I am very thrilled I was able to catch up with my good friend Mr. Preston Bailey, a household name and expert in the Wedding & Events Design World for this interview. We adore his “out-the-box” creativity that has attracted the likes of Royalty, Business Moguls, and endless Celebrities. Preston shares how he got into the business and more…
Our Interview - October 2012
Where did the idea of your business come from?
From a good friend the Interior Designer Vicente Wolf
What’s the most rewarding part of your job?
Getting know my clients and knowing I "get" them.
When you walk/scout a venue, what are the top three things you look for?
a. The color of the walls (best to work off Neutral)
b. Color of the carpet (best if it is not bold)
Name 3 favorite NY outdoor venues and Indoor Venues...
Metropolitan Museum of Art
The St. Regis ballroom
The Plaza ballroom
What inspires you?
The beauty of Mother Nature, I hardly ever get outdoors, except to get to my clients house.
What makes you stand out as the "Go-to" Event Designer out there?
I am not afraid to try something new and different.
What are your top tips to clients?
Be realistic about their budgets.
What advice can you give people who are on the fence about hiring an event/wedding designer?
None. If they decide not to, let's talk after their event. Usually they'll change their minds.
What's your current obsession right now?
I have no obsessions. I find them counter-productive.
What's your motto you learned from your parents or your culture?
Mi casa es su casa, and to Treat your guests like kings and queens
When you aren’t doing this, what are you doing?
I am very active so I am working out or relaxing with friends
Tell us something we don’t know about you or your business?
We like the "cowboy" mentality, to go where no man or woman have gone before.
Preston Bailey was born and raised in the tropical paradise of Panamá. Moving to New York City in 1968, he began his career in the design world as a fashion model at the age of 19.
Ultimately, Preston’s innate talent for design and dramatic sensibilities led him to the event industry. After 30 years in the business, Preston Bailey has become renowned for his gift for completely transforming raw, ordinary spaces into sumptuous, theatrical environments.
Because of Preston’s unique ability to create breathtaking, memorable events, he has developed a client base that includes royalty, socialites, business moguls and celebrities such as Donald Trump, Oprah Winfrey, Joan Rivers, Donna Karan, Liza Minnelli, Laurence Fishburne, Bill Cosby, Matt Lauer, Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones, Uma Thurman, Donny Deustch, Jennifer Hudson and Ivanka Trump, among others.
Adding another dimension to his remarkable portfolio, Preston has been tapped for endorsements, launch events and licensing deals by major brands, including Sandals Resorts, Godiva, Hewlett-Packard, 1-800-Flowers, and more. His art installations have been commissioned to draw in consumers at prominent locations across the globe, such as London’s Covent Garden and Hong Kong’s fashionable Landmark Mall. In addition, he is the author of four best-selling books, Design for Entertaining, Fantasy Weddings, Inspirations, and Celebrations. His newest book, Flowers, hit shelves at the beginning of October 2011.
Most recently, Preston partnered with The Wedding Planning Institute to offer a first-of-its-kind wedding and event planning course that is available at nearly 2,000 accredited colleges and universities in the United State, as well as online.
Preston is also much sought after both as a television guest and public speaker. His numerous national television appearances include The Oprah Winfrey Show, Entertainment Tonight, Access Hollywood, Extra, CBS’s The Early Show, and NBC’s Today Show. He regularly appears in dozens of publications including Town & Country, Vogue, Vanity Fair, Elle Décor, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and New York Post
Preston Bailey working in the
South of France