Post # 1
I am getting married next June (no definite date being set yet) and am debating whether I should get a wedding planner. I currently live in CA but will get married at my home town in Dallas, Texas; therefore, having a local planner would be a big plus but I am not sure how much they cost and if taking a large chunk out of the budget would make sense.
I am Vietnamese (so is FI) and there are only a handful of vendors and caterer that are familiar with the culture so I already have them picked out; therefore, a planner would not add much value in this aspect… I also pretty crafty and am planning to have many DIY projects… However, I was hoping to have help with just the florists and possible lighting/ambiance decor…
Therefore, should I spend $1000-$1500ish(???) for a partial planner or should I just put that money into Flowers and Decor (areas where I was hoping to get some help to reduce costs)… Also, as I have not talked to any planner, I don’t know if that estimate actually make sense….
Please let me know what you think…. I would appreciate some wedding planner suggestion in the Dallas, Fort-worth area as well.
Thanks a bunch!!
Post # 3
I can’t help with getting a wedding planner because I am not using one. I live in Dallas but will be getting married in Fort Worth, and to be honest I’ve done pretty much all of my planning online. I contact all of my vendors via e-mail and will call if I have to (I have limited phone availability during the day).
I’ve found the Russell + Hazel planning worksheets to be really helpful, as well as the Wedding Wire website for finding vendors and keeping track of everything.
There are more florists here than you can shake a stick at; I think we had a short list of 5 florists. We ended up meeting with one and she was so fantastic that we ended up booking with her and cancelled our other consultations.
Most of the DJs here will offer some sort of uplighting package. The one we will most likely go with will throw in an uplighting package for free because we were referred to him by our photographer.
The wedding industry definitely *wants* you to feel overwhelmed by planning your own wedding. But you have over a year and can definitely do this on your own. The Wedding Wire checklist can help you stay on track.
If you can visit Dallas a few times before you get married, you can try to cluster your vendor appointments around your visits.
Post # 4
@Steqpham: Are you going to be visiting Texas at all? I planned my wedding in Wisconsin from Ohio and we visited about 5 times during that time. I probably could have done it with just 1 or 2 visits though. If you already have most of your vendors I don’t think a planner is really worth it. I would suggest just looking at a day of coordinator.
Post # 5
Thanks so much for the quick replies! Yes I am planning to visit Texas once or twice before the wedding (not too many times since I can’t spend too many vacation days.
@Anise: How wonderful that you dealt with it all by yourself… Do you have tips on keeping communicating with vendors? How often do you check back with them and what do I need to pay attention to? My biggest fear is if we were only talk about the details, I will not see it all comes together and end up being disappointed on the actual products…
@MrsBeck: A day-of coordinator would be a nice option as well. DO you know how much they charge? Will they help me check on the vendors as the wedding day approaches?
<3 thanks Bees!
Post # 6
@Steqpham: I only check back with my vendors if I actually have something to say or schedule with them. I think if you follow a wedding planning checklist you will have no problem putting something together wholistically.
Also, there are quite a few venues that provide day of coordination. So I would wait to hire one only if needed.
At this point, you should be getting ideas together for the kind of wedding you and your FI want, how you want things to feel, and the size of your party. That will make other decisions like your dress and decor much easier.
For example, it was really important to FI that we have a chapel wedding (for what it’s worth I really wanted a garden wedding for the longest time). We both wanted an attached reception space, and we wanted to keep the party small (initially 50 guests, although it’s more like 75 now). These big decisions helped us eliminate a LOT of wedding venues that were simply too big for our party or couldn’t accommodate our reception. As a bonus, I was able to find a nice chapel that also has a courtyard with garden.
Once you have the venue and feel for the kind of wedding you want to host (we are going for a classy, timeless feel, semi-formal), then things like the kind of gown that fits your space, and the kind of invitations you will need become much easier. The chapel we are getting married in is not that big; a huge billowy ballgown with a dramatic train just wouldn’t work very well!
I can’t say that these are strict rules, because this is the first (and only) wedding that I will plan, but it makes sense to me and I think would be supported by blogs like A Practical Wedding.
I hope all this helps, and have fun planning your wedding!
Post # 7
I used Each & Every Detail, located in McKinney. They are SUPER nice and my wedding was amazing. I already had most of my vendors picked out and booked at the time that I hired them, but they helped with finishing up (decorations, mainly), coordinating everything with and communicating with the vendors, making sure everyone understood what I wanted and delivered on it, etc. Plus the day-of services, which I would not have been able to handle my wedding without, lol. Their day-of coordination sounds like mainly what you need, since the package includes a lot of vendor communication, but they can work with you to figure out what you need and customize it. Our lead planner was Joy, who is amazing, and then also at our wedding and some of the meetings was Wendy, who is the owner and also really awesome.
Each & Every Detail
I will note on the venue day-of-coordination that was mentioned above, they usually don’t communicate with your vendors in advance or fix any problems that may occur, or really deal with much outside of what the venue itself does. The wedding planners did things like wring out our bouquets (since they come right from a vase of water!), keep us all on schedule, carry anything we need to be carred, kept track of all of our stuff and put it in the getaway car, etc. All small details that I found really useful because I would never have remembered them otherwise.
Post # 8
I wanted to chime in and point out a few things.
I am a wedding planner and whether or not I’ve been hired for full planning and design or just day of coordination everyone should at least consider hiring a planner based on the services that you’re looking for.
I’ve worked with some of the most amazing brides who’ve booked all of their vendors and dotted all their i’s and crossed all their t’s but on the day of you’re wedding are you expecting to be any less than the bride? A day of coordinator is the person who sets up, makes sure that every vendor has arrived on time, gives them last minute changes per the brides or grooms request, makes your guests feel like there is a plan and everything is running on schedule, and serves as your personal go-to person for everything —EVERYTHING. Let me go back to the management of your vendors for a sec….each vendor WILL have a handful of questions as soon as they arrive and it’s a doc’s job to answer each and every one of them along with plan out when each will eat during the reception….do you really plan on doing that on your wedding day?! The answer should be NOOOOOOO.
Honestly, there is only so much planning that you can do until you HAVE to let go and on your wedding day be the bride. I will be designing and planning my own wedding but you bet your behind I plan on hiring a day of coordinator so that I can actually enjoy my day.
Post # 9
@distracts: EXACTLY venue coordinators are ONLY responsible for their venue not the management of YOUR vendors. If you’re really lucky you may get someone who will go above and beyond to help you but keep in mind it’s not their job so vendors will be coming up to you all night asking a million and one questions.
Post # 10
@Steqpham: We’re using Christine & Rachel at Best Day Ever Events and they’ve been amazing (and they’re actually both from California originally so that’s kind of funny). But they always reply to me within 24 hours, have helped me research all my vendors and are super affordable too. Our full service planning was only $1,000. If you’re still looking I’d highly recommend them.