(Closed) Who sets everything up?

posted 8 years ago in Logistics
Post # 32
10044 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

You definitely need to check with your vendors. Our venue set up the tables and chairs, the caterer did the tableware, a different person did the linens and chair covers, and our florist did the centerpieces. And yes, we paid extra for some of these things so we wouldn’t have to do them ourselves.

As far as your DJ goes, keep in mind that his price probably doesn’t include setting up a whole venue the day of the event. He would probably have to hire additional help for that. Generally the day-of coordinator just keeps things running smoothly and may help with some of the decor.

Post # 33
7604 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2014

View original reply
@CharleighT:  Start by asking the caterer and the florist. Some will do the linens, decor and centerpeices, some won’t, and some will charge. If you can’t make suitable arrangements, you can alway go to your local temp agency and hire a setup/breakdown person or three. If your decor isn’t overly complex, you could even hire a couple of local teenagers to do it.

Your local college/university may have an event management/hospitality management cirriculum and you may be able to hire one of their students.

Post # 34
62 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

This is why, if you have the budget, you can hire a wedding coordinator. But otherwise, yes, friends or family do it. I decided to hire a college student I know for the morning, just to make sure the room looks the way it’s supposed to. We are having a low-key wedding with not too much decor, but we also don’t have a wedding party of people who could set everything up. I didn’t want my family having to make sure vases were on tables, etc. so I think this is money well spent. (And way more affordable than hiring a day-of coordinator.)

Post # 35
9538 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

I hired a day of coordinator and she was worth her weight in gold. Seriously.

Our ceremony was at 5. My husband and I got to the site around 9 and discovered that his uncle got there early and had already set up all the tables (Thank Uncle Harry!). We started organizing everything and directing people as they trickled in to help (We have about 25 friends/family there to help get everything together) The DOC got there around 10 and I went over all the last minute details with her and introduced her to people. Then I left to get ready at 11. By the time I got back at 2, it was mostly all put together and everyone had gone off to lunch and to get ready. The DOC finished everythig up while we went off and took pictures at a park.

Having the DOC was a big priority for me because I wanted to be able to relax on wedding day. And it worked like a charm. She handled everything that came up and I didn’t have to worry about anything. Stepbrother flipps out and won’t walk stepmom down the aisle – didn’t even know it until I was watching the processional and thinking, “Huh, I wonder why hubby’s brother is walking stepmom down the aisle”. My dad made appetizers but put them out in crummy tupeprware, but I didn’t know that until the next day because the DOC rummaged through dad’s cabinets until she found the china and arranged the apps nicely. Honestly, my DOC was so busy all night, I don’t know how she could have done DJing as well. But we had an off site venue, so it was more complicated than most. 

In summary – I highly recommend a DOC and a small army of friends/family. People will volunteer to help. Ask if they really mean it. If they say yes, tell them that you know you’re going to need help getting things set up before the wedding, if they’d be interested. Make a list.

Post # 36
9947 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

For my First Wedding (circa 1980) we rented a Hall, and the Decoration & Set-Up was done the day of the Wedding by the Groom, Groomsmen, and Dads.  It was pretty stressful on them… my Dad showing up late at the house and rushing to Shower, Get Dressed and take Formal Pics (the Photographer was already on site when my Dad arrived home)

Consequently… I am now in the camp that if it comes down to doing all this “the Day Of”… I strongly advise Brides / Couples to consider paying someone to do the job for them, such as a Day Of Coordinator (DOC)

Personally, I will PAY for a a DOC for my own kids when they marry… rather than have this often forgotten last minute job worrying people and stressing them out

Sooo worth it, IMO


Post # 37
1632 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

Go back and ask your other vendors if they will swt it up for you ans how you should coord I nate gettingvthem all the decor they need.

Otherwise, it’s on you!

Post # 38
9 posts
  • Wedding: October 2014

Wedding party. Usually caterer, florist, etc will set up their own stuff. 

Post # 39
772 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2014 - Gold Hill Gardens

I’ve set up for the last two weddings I’ve attended. The most recent was for my Future Sister-In-Law and Future Brother-In-Law. Fiance was the best man, so I got my hair and makeup done (with a good friend/would-be-FSIL, except she’s divorced from the FBIL) and then went over to the venue to do the setup. They also had their florist do some of the setup. One of the issues I ran into was finding out while I was there that I was IT. I was the person in charge of the set up. The florist didn’t have the “grand scheme” of things. I hadn’t realized that was my role! It all worked out (their wedding is in the most recent Real Weddings magazine), thank goodness, but I was a stress case! I had a list written as a text message from the bride only on my phone and there was poor signal. Anyway, the previous wedding was for future cousins 🙂 At the rehearsal dinner we were asked by then-FSIL (same one I had my hair and makeup done with – this is a close family) if we could help with the setup. Jeez! So, we spent about 3 hours there before going back home and getting dressed and ready. B&G had nothing to do with us helping setup their wedding. That one was, again, a bit sketchy as far as directions go, but from what I understand they were thrilled with how it all turned out. And now I have A LOT of good karma for setting up ours! That said, I don’t want ANYONE to be stressed out the way I have been for the past two weddings, so I am going to make sure that there are CLEAR lists of what we want, and defined roles for the people who are helping.

Post # 40
188 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

Usually the venue sets up the chairs and tables and if you got a full service caterer they will put on the table cloths and dinnerware.  florist will do the centerpieces.

if you made your own centerpieces then most likely you will need to set it up or sometimes the caterer will do it.  you’ll have to check w/ your caterer as to what they will and will not set up.

I’d recommend hirng a coordinator though if you have lots of diy decorations so you don’t have to worry about it.  The best thing I did was hire a day of coordinator!  they made everything run smoothly and perfectly.  i wasn’t stressed out at all.  one of my friends who didnt have a full service caterer and didnt hire a coordinator was super stressed and so was her entire wedding party…she was crying in a corner at one point. 

Post # 42
850 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

View original reply
@CharleighT:  You might find these “A Practical Wedding” posts on coordinating your own wedding really helpful, even if you end up hiring the DJ to do some coordination: http://apracticalwedding.com/2011/07/wedding-planner-tip/





Post # 43
9639 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2013

ugh.  i have nothing to add but that sounds like a pain.

we had our wedding at a hotel.  the hotel set up tables, chairs, silverware, plates, glasses, etc.

we used a rental co for linens, centerpieces, and uplights.  they did the set up and breakdown of their stuff.

i did not have flower centerpieces, just bouquets.  otherwise, the florist would have set up there centerpieces.

i guess if you don’t have someone who is provided by your venue, you either need to do it yourself, ask friends/family, or hire someone.

Post # 45
111 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: March 2012

View original reply
@This Time Round:  I’m a wedding planner who mostly deals in wedding day coordination. Many of my clients actually come to me through moms like you – they’ve been through their own wedding, they remember the hassle it was to do it all themselves, and they have no desire to work that hard now that their son or daughter is getting married!

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