Thursday, September 28, 2006

The Most Important Day...

I was recently approached with the request to become a 'Wedding Planner'... It's all a part of a large project I've been involved with for the last year.

I've always loved planning parties... I think I'm quite good at it... I enjoy all the details of a great party... The Invitations, The Decorations, The Food... However, it is quite a different game altogether to take on the responsibility of being at the helm of 'The most important day of someone's life'... As an old married woman I know that phrase isn't necessarily true but try to tell a young bride that!

In the very limited spare time I've had lately, I've been doing a bit of research into exactly what is required of 'A Wedding Planner.' Here's just some of what I found out:

Our first duty/responsibility is to the bride and groom. The services and benefits we offer them are:
1) Determine and maintain the parameters of an overall budget
2) Setting and attending appointments with vendors, such as:
a) Ceremony and Reception Site Selection
b) Caterer (If necessary)
c) Bridle Salon dress selections
d) Florist, Decor or Production Company
e) Entertainment (Band or DJ)
f) Musicians for Ceremony
g) Photographer
h) Videographer
I) Baker
j) Officiant
k) Calligrapher
l) Transportation for the wedding day
3) Review all of their contracts for completeness or omissions
4) Provide constant communication with all of the vendors they select
5) Assistance with Invitations, Favors and Accessories
6) Assistance with Save the Date cards/letters
7) Assist with organizing the rehearsal dinner
8) Assist with Accommodations
9) Handle shipping and receiving when they need to send items for the wedding
10) Wedding Day Director Service - Orchestrating and directing their Rehearsal and Ceremony, working side by side with the officiant and other vendors

We are also there to:
- be an efficiency expert and organizer, advising what to do when their plans seem overwhelming
- help them understand costs and services and professional lingo
- work side by side with the other vendors to ensure the day flows smoothly
- be an advocate who works on their behalf to get the best services, quality, and prices
- oversee all the work done by all the vendors they hire, whether my recommendation or not
- anticipate problems before they arise and solve them, most times without the bride and groom even knowing about them
- handle last minute details or errands that need to be taken care of
- prepare schedules and itineraries for the vendors
- be an extra set of hands that can handle all the details for them
- be a mediator to run interference with vendors and family members
- diplomatically explain to a difficult relative or guest why toddlers have not been invited
- be an independent third party who is a detached problem solver and not embroiled in family situations or emotional decisions

Though this list is, in no way, completely inclusive, it does give a very good description of the tasks we take care of as professional wedding coordinators when hired by the bride, groom and/or their parents.

WHOA!!! That's an awful lot to have riding on any one persons shoulders. I believe the venue I'll be working with won't be able to hold a huge amount of guests... And some of the items listed above won't necessarily be a part of what we'll offer but WOW! I really have to spend some time considering whether I'm up to the task!? I can't think of anything I'd love more than to be involved in such joyous occassions... I'm also quite a control freak and that may be a draw-back when it's the bride that really has the say in what she wants... For instance, how would I handle the bride that has incredibly tacky taste?... And those issues with family that are touched on... I'm a rather non-confrontational kind of gal... Will I be able to handle people high on emotion and low on common sense?

This entire project I'm involved in is going to take at least a few years before it's off the ground and running and I'm grateful for that because it's going to give me a lot of time to research this whole idea and determine if I've got what it takes.... For now though, I'm intrigued by the idea of playing a part in 'The most important day of someone's life'.
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