Congratulations on all your hard work on your wedding so far.. hopefully your fiance and friends have been helping out! Now it's time to consider a coordinator... well don't get confused between your venue coordinator that runs the staff at the venue and a wedding coordinator that deals with everything else (outside vendors, styling, flow of the day, etc.). After being asked this endless times, I think it's time to clarify exactly what is coordination! Some planners refer to this service as day-of or month-of coordination and amongst each planner, this service does have many variances. At Bisous Events, although this is our smallest wedding package, we do not take it lightly. We have just the one time to ensure your day runs smoothly so there are many details required in order to make this dream day happen!
What is included in "coordination":
Of course, every wedding is unique with its guest count, location, design, DIY elements, season and personal touches but here is just some of what is included in coordination when it comes to us:
- 2 face-to-face, skype and/or phone meetings to finalize all the details (we have plenty of international clients)
- site visit/wedding rehearsal
- 10 hours coordination on the day-of (unless requested by the client for additional hours): We usually arrive at noon and wrap up at 10pm when all the speeches, dinner and games/tosses have been done and it's just time to dance!
- floor plan: We will work with you to go over how you'd like to make the room look and where to put flowers, decor, pictures, tables, dance floor, etc.
- customized itinerary: when does everything happen? who are the important people in terms of vendors, friends and family? is there enough time for all the elements and does it have a natural flow? Awkward pauses and moving crowds of people are kept to a minimum to keep your wedding flowing along!
- set-up details: what goes where? is there anything missing?
- cutting out those traditions that you aren't fond of and allowing you to have more time to enjoy with your guests!
- connecting vendors: Your A/V company will want to make sure the band/DJ has everything they need, the videographer will want to connect with the photographer if they've never worked together, the venue will want to know when the furniture are arriving so leave it to is to finalize those critical items and making sure everyone is on the same page.
- set-up: we make sure your vendors are set up, deliveries are made on time, everything looks beautiful and guests are where they need to be
- clean-up: especially when it comes to the money box, we'll make sure your personal items are packed/locked away before we leave for the evening. All pick-up from other vendors will be smooth. (Again, some couples choose to hire us all the way until lights are turned back on.)
- less stress, more fun: any way we can expedite or alleviate stress, we try! The final itinerary and floor plan are usually sent out to all vendors and the VIPs (family and friends) a week in advance so they can ask any final questions, make minor adjustments and know the flow of the day.
- wedding kit: we bring out handy dandy kit with a plethora of goodies including bandaids, hair spray, tape, lights, mints, etc.
- problem solving all the issues that may arise! Nothing can beat peace of mind.
What details we'll need to in order to prepare everything:
- final guest count with meal choices and dietary restrictions
- final floor plan: how many chairs, tables, linens and cutlery will need to be finalized based on this
- VIPs'/wedding party info (family and friends to arrange where they're sitting, order they'll be walking down, know when family photos are being taken, speeches, etc.)
- vendor info: email, phone, name, what are they bringing, what do they need, what time are they arriving and cleaning up
- traditions and games: are you cutting the cake? throwing the bouquet? breaking the glass? tea ceremony? shoe game?
- details, details, details: what will you bringing/need us to bring/unpack?
- exact getting ready locations / hair and make-up schedule
- photo list
- final song lists for first dance, cake cutting, etc.
- processional and recessional order for ceremony
- grand entrance for reception
- day-of stationery: seating chart, table numbers, place/escort cards, favour tags, menus, etc.
- DIY items and set-up details of how you'd like to see them displayed
I know one of the biggest regrets some of my clients have said if they wished they did planning instead of coordination but at the end of the day, weddings can absolutely be pricey but its worth considering a coordinator at the very least! I have done weddings for event planners because no matter how organized you are, you can't duplicate yourself on the day and you want to be sure you aren't having to deal with those hiccups on the day. Trust me, to this day, some of my clients don't know the bumps that happened on their day that we dealt with... which is the whole point! Whether it is a $10k or $100k budget, just make sure all that planning comes together the way you imagined it. Every couple thinks of eloping once or twice during the process so don't be so hard on yourself either!
All the best with your planning process regardless what you decide!