It is my firm belief that every wedding should have a wedding planner (or coordinator, at the very least). This isn't just because I am a wedding planner and want you to spend more money on your day (I actually don't, I believe you should be stress free both emotionally AND financially), but because I truly believe that you should be relaxing and enjoying your day - not stressing about the details (or stressing out your bridal party or family)! And, a wedding planner typically pays for themselves by helping to negotiate better rates with other vendors, offering more cost-effective solutions, and saving you tons of time!
Photography by Courtney Taylor Bowles Photography
When you start planning a wedding, you immediately think of the dress, the flowers, the photos - but not necessarily all the little details. Without sharing a full wedding day timeline with you, I want to walk you through what my AFTERNOON on your wedding day looks like:
2 p.m.: Arrive at least 2-3 hours before your ceremony (sometimes more)
2 p.m. - 3 p.m.:Set-up all decor with at least one assistant, answer questions from vendors, answer my phone, rearrange a decor idea (or 5) because there's a better way to display it, take pictures, send to you and make sure you're doing well!
3 p.m.: Check in with every vendor, provide payment if necessary, answer questions, make last minute decisions about set-up or changes that have been made.
3 p.m.: Make sure the bridal and groom suites are ready for you to arrive!
3:15 p.m.: Greet you when you arrive and make sure you have everything!
3:20 p.m.: Collect your detail items to give to the photographer. Give everyone timeline reminders!
3:30 p.m.: Continue to set-up, now that the spaces are mostly staged with tables and chairs.
3:40 p.m.: Make sure the bridesmaids and groomsmen are getting dressed, if not already!
3:50 p.m.: Discuss photo/video locations with the photographer/videographer, review the timeline
4 p.m.: Make sure you're getting into your dress!
4 p.m.: Answer questions from all vendors, make a couple of needed last minute changes
4 p.m.: Distribute flowers, pin all boutonnieres and corsages and make sure all arrangements are accounted for!
4:05 p.m.: Review the cues with the DJ or ceremony musicians for the ceremony.
4:15 p.m.: Double check the layouts, table numbers (and number of chairs at each table).
4:20 p.m.: Talk to the officiant, make sure he gets mic'd, and knows his cues.
4:30 p.m.: Set out your escort card display, making sure it's all in order.
4:30 p.m.: Check all the set-up one last time, make any adjustments if needed.
4:30 p.m.: Ceremony sound check!
4:45 p.m.: Guide guests to the correct location for the ceremony, answer questions
4:50 p.m.: Track down Aunt Emily who still needs her corsage (and retrieve the corsage, which is probably still with the rest of the boxes that the flowers came in, in the bridal suite)
4:55 p.m.: Line up the bridal party for the ceremony! Give all last minute reminders about cues, where to stand, how to hold the bouquet, where to walk back to...
5 p.m.: Cue the processional! Collect gum that the groomsmen are still chewing, or carry your train to the aisle (don't worry, I wouldn't be catching gum and THEN carrying your train!)
This is just a sample of what an afternoon might look like – and it’s all within only 3 hours (with most of it happening in the last hour!). I usually will start with décor so I can make sure we have everything we need, and then leave my assistant or team to finish the set-up and décor while I meet with each vendor, answer questions, and help with those logistics! It’s definitely not a one person job, and it’s something you shouldn’t stress your family out! Let a professional handle your logistics, and trust that they understand your vision and will execute it!
Think of a wedding planner as an insurance policy - you’ve finalized your plans, hired a whole team of vendors to make sure everything is as you’ve wanted, now you need someone to execute it! Once you’ve done all that planning, you need to trust that a professional will manage it for you. I also believe that you should do your research and hire someone that you mesh well with. You need to really be able to trust your wedding planner! Whether it’s me or someone else, make sure you’re protecting your big day!