Some couples need a wedding planner to help them from the beginning—to figure out all the details and assist them throughout the entire process. Some couples choose to plan the wedding themselves. Regardless, it’s important to think practically about what happens on the day itself. Who is responsible for all of your plans coming together?
Before I was a wedding planner, I planned my own wedding. I’m type-A and organized, so I didn’t think I needed help. Then, our wedding day rolls around, and I am at the reception venue early in the morning arranging uplights and delivering the flowers and cake that I made (yes, I made my wedding cake and don’t recommend taking that on!). I also stayed up all hours of the night for about five days leading up to the wedding to complete all these projects and then some. I should have been soaking in the excitement and spending time with family and friends, but I took on too many responsibilities, which left me feeling overwhelmed and crunched for time. All of that could have been avoided if I had relinquished control and prioritized and budgeted for a wedding coordinator.
My heart hurts for couples that feel increasingly overwhelmed as the wedding day approaches because they have taken on too many responsibilities. Yes, you are capable of handling them. But, you have to ask yourself, “Do I want to be responsible for these things on my wedding day?”
Here’s the truth about weddings, big or small—something will go wrong, even with the best laid plans. Who is going to troubleshoot and problem solve on your wedding day? Unless you have hired someone, it is most likely going to be your mom, your sibling, your best friend, or you. If someone else is not responsible for being “on call” on your wedding day, people will call you when a problem arises.
On a wedding I coordinated, the cake was delivered and left in front of a window for too long on a hot day. Not long after I arrived, the icing on the top tier of the cake began to pull away from the cake and slide off like an avalanche in slow motion. The cake was delivered from a bakery two hours away, so I could not get the staff back to the venue before the reception. I was able to work with catering staff, who were at the venue and had the proper tools, to smooth some icing back on the top tier and decorate it with flowers so that the missing icing would hardly be obvious. Was it perfect? No. Did the bride or groom ever notice? If they did, they never told me.
What I’ve learned from being a wedding planner is that brides and grooms are emotionally attached to wedding details. It’s personal for them. Wedding planners are a step removed. Of course I care about my clients and want them to have the wedding day they’ve dreamed of, but when there is a hiccup, I start thinking about logistics and plan “B.” I’m not reacting emotionally to the situation. I can’t imagine the pressure my bride would have felt if she would have been responsible for figuring out how to fix the messed up cake herself.