Saturday, September 17, 2011

The Ties That Bind

In a previous post I shared a few tips on documenting the details of your big day, and making sure your wants and wishes are clearly detailed in your wedding professionals contracts. Following are a few more tips to help you navigate the ties that bind.

· Get everything in writing because verbal deals are not binding.

· Negotiating is like a dance. It's give and take. Everything is negotiable! Howevever my next point is crucial...

· Think it through! What are your needs, wants, and absolute must haves? The time spent before signing the contract is called negotiating. Once the contract is signed, it’s called BEGGING.

· Here today, gone tomorrow. There is a high rate of turnover in banquet sales. The sales person who promises you the world today, could very well be off to another sales position tomorrow. If your sales person leaves – all the verbal agreements go with them and you won’t get what was “promised”.

· Professional wedding planners may seem like magicians, however if what you want is not in the contract, your planner’s hands are tied. Although your planner will go to bat for you, she may not be able to “make it happen” if it’s not in writing.

· As new deals, agreements and promises are made, make sure to get a new contract or signed addendum.

· If a verbal agreement was made, be sure to follow it up with an email confirming the discussed details and request a reply confirmation.

· Make sure you get a copy of every change, note, discussion, etc.

· No detail is too small to note, especially if it is important to the success and the vision you have for your wedding day.

Contracts are the least fun part of planning a wedding, but they are absolutely the most vital part of your wedding day success!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

What's In Your Emergency Kit?

Despite all of the claims of producing a “perfect” wedding, the reality of the day is that there will be some snafus. Unforeseen situations will arise that you did not plan for, stuff will happen, and people will be people. How prepared are you? If you are lucky you will have a professional wedding planner on hand to run interference and you will not have to tend to the issues yourself. However, if you decide to go it alone, an emergency kit is a must. The wedding day emergency kit that I prepare for each client is filled with over a hundred items. Quite honestly unless you’ve planned hundreds of weddings, some of the things you’d find in the kit would have questioning why. As a planner it is my job to think outside of the box and to see the whole picture. So, here are just a few “out of the box” thinking items you might want to include in your kit.

Toothpicks – are perfect for stabilizing a bent boutonniere. Simply run the toothpick through the center of the flower into the stem in order to straighten it out again and keep it from drooping.

Rubber bands – waist band too tight? Rubber bands are perfect for fastening pants and covering the waist band with a vest or cummerbund.

Floral Tape – is definitely a must for missing or completely destroyed boutonnieres. Solution: remove a floral stem from an altar arrangement or one of the bridesmaids bouquets, cut the stem down to size and wrap floral tape around it…and voila you are back in business!

Panty Liners – work extremely well under the armpits of a very nervous groom :-)

Straws – reduces the need for constant lipstick touch-ups for bride and bridesmaids who need to drink water or their beverage of choice while waiting to take pictures and partake in other wedding day festivities.

Crochet Needle – an absolute MUST have for buttoning those tiny buttons on the back of the brides wedding gown!

Stain Remover – Those “Shout Wipe Pads” are the best thing created since sliced bread! Inevitably, the bride is going to get a mark or smudge or something on her gown between the time she puts it on and the time she heads to the ceremony…never fails, so stock up!

Again, these are just a few items you should consider having in your kit. It’s better to be prepared and not need them, than to need them and not be prepared.

I would love to hear from you. What potential wedding day disaster was averted because you or your coordinator was prepared with a well- stocked emergency kit?