Friday, May 28, 2010

Tips for the Bride: Wedding Planners

Do you ever wonder what you'll be like as a bride-to-be or are you currently engaged and starting to worry if the crazy will set in as your day approaches? You may be telling yourself that, when the time comes, you will be the bride to throw care to the wind and just go with the flow. If that is the case, I am telling you now, that is just simply not true.

You may consider yourself to be a rather sane and level headed person, but when it comes down to it, will you care if your flowers are not the right shade of orange, your napkins are folded incorrectly, or, god forbid they put your floating candles in the water upside down??? YES, YES, and YES!! Read below to get the answer to a question a lot of ultra busy brides are asking themselves,
"Should I hire a wedding planner?"

PROS - What a wedding planner can bring to the table:

1. Experience: There is nothing better than someone who has been through a situation, who knows how things should work, and who can anticipate disaster at any corner! Experience is key to planning any party and especially a wedding. Unless you've planned multiple weddings or know what you're doing, things can get real tricky, real fast.

2. A Voice: This person can be your voice and speak up for you when you cannot be there. It is crucial to have someone who knows and understands exactly what it is you are dreaming of and can execute plans accordingly. You won't be present at every second and will be occupied with other tasks, so you'll want someone there that you can trust to take the reins in your absence.

3. Stress Relief: Do you really want to be worrying about what your groom will wear, how to hang the 50+ paper lanterns, and where your cake toppers ran off to? Certainly not! Now, there are some things that are uncontrollable and nothing ever goes according to plan, but, you will be more at ease knowing that you have someone who is experienced and completely dedicated to making sure things run as smoothly as possible.

4. Flow and Organization: This is incredibly important to the event. An organized event planner can help make sure that your event has consistent flow and keep track of the timeline. They will help you stay focused and make sure you are exactly where you need to be when you need to be there, which can be a blessing as we're guessing a watch and/or cell phone won't really go well with your outfit...

5. Damage Control: The flowers don't arrive on time, the cake falls apart, your pumpkin martinis are maybe not going over so well with your guests, and, to top it off, your dress rips and someone stole the sewing kit from the bathroom! Now, you have enough going on to have to worry about how to remedy these let someone else worry about these things for you. A good wedding planner will anticipate problems, diffuse the situation to the best of their ability, and think of creative and helpful solutions to help you enjoy your day despite any little accidents that might happen along the way.

6. Discounts: Yes, we said it correctly - discounts! Wedding planners can help you save money by organizing your expenditures and keeping you on budget. They often have access to special discounts for services, materials, etc. that you would not normally have if planning things for yourself.

Cons - Disadvantages of a wedding planner:

1. COST! This is legitimately the only thing that we can think of that would be a reason to not hire a wedding planner. That and, of course, if your venue already provides a consultant of sorts. But, mainly, it is the cost that deters people from hiring a wedding planner and this can be determined in a few different ways, hourly, a set-fee, or a percentage (sometimes 10-15%!) of the total wedding budget. This can add up quickly and you should carefully weigh your options to determine if you can afford this or not.

So, do we think it's worth it??

Speaking as the former bride (and maid of honor!) of a recent, kind of DIY wedding, ABSOLUTELY!! Though we decided against a wedding planner to save on costs, we realize we really would have paid anything to have been able to relax, have our friends and family kick back, and not have to worry about a thing. In retrospect we loved our wedding, but realized a wedding planner would have made our lives easier, kept us calm, and would have made our wedding day a more pleasant and enjoyable event for all involved.

Happy Planning (or Hiring!)

Jen & Saira

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