16

Feb

2011

Wedding Wednesday Discussions: What does a Wedding Planner actually do?

It surprises me that many people still don’t seem to know what wedding planners do! I set my wedding planning business up in 2009, at that point in time I’d used a wedding planner for my own wedding, so understood wholeheartedly the benefits of hiring a wedding planner, however as I have gone on and progressed in building up my business I still come across the same puzzled faces, the same questions and the same preconceptions of what a wedding a planner does.

This has come to my mind again recently after exhibiting at a few wedding exhibitions and coming up against the same hurdles, brides, grooms, mothers, even suppliers still don’t seem to know what we/I do, which quite frankly worries and puzzles me!
So I thought I would write a little piece on what I personally do….this isn’t a sales pitch it’s more of a closer look at the life of a wedding planner!

So what does a wedding planner actually do??

 

boho weddings and events

Well after reading many many wedding planning sights, the main spiel we all seem to give you is….we can save you time, money, your stress levels blar blar blar……and yes the average wedding take’s 250 hours to plan, and what with having a full time job and trying to keep together some sort of social life, that means most of a brides and grooms weekends and evenings taken up with wedding planning!…again blar blar blar!!

So some comment misconceptions first

• I am nothing like Jennifer Lopes in the wedding planner – I am not going to steal your husband and I do not wear a head set when I am working!

• Neither am I anything like the wedding planner in father of the Bride…I will not insist you have swans in your back garden and I will not make your wedding into something that you don’t want!

• I am not going to come into your wedding plans and completely take over, I’m here to assist you

• I do not work on commissions from other suppliers and venues I work independently and always have my client’s best interests at heart.

• I don’t just plan the whole wedding. I have a huge number of planning services on my website from just an hour of my time, to planning workshops, venue searches, on the day management, partial planning right up to the full on planning packages, my services are there to fit round you, I try to be as flexible as possible.

• This job is not as glamorous as people think, I don’t spend all day at cake tastings (although this is my favourite bit) there is a lot of hard work involved, incredibly unsociable hours, late nights and a lot of very demanding brides….saying that I totally love it!

• The wedding is not all about me, I’m there in the background like a little hamster on a wheel, making sure that everything runs to plan, the greatest compliment anyone can pay me at a wedding is not even realising I was there!

• Not it’s not just an American thing, lots of people these days hire a wedding planner.

• And No you don’t have to have a massive Budget to have a planner, we work to different budgets and offer a whole host of packages and services

• If you are a wedding venue, my intention is not to undermine what you do, I am here to work with you after all aren’t we all just trying to make our couples have the best day possible?

• Yes I really do LOVE weddings that much!


Basically I am employed by you (the bride or groom) to make your life as easy as possible!

Some planners focus on the budgeting and organisation aspects, others focus on the design and styling, some offer vintage specialities, some offer destination planning specialities, while others focus on high society weddings…………in that aspect we are all different!! Some just want to focus on offering on the day assistance, while others only take on full wedding co-ordination………….again we are all different and we all have our different areas of speciality!

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My area of speciality is unconventional weddings and weddings in Ibiza.

I set Boho Weddings & Events up to work with brides who wanted to break away from the norm and have an un conventional wedding, ‘alternative’ maybe but more often than not I tend to work with couples who just want to do things a bit differently.
I find that a lot of my couples are having DIY weddings but still need to someone to pull all the different elements together, others having marquee or Tippi style weddings where there are a lot of outside factors to consider, others having a totally budget wedding and need to find ways to cut down on spending, while others are living in one part of the country and getting married somewhere else and just need me to bridge that gap and do a of the leg work for them.

boho weddings and events

Personally I like to think of myself as an all-rounder. I love to be organised, I am completely anal about my lists and to do sheets. I get a trill out of keeping couples on track with what they have to do, breaking all their jobs into months, working out budget sheets with them and basically managing their work load for them. However at the same time I am very creative and visual person, I love discussing colours and themes, working with couples to make the wedding not only run smoothly but look amazing! Offering inspiration and ideas, coming up with things they may never have thought of before…..often going off into my own little wedding daydream land!!

boho weddings and events

I can get involved as much or as little as you want. I have some brides who have booked me for on the day co-ordination who I have not even met yet, they are quite happy for me to meet up 4 weeks before the wedding and do the rest themselves. I have others who contact me every now and again giving me up dates with how things are going, asking my advice on things as and when they come up. While others ring and email me every day, some 4-5 times a day.
Every wedding is different, as are every couple getting married, which is why every service I offer has to be tailor made to fit with them.

With any of the wedding planning packages I offer I always say I work with a couple, people don’t want to be dictated to, they don’t want my tastes and views enforced on them, yes I will guide you in the right direction, but at the end of the day it’s your wedding, not mine!

So personally I try and stay as flexible as possible, as a planner I am here to help you plan the wedding you want.

So I hope that has enlightened you? I’m hoping one day I won’t get that confused face at wedding exhibitions, or that…no I’ve planned it all already standard answer from people (really planned it all? What you doing at a wedding fair then??) I totally LOVE my job, and those brides and grooms that have booked me I can say hand on heart have not regretted it, they seem to be enjoying the whole wedding planning process, instead of dreading it like many seem to!

