My saving grace...17hats!

People always told me it was bad to grow you business too fast. I had no idea what that meant! How can it be bad to grow your business really fast?! Well after drowning in paperwork and using archaic systems that were impossible to stay up to date with I started doing some research. Should I hire a full time account? I definitely couldn't afford that...! I often find myself researching tools for photographers since they have such a supportive and progressive community. My website is hosted by Showit (for photographers) so through one of their Facebook groups I found someone else researching the same thing. I started to stalk the post that had nearly 100 comments and came across 17hats. 17hats is awesome. Below are my favorite things to use it for!!


I have the ability to organize all of our clients on ONE page. When new leads come in, it's so easy for me to log into the database and see if we are available. Having one calendar for Tricia and one calendar for me was making me cray cray!!

Bride Project Management

For each bride I create a "project" which is their electronic wedding file (those are all the little squares you see in the first picture). For each wedding I have the ability to do all these awesome functions! Hallelujah!

Electronic Contracts and Invoices

Words cannot express how much I LOVE having an electronic contract. Having to wait for our old contracts to arrive via snail mail or having to print them to sign and return was time consuming. Having templates we can send at the click of a button is so easy and fresh. I also love that we can put due dates on everything. I have our contract templates set for brides just enter their wedding information and boom! They sign at the bottom and our countersignature is already on it when it goes out.

  Templates galore!

I have templates set up for everything- contracts, invoices, questionnaires, etc. You have the ability for the software to pull client names, dates, project name, etc so you never have to change them!


Invoicing was the biggest pain for me. I dreaded it and made mistakes that lost us money. So wait, I was spending more time AND losing money...ain't no body got time for that! 17hats has created the easiest invoice system where you can add tax (if applicable to your business) and break payments up into a payment schedule. Sometimes a bride will email Tricia asking for their balance and the process was just so time consuming for her to ask me and have to wait for me to pull it up on excel on my computer, ugh! Having one web based program we can both log into at any moment is the!!

I'm sure there are many other things I can do to utilize this system, but the little ways I'm using it now have been saving me SO much time and MONEY. Time is money baby!

I highly recommend this to all small business owners! Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about this system! I'm only sharing the little bit of info I know about it ;)

Till next time, happy planning! Cheers!!

Meet the editor: Hey y’all! I’m Ashlee, the founder of Ashlee Virginia Events, a Virginia based Special Event and Wedding Planning firm. I just moved into my dream house in Warrenton, VA with my husband and fur babies (two dogs, a horse, and donkey)! When I’m not planning events you can find me riding my horse or tasting wine at a local vineyard. I love all things Southern, Kate Spade, and big costume jewelry. Cheers!