Post # 1
So I posted a few months ago that I was incredibly excited that I found a DOC who fit our wedding/budget/vision perfectly and that a huge weight had been lifted off of my shoulders. I didn’t/don’t absolutely need a DOC, mind you, but I thought it would be a huge stress reliever (and part of me still does).
Now I have a friend from high school who wants to step in as DOC and help decorate, arrange flowers, move chairs from inside to outside, etc. This is the majority of what I wanted a DOC for (that, and for a timeline/moving things along in an orderly manner/cueing music). She offered to do it for free (which I am not really factoring in, because we will pay her anyway).
So, Bees, what would you do? My fiance is totally on-board either way, so I’m just as confused as ever.
FYI: The wedding is super budget and DIY, if that helps sway you either way.
Post # 3
If your friend from hs wants to help out and all you are really concerned about is the setup stuff you mentioned above, then I would just sit down with her have an established timeline that you clear with her (and provide her copies of) and do that instead!
As you mentioned you could probably get away with giving her some cash or a gift instead for her help. 🙂
Post # 4
@jlc3: That’s what I was thinking… we weren’t great friends from high school (I was best friends with her younger sister), so I think we could have a business-enough relationship during the wedding. Especially if there was payment involved.
I guess the thing I’m most freaking out about is that I/she will forget about something and won’t know what to do, whereas the professional knows exactly what to expect.
Post # 5
@jwdesiree: Haha…it’s sort of a toss up. The other thing with payment being involved is that it is treated more seriously as a ‘job’. If you know what I mean. If there is a timeline and lists of what needs to get done, images of table setups, etc then it should be easy peasy for any non- pro to handle I feel.
I think that’s a valid worry – but at the same time, things can go wrong no matter what. Is budget an issue with the original DOC you found? If it’s not, then stick with the original DOC but if it is a concern maybe this friend is a solution to that.
Post # 6
I suggest doing a contract and offering to pay her. Not as much as the pro, but this way you have leverage on her doing a good job. If she is intrested in doing this as a business eventually, you can also say she can use you as a referance.
Like PP said, sit down, have a plan and get her vision of your plan.
Post # 7
- Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry
I had a friend lined up to be my DOC, who ended up having to back out that week due to a family emergency (her Mom was in the hospital.) One of our guests, a friend of my Mom’s stepped in to help with a LOT of things day of (was already coming early to help with flowers the day before), but our card box wasn’t supervised during the ceremony, and money/gift cards were stolen from 3 cards.
So my two cents:
-have a back-up plan. If you go w/ a pro, most likely she has a network of people who she could contact for a last minute fill-in. If I could go back, I would have tried to get someone else to fill in, versus asking a guest to.
Post # 8
@rebwana: DEFINITELY something to think about. I will do what everyone is suggesting and have a sit-down with my friend and ask her who/what her back-up plan will be for that day. Great idea. Thank you.
(And, so sorry to hear about the thefts. Some people are just disgusting.)
Post # 9
- Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry
you’re welcome. Yeah, someone on either the venue or catering staff felt that they needed it more than we did. Grrr!
Post # 11
Hire someone. (What, biased? Just because I make my living as a wedding planner? Gosh, of course not! )
Seriously, though. Here’s why you should pick the pro over the friend.
1. There is a lot more going on behind the scenes than you might realize. I love bringing a new assistant on board. They’re always super excited to work a wedding, but at the end of the night they’re inevitably exhausted and can’t believe how much there was to do! This summer I wore a pedometer and clocked 7 miles of running around at one wedding! It’s definitely more than just flowers and a few chairs.
2. Crazy ish can happen, and you want a pro on your side when it does. I once had a reception manager pull me aside and inform me that people were drinking too much, that it was costing him too much money, and he would be shutting the bar down after dinner. I spent most of the night convincing him to keep it open “just 30 more minutes” and trying desperately to hide the situation from the bride. It was a nightmare, and not the kind of thing you want a friend to have on her shoulders.
3. You’ll have someone to blame if stuff goes wrong! Your champagne flutes never made it to the bar? Your marriage license got misplaced? Your grandma is mad about the seating arrangements? None of this will ruin any friendships if the person responsible is hired help. Plus, if you really REALLY have to, you can sue them. You don’t want to sue a friend.
4. We’re not emotionally involved. We try to stay out of photos, because we know it’s not about us. It’s okay if we have to miss your first dance because there’s some sort of issue in the kitchen. We sincerely love weddings and want your day to be amazing, but we’re able to keep perspective in a way that your buddies may not be. It’s our job to get stuff done rather than get caught up in the magic.