Did you know a wedding is one of the most stressful events in your life (7th most stressful life event according to the Holmes and Raha stress scale)? But if you want a worry free wedding day, what you need is a fantastic wedding planner. These amazing professionals who can keep their head when all around them are losing theirs, these calming figures who glide through the day like a swan, while their feet are going at the speed of lightning.
And it’s this amazing skill that makes them special, the ability to take away all the worries, deflect all the problems away from you so you can enjoy your big day. But just how do these miracle workers do it and what goes on in the day of a wedding planner?
We put together a panel of some of the UK’s Top Wedding Planners to learn the secrets of their success.
To find out more about our lovely team of planners, please see to the contributor’s section at this end of the article.
Our panel of experts…
|Katrina Otter||Emily Andrew|
|Zoë Binning||Aimee Dunne|
|Samantha Imbimbo||Annabel Candler|
|Emma Douglas||Siân Bowron|
|Jane Riddell||Debbie Rainford|
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5.30AM: Breakfast and depart for the wedding venue with all stationery, props, décor, wedding folder and clipboards, wedding planning kit and a change of clothes.
6.30AM: Venue gates to open and walk-round with front of house team, checking placement of venue furniture (pre-set overnight) including ceremony seating, reception tables and chairs, easels and PA system.
7.00AM: Hair and MUA to arrive and start bridal party prep.
7.30AM: Assistants to arrive at venue – walk-around, briefing and commence venue set-up (7:30AM – Midday) including unpacking and checking of earlier deliveries i.e. linen and tableware.
8.30AM: Supplier deliveries to venue from 8:30AM including additional chill-out furniture and lighting.
Wedding Planning Tip #1 – Siân Bowron
Decide from the very beginning how and where you want to prioritise your budget and stick to it. If you get part way through the planning and are looking around at things you haven’t budgeted for then stop and reassess before you get carried away.
6.00AM: Time to get up, have some breakfast (it’ll be my last meal for several hours) and get ready for the day ahead!
7.00AM: Off to the venue to set up the room for the wedding breakfast. Ensure that all the tables have been already laid up, ready for me to display the centrepieces, name plates, menus, favours, guest book and other decorations.
8.00AM: Make sure the bride has some breakfast – even if it’s just a piece of toast! Usually they’re not feeling like eating but it’s a long day and there’s going to be lots of bubbly flowing…
9.00AM: Florist to arrive and start set-up including ceremony and reception.
9.30AM: Usher breakfast briefing, running through timings and roles and responsibilities.
10.00AM: Placement of all signage and wedding stationery.
10.30AM: Delivery and set-up of wedding cake, including placement of floral backdrop and cake table linen.
11.00AM: Photographer and Videographer to arrive at venue for briefing and walk-through.
Wedding Planning Tip #2 – Debbie Rainford
How to budget?
My question to clients is always – What are you comfortable spending on your big day and what would you keel over and never recover from if it cost? By doing this you tend to get a realistic budget. The reason this is so important is because it affects every decision you make after this. The benefit of an experienced planner here is that they will immediately be able to tell you whether your budget is realistic to achieve the type of wedding that you desire.
9.00AM: The florist delivers the bouquets to the bride and bridesmaids and the buttonholes to the boys! Check in on the girls and meet the make-up artists and hairdressers who have arrived to get the girls ready.
10.00AM: Meet the florist at the venue to check that floral centrepieces and any other arrangements for guest book/cake tables have all been delivered and displayed.
11.00AM: Ensure that the cake has arrived and is properly displayed. Check final touches to all of the wedding breakfast and occasional tables and any other decor around the venue. Check that the bride is looked after, relaxed and enjoying the preparations.
Wedding Planning Tip #3 – Marie Haverly
Save money (and stress)
Don’t underestimate how stressful things can get, plan early and make decisions quickly and then stick to them. Know what your focus is, where you want to spend money and where you want to save money and stick to these too.