GUEST POST: Courtesy of Wedding & Events by Raina
If you think wedding planners are only a privilege the rich can afford, think again. A wedding planner could just be the best thing you spend money on. Hiring a wedding planner doesn’t mean outsourcing your entire event. You may feel that you want to handle all the preparations and vendor research yourselves. You may be thinking that it will be fun to do that, and you may think that looking into the suppliers will be the only way to know all the options, to be truly informed and ensure the style you like at the most reasonable price.
Well, while this may seem like a good idea on paper, you will find, in the long run that you will wish you had hired an event planner from the amazing team at Weddings & Events by Raina for your big day.
Here are our top 10 reasons why hiring a wedding planner is the best thing you can do for yourselves!
#1 An “on-site” wedding planner or venue coordinator is NOT your wedding planner.
Many venues offer an on site venue coordinator, or they have a “wedding planner” on staff. Typically they are merely a couple’s main point of contact with the venue. While these planners are absolutely valuable, don't expect them to take care of all your wedding needs. Their job is to ultimately represent the venue, not the couple. Even though your venue may have a wedding planner, chances are that person is not a substitute for a professional wedding planner.
They do not actually coordinate your wedding, but what they do fabulously is manage your venue! They keep the kitchen operating at full capacity, prevent any rule breaking and make sure the bathrooms remain well stocked. If you’re lucky, they might also help with overall setup and décor. What they generally don’t do is answer all the miscellaneous questions that pop up throughout the day.
Your Weddings & Events by Raina event planner works directly for YOU, not for the venue. Their obligation is to look out for the happy couple and no one else. While they will respect the rules and regulations your venue has put in place, they will also do whatever they possibly can to execute your day, according to how you always dreamed it would be. You may have a great venue coordinator or on site “wedding planner” but they don’t take care about any of the other details.
Bottom line? Their job is to make sure the venue staff is doing what they are supposed to do, make sure no damage is done to the venue. And while some site planners are willing to do some extra set up for the couple, many will not do things like setting up escort cards and decorations or consult with vendors on anything other than arrival times.
While many of them are really enthusiastic and will even provide you with a recommended list of suppliers that they work with, just keep in mind, that is all you are going to get. A wedding planner from Weddings & Events by Raina will go above and beyond to help you manage your budget, mediate disputes with your family, tell you what flowers are in season on your wedding date, take you to meet the other suppliers, research prices, and anything else you wish!
#2 Your well meaning friend or family member is not the same as a professional wedding planner.
Another pitfall many couples need to be careful to avoid is the friend or family member posing as your wedding planner. While their hearts are in the right place, your friend or family member is not a substitute for a professional wedding planner. That being said, a couple’s friends and family play an incredibly important and irreplaceable role during the wedding planning process, however, you can save yourselves time, energy, stress and money by allowing your friends and family to celebrate your wedding day with you.
Leave all the work of wedding planning to a professional from Weddings & Events by Raina. The most important role that friends and family of the happy couple can play is witnesses and celebrators of their marriage. This role is crucial and not one that is easily accomplished if they have the added responsibilities of managing your event. Even if your friends and family members are playing an active role in the wedding planning process prior to the big day, hiring a day-of wedding planner from Weddings & Events by Raina will free them up to play their most important role on your special day.
Not to mention, even the most well-intentioned friend who is helping out will get distracted from their official wedding responsibilities by having a few cocktails or catching up with an old friend. It’s best not to blur the lines between friend and employee.
#3 A professional wedding planner is a huge time saver.
Wedding planning is quite time-consuming and often time-sensitive work. Friends and family members have their own jobs and personal responsibilities and do not have the necessary amount of time and energy to devote to your wedding. It is best to hire a wedding planner from Weddings & Events by Raina because this will eliminate conflict that can quickly arise between friends and family over wedding-related time expectations.
By hiring a wedding planner from Weddings & Events by Raina, they will devote as many hours to your event as necessary and can easily defuse any tension or stress that might arise. Because until you really get into the preparations for your big day, it is impossible to fathom just how much work is involved and how many details need to be taken care of. In some cases, couples will even take a leave of absence from work in order to have more time to prepare the wedding. If you work long hours, have lots of hobbies or have children to look after, and don’t want to be completely drowning in to do lists during your engagement, a wedding planner from Weddings & Events by Raina handling some of those tasks for you could be a real lifesaver.
Also, you really don’t want to get in trouble at the office by getting caught doing wedding planning on company time! So, while your friend or family member may be very creative and reliable, but that doesn't mean they have the skills and knowledge that comes with experience in event management. A professional wedding planner from Weddings & Events by Raina brings their expertise on everything from timelines, to table settings to ceremony music, while your friend may have only their own wedding experience (or others they have attended as a guest) to draw from.
#4 Don’t give in to the stress and anxiety of planning your own wedding.
