(Closed) Ceremony/Reception Set Up

posted 6 years ago in Logistics
Post # 3
Member
46417 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Friends and family are usually glad to help. They don’t spend as much time as the wedding party getting ready. I really wouldn’t ask the wedding party to help when you can only get into the venue just before the wedding.

If you can’t solicit volunteers, look to your local colleges for some students to hire. They may even have an event planner or hospitality management program. There are lots of mature ( read older) students in those programs also.

If you are organized with a written step by step plan for them, have a copy of the room layout and a sample pic of your centerpieces, they will do just fine. Make sure they have the phone number of someone else besides you, to contact in case they have prolems.

Post # 4
Member
190 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

I am actually in the same boat! I interviewed an ‘event sylist’ which is technically cheaper than a DOC.  Still $350 for set up is a bit steep for our ~8k budget…  My Maid/Matron of Honor is going to ask her sister if she would be willing to be our DOC in exchange for a gift and attending the wedding (our food with be delish!).  If you have a friend of a friend or a sibling of a friend that is organized and on pinterest, the odds are you can trust that person.  As long as they are a little more Type A and are willing to get the work done before they join the festivities. 

Post # 5
Member
17 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: May 2013

Depending on how big your wedding is, I would pay for the extra hours of setup if it isnt too steep. It will save you from running around sweating you butt of in a panic. I cant imagine setting up a wedding in two hours. Either way, I would definitely have all of your centerpieces and decor organized and labeled for easy setup. Put everything you need for each table in seperate boxes and include a picture of what it is supposed to look like in each box. Then designate to certain people what their role is. I feel like it would take two hours just to get yourself ready, but maybe thats just me? If you cant pay for the extra hours, I would go with what the above bee said and find a friend of your parents or family that could help be the head in charge.

Post # 7
Member
911 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013 - The Down Town Club, Philadelphia

Even if you can’t afford a professional DOC, you may want to enlist the help of a good friend, not a bridal party member, to act as a “stage manager” for the day.

A Practical Wedding has a spreadsheet for it, and more info: http://apracticalwedding.com/spreadsheets/

How to Stage Manage Your Wedding

You don’t really want to be worried about the timeline and all that, all day long. You will drive yourself crazy!

Post # 8
Member
2084 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

I agree with the comments above enlist someone not in your wedding party but dependable to be the unofficial wedding day coordinator. If you have a dj and or mc they keep a timeline of when different events should occur. Don’t stress over the small times just delegate who should do what and when and leave it to them. . .HTH!

Post # 10
Member
2295 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

I hired a DOC. I have a lot of capable and helpful friends/family, but the wedding is out of town for everyone so I don’t want to ask them to work while they’re there. Plus, I am very particular and want to be able to be somewhat demanding and also have the person be bossy without causing hurt feelings among friends/family.

However, I was able to get her for $300. I’m doing a bit of trade (designing her a new logo and a couple other things), and she’s also quite new to the business so her rates are more affordable.

It includes: 

  • Contract review & contacting other vendors to introduce herself and be the point of contact (although I am very much staying in control)
  • Week before – confirming all arrnagements with vendors
  • Timeline review (she would create it but I really want to do this myself)
  • 3 hours at the rehearsal/rehearsal dinner (we are bringing in catering so she’ll help with that)
  • Arriving at 2:30 at the venue the Day-of to do final setup of centerpieces, aisle runner, a few other DIY projects and making sure all the other vendors have come through
  • Coordination during the wedding/reception
  • Removal at end of the night of gifts, DIY projects we need back, up until midnight

Post # 12
Member
17 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: May 2013

Have you looked at anyone in your surrounding towns? I know that where I live, I can find a cheaper variety of planners an hour away. Many planners will travel that far without a fee. 

Post # 13
Member
2692 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

I am diy-ing my wedding as well and thought lon and hard about hiring a DOC but just could not fit it in my tiny budget.  So I came up with the next bext thing.  I am hiring a cousin of my fmil to help with with set and decor the day off.  I have pretty much the whole day at the venue (I can arrive for setup at 8am at both venues and start set-up).  So I will arive with her and leave her in charge of the reception set-up (I will also have some family members helping which will make the process go faster). I don’t think 2 hours is enough time unless you work really fast and have a lot of hands and simple decor.

I am going to have my dj in charge of annoucing things like dinner, cake cutting, dances, etc… And my florists will deliver and set up the centerpieces (need to speak to her about this as it is extra). 

Post # 14
Member
2692 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

Also fi’s cousin has agreed to be in charge of things for the ceremony…making sure guests are seated, making sure the music is set up and playing, lining the guys up and starting things off (basically what a DOC would do).  And she is doing this as a wedding gift to me.

Post # 15
Member
486 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

I didn’t get a planner or coordinator, but we did have days in advance to set things up. Even then we were rushing. Im hindsight, if I had everything locked and loaded and a play by ply written out, I could have passed it on to a couple of my friends. If you have amazing friends who are not in the wedding party and willing to help, I would ask them. That’s what I did. as far as coordinating, the owner of my venue told my vendors how she prefers people to set up and she coordinated everyone’s walk down the aisle. The caterer coordinated all the food related things. We didn’t buy our dessert from them, but they still brought it out and set it up for us. Then there was the DJ, who really helped with the flow. The only times I was approached was when the caterer had a specific question about how I wanted something done. A couple times I approached the DJ andsaid, ok I want to cut the cake now, or it’s time for last call. It can definitely be done without a coordinator,but you just have to be diligent and let a few responsible guests “in” on how your want your day to go.

 

 

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