Wedding Wednesday Discussions: What does a Wedding Planner actually do? me at work…yes that is orange juice in my hand (photo credit www.s6photography.co.uk)

I would love your thoughts or comments on this……….other planners, brides, grooms, suppliers………tell me what you think!!!

For more infomration about any of my wedding planning packages go to:
www.bohoweddingsandevents.com
[email protected]
07989431821 / 0114 2854532

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Comments

    Melanie Kiani

    Great post Kelly – I, like you, constantly come up against a lot of people in all walks of life who just don’t “get” what wedding planners do. Its always a bit of an education! Some of my clients describe me as a wedding PA which is partly true but I think that most often is far more than that – as your blog explains.

    Once they have been to a wedding which has had a planner involved or once they have had a planner then get it straight away and thats where a lot of business comes – existing brides/clients – which I am sure you find too.

    Anyway – great Kelly – well put

    Melanie

    x

    Reply
    Your Day - Your Way

    Concise and to the point as ever Kelly well done! I’m somewhat relieved that the response of couples etc. to wedding planners seems to be a general one – I was beginning to take it personally having had two cancellations phoned in yesterday and sometimes feeling as if I am banging my head against a brick wall! I shall move forward with renewed optimism and determination knowing that we’re all in this together. Lots of love xx

    Reply
    Becky Hart

    This is great! I am working on becoming a wedding planner in the future and the first thing people always say is oh, like Jennifer Lopez? Haha not even close!! I am very excited though and this makes me even more confident that this is exactly what I want to do. :)

    Reply
    Jacqueline Bradshaw

    Excellently put Kelly, thank you for this blog, I often come across those confused faces too, as you say there are many elements to being a good wedding planner and the biggest compliments you can also get is when the couples tell you their day was even better than they imagined, that they just had to turn up and enjoy the whole day, thank to the excellent planning that went on before the big day. Every bride should have a Franc or a Jennifer perhaps without the swans or the headset! A wedding doesn’t have to be stressful if you have a great wedding planner ;-) x

    Reply
    Katy Thomson

    This is such a great article Kelly. It’s so important that people realise what you do and how it can completely transform a bride and groom’s day. I hope it helps to raise your profile.
    I’d like to see you with a headset and chasing a few swans around a wedding though! ; )

    Reply
    Vix

    Very insightful article! I’ve photographed a few weddings with wedding planners, and they do seem to flow smoother, far fewer people standing around confused as to what they should be doing!

    There was one who had a bit of a fixation with putting the couples name on everything, including a little sign in the ladies bathroom above a basket of tampons that read “Jill and John invite you to help yourself to feminine toiletries.” That was a bit much!

    Reply
    Sarah

    Aren’t you tempted to force the swans on just one bride? :P Great post, but I think I might be that one person who has everything planned, I just like wedding fairs!

    Reply
    Seyi Olusanya

    Great article Kelly. I can say that for someone who has been in the industry for coming up to 10 years now I think the perception is changing.

    When i started out there very few wedding/event planner, the internet, google, facebook, twitter is changing the face of the industry.

    The work of a wedding/event planner is invaluable. In my role i have been known to be:

    Budget planner (people dont just know what things cost as they have never done it before),

    Stylist coming up with ideas/concepts that my client would not have the confidence to undertake themselves

    A good resource library, a good planner must be knowledgable about the different areas of what make a good wedding, flower choice, seasons, good venues, superb vendor why they are good for what type of wedding.

    Time saver! This is the big one. It does take a lot of time and attention to detail to organise a successful & flawless event/wedding. Most of the clients that come to me are busy professional who work long hours and often out of town.

    A shoulder to cry on when everything get a bit overwhelming on the day.

    A mediator

    Etiquette adviser

    I could go on!

    A fab wedding planner is not a luxury but a necessity if you can afford one.

    Great post again Kelly

    Reply
    Kim Herbing

    Brilliant article Kelly and it really shows how passionate you are about your work.

    I still think people automatically see ‘wedding planner’ and think that the service will be expensive and that the planner will take over the whole day. In this post you show that having a wedding planner to help with your wedding will help the day run smoothly and will probably save you money in some areas as you have the contacts and knowledge that the couple might not have!

    I believe the most important part of a wedding planners role is the ‘On the day co-ordination’ – being on hand to organise everything and make sure all the details that the couple require are just perfect.

    Your weddings are always amazing Kelly and you offer a fabulous service.

    Kim – The Wedding Community x

    Reply
    Julie Dawson

    HI Kelly,
    Yes great article, very well put together. I do think that the perception of wedding planners is changing but slowly. It is up to us to promote a flexible quality service. I have to agree with the other planners weddings that have us around are calm and chilled. One of my brides said she felt like a guest at her own wedding! She took off her watch and just got on with enjoying every minute whilst I worked in the background.

    I love that we can help brides with as little or as much help as they need. Human Inspiration is sometimes needed even when magazines and the internet is awash with it . Sometimes it takes a human being to simplify it all and recommend ideas, decor and little unique features that are simply in tune with the couple.

    We are there to support too, which even if its a small thing we can sort out in a heartbeat it may have kept a bride up for nights!

    Thanks for a great feature. xxx Julie The Wedding Genie

    Reply

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