"I just need Day of Coordination services - I've done all the work - I just need someone to show up and execute it."
There is this myth, this hope, this fantasy that this mythical person can appear the Day of your wedding like your Fairy Godmother and magically know all the extremely complicated logistics and details of your unique wedding. Important details like: how your venue functions, how many linens you rented and what time they are arriving, who is delivering what, how long your ceremony is, what exactly is happening during your ceremony, where to line you up before you walk down the aisle, what kind of flowers you ordered and where to put them, where you want your place cards to go, where your grandmother should sit because she has trouble walking, what your backup rain plan is, etc, etc, etc.
When I was planning my wedding I was working with a ridiculously small amount of money. I wanted this too. I thought, "Why can't someone just show up and do everything? I've done all the work they don't need to do anything. I'm a professional wedding planner!" I'm here to break it to you (gently) that you do need the extra help and you do need it well before your wedding date. You, your partner, and your family are emotionally tied to this day. You will benefit from a 3rd party professional who is looking at your wedding objectively without any emotion. One that starts working on your wedding with enough time to catch any discrepancies, make suggestions, learn about your needs, and guide you. You deserve to be fully present with your loved ones on one of the most memorable days of your life. You deserve to treat yourself to a planner.
Here is why you should invest money in a Month of Planner and stop looking for the Mythical Day of Coordinator Creature:
1. I will meet with you at least a month before your wedding to walkthrough your venue with your vendors.
Why this is important: Whether your planner has worked in your venue 1000 times or 0 times - it is important for us to learn how YOU would like to use the venue. You are unique and have your own taste. We want to know where you want your gift table, at what point you want the champagne toast and exactly where you want your floral arrangements. This is why I always arrange a final walkthrough of your Venue with ALL of your vendors. That way your entire team is all in the same room at the same time to assure we are ALL on the same page. This is a great opportunity to make sure everything you've worked so hard planning and invested in is how you envisioned it.
2. I will meet one on one with you, your partner, and any member of your family who is apart of the planning at least a month before your wedding.
Why this is important: This meeting is critical for me as a planner because I ask you about the TIMELINE of your day. This is where I really get to learn your wedding day. I ask you about what time you would like to start hair and makeup all the way to the end of the wedding day. I ask questions like, what time would you like me to run over to the hotel and drop off your cards & gifts? I help you come up with answers to your logistical questions - ie; how do we get mom and dad from the hotel to the venue earlier than the other guests? How long should we take our first look photos for and where? Can we have some alone time with each other after the ceremony? - Do we have time? When can we eat? Do we have time to eat? This is your moment to ask a professional who has done this 1000 times how to figure out the many puzzles that is your wedding day. What a treat to have enough time to bounce off these questions with someone who has done this many times before!
3. I will create a production timeline and reconfirm details with your vendors.
Why this is important: I start creating your timeline right after our initial meeting a month before your wedding. As the week's progress, I start to flesh this timeline out and add more and more details. This means I have the entire month to email & call your vendors with any questions you or I may have, fine-tune any details, and review all of the contracts you signed with your venue, photographer, florist, etc. Reviewing your contracts is ABSOLUTELY essential by the way- Not only does it help me learn everything I can about your wedding, (how many centerpieces your florist is providing and if it matches up with your banquet tables, if your DJ is bringing microphones or if the venue is providing them, if you have enough linens rented for your tables). I can't tell you how many discrepancies I've caught weeks before the wedding- another reason day of coordination doesn't work in your best interest!
4. I will be there for your Rehearsal the day before your wedding.
Why this is important: You're probably thinking - I don't need help for my rehearsal - it's easy I've been a bridesmaid before I get it. Okurrrrr but have you ever directed a group of 10 plus people? Have you ever directed a group of 10 plus FAMILY members? In 1 hour? (Because that's all your venue usually allows). If you're anything like me, you tend to get EMOTIONAL around your family. They annoy you, they say things that are dumb, they chat and don't pay attention. Have you ever staged a group of people before? Figured out when they have to line up, where they are coming from and where they are going? It sounds easy but it really isn't. I will say- if you're in the theater and you have been a stage manager then you may have an advantage - BUT it's still your wedding day and you should be drinking a glass of champagne and having fun!
I'd also like to speak to the importance of the relationship between your officiant and planner. I always call or meet your officiant whether it's your pastor, dad, or best friend and run through the ceremony with them well before we have the rehearsal. This allows us to catch anything that we may not have thought of or clean up the programming. For instance, I had a couple that wanted all 80 of their guests to each light a candle. This is a beautiful idea, but it's so tricky to get children, older guests, and 80 people to do something like this all at the same time quickly. So- we simplified. We took the idea and scaled it down. 80 candles became the bride and groom lighting 1 candle together. GORGEOUS.
5. I am your personal assistant, advisor, and consultant available for any questions the whole month leading up to your wedding.
Why this is important: I'm a 3rd party, a meditator, a friendly guide as it will, for any concerns or questions you or your family may have. Maybe you still need to secure a vendor for your transportation, or you are having trouble with one of your vendors, or you aren't exactly sure what kind of favors you should offer or whether you should offer any at all. When it comes to your wedding, I am your right-hand partner, your collaborator, your stage manager, director, aid, and teacher.
And couples, please give your mom, your mom's friend, maid of honor, bridal party or any other guest at your wedding the opportunity to have FUN at your wedding. If they are your day of coordinator, they will not be your guest. They will be working, running up and down stairs grabbing the boutonnieres for your groomsmen and answering questions from your caterer the entire night!
You only get married once. You are already making one of the largest financial commitments of your entire life. Why not secure your investment, have a professional help you and truly be present on your wedding day?