Wedding planning is stressful and certainly not the romantic experience everyone expects it to be. There are many details to take care of, meddling family and friends might drive you crazy and even vendors can be a source of drama. By the time you reach the final month before your wedding you may find that you are so exhausted that you just want the day to be over. Having a wedding planner from Weddings & Events by Raina on your side, will allow you to avoid the chances of bursting into tears from stress or you and your fiancée snapping at each other because you are both just spread too thin. This is not how anyone’s planning should be. Bringing on board a professional planner from Weddings & Events by Raina to help and take some of the workload off your hands is such a relief. They can not only be your sounding board, but also provide advice on managing any drama that may arise.
Given that many couples have to deal with a plethora of conflicting opinions from their friends and family about how the wedding should unfold, and it can be hard to please everyone. Not to mention stressful. Our wedding planners know just how to deal with your family’s expectations, show you the available options and can always be relied upon to give you expert advice so you can make an informed decision.
When you finally reach the day of your wedding someone needs to be in charge of overseeing and answering the questions posed by your many helpers. At Weddings & Events by Raina, we have coordinated several weddings where the couple has had an impressive army of volunteers.
They were responsible for everything from bringing salads and sides as well as cakes and treats to picking up rental tables and chairs, to hanging decorative fabric from the ceiling. While these group efforts are certainly impressive to witness, the more volunteers you have, the more complex the task of managing them becomes.
If you choose not to have a wedding planner, you will be the one expected to manage all the helpers rather than relaxing and getting ready for that walk down the aisle. Those without a planner, sometimes find it difficult to ask help from others or handle everything themselves. In most cases, family or the bridal party do not actually offer assistance which leaves the couple feeling awkward having to asking them.
On the wedding day, when your fiancée should be relaxing, they may find themselves driving all over town picking up cakes and rented formalwear while you are at the ceremony site setting up your refreshments table and texting the officiant, musicians and decorator to ensure that they arrive on time.
These are all tasks that a day-of wedding planner from Weddings & Events by Raina can coordinate for you, rather than burdening yourselves or your guests. Plus, with many of the packages we offer, our planners come with a full staff of experienced event assistants to streamline every moment into perfection.
#6 Bridal Budgeting
Money is one of the hardest aspects of planning your wedding. Who is paying for what and how much? When are your payments due? How do you ensure you don’t overspend? A wedding planner from Weddings & Events by Raina is like a financial adviser who specializes in weddings. They know how much things should cost, roughly what percentage of your budget will be spent in each area and when payments will need to be made in order to secure services or products.
You don’t want to spend hours finding suppliers and trying to figure out who is trustworthy. It’s daunting when you realize just how many suppliers are out there and how many of them it takes to make a wedding a success. Knowing who to trust and who is right for you is one of the hardest tasks of planning a wedding. Once you find a great wedding planner however, the rest is considerably easier. They can recommend suppliers they’ve worked with before and know how to get the best prices, and the best results, from them. Even when they use a new supplier, and experienced planner will know how to find the best one for your style and price.
The imagined price for a wedding planner, in many cases, is the reason couples decide against hiring one. However, planners know what different services cost, and can better spot when a vendor price is exorbitantly high or too good to be true. They know most local wedding vendors, and can help you get the best value for your budget.
As with any other wedding vendor, you will agree in advance what services you want from your Weddings & Events by Raina planner and how much that will cost. Our planners can handle everything from writing all your thank you notes for you while you are on your honeymoon to expertly executing every last detail of your perfect wedding day. The best reason to hire a professional Weddings & Events by Raina planner, however is that things do go wrong at the last minute. You don’t want to be left trying to put our fires the day before your wedding if the cake artist claims they never received your order or your dance floor provider suddenly calls because you forgot to pay them.
You don’t want to realize at the last minute that you are one centerpiece short and have to frantically call the decorator or update guest numbers with the caterer. Even tiny things, can bring upon a general feeling of stress on a day that should be lovely and relaxing. By having a professional planner from Weddings & Events by Raina to handle all the little (and big) details for you ensuring that even if something does go wrong, you will never know about it because you deserve everything to be perfect on your big day.
#7 Selecting the best vendors.
Despite thinking that researching vendors yourselves is the only way to ensure that you can make the best supplier decisions, hiring a professional from Weddings & Events by Raina who has seen these vendors in action at many weddings, they can assist you to find the best one to fit not only your budget but your personality as well.
And we promise, our planners will never force you into choosing a vendor you aren’t completely happy with. A Weddings & Events by Raina event planner knows exactly what to ask vendors to get just what you have in mind for your special day. They will be able to speak the language of each vendor and know how to ask certain questions to get the most accurate price quotes and details. Having worked with many of these vendors before not only will you get vendors you can trust, but often a professional planner can save you money as well.
