What your day-of coordinator needs to know #wednesdaywisdom
2020 is here! And so are lots and lots of 2020 weddings. I am so proud and excited to be working with quite a few couples in the planning and coordinating of their weddings this year and I am so excited to kick off this exciting year of weddings this weekend (see you very soon Kayla and Reece!).
Today, I want to discuss your relationship with a day-of coordinator and how to make the most of their service. Communication is so vitally important to making this relationship work and make sure that you're happy with your day-of coordinator and how your wedding day flows. Communication is the key to making sure that you get what you want, what you have already paid for, and keeping your stress low throughout your wedding weekend.
If you are working with a day-of coordinator you are probably working with your fiancé, your family, and trusted friends to select the vendors that are right for your wedding day. Hopefully, you're collecting a notebook of all of your signed contracts with your vendors that details exactly what you've chosen for your wedidng, when it will be delivered, how much you've paid and what you owe and when the balance is due.
Now your wedding day has come and it's time to pass the important information to your day-of coordinator so that they can take care of all the details for you. But, what do you share? Do you pass the 200 page binder over to the coordinator and hope for the best? I wouldn't recommend that.
Let's share what is useful and pertinent, but keep the excess to yourself. And furthermore, how should it be organized to be useful to your coordinator? Here's a list of what MUST be shared with your day-of coordinator to keep the stress down and keep you and your coordinator happy!
- The names of everyone in the wedding and phone numbers of the VIPs. If they are your maid of honor, your grandmother, or reading a poem - make sure that your coordinator has their name and a way to contact them on your wedding day that doesn't involve anyone bothering you or your groom.
- All of the contracts that you have signed with every vendor hired for your wedding day. Send over those contracts by email so that your coordinator can call and confirm that all deliveries are scheduled at the times that work best.
If you change vendors, revise orders, change pick up or delivery plans, or make any other changes to an order - share that information too. It can cause so much confusion on the wedding day if everyone is not up to speed on all the arrangements.
- Any family or members of the wedding party that might need special care or attention. Let's face it, family can be tough. Getting large groups of family together and keeping the peace can be tougher, even on a joyful day. If there is anyone who has special needs or if there is tension that needs to be addressed by a coordinator, share it with them.
- Who is helping with set up and clean up? In the case that your caterer or vendor doesn't provide clean up personnel, let your planner know who will be helping with set up and who will be assisting with clean up at the end of the event. Make sure that your planner knows if it is their responsibility to remind those helping out before the end of the event.
Now the organization part - I recommend creating a good old spreadsheet or two with all of this information. Email the copies of your contracts over to your coordinator, but create a cheat sheet for them, if they don't send you a form that does this job, with a point of contact and how to reach them for everyone listed above.
If it seems like a headache to compile all this information, I understand. But, please remember that a little work ahead of your wedding day will save you an enormous amount of work on your wedding day. All you have to do is pass it on to a coordinator like me no less than three weeks ahead of your wedding date and let me take it from there. If I need more guidance from you, I'll get in touch with you. Next, you can expect a detailed timeline summarizing all of the information that you have shared with me. This timeline will guide how your wedding day flows and be the reference point for me throughout the big day!
Now, what do you NOT share? Don't share any quotes for vendors that you did not choose. Do not share any information for services that your coordinator cannot control. For example, save photos of your hair and makeup for your hair stylist and make up artist. Do a final clean out of any pinterest pins that ending up not matching your final choices of decor, flowers, or ceremony and reception layout. Make sure that your coodinator sees only what you and your fiancé want so that they can execute your vision.
One last note, and I cannot stress this enough - COMMUNICATION IS KEY! I know that wedding planning can be so stressful. But, I encourage you so, so much to keep your day-of coordinator in the know as your planning evolves. I want to make you and your fiancé happy and lighten and see your through a glorious, stressfree wedding day.
Thanks for making through this doozy of a post. I can't wait to share my spectacular 2020 weddings!
All photos courtesy of the amazing Summer Simmons Photography