Wedding Planning: Working With Vendors and Staying Organized
TV personality Jamie Stelter shares tips on successful wedding planning.
I am extremely organized, and even I was overwhelmed at times by all the details that go into planning a wedding. It can be a logistical nightmare, but it doesn't have to be. There are so many vendors, so many opinions, and so many personalities – so how do you deal with the torrent of information? Easy.
Communicate. Not just in terms of telling each of them what you want, but also by being responsive. Each vendor – the florist, caterer, band leader, wedding planner – thinks that their part is most important so it's best to keep an honest, open line of communication. For me, that's preferably via email. I gave each my email in the beginning and told them to contact me whenever they needed something. I happen to be good at keeping up with email, but I also didn't want them calling or texting me at all hours of the day. Don’t set yourself up to be inundated or annoyed. You are the boss of your own day, so let them know how you prefer to be contacted.
It also makes it a lot easier when you know what you want, or at the very least, have a good idea of what you want. Pinterest boards for brides may be cliche, but there's a reason why they're so popular: they're easy to use and share. I sent the florist a link to my page and she was able to gauge color, type, size, style, everything from the pictures I had pinned. It makes their job easier, which makes your life easier. And it gives you a reference point in case of any conflict or questions.
Delegate. If your parents are around and interested in helping, use them as barriers and delegates. Put them to work! They will love it. I made my mom the main point of contact with the wedding planner so she could serve as a buffer: ask me about details that I would care about and make other decisions on her own that we had already discussed. When one of my friends went to book a room at the hotel and the block of rooms had filled up, I simply forwarded my friend's email to my dad and asked him to please help get to the bottom of it. Done.
Everyone asks how we got a wedding together in four months and honestly, it was mostly because of my parents and their willingness and excitement to be a part of the planning. They helped pick all of the people involved that we would be working with -- people who we could trust, who were responsive, knowledgeable and pleasant. We wanted this experience to be easy and fun and because of all of them, it was.
As the wedding day approached I told everyone that as long as my groom, my band and the alcohol showed up that I didn't care about anything else. Everyone told me I didn't have to worry about any of those things and guess what? They were right. Everything comes together and everyone shows up. And anyone who doesn't? It's their loss.