I know this may surprise you, but shockingly I don't have all the answers. I can't tell you why sometimes people can be complete assholes, only that it feels fucking fantastic to put them (assholes) in their place. I can't tell you why certain vendors can be just as diva-like as certain brides, only that I've learned to take care of them (or else). But, what I can tell you with absolute certainty is that it is in your best interest to hire a wedding planner. In any capacity...
And yes, we've covered this a million times before. And yes, I sometimes feel like I and say and write this shit and nobody listens, but lately I am starting to think that maybe you really are listening. Because within the pile of emails I receive daily with questions about wedding planning, ceremony ideas, terrible bridesmaids, etc., recently I have been getting quite a few emails about hiring a wedding planner. For instance:
"I have a quick question regarding wedding planners, I know what full coordination service entails; but what does "Wedding Day Coordination" generally include? Also, what does "Consultation only" include? I am considering hiring a planner, but if it is not in my budget, is consulting with a planner then hiring them for the day of a viable option?"
Allow me to break it down for you, but please note that each wedding planner works independently, and what I perceive as wedding day coordination (or month of coordination), another planner may completely differently than me:
Wedding Day Coordination or Month of Coordination:
- Initial consultation
- Two planning meetings
- Primary liaison with all vendors
- Manage final walk-throughs with vendors/venue
- Finalize floor plan layouts
- Rehearsal management
- Coordinate delivery of specialty items, printed materials, and rentals
- Create detailed timeline for entire wedding day schedule
- On-site management for extent of the wedding
I prefer to call it month of coordination because there really is no way for anybody (even the very best like me) to step in on the day of the event without it being a disaster. In order to do it correctly, it requires a least a month of pre-planning. And personally? This is my least favorite way to plan a wedding. Why? Because usually I'm working with vendors I don't know or don't know well, I have little control over the details, and more often than not, I would have done things differently from the start. Stepping in with a month to go is hard, but doable.
Consultation Only? This could mean a ton of things... Here's what it means to me...
- Provide excellent advice
- Vendor matching
- Décor guidance
And the list can go on and on... Bridey, most likely you will pay an hourly rate for consultation just like you would if you hired an accountant, attorney, etc. And again, these rates will differ depending on the planner, and where you are in the country/world. If you want more, bridey? If you want the planner to morph into your actual wedding planner? Well, then you pay for it.
Here's the truth. If you are interested in hiring a wedding planner, then get the full wedding planning package. Let them do it all for you. Okay? Just fucking do it. I don't care how DIY or Type A you are, leave it to the professionals. Because this is what we do day in and day out. This is our job. This is our passion. Bridey, budget this fee into your overall budget from the start. Because a wedding planner's fee? It will be the best money you will spend during your wedding planning experience. Got it?
Want to learn more? Then read our vendor vent... Communication Doesn't Have to Be a Bitch!
Photo cred: Wedding Salon