bout wedding planners
As I talk to brides and their friends I began to realize that very few people really know what wedding planners/coordinators actually do. There were many myths or misunderstandings that I discovered. I wanted to give some clarification to how, what and why I do, what it is, exactly, that I do. Here are the top 5 myths I uncovered:
1.) Wedding Planners take over your wedding and make choices for you.
It is your wedding, first and foremost. A good wedding planner will listen to your desires, help you create a vision, and encourage you to make choices. It is our job to help you find options, advise you if you ask for it and ultimately you (and your fiancé) pick what you want.
2.) Hiring a wedding planner is really expensive and I can’t afford it. Wedding planning is a process, I strive to help my clients make the most of their budget. The earlier on I get involved in the process, the more I can prevent mistakes and assist them in understanding how certain decisions impact processing. Often, my services pay for themselves. I save clients more money (through discounts with vendors I recommend, helping them avoid costly mistakes, and providing creative ideas to maximize what they have to spend) than my services cost. If you’re estimating, a planner should cost around 12-15% of your budget, a coordinator should cost around 8-10% of your total budget.
3.) My venue has a coordinator onsite, so I don’t need one.
Most venues have a point of contact for vendors the day of your wedding, their titles include: event manager, event coordinator, wedding coordinator, wedding director, event director, etc. This person is who will provide on-site info the day of the wedding to your vendors or notify you if something goes wrong. He/She will not have any contact with your vendors before the wedding, his/her job is to make sure of things like: the buffet opening on time, vendors cleaning up and leaving by the time breakdown is over. A wedding coordinator that you hire personally provides a completely different level of service. More than 50% of our work is done before the wedding day. We work hard to be proactive and communicate with all your vendors in advance, our work is preventative. That way there are no emergencies or stressors the day of the wedding.
4.) If I hire a wedding planner, she will probably talk me into things that increase my budget.
I pride myself on helping my brides and grooms get the absolute most for their money. I kinda feel like the TJ Maxx of wedding planning. There are tons of creative ways to trim the fat and inexpensive ways to Wow! Your guests. When planning a wedding we start together at the beginning. We talk numbers at the beginning, create a detailed budget and use they to guide your decisions. It’s okay to over-spend in one area, if you’re willing to skimp in another area. And going over-budget is a conscious choice, not a surprise mistake.
5.) But, I’m a planner, so I don’t need to pay anyone to help me with my wedding.
No matter how organized and clear you are on what want your wedding to be, the day of the wedding you will want to be the guest of honor. Not a wedding coordinator. Even if everything goes smoothly, you will want someone else (who is not your mother, sister or best friend) to be there to handle any mishaps. Even though I had been planning and coordinating weddings for 7 years by the time I got married, I hired a “day of” coordinator. I knew how many details there were to attend to and I didn’t want to be the person responsible for facilitating them. It was great decision and I now I have positive memories of my wedding day and enjoying all the friends and family that came to be a part of it, not regrets about stress and distraction.