I have a feeling the wedding industry, more specifically wedding planning is a little misunderstood. When meeting people for the first time one of the lead questions is usually “what do you do for a living?” and when I say “I’m a wedding planner” the most common response from both men and women is believe it or not, “Oh my gosh … like J.Lo!?” Yes and no. Yes I’m a wedding planner; no it’s not quite as glamorous behind the scenes as that movie depicts. Until recently a friend of mine also thought that all a wedding planner did was organise the flowers while others think of wedding planning as another excuse to make weddings more expensive … I’ve decided to set the record straight.
While I’d love to tell you that it’s a world filled with venue and boutique openings and magazine launches as those movies would have you believe, scratch the surface and you’ll find a well oiled machine working tirelessly to ensure that nothing falls between the cracks, deadlines are met and budgets not exceeded. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE what I do and there are some perks and a little glamour along the way but the day-to-day items listed on the old-faithful to-do list are nothing out of the ordinary. To give you a peek behind the scenes I’ve put together a two part diary: part one covers a day in the office, part two covers a day at a wedding.
Part Une – A day in the Office 21 April 2011
0700: Check emails and respond to any requiring urgent attention – with the 5-day Easter break beginning tomorrow this task takes much longer than usual.
0900: “Officially” start work for the day – today I must send out the run sheet to all suppliers involved in this weekend’s wedding. As a rule I have my clients sign off on this no later than the Wednesday before their wedding so I can allow for any last minute changes before sending to suppliers. Everything else on the to-do list is flexible but this is a must for the day. This is also an unusual Thursday as the aforementioned 5-day public holiday starts tomorrow. This means that suppliers involved in the weddings over the next two weeks are for the most part incommunicado until W-Day.
1000: Final venue meeting with clients getting married next weekend – confirming floor plan and seating chart.
1100: Collect the delicious macaroons for this weekends wedding – these are serving as the bonbonierre.
1230: Meeting with bride and tailor in regards to groomsmen’s shirts – the original shirts turned out a little more pink than planned, so we’re coming up with a solution today.
1400: Final meeting with a different venue for this weekend’s wedding. When I get there I discover that the tables have been set, overlays down, cutlery and glassware complete – this would usually be a great thing as it saves oodles of time on the wedding day but on this occasion the tables used are too small – they fit 8 people at a squeeze and we need to comfortably seat 10 guests per table … time to troubleshoot.
1530: After the meeting with this venue, I start calling different suppliers to see if they can provide me with larger tables. This would usually be a walk in the park but this is happening on the last day of business before the Easter break – a five day weekend with most businesses closed for the entire holiday which is proving to be incredibly inconvenient.
1630: Success at last – a supplier has been found and some very generous friends of mine in the industry have kindly offered to come in on Saturday and reset all 24 tables … I LOVE YOU!!! Crisis averted.
1645: The run sheet for this weekend’s wedding is sent out with 15 minutes to spare … phew!
1700: Finally some office time – this includes replying to emails, chasing payment for final invoices, responding to new inquiries, confirming stationery designs for upcoming weddings and putting the finishing touches on the information sheets for TLWWC’s Coordination Assistants.
1800: Interview for new work experience student.
1900: My last meeting for the day – a full staff briefing for the wedding this weekend … this is my favourite way to end the day … I LOVE my girls!
Stay tuned next week for my follow-up diary … “A Day In The Life Of … Part Deux”.
Photography by Todd Hunter McGaw Photographer
Ms Gingham says: Phew! Is anyone else exhausted? And we’re just reading it! Thanks to Victoria from The Little White Wedding Company for this insight into what a good wedding planner invests in her client’s weddings!
Based in Brisbane, Victoria Cameron of The Little White Wedding Company not only takes delight in planning weddings for local brides but also offers a specialised planning service for brides-to-be tying the knot interstate or abroad.
Read more wise words from Victoria Cameron here.