Many brides and grooms wrestle with the question of, “do we need a wedding planner?” Luckily, there is an easy answer here that we love to share. If you are planning a wedding, the answer is yes! As weddings have evolved over the past decade, there’s not an immense amount of information on what role wedding planners play, what value they bring to your day, or if there is any real quantitative impact by not hiring one. We firmly believe the quality of your wedding day can be dependent on whether or not you hired a planner. Planners have the ability to save you money and reduce wedding day stress. But what do they do exactly? Wedding planner Morgan Davis with Morgan Marie Events is sharing all the deets about services provided by planners that may be uncommon knowledge to our wonderful engaged couples. Read on below!
(guest post by Morgan Davis of Morgan Marie Events)
Photos // Seleni Hernandez Photography
1. Review your vendor contracts
As a first-time bride, many don’t realize how many contracts you’ll have to review and sign. The legal jargon alone can be daunting and confusing to decipher on your own. Wedding planners will be able to review these contracts with you and understand the expectations or services being provided. A planner’s expertise allows them to understand what vendors you’ll need to source labor from, how many hours of coverage is best to have for photo/video, and what time the venue will allow vendors in for setup and teardown. These are all behind-the-scenes logistics that build a successful wedding day timeline.
2. Customize a ‘personal items’ list for you
There are a million and one details running through a couple’s mind the week of their wedding. They are excited, nervous and most of the time, overwhelmed with tasks. Your house starts to look like an Amazon warehouse and you begin to forget what items are a wedding day necessity and what items you are wanting to use as additional decor. Most of your rentals and items used to enhance your wedding design will be sourced from your venue or a third-party rental/decor company, but what about your bridal portrait canvas or Waterford toasting flutes? A planner will create a list for you that includes all the personal items needed for your wedding day. For example – guestbook, pens, engagement photos, marriage license, veil, and items your photographer and videographer would like to shoot.
3. Communicate heavily with food and beverage vendors
Not only is catering one of the largest wedding expenses, but it is also one of the most crucial planning elements. Wedding planners are able to appropriately time when dinner should be served, how long it will last, what items should be preset on the guest tables, etc. We also provide the caterer with a detailed list of food modifications or allergies that need to be addressed before the wedding day. This allows your guests to feel comfortable and taken care of. The caterer is also at ease knowing there won’t be any last-minute requests that they can’t accommodate. In the event the timeline is running behind or ahead, food timing is crucial. A planner will communicate this to the catering staff so food can remain warm or they can prepare for an earlier serving time.
4. Create a layout to guide you through assigned seating
Curating a layout and assigned guest seating can be stressful for several reasons.
- How do you know how many tables can fit in a space?
- You’re unsure of how many guests can fit at certain size tables.
- You can’t begin assigning seats until all RSVPs are accounted for. This can mean no earlier than 3-4 weeks before your wedding date.
A planner will have access to online seating programs that allows them to view the venue’s measurements and place the appropriate amount of tables into a space. Also, the planner’s knowledge of table size, how many chairs per table, linen size and expertise of design will build a floor plan that you love and that’s functional. Having a guide walk you through uploading your guest list to an online seating program and physically assigning those guests to seats, will save you an immense amount of time and frustration. This is a wedding planning step that does not allow room for mistakes.
5. Create transportation timelines
Transportation requires an unexpected amount of detail and attention when it comes to planning routes. It takes your planner’s knowledge and experience to integrate the transportation timeline correctly into the master wedding day itinerary. When creating this specific timeline, a planner will consider vehicle capacity, passenger lists, loading and unloading times, travel time from ceremony to reception, and pick up/drop off locations. For example, can a 56 passenger bus drive up this hill, on an unpaved road, to reach the venue? Your planner will send pictures, videos and heavily communicate with the transportation company to account for these crucial details. We enjoy educating the industry on what our role is as a planner and how couples can benefit from hiring a professional. A planner’s job is to provide a variety of services and wear many hats, all for the goal of helping our couples celebrate their best day ever!
Ready to get the wedding planning party started? Connect directly with Houston wedding planner Morgan Marie Events here. Cheers and happy planning!