Wednesday, September 17, 2008

An article

One thing brides always ask me is what I can do for them. I found an article about some of the things a coordinator can do for you. Enjoy!


Hiring a wedding coordinator was once a luxury. Today, for many couples, it's a necessity. Planning a wedding is more complicated than ever, now that most brides and grooms don't meet and marry in the same hometown. Both the bride and groom usually want to be involved with the arrangements but are often preoccupied with work or school. They have high expectations of their weddings, but are novices at organizing such big events. Not only can a wedding coordinator handle the time-consuming, stress-inducing details, but he or she can also help make the planning itself an enjoyable experience. "Many couples have tremendous wedding days," says Elizabeth K. Allen, a planner with offices in New York City and Atlanta. "But looking back, they realize how stressful it was to get there. A wedding coordinator helps to make it an enjoyable process all around, so the couple has great memories of the engagement and the celebration."

Wedding coordinators provide a variety of services, from the general to the very specific. They can help you determine and stick with a budget, for example, or suggest suitable reception locations. They can save you lots of time, especially if you're looking for unique services, such as a caterer who specializes in vegetarian meals, or a photographer with a talent for black-and-white images (most coordinators will have collections of photographers' portfolios on hand, so you don't have to spend valuable time meeting with dozens of photographers yourself ). Because wedding coordinators have worked with many vendors in the past, they are knowledgeable about those professionals' or companies' strengths, weaknesses, and fees -- and whether fees are negotiable. Some coordinators even serve as shopping companions and advisers as you try on dresses, shoes, and veils. Best of all, talented wedding coordinators can act as counselors, helping to appease the conflicting opinions of various family members.

Wedding coordinators can be especially helpful for couples who are short on time or live far from the location where they plan to be married. Tiphaine Ravenel and Paolo Bonetti faced both dilemmas. The couple lives in Colorado but wanted to be married near the bride's hometown of Charleston, South Carolina. Tiphaine's mother, Mollie Fair, feared that the couple's distance from the wedding site, combined with the short engagement period, would not allow the three of them to organize the perfect wedding. So they hired a coordinator who created a schedule and helped them elaborate on ideas they had for an outdoor, interfaith ceremony.

The coordinator also addressed the little things they might otherwise have overlooked, such as finding a restaurant that could store the wedding cake Tiphaine's friend had made in California and then shipped cross-country. But perhaps her greatest contribution to the wedding plans was to give the bride and her mother the confidence they needed to handle many details on their own. "It was a relief just to know we had the phone number of a very experienced person and could use it if we needed it," says Mollie.

Wedding coordinators can be lifesavers when time is short, but that doesn't mean you should postpone getting started if you can help it. Most coordinators say you should plan a wedding at least six months in advance -- a year is better. It is important for you to use the time wisely. To make your interviews with potential coordinators the most efficient, bring along clippings from magazines showing food, decorations, and settings that appeal to you, as well as photographs of any weddings that you enjoyed and might like to duplicate. During the initial consultation, try to determine whether this is a person you can trust and with whom you will feel comfortable working.

If you know you'll need someone to hold your hand through every step of the planning process, this is the time to ask whether the coordinator already has several other events to organize for the same month as your wedding. If she is not available, it won't matter that she's the best in town. Then determine how many meetings you actually need, whether it be one a month or one a week. Many couples appreciate the comfort of having a wedding coordinator on hand the day of the ceremony to ensure that all goes according to schedule.

I believe this article gives brides an idea what I coordinator can and should do for you. Furthermore, I believe this is what I do for my brides! Happy Planning!