You’re getting married. Everyone wants to help, everyone has an opinion, things are becoming overwhelming and you just want to run away. And you are just getting started! That wasn’t what you were dreaming about when you first got engaged, was it? DIY Weddings! It all sounds so easy and dreamy, maybe a little confusing but still fun. Now I am not saying that this happens all the time to every bride but I do expect you will experience some ups and downs over the next several months as you plan out your wedding.
Do-it-Yourself (DIY) will never go out of fashion; it’s everywhere these days and that is not necessarily a bad thing. But just because you can DIY your wedding doesn’t always mean that you should. There are some areas that you can handle and others that should be done by a pro. Even if you’re the biggest control freak going, you’re going to need to delegate on your big day.
Here are nine things that a professional wedding planner or coach can do for you that DIY weddings can’t:
OFFER A FOUNT OF KNOWLEDGE, SUGGESTIONS, AND CREDIBLE ADVICE
Wedding planners and coaches plan weddings. It’s what we do. We do lots of them, whereas I expect this is your first one. Even if it is not, there is a good chance you don’t know your way around the wedding industry like we do. So why go into something that you’ve never done before or have had minimal exposure to when someone who has buckets of experience can guide you every step of the way? Doesn’t that make you feel better already? We are also the unbiased voice in matters that matter, keeping emotions in check and taking the stress from family members who so want to help but soon find out they are in over their heads and end up passing that anxiety over to you.
SHARE THEIR KNOWLEDGE OF VENDORS IN THE WEDDING INDUSTRY
I imagine your support team — mom, bridal party, friends— all have suggestions as to who to use as various vendors. They know a good photographer or a fabulous florist but do they have a working knowledge of them? (Unless they work in the industry, and then by all means use that!) But if not, choose wisely. Having a planner means we can help you in choosing your vendors, and the relationships we have built over the years will most certainly help. We can remove a lot of the leg work and keep you within your budget. Because being on budget is always top of mind (or should be!).
SAVINGS VERSUS SPENDING: BUDGETS AND DIY WEDDINGS
Speaking of budgets, everyone has one whether it’s large or small. I have helped brides with budgets of $10,000 and up. Some of my brides have gone over budget because they had made mistakes in the planning process and ended up having to spend more because something didn’t go the way they expected. They didn’t know what questions to ask or too afraid to question the expert. As a coach, I can work with you to determine what’s more important for you to spend your money on and what isn’t. I think you will be surprised how we can actually save you money and still get what you want!
Wedding coaches and planners tend to be excellent mediators. For example I had an older bride who was getting married for the first time but her mother seemed to think she was still a young girl; the mother wanted things to be her way or had very strong opinions about her daughter’s choices. I was constantly working with them both to see what the other thought and getting them to work it out. Sometimes it takes someone who isn’t emotionally involved in the wedding planning to make sense of things. Do you have some issues that you wish you could get another opinion on? A Wedding Coach can be a referee during the planning process and a planner can do so on the wedding day. Both can focus on making everyone happy — especially the bride and groom.
LITTLE THINGS HAPPEN!
It doesn’t matter how much planning, care and attention you use along the way to the wedding day, things can and do go wrong. But do you want to deal with it when you already have enough; with out of town guests arriving, doubling checking the seating chart, hair and nail appointments? Sometimes the things that happen are just part of life and they can’t be helped — human error, traffic tie ups, weather mishaps. A planner can handle these things, and you don’t even have to know! Does that make you breathe easier?
I once had a situation where the photographer, due to a personal crisis, totally forgot the day of the wedding. As I knew where he lived I was able to find him and get him to the church just as the bride was arriving. Because of my relationship with him, I was able to handle the situation without stressing out the bride.
A WEDDING PLANNER IS A MINI YOU
My wish at every wedding is to see everyone having a good time; smiles all around! My job is to ensure that happens by doing my job. I’m there to make sure that all you wanted to happen happens the way you envisioned. I am not there to mix and mingle with friends and family (even though I do let guests know I am there to help). That is what you and your groom, parents, and friends deserve to be able to do, right? I’ve heard so many stories from brides who didn’t have planners, saying that they spent their whole wedding dealing with issues and didn’t even get to enjoy the night. Is that what you want?
As I mentioned earlier, I’m sure you have people who want to handle everything for you, but it will take away from their enjoying the day as well. You will be happier if you can look over and see the relaxed smiles on your mom’s and friends’ faces because they are able to mix & mingle, dance & enjoy themselves.
MAKING SURE THE WEDDING GETS SET UP CORRECTLY
I have talked to a number of brides who feel that as long as they have someone to help with the décor the day of the wedding, they can handle everything else. Well it certainly does take a bit of the weight off but there are still numerous things that need to be dealt with prior to walking down the aisle. DIY Weddings still require you to answer these and other questions:
Who is (correctly) placing boutonnières and corsages on ushers, parents, grandparents?
Do you have someone to answer guests’ questions?
Who is working with the musicians for timing, the MC and DJ need answers … the list can go on.
They are little things but they are all pieces that go into the puzzle of your wedding day. You need to concentrate on getting yourself and your bridal party ready. There is no time for anything else.
Wedding planners can easily handle all the pieces because that is our job. We don’t have to worry about looking gorgeous for the day — that’s your job!
TIMING AND LOGISTICS OF THE DAY’S EVENTS
There are a lot of timing issues that need to be dealt with for a wedding ceremony to go off smoothly. As a bride you need to have someone not involved in the processional to manage the timeline of getting everyone down the aisle. Here is an example of what I do to get the ceremony started: make sure photographer and videographer are in place, have everyone lined up and ready to walk down the aisle, cue the officiant that we are ready, hold back any late guests, signal the musicians to change the song for the bridesmaid’s processional and bride’s entrance, and assist any little people who might need encouragement getting down the aisle.
The same goes for the reception. Working with the caterer, MC, photographer, DJ — they all need to work together. Having someone who knows the schedule and how to execute it seamlessly makes a wedding run smoothly. A wedding planner can do that for you so that your family and friends don’t have to. (This isn’t to say that your friends and family can’t help plan your wedding, but I do recommend that they do so in conjunction with a wedding planner or coach. I don’t want — and I don’t think you do either — the most important people at the wedding missing out because they were helping!)
NOT EMOTIONALLY ATTACHED
Have you noticed that weddings can sometimes bring out the worst in people? Certainly emotions are high and close to the surface. You won’t hurt my feelings if you tell me that you hate or dislike something, but the same cannot always be said for family or friends. Remember, little things happen. Your wedding planner can handle it so that your mom (and you!) can enjoy the day. I remember a wedding not long ago where the couple was worried about an uninvited family member showing up. I was able to assure them I could handle it and I did — there was no scene. Everyone has opinions about how a wedding should go! I can be there to help you deal with it, with as little stress as possible.
Though I no longer do the hands-on work of a day-of wedding planner, as a coach I am there to help and guide you to get to that point. Even DIY Weddings (and maybe more so) can benefit greatly from a coach. Consider treating yourself.
Did you have or are you hiring a wedding planner for your wedding? If so, how have they helped to reduce your wedding day stress? Leave a comment below!
Still have questions or concerns? Not sure what exactly a Wedding Coach is? Click here to visit my website for answers and my contact info. I would be more than happy to help you in anyway.
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