What does an average wedding day look like? How involved will One Weddings be in your big day? What ALL can a Wedding Planner do and is there anything that off limits? What does a day in the life of a One Weddings Wedding Planner look like?
When my dream of becoming a Wedding Planner began during college, I asked myself all of the above questions. In my Hospitality Management courses, I heard a couples common lines from professors: "We are the profession that works evenings, weekends, and holidays". "We are the ones behind-the-scenes, putting our client in the spot-light while making sure everything else isn't falling apart". Once I began my classes for certification through Columbus Bridal Consultants, the President of CBC (our teacher) Heather Smith drove these points home even further. As I shadowed her in my training, I learned just what to expect once I began Wedding Planning on my own. In my experience, I would say that a Wedding Planner becomes the assistant of the entire Bridal Party for the wedding day, while also managing the logistics and flow that make the event everything we had planned. From caring for an infant flower girl who fell asleep right before the ceremony and woke right after it started, to trying to understand what a Bride's grandparents are requesting of me in Macedonian, I have seen it all.
For Brides, people interested in Wedding Planning, or anyone who is just curious, here is what a typical day in the life of a Wedding Planner looks like.
6:00 am - Wake up and get ready for a wedding! While the Bride usually has someone to do her nails, hair, and makeup, I do not. All of that has to happen the night before or morning of the wedding, so that I look professional and am dressed for the big day.
8:00 am - Triple-check my check list of items I'm supposed to bring and load everything in the car. Check that my wedding emergency kit is fully stocked with everything to handle a wardrobe malfunction, a flower girl meltdown, or a dehydrated Bridesmaid.
9:00 am - Arrive at ceremony venue and check Bridal Party rooms for all the getting-ready-essentials (mirrors, outlets, water, snacks, etc). Set up ceremony decor.
10:00 am - Arrive at reception venue and check or supervise layout of furniture and equipment. Revise layout due to any last minute changes or cancellations and inform venue staff of any changes. Set up decor (centerpieces, signage, favors, etc) and send pictures to the Maid of Honor who really wants to see it before the Bride gets there.
2:00 pm - Head back to ceremony site and get lunch on the way. Find the Bridal Party almost ready and greet vendors. Help vendors with their set-up and make sure they have the finalized copy of the itinerary. Introduce ceremony staff to vendors and begin rehearsing music, testing AV equipment and perfecting the lighting. Check to see if the Bridal Party forgot anything, needs help getting zipped, pinned, or buttoned, or needs to talk through the order of the ceremony (again). Go find Grandma and give her her corsage. Point out important family members to the photographer and videographer, so they're sure to document their role in the big day. Assist Bridal Party in any pre-ceremony photos.
4:00 pm - Welcome guests and direct them to their seats. Give Bridal Party a countdown and check in with vendors for any last minute needs.
4:15 pm - Get the Bridal Party lined up and ready. Give musicians a cue to begin the Processional and maintain the spacing of the nervous bridesmaids. Once the Groom has made his way down the aisle, retrieve the Bride and her father from their room and hide them near the ceremony entrance. Once the full party is down the aisle, cue the musicians, and open the doors for the beautiful Bride and her father.
4:30 pm - During ceremony, clean up Bridal Party rooms and make sure Bridal Party transportation has arrived.
5:00 pm - Pass out bubbles/rice/flower petals to guests while Bride and Groom are signing the marriage license.
5:15 pm - See Bridal Party off to photography location and head to the reception.
5:45 pm - Arrive back at reception, greet guests and help them find seats. Tend to guests needs and requests. Talk with reception staff and vendors about the finalized timeline and the Bridal Party's ETA.
6:15 pm - Get Bridal Party lined up at reception for announcement and have guests find their seats once more.
6:30 pm - Cue Emcee to announce Bridal Party, begin speeches, and start dinner. Once dinner begins, I try to eat quickly so I can manage all the following events. I also ensure that the other vendors get fed.
8:00 pm - Check with Bride and Groom and then cue Emcee to announce dances, bouquet and garter toss, and cake cutting.
8:45 pm - Stay on site and manage event. Load gifts into Bride's car and pack up leftover dinner and cake.
11:00 pm - As the last guests are leaving, I begin to clean up and tear down centerpieces and decorations. I pack all items into a storage room at the reception site and take unwanted flowers home. Tomorrow I will return any rented vendor property in and around Columbus.
1:00 am - I am finally done with the day and headed home.
After a 19 hour day (and the return of vendor property the following day), my job is done. Though I spend so much time with a Bride on her wedding day, it doesn't compare to the time we spend in preparation meeting, talking, and planning. Everything we do to prepare is well worth it as we see her dream become a reality and I am always more than honored to play a role.