Phase 2-Building Your Vendor Team
Once you’ve done your research, had the important conversations outlined in phase one and have set the foundation for your wedding, it's time to start digging in a little deeper. We highly recommend choosing your wedding venue first, as not only will signing that contract officially set your date, it will also set the tone for many other aspects of your wedding day such as the wedding décor and dress code. Choosing a barn venue for example will certainly set the tone for a rustic décor theme such as birch candle holders, Unity Candle sets and perhaps a beautiful vintage style wedding gown.
Your Venue is booked! Now you can start searching for your other wedding vendors. If you don't have the luxury of time, you’ll want to book all of your pros as soon as you can. Here's a checklist of the vendors you'll likely want to research.
Caterer, Photographer, Videographer, Florist, Officiant, Music (DJ, Band, Ceremony Musicians), Hair Stylist, Makeup Artist, Wedding Cake Baker, Invitations, Transportation, Wedding Dress and Tux retailer, Event Rentals Company, and lighting designer.
Now is also the time to get moving on the rehearsal dinner details. Typically, the groom's family plans the rehearsal dinner, but if that's not applicable to you and your wedding, you'll want to figure out who's putting together this night-before event. Planning a rehearsal dinner is a bit like planning a wedding on a smaller scale, so get started as soon as possible.
You may also want to start researching and planning your honeymoon. Whether you're opting for a small getaway or a full-on honeymoon, choose a destination so you can start researching accommodations and other important honeymoon details.
Should you hire a wedding planner?
One very important decision to make as soon as possible is to decide whether to hire a wedding planner. Not every couple has a budget to hire a planner but if your funds allow it, hiring one will undoubtedly make your whole wedding planning experience much easier. The key is to hire a planner that will accommodate your needs and will prioritize what you want. Be sure to ask around, perhaps a recently married friend may have a wedding planner they can recommend.
Here are some important factors when choosing a wedding planner.
- Experience: A lot can go wrong at a wedding, and only an experienced wedding planner will have the knowledge to anticipate and resolve a problem. Make sure to get references and to check that they have had a lot of experience planning weddings.
- Accommodating: It's important to find a wedding planner who helps give you tips to achieve the wedding of your dreams, instead of discouraging your ideas, and insisting on their own. You need a planner who will be there to take care of your needs, but also, who will also respect what you want on your wedding day.
- Personality: No matter how good your wedding planner is, it is important that they also have a great personality. You want to be able to plan your wedding with someone that you enjoy working with. This could be be a significant problem when you experience the stress of planning a wedding with this person.
- Must be local to your area: It'll be easier working with a wedding planner who is local to your location. They will have a good idea of what it's like where you live. They will know all the local vendors and venues. An added plus would be if they have already organized weddings that are similar in style to the one you want to have, and hopefully already have experience with your chosen venue. A planner’s relationships in the industry can pay off. They use many of the same vendors over and over, so they can leverage those relationships to help make a budget go further.
Speaking of making your budget go further, with some ingenuity there are many opportunities to save money on your wedding. Here are a few examples. If you know anyone who has recently married perhaps, they have left over wedding items that they would be more than happy to get off their hands. Craft stores are a great place to find supplies to DIY some of your décor items and they often offer coupons. Also don’t forget to ask your friends and family to help with your DIY crafts. Some of them will surely be happy to help and you may just find they have some craft skills that you never even knew about!
Stay Tuned, Wedding Planning Phase 3 Coming Soon!
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