If you’re anything like us, you’ve probably been thinking about your dream wedding long before you got engaged (OK, long before you started dating…), but now that the time has come to start planning, you’re realising quickly that it’s a LOT harder than expected.
You’re buried in checklists and surrounded by big decisions that will impact your wedding day, so it may be time to get some professional help from a wedding planner. If you’re thinking of hiring a wedding planner to pull together your big day, here’s a basic ‘how-to’ on finding your perfect planner!
What Service Do I Need?
Think about exactly what you’d expect your planner to manage, because you can hire someone to manage the entire event, or just certain bits and pieces that you’re overwhelmed by.
A full-service planner is someone who assists with everything you can possible think of, including vendor management and negotiation and day-of coordination. If you’re having a large or complex wedding, this might be the best option for you.
Another option is to hire a planner to assist with a specific task, like event design or styling. If your venue needs a lot of decoration to achieve the look you want, this is an ideal choice.
As we all know, no matter how much planning you do things will always go wrong on the big day and if you don’t want the stress of dealing with issues, it might be a good idea to hire a planner to do on-the-day management. This generally comes with a once-off fee for their assistance on the day and can save you a whole lot of drama and tears!
What’s Your Vision?
Organise a date night with your fiancé to discuss what you’re both looking for on the wedding day. Talk about your dream venue, colour schemes and entertainment and jot these down to take to your planner. Finding out what style and atmosphere you’re going for will help when deciding which planner to opt for, because like your wedding day, each planner has their own look and feel.
Interview questions that you ask:
Hiring a wedding planner is like hiring an employee for your company, so make sure you get the right candidate for your ‘job’. Ask the appropriate questions at your interview to make sure you are getting the right person.
You need to try and get to know them by asking them questions such as what made them become a wedding planner and how long they have been in the business. However, don’t just base your opinion on the year of experience they have as some top wedding planners are great at what they do, but only started planning a year ago!
Ask whether they have preffered vendors and if they’re happy to work with a vendor that you like, or they’re contracted to specific suppliers.
Ask how they handle issues on your wedding day and whether they’ll manage any problems, or if they expect you to.
Once you have made a decision, you need to check exactly what costs are included in the price you have settled on; this will eliminate any hidden surprises when you receive the final invoice.
Dig up Some Dirt!
Remember that planning your wedding is a journey and not a destination, so having a good wedding planner will help with having stress-free memories. A good idea is to research your potential planners and read some reviews from previous clients.
If their online presence has a good reputation, when it comes to the interview check their body language. You need to have someone that has our full attention and values you as a bride.
Can You Customise?
Just because you have your own wedding vision does not mean it will suit your wedding planner. Try to listen to what they have to say and think outside the box with some decisions. At the end of the day, they’re the experts and can often have some great suggestions to make your big day even better!
If you are having a Jewish or a Muslim wedding, it might be a good idea to hire a planner who has experience in this type of cultural or religious wedding. If they know what to expect, planning your wedding will be so much easier and they’ll understand your values and needs.
Images from Sarah and Dane’s wedding. Photography by Kim Power.