Planning a wedding is a mixture of organization, attention to detail, and honestly, a little mental instability! Most couples initially don't realize the work and dedication needed to execute their dream day however, as they dive into the planning process this realization hits, and it hits hard. This is when they turn to the professionals, aka us! They are instantaneously hit with the decision of whether to go with a wedding planner vs. wedding coordinator. While these terms seem interchangeable, they are two distinct roles that fulfill different needs.
What Does A Wedding Planner Do?
Wedding planners are with their clients from start to finish. They are involved from conception to execution and work very closely with the couples from design to logistical work. Their focus is heavily on conceptualization, vendor selection, budget management, design, logistics and
coordination, and personalization.
Conceptualization: Planners need to collaborate with their couples to understand their vision, preferences, and style; they help translate these ideas into a cohesive wedding concept.
Wedding Vendor Selection: A huge perk of hiring a planner is their extensive network of vendors. These vendors are people whom they have worked with time and time again and know they can deliver exactly what they have promised. They also know what vendors will go best with your style and budget!
Wedding Budget Management: Money is one of the first things that come to mind when thinking about your wedding, having a planner assist in creating and managing the budget is HUGE. They allocate funds to various aspects while keeping track of the overall expenses to keep their couples on track!
Wedding Design: They take your aesthetic and show you possibilites you never imagined imagined having! They contribute to the creative aspects of the day; from design board creations to floral arrangements - even better if your planning company has a floral department, hint hint, it's US!
Wedding Logistics and Coordination: This is where planners become similar to coordinators, both are responsible for overseeing all the logistical details including timeline and vendor coordination. However, a planner will take logistics to another step by attending site visits and menu tastings with their clients!
Wedding Personalization: Planners love to customize their couple's weddings, one of their goals is to infuse personal touches throughout the entire day. From incorporating ceremony rituals to creating custom signature drinks - they want the day to ooze uniqueness!
What Does A Wedding Coordinator Do?
Wedding coordinators typically begin communication with their clients around 6-8 weeks out, they are there to help manage the final details and take stress off their couples. Their primary focus is on the execution of all the wonderful details their clients picked out to ensure the day the couple was envisioning comes to life! They manage items such as timeline, vendor coordination, ceremony and reception, problem-solving, and decor and setup.
Wedding Timeline Management: They create detailed timelines based on the needs of their clients. They ensure that all of the client's wants are met throughout the day while also maintaining the flow of the day. They are responsible for wrangling in the wedding party and family, even those over-served bridesmaids or crying flower girls 😉
Wedding Vendor Coordination: Coordinators are in contact with the vendors as soon as the 6-8 week mark begins. They are confirming details, delivery times, and set-up requirements. They are the point of contact for the vendors from the time their contracted start time begins to the very end of the day, making sure everything runs smoothly.
Ceremony and Reception Management: Not only are they guiding the wedding party down the aisle they are also overseeing that the DJ plays the right first dance song, getting your toasting flutes filled for cake cutting, and even making sure your other vendors get fed!
Wedding Problem-Solving: From having to deal with that one drunk groomsman who thinks it's okay to give a 30-minute speech, because let's be real, there's always that one guy, to having to tackle unexpected challenges that will inevitably arise throughout the day. It is the coordinator's main objective, to be a solution-finder, they are there to minimize as much stress as possible for their couple.
Wedding Decor and Set-up: While they are not involved with the selections in the design process, they are the supervisors of the set-up of all decor. They are doing everything they can to ensure the vendors the couple has hired and trusted bring the vision to life.
Which One Is The Right Option For You?
Now that we have unveiled the difference between wedding planners vs wedding coordinators, it's time to decide which one is the best fit! For brides who struggle to make a decision and who get overwhelmed when even having to choose a place to eat let alone planning a huge event, the planner route may be the best way to go! A planner can offer their expertise and in turn, will reduce the stress of planning an event and everything that goes along with it. For the brides who have a knack for organization and love the planning process then a coordinator may be the best direction! A coordinator can be there for support during execution and will do their best to execute your perfect day and all the selections you made! Another thing to consider is the budget. Both a planner and coordinator are extremely worth the investment, however, we know some couples need to stick within certain means. So when starting your initial budget talks keep in mind which wedding professional you feel will best suit you and your needs and be sure you account for their expense in the budget!
Whether you opt for a full-fledged planner or a coordinator, you can't go wrong! Both of these professionals are KEY in executing your most perfect day, they bring a level of expertise that is crucial to the success of the day! They both are dedicated to making your day as memorable and enjoyable of an experience as they can. Their ultimate goal is to allow you to focus on celebrating with your closest family and friends! Something important to note - while it is always recommended to have a planner or a coordinator for a wedding, it's important that both parties mesh well with each other. Not everyone is a perfect fit with one another, so take the time to really get to know one another and ensure that your ideals match up, because, by the end of this wedding experience, we can almost guarantee y'all will be best friends!
Photo Credits -
Kristen Giles Photography: https://kristengilesphotography.com/
Tiny Mum Photography: http://www.tinymumphotography.com/