A Day in the Life of a Wedding Planner
On the day of the wedding, my day usually begins before the sun rises. A morning routine is important to prepare for a full day onsite. I start with a hearty breakfast (everything bagel with plain cream cheese). Then I put on my “natural but better” makeup and my comfy yet professional outfit (usually something black with pockets)! Next, I make sure my emergency backpack is packed full of all of the essentials, slip on my comfy planner shoes and grab my handy clipboard with the day-of timeline. Finally, I drink my coffee and listen to a podcast or audiobook on my way to the site.
Pre-Wedding: Upon arriving at the venue, I verify that anything that is already set up matches the details in my Wedding Event Order. If the décor is already at the venue, I begin putting all of the details into place from the guestbook to favors; making sure everything is placed as the couple pictured.
The bride and bridesmaids are usually the next to arrive. They get comfortable in their designated suite as I make sure to hang up their dresses and collect special items for detailed photos (invitations, bride’s shoes, bride’s garter, veil, something blue, something old, something new, something borrowed and the marriage certificate).
Now the hustle and bustle of the day begins. I kick into action receiving deliveries, checking in vendors, answering questions and ensuring everything and everyone is in the correct place. Meanwhile, the bride is enjoying a mimosa with her best girls as the makeup artist and hairstylist work their magic.
Usually, about this time the groom and groomsmen arrive, and the real party begins (groomsmen are always a hoot)! Upon arrival I double-check their attire to make sure all buttons are attached; pocket squares are in place and boutonnieres are pinned securely in the correct spot. The photographer becomes the expert here as they direct the bridal party through pictures. If the bride and groom are doing a first look, I offer a helping hand with carrying the bride’s dress and making sure the trail looks pristine as she approaches her groom.
Ceremony: After a little rest and makeup retouches (my timeline always includes 30 minutes of chill time before the ceremony), it’s showtime! I lineup the grandparents, parents, and bridal party just like we did at the rehearsal. On my signal, the ceremony musician begins the processional music and each pair is signaled down the aisle. With one more signal to change the song it’s the bride’s turn. I give her one final fluff of her trail and down the aisle she goes.
While the officiant is doing their work in the ceremony, I am putting the final touches together in the reception venue. Lighting candles, putting the final touches on centerpieces and place settings, and of course, checking in with the caterer and bar staff.
Cocktail Hour: During the cocktail hour, I am usually jumping back and forth between assisting with directing group photos and making sure the guests are enjoying the hors d'oeuvres. As a second guide to your photographer, I am making sure you get all of the photos you want by reviewing your checklist. I am also there to always make sure your trail and veil look perfect and if there are any cranky flower girls or ring bearers don’t worry, I handle them too.
Before we let guests into the reception, I am doing a walkthrough to make sure that everything is in place, candles are lit and the staff is prepared for guests. On my signal guests are welcomed into the reception hall and I am available to answer questions about the seating arrangements or where the gift table is located.
Reception: Let’s get this party started! Guests are seated and the bridal party is lined up and ready to make their grand entrance into the reception. I work with the DJ or reception MC to execute the grand entrance. The bride and groom settle into their seats and sip their drinks that I already have placed for them. Dinner service begins. For buffet dinners, I am there to help release tables one by one to avoid a long line and make sure that all of your vendors get a meal. Of course, I’ll personally deliver the couple’s making sure that they have time to eat.
Once everyone is served, I work with the DJ/ MC to get the toast and speeches started. Next up is the cake cutting. Don’t worry I already set out a plate, two forks, extra napkins, and filled your champagne glasses. Now the DJ/ MC takes over to signal through your first dance, other special dances, bouquet/garter tosses, and an open dance floor. Don’t worry though I am still there observing in the background available if anything is needed.
As the night continues, I begin the pack-up process by gathering items throughout the venue and placing them together in a safe place. At this point, I make sure that your gifts and cards are safely packed up in the correct car. I also make sure your overnight bag is safely placed in your getaway car.
If there is an organized grand exit with supplies such as sparklers, I direct guests to the proper spot and provide the necessary directions. Now unfortunately our time together has come to an end as I wish you the absolute best and send you on your way through your exit and into your getaway car.
As you and your new husband settle into your hotel room, I make sure that all of your décor is properly packed away from the venue. Anything that needs to be returned is packed in my car to ensure a safe and timely return. I conduct a final walk-through to make sure nothing is left behind. Guests are gone and family members head to their cars. My job here is done.