggling numerous balls and it can be tough at times to give everything the level of attention I want to. That said, my three brands have incredible synergy and I am working hard at delivering on my vision and dreams for each, and for them as a collective. Being kind to myself and taking time to take stock and assess progress is so important in maintaining a positive and optimistic outlook. I also have an incredible team that share my passion for the industry and that makes all the difference.

Misha Lee Photography
Dean Maber
Misha Lee Photography
Conway Photography

Hooray: How did you get into the wedding industry?
Lucy: I’m not predominantly in the Wedding Industry, however my work in the wedding industry began with my first wedding cake order at Vanille Cafe & Patisserie in Kloof in 2004.

Hooray: What is it like running a venue?
Lucy: With a history in the restaurant industry, I realised over time that I really love having a space to call home. My heart for my businesses is to create a space that fosters real connections and uplifts people’s spirits. Creating community through service excellence and attention to detail. Running restaurants was a full time gig – 12 hour days, 7 days a week, almost 365 days a year! For me this wasn’t sustainable but I wrestled with how much I loved the energy and vibe that my spaces had and my favourite thing to do was to sit quietly in my empty restaurants and enjoy them. My venue suits my “all in” personality in that I can give my all to an event and then take some time to rest between events. I’ve also been in the industry for 15 years so its great to have a venue that allows me to work with so many industry friends and colleagues and then also be able to curate my own events in collaboration with my other brands. From a logistical perspective running a venue is like owning a home – there is always something that needs doing and my expectations and drive for perfection keep me always looking onwards and upwards!

Misha Lee Photography
Misha Lee Photography

Hooray: What inspires you?
Lucy: LIFE. Surrounding myself with passionate people. A day spent catching up on current trends both locally and internationally to the soundtrack of my favourite or sometimes newly found artists is always a great way to recharge and renew my mind and my inspiration. 

Hooray: Running your own business can be hard, do you have a daily routine?
Lucy: It is tough and routine is what keeps you sane!!! I’m usually up at 4:30am when I’m either running, going to the gym or swimming. Then my morning coffee(s) at my local coffee spot before I head to the office. 

Misha Lee Photography
Misha Lee Photography

Hooray: Tell us about your ideal wedding client.
Lucy: I really love clients that are decisive. This doesn’t always mean they have all the answers, but they have a good handle on their style and budget and are able to make decisions easily.

Hooray: Do you have a favourite wedding to date?
Lucy: I’m not a good person to ask when it comes to favourites…..that said I have loved certain elements of a few different celebrations. Lois & Tanya Boshoff, Rorke and Marika and Keegan and Leonie. To be honest I can find moments in each wedding we’ve hosted that I love and want to share.

Misha Lee Photography
Misha Lee Photography
Derryn Schmidt

Hooray: What do you love most about your job?
Lucy: The opportunity to dive head first into short term projects, be highly creative and to impact people’s lives through the work that I do.

Hooray: Can you describe your style?
Lucy: Minimal and monochrome 

Hooray: The mistake you made that has taught you the most valuable lesson?
Lucy: I have learnt to never under value yourself or your services.

Misha Lee Photography
Haze Film and Photography
Misha Lee Photography

Hooray: What wedding trend are you foreseeing for 2020?
Lucy: Sustainability and authenticity are trends I see gaining huge traction going forward. From sourcing locally grown flowers and foraging wild flowers and dried blooms and greenery to locally and ethically sourced and grown produce for menus. Cakes are following a simpler and more down to earth aesthetic with fresh and edible flowers and interesting flavour combinations being experimented with. Clients are also looking to create a more personalised experience that speaks of them as a couple.

Hooray: Where do you see yourself and your company this time next year?
Lucy: World Domination…. hahahahahaha (evil laugh) For me – some exotic location, my company – full of happy people!

Misha Lee Photography
Conway Photography
Misha Lee Photography

Hooray: If you could be anything else in the wedding industry, what would you be and why?
Lucy: I would be a florist – I love flowers!

Hooray: Do you have any friends in the industry? Tell us who and how they impact you in this beautiful business.
Lucy: I work with so many amazing industry friends!!! 

Hooray: Your favourite way to unwind after a wedding/event?
Lucy: Netflix and chill is my default!
But after a recent knee surgery, I am back up and active! So off days can be spent paddling in the ocean, coffee shop hopping and quiet time with Jesus. If I’m doing an away wedding (either cake or catering) then I try to maximise on the travel by staying over and meandering. One of my big drives is to create a lifestyle that is both inspiring and aligned with the brands we are building, that being nourishing, nurturing and wholesome. The Hospitality industry is all about giving and executing experiences that make dreams come true and in doing that for clients it’s tricky to find the “harmony” (thanks Ashley Knight for that word) required in creating that same lifestyle for ourselves. Grace, kindness and intentional practices help me too regroup after a busy patch.

Misha Lee Photography
Misha Lee Photography
Derryn Schmidt

Hooray: Lastly, tell us about the last time you were really, really proud of a job you completed.
Lucy: A recent shoot I conceptualised for my team and my businesses. The process from inspiration to seeing the final results is just exhilarating!

Some extra deets:
Capacity?
300 seated or up to 500 cocktail style**

Sound Limits?
None!

Closing time?
Default curfew is midnight but we are happy to close later by prior arrangement

**Although the venue has a large seated capacity we have a super clever screening system that allows for smaller intimate events for as little as 50 guests or the entire space can be used to host both a ceremony and reception for up to 150-180 guests**

Lucy, thank you so much for sharing more with us today. We are always in awe of how you do it all, you are one amazing super woman and we cannot wait to see all the magical weddings The Plant is hosting.

If you would like to get in touch with Lucy, click here. 

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