The best example we can give would be this. It probably took you years to find your perfect match in your future spouse, and now you need to find your perfect match in your wedding vendors, however you don’t have years! A professional wedding planner from Weddings & Events by Raina is a lot like a matchmaker, only instead of finding you the perfect mate, we help match couples with wedding vendors that match their vision, personality and budget. Without a Weddings & Events by Raina planner, most couples base their decisions about vendors on online searches or recommendations from friends. While those tools are valuable, our professional wedding planners have extensive networks of vendors with whom they have worked closely, and whose work they can vouch for.
They can both set you up with great quality vendors as well as steer you away from vendors that wouldn’t be a great fit, so why wouldn’t you take them up on that? Vendor matching is one of the most important services Weddings & Events by Raina offers their clients. Your wedding vendors are your wedding “team,” and a professional Weddings & Events by Raina planner can help you draft the right vendors to make a winning combination for your day.
#8 Avoid becoming a Bridezilla.
Weddings & Events by Raina planners are a wonderful outlet for all of your wedding energy. If you feel tremendous pressure to impress people with your style, creativity, and sentimental whimsy while at the same time keep your wedding thoughts to yourself so friends and family don’t think of you as a wedding obsessed Bridezilla; then hiring a Weddings & Events by Raina event planner is the best thing you can do for yourself and your future spouse.
Dealing with the pressure to impress everyone while simultaneously burdening no one is absolutely a recipe for a melt-down! One of the greatest joys of our event planners at Weddings & Events by Raina is the ability to be an enthusiastic and judgment-free outlet for our couples. Because wedding planning is both exhilarating and exhausting, you need a dependable outlet for talking about your wedding—and our professional wedding planners are exactly that.
Truth be told, wedding tasks aren’t always fun. Sure, it’s a ball to ooh and aah over cake designs, but there’s nothing enjoyable about researching buses for guest transport, port-a-potties, or making seating charts.
There isn’t much joy in reviewing vendor contracts, keeping track of payments, or trying to negotiate for the best possible price either. Contrary to what you may be thinking, a wedding planner will not take over. They will only handle what you want them to. Whether it is simply making it all come together with day-of coordination, organizing and streamlining all your hard work with month-of-coordination, or indeed planning the entire event. Having a wedding planner allows you to be a part of the planning, while they assist with the less exciting technical things such as contracts and negotiating for the best price, so you can focus on the fun parts. Trust us, enjoy being a bride by leaving the boring bits to someone else.
#9 Destination Nashville
In the past few years Nashville has become one of the most popular locations for destination weddings. Planning these types of events certainly have their pros, but it’s hard to organize suppliers that you’ve never met or imagine a space you’ve never seen in person. Our Weddings & Events by Raina planners have experience in organizing destination weddings and certainly have a trick or two up their sleeves for getting the job done the way you want. Using one of our wedding planners means you’re in control, even at a distance. It’s definitely your day, your way, but you have a specialist working on your behalf to do the legwork, reduce your stress and ensure every detail is your kind of perfect.
#10 Live 100% in the moment.
It takes a lot of time and hard work to pull a wedding together perfectly. Our professional wedding planners have organized weddings a hundred times, and with practice comes perfection. They know the right people to talk to, how to get the best prices, what should and shouldn’t be in a contract, and how to ensure that every single detail is prepared for your big day. You should be 100% present for your wedding day because your wedding day happens once, and it can never be repeated.
So, why not invest in someone who can free you from every responsibility other than drinking in every moment of that day? You’ve likely invested a great amount of time, energy and resources in your wedding, so you should get to enjoy every minute. By living in every moment of your wedding day you will actually get to remember your special day. The planners available through Weddings & Events by Raina can do their jobs so well that our couples can describe in detail the moment they saw each other for the first time, what it felt like to squeeze each other’s hands during the ceremony, the taste of the cocktails and the exhilaration of dancing until their feet hurt with their nearest and dearest friends and family all because they were at liberty to surrender the details of the day to one of our planners and simply enjoy it.
So, at the beginning of your wedding planning, sit down as a couple and consider how much time, budget and how many helpers you have available for big-day preparations.
Consider which areas you could do with professional support, and which planning areas you are less interested in and happy to outsource to Weddings & Events by Raina.
Contact us, even if you’re hesitant, it won’t cost you anything to give us a call or send us an email and find out the range and price of wedding planner’s services. Trust us, it is the best way to a smoother, less stressful and more romantic wedding planning experience.
Meet The Author - Raina van Setter
Raina is a fearless leader from upstate New York, but has never felt more at home than she does in Tennessee. Apparently sweet tea has always flowed in her veins...who knew? She gets really excited when a couple selects lemon for their wedding cake, since its her favorite flavor. When she's not busy planning events and weddings of all shapes and sizes, she can be found holed up somewhere cozy with a book.
She's foodie who's all about petticoats, planning ahead and pretty things. Raina has a unique ability to reduce stress for her couples and their families so they can enjoy the planning process!
Raina van Setter
Owner of Weddings & Events by Raina
Disclaimer: This is a guest post and does not reflect the opinions of Blissful Blue Jays.
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