What I learned in my first year of wedding planning

Don’t make these mistakes on your big day

About a year ago I started this journey of serving couples and planning weddings. When I first started I thought what most young girls think about wedding planning: this is going to be the most fun job ever! Going to weddings every weekend, picking out beautiful designs, meetings tons of people. Although there are glamorous parts about wedding planning, there is also the side that people don’t see, which is WORK. Fourteen hour days, managing many different vendors, and making sure your clients have every single need met. So here are the most important things I learned in my first year as a wedding planner.

Ask the right Questions

When touring venues, booking a caterer, or hiring a DJ, it's important to know what questions to ask. If you’re bringing your own liquor to a venue, is there a corkage fee? How about a cake-cutting fee? Will your DJ company provide a back-up in case yours gets sick on your big day? These are all essential questions to ask before signing on the dotted line.

Most couples haven’t planned a wedding before, so it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of the process and forget about the details. Check out the vendor’s website before going to a meeting.Write down questions you have beforehand so you don’t forget them.

Always have a timeline

A timeline creates some work on the backend, but it will make your wedding day run much more smoothly. The timeline should include everything from the ceremony rehearsal to the clean-up at the end of the night. A copy should be given to the photographer, videographer, transportation company, and venue. This will ensure every vendor is on the same page and eliminate confusion on your big day.

You need an emergency kit

Snacks, deodorant, extra hairspray, a lint roller – what do all of these have in common? They’re all things you won’t know you need until you’re about to walk down the aisle and you realize you could really use an extra application of deodorant. Or it’s humid and your maid of honor’s hair is falling out of the perfectly placed bobby pins. As a wedding planner, I always bring an emergency kit (actually, more like an emergency bin) to every one of my weddings.

Wedding days are filled with joy and love, but they’re also long and can included unexpected moments. The air goes out in your limo and everyone starts sweating. All the sudden rain hits and your hair starts to go flat. You forgot to eat lunch and now your groom is hangry. These are all things that have happened during weddings where my emergency kit saved the day.