Monday, March 31, 2014

Working with a wedding planner- Wedding in Tuscany

The key to a successful working relationship with your wedding planner is uniting together as an invincible team.

Trust your wedding planner

When you consider the expense of a professional helping with your wedding, and the degree of involvement they have in the details, you can see how important it is to have a level of trust that transcends the emotional ups and downs that are also a part of planning your wedding day.   They will be the go between with your vendors, your venues, and even your bridal party.


Now that you have asked the important first questions, the planners will invariably want to meet with you, and discuss your wedding in greater detail.  Do not book a planner for this appointment unless you are truly interested in hiring them for your wedding.  It will simply waste your time and theirs.  Let them know that you will get back with them as soon as possible if you decide to book them.  Then, take the information you have and narrow down your choices to those who you believe would be a good fit for what you want.  

Trust who you book.  You've done your homework.  Relax, let them do their job. Communicate.  Do not avoid discussing concerns along the way.  If plans may need to be changed tell your planner as soon as you know about the potential for change.  See your planner as your partner, not your slave.  Yes you are paying them, but, you hired them because they know what they're doing and you need that expertise.  Trust them.   

Your wedding planner not only wants your trust, he or she needs it.  There is no way to accomplish what you have set before them if they feel you don't trust them.  Knowing that doesn't make it easy, and often there is a concerned friend or loved one that makes letting go even more difficult.  Whether it be out of love and concern for you or out of their own personal issues with your hiring of a wedding planner, the fact is, no one can disrupt your wedding plans more than this person often does.  If they are being protective they see the planner as an outsider, a stranger, who is not welcome at such a personal event.  If they are acting out of personal issues, they see the planner as an enemy to be defeated.  If you find yourself in this situation it needs to be resolved quickly. The longer the problem goes on the more volatile it becomes.  Your planner should not be put in the position of resolving the conflict, as this isn't usually effective anyway.  You must deal with it yourself.  Allowing them to continue is an open invitation to their questioning the plans, stepping in and changing things, and potentially causing your planner to end your contract.

You hired your planner because you trusted their credentials, or you felt a connection between the two of you, or you liked their handling of other events.  Whatever the reason, you chose them. Now trust your choice and support your planner.  Let your loved ones know that this planner has your trust.


A wedding planner is not a caterer, or a florist, or a dishwasher, but, many are willing and/or able to do those things. The fact is, most wedding planners come from one of the industries involved with event production such as floral design, and can bring that expertise to the table, but, that does not mean your planner in particular has that background.  Read the contract you sign carefully so you know what your planner will provide.  If they do not say they will set up your reception then do not expect that they will roll out tables and chairs and physically set them up.  If the contract states they coordinate set up, that means they can arrange for manual labor to set up tables and chairs.You are not hiring a worker, you are hiring a professional.  You would no sooner expect your dentist to clean your teeth, or your doctor to answer the phones at the reception desk.  

Weddings Cost Money 

The worst thing a bride can say to their planner is that they don't know what their budget is.  That's a red flag to any wedding planner that there probably isn't any budget, and this bride is probably going to expect a miracle.  Most planners will not take on a job without the budget clearly established, after all, how can you plan anything if you have no idea what you are working with by way of resources.  If you need help setting a budget, a planner can help you with that, but, you have to have some idea where the money is coming from.  The budget a planner puts together will either indicate what percentage of your overall budget each item on your wish list will require, or, will tell you a round figure for each item giving you a total ballpark figure for your overall budget based on your plans.  Either way, the finances of your wedding need to be established before you can move forward.  

Once you have decided on your budget and your planner agrees that your plans are realistic for that budget amount, understand that anything you add or change about the plans can and often do cost more money.  The closer you get to your wedding date the more things cost.  It's the simple law of supply and demand.  If you wait til the week of your wedding to hire a vendor or add an item the odds are that addition will likely cost more because the vendor either needs to hire more workers if their existing staff are already booked, or, they have to pay overtime, for whatever reason they have the right to charge more for a last minute booking.  Alternatively, deleting something at the last minute can cost money even though you are not using it.  Floral orders cannot always be cancelled, nor can catering orders always be cancelled.  Food and flowers have an expiration timeline, and if they are already ordered they must be paid for whether they are used or not.  Most florists and caterers have this written clearly into their contract.  Changing venues can also cost you the deposit for cancellation.  Your wedding planner will try to work within your budget, but, prices can change, and that can mean you will either have to come up with more money or change your plans.

In the end, your wedding planner, when chosen carefully, and then trusted and communicated with, will give you the wedding you want at the price you dictate.  

Get in the Trust Tree
If placing complete trust in your planner is difficult for you, remember that s/he has not only your best interests at heart, but his/her professional interests as well. This may be your first trip down the aisle, but an accomplished planner has been involved in countless weddings. Bottom line – make sure you can trust your wedding planner to pull off your event with success, then give them the space to do it. Any good planner or coordinator (I tend to use the words interchangeably) will tell you that their role isn’t to take that control away from you. A good planner will want to work with you, not against you. You are their client, and they want to make sure that they are there for you, so that you can have the most amazing wedding possible; the wedding you’ve always dreamed of. You make the important decisions, and they help stitch it all together.

Like any good relationship, your relationship with your wedding planner, or any wedding vendor, is based on trust. You need to trust them, that they understand your vision and will be able to bring it to life- even if you can’t convey what exactly your vision is in words. You need to trust that they are on your side, and that they are doing what is best for you. Wedding planning is a crazy ride, full of passion and impulsive decision 

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