So he (or she) has popped the question and the initial excitement has worn off; it’s time to plan the wedding of your dreams. Whether you have binge watched every episode of “Say Yes to the Dress” and drool over big extravagant weddings you see in the magazines or you long for a small intimate wedding with unique details that capture your love story perfectly, choosing the right vendors is the key to having a stress free day. What do you look for when choosing the vendors for your wedding? Here are some tips below.
Price. No brainer right? Maybe not so much. Let me tell you a story about a bride. Six years ago a bride married her soulmate on a blistering day in August. She wanted to look perfect on her big day so she hired a professional makeup artist (I have some AMAZING referrals if you are looking for one BTW). The trial run went flawlessly, contract was signed, and makeup artist shows up the day of the wedding and does her job. When the time comes to pay, the balance due does not match what the bride thought it would be. The bride didn't notice the fees listed in the contract for travel. Luckily the bride’s mom steps in and covers the remaining cost and the day is saved with only a minor panic attack (P.S. I am the bride; she is me). It seems like a no-brainer to consider pricing when choosing a vendor but its imperative to make sure you know the full price and what all is included or what you will need to purchase a la carte.
Equally as important, is choosing vendors whose style matches your vision. Again this may seem like a no-brainer but taking your time and not rushing into choosing vendors is key. If you haven’t already, get on Pinterest and figure out what style you like. If it’s photography, do you sway towards bright and airy photos or do you see yourself swooning over the more dark and dramatic edits? When looking at venues do you prefer rustic or modern or somewhere in between. Get references from recently married friends and family or ask potential vendors for referrals. Take the time to research what you like and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Vendors want you to get exactly what you want; they want you to be happy with the end product because a happy bride is a good review.
Are you still with me? Good, because this could be the most valuable tip I give you. Choose vendors you mesh with. Let me say it a little louder for those in the back, vendors are NOT one size fits all. Just because you like someone’s work does not always mean they are the right person to do the job. Let me explain. Photographers, for instance, are with you pretty much your entire wedding day. Sometimes we see you cry, a lot of times we witness family quarrels, almost always we see you naked (not kidding here). We plan with you for months in advance and capture the love between you and your significant other on the day devoted just to you all. Having someone with you, that is in your corner, that can cry along side you, that can diffuse tense situations with family members, that can dance to the Cha-Cha slide with you (also not kidding, I will be dancing at your wedding at some point) is a crucial part of your big day. My job is not done if I haven’t made myself a part of your family and become your friend. So pick vendors whose work you like and whose personality you love.
The selection process is tedious and sometimes long but do not rush it. This is YOUR big day. your only wedding (hopefully), so make it about you and your significant other. Meet with potential vendors in-person, if possible, to see their work, explain your vision, and make sure you can handle spending the most important day of your life with them. Oh, and have fun. Wedding planning can be stressful but you should also try to breath through it and enjoy.