Post # 1
So I need some advice. I am currently in school for event coordination (almost done!), specifically weddings and my friend is getting married in 2011. She is having a very non-traditional wedding and I am a bridesmaid in the wedding. I have tried to be very supportive of her wedding which includes a shorter recpetion that will be outdoors with a “finger foods” menu and a bride who will be wearing a shorter wedding dress that resembles a 1950’s style dress. I am the type of person who will have a very traditional wedding when the time comes and she knows this.
Well, recently she sat me down and told me that I was not being “supportive” enough and that it sucks when I tell her that I would never do that. Anytime I’m not 100% all for something she just get’s upset and acts like I don’t like her “vision”. For example, she wants to serve mini slider burgers and french fries. When I was hesitant on her doing that, she got upset. But when her maid of honor (who is very much a tomboy) thought slider burgers were awesome, she was very pleased by her agreeing with her vision. The same thing happened when her Maid/Matron of Honor thought wearing converse sneakers with a short bridesmaid dress were a great idea and I thought it was improper!
She thinks of her wedding as a party and not as a wedding and has stated several times that she just wants to have a party where everyone can have fun. I have tried very hard to be supportive but when she is breaking etiquette rules in the planning process, it’s been very hard for me to be supportive of what she wants from a planners standpoint. I really do think the ideas she has are cute but just not for a wedding, more for a party then for a wedding. Her theme is Southern/Retro 1950’s.
So here’s my dilemma… do I stop looking at her wedding from a planner’s standpoint and just be the bridesmaid who thinks her every want is perfect and if she regrets something later it’s her problem? Or do I risk our friendship by continuing to try and help her change her “vision” that she is so dead set on? I am so confused because this theme that she has her heart set on is causing our friendship to be in jeopardy.
Help is appreciated! Thank You!
Post # 3
In My Humble Opinion you are there to be her bridesmaid, she isn’t paying you to be her wedding coordinator. Even though the ideas might not be what you’d do they are what she wants to do. Don’t just blindly agree with everything she says, try to offer more constructive criticism, but also, don’t try to change her wants. This is her wedding and she has asked you to be her bridesmaid because you are special to her.
Post # 4
You need to let her see her vision through. Be a bridesmaid and be supportive of her decisions unless she asks for your honest opinion and expertise but even then be careful. She asked you to be a Bridesmaid or Best Man and not the planner. I know it will be hard but you risk your friendship otherwise. No matter what my mom thinks of my ideas she just says I am the bride and it’s my choice.
Post # 5
I think there’s a difference between having a nontraditional wedding and breaking etiquette rules. You should be supportive of her style and ideas in matters like wearing a short dress or having a hors d’oeuvres reception – no need to point out that you would never do that yourself. As a coordinator, I bet you’ll work with brides who have very different styles, and you need to be able to get excited about them even if it’s not your personal preference.
I’m curious what exactly you think is wrong with her vision and why you are obligated to change it? If she was doing something rude or inconveniencing guests, I think it would be okay to explain that to her, but from your post, it doesn’t seem like she is breaking any etiquette rules at all!
Post # 6
Planning a wedding is stressful, and it’s probably really difficult and/or hurtful for her to hear from you that most of her ideas and plans aren’t “appropriate” or “done.” What she needs from you is help realizing her vision for her day, not a play by play of “shoulds” and “musts.”
I would note that as a professional you will likely be asked with some frequency to assist brides whose ideas and tastes do not conform to the textbook definition of “wedding.” Your job, unless you intend to limit your clientel exclusively to brides whose tastes are identical to yours, will be to help them achieve an ideal wedding on their terms – no matter how wacky or tacky. Think of your friend’s wedding as practice and bite your tongue.
Post # 7
I personally think this is a time to stand down, and just be a friend. The fact that your profession will one day be to plan events like this is probably making it near impossible BUT, you can’t risk your friendship. The fact that she wants something nontraditional isn’t so bad, lots of brides choose that. As long as she’s not offending anyone, it shouldn’t be an issue at all. And if any of the ideas she has seem like disasters, just offer your assistance, hopefully she’ll take you up on the help. Good luck!
Post # 8
i would stop thinking as a coordinator and just be there for her as a bridesmaid. just because you don’t agree with her vision, doesn’t make it not ok and doesn’t mean it’s not right for her. just look at the bees and brides on this website, there are many non traditional brides who don’t go by the book and still have beautiful and fun weddings. plus, she asked you to be a bridesmaid because she needs your support.
Post # 9
It’s best to support her vision for her day. If she’s stated that she wants more of a “party” feel than a traditional wedding; then help her achieve exactly what she wants.
Post # 10
Yeah, I’m wondering what “etiquette rules” she’s breaking…?
However, I do think that even though this isn’t your idea for a wedding, it’s hers. As an event planner, I’m sure you’re going to have to plan tons of events that are not exactly what you would do yourself.
Post # 11
I think her vision sounds great and I don’t understand why you would want to change it. You’ll have the chance to do your wedding the way you want. Won’t you be upset if someone keeps trying to change your vision when that time comes and keeps telling you how bored your guests will be and how uninteresting and lacking in fun your traditional wedding is? (I do not! think that there’s anything wrong or unenjoyable about traditional weddings but am just trying to get you to see another side on this).
Certainly something like a short dress is not something anyone should express disaproval off. It doesn’t hurt anyone and will make her feel the way she wants and give off the vibe she is going for. She is the bride the last thing she should have to hear is negative comments on her dress from bridesmaid, her event planner or her friends.
Post # 12
Other people have already said it, but I’ll go ahead and chime in – Not every single bride you deal with as an event coordinator will have a “traditional” wedding (whatever that means, these days…). Consider this a learning opportunity to work with someone who’s a little off the beaten path.
Post # 13
Your friends words of this being a party and wanting it to be fun ring very closely to how my wedding was. I didn’t want hardly anything that was bride-y. I wanted something different, fun and relaxed.
This is her wedding, not yours. I agree with others that you should be a bridesmaid, not a coordinator for your friend’s wedding. Her taste doesn’t have to match yours. I don’t think that a difference of taste means breaking etiquette.
Post # 14
Also, it seems you might be concerned that she will regret her decisions (because you would if you were in her situation). I might be biased but I’ve read more accounts of brides who went traditional to appease family and regretted giving in so much but all the brides who went non traditional were really happy with their choices. I think as long as it is true to the bride she will not regret it.
Post # 15
Let it go. Its her wedding and her dream, so support her in it and help her make it come true. Its hard because you are going into a career of planning, but you have your whole career to plan peoples big day. But you are going to run into this as a planner too. People have different visions and ideas and its ok. You need to support her and hold your tongue. If she wanted your ideas and for you to plan it, she would have asked.
Post # 16
- Wedding: August 2018 - Oakland Manor
I think you shoudl refer her to weddingbee gallery/bios, offbeatbride, a practical wedding, and rocknroll bride for more great ideas. Her wedding is her expression and your wedding will be yours – why should they be the same?