Recently I met with a potential client and during our meeting it was revealed that they cancelled a wedding previously and had another planner. Of course I’m curious to know which of my colleagues they were referring to and why had they not chose to continue services with them. They continued to tell me the reason… they cancelled and the planner had the gall to keep the deposit…gasp!
Now, here is where I could have fallen into the gossip trap and have this potential client feeling this was okay. Instead I defended my competitor. The truth is most vendors have this policy. Most business have this policy to some extent.
Read your contract thoroughly before signing. If you have questions be sure to ask. Even though your vendor has yet to do the grand finale; your date has been blocked and in the planners case, work has been done. Once your date is booked, it is taken off the calendar. This looses potential income if you should decide to cancel your wedding. Most vendors have one or two weddings during the weekend and depending on when you cancel it would be hard to try to re-book that date. The best thing to do is read through your contract thoroughly. If you just need to change your date, ask your vendor about their policy. Be sure to find out what is the deadline to reschedule your date and how far in the future can you reschedule. Fingers crossed that you never have to cancel.
What time do we make the toast?
What time will dinner be served?
When will you cut the cake?
We have entertainment, when should they perform?
Having a timeline is essential to every wedding or event. Why can’t I just go with the flow; you ask? You don’t want your guest waiting around for something to happen. Also, you don’t want everything happening at once and leaving your guest without anything to look forward to. Your vendors should have the timeline no later than two weeks before the wedding in case any changes need to be made. There are a lot of timeline and schedules on the internet; a good timeline should be created just for your wedding.
How long does it take to get from site a to site b?
When will the vendors arrive?
How long are the speeches?
How long will it take to set up and break down?
Your event planner will know all this information and coordinate with the vendors to make sure everyone is on the same page. If you don’t have an event planner (get one) you need to designate someone to keep and eye on the time and make sure everything is going as planned. An event planner can make quick decisions regarding the timeline if something is running off schedule, and move things around so it still flows smoothly.
Probably the most stressful part of a wedding is your wedding budget. No matter if you have 10K or 50K, you still want to stick to your boundaries.
Here are the 5 basic rules to sticking to your budget
1. Priorities– Decide what is most important to you. With Pinterest, inspiration shoots and all the blogs it is hard to keep focus on what you really want the most. It is very easy to get distracted. Make a clear plan of what you want your wedding to be. If you are not sure hire a wedding planner or designer to help you get started.
2. Be realistic– You can’t have everything, there… I said it. This goes back to number one. If you only have a 5K budget then no you can’t have the Swarovski crystal, blinged out, seven tiered wedding cake. Find afforadable alternatives to create the look. Speak with your vendors be honest with your budget and let them help you decide how to get the best for your dollars.
3.Guest list– The more you invite, the more it is going to cost. I always say,”Imagine you are handing your guest cash as they walk in your reception”. Would you hand them a hundred dollar bill…two hundred? Now you are questioning how close you really are to ……… oops, you forgot her name already. Rule of thumb is if they are not active in your life, do not invite. Don’t feel bad about not inviting co-workers or distant relatives that you haven’t spoken to in years.
4. Impulse Shopping– This is the quickest way to blow your budget. You are out shopping and you see the cutest (insert item here) that would go perfect with your wedding. You are not quite sure where you will use it but you will find a way to make it work. Sound familiar?
5. Competition- Don’t try to keep up with the Jones, that is the quickest way to blow your budget. Keep focused. Just because Sarah had the this big shindig with over 300 guest doesn’t mean you should.
Think of you and your fiance’ as a team. Make your wedding reflect you. Think of unique elements you could incorporate in your wedding that speaks of you as a unity. Your guest should say, “Oh this is so them.”