There are so many little (and not so little) issues that arise during the process of planning your wedding.
But thankfully, there are professionals who have seen it all, been there, done that, and rearranged the table plan at the last minute. And we have one such planning pro on hand today, to troubleshoot some of the most common issues that arise for couples in the lead up to their big day.
Emma from Something Blue creates the most beautiful weddings with stunning tablescapes, gorgeous details, and best of all, a smooth day for the couples she works with.
Read her great tips for everything from dealing with non-RSVPers (my pet peeve!), to tackling your wedding budget – this lady knows her stuff!
I’m going to run through the most common issues I come across as a wedding planner and how to overcome or even better, prevent them!
Finding Trustworthy Suppliers
This is a tricky one as there isn’t a one stop place to find reputable suppliers.
Many websites and blogs have directories, but once you’ve found the suppliers you like the look of, what do you do then?
The first step is to think about how you feel when you look at their website? Is it professional? Can you see images of real weddings? Has their work been featured on any blogs or magazines and then links to the articles where they’re credited?
Once you’ve have done your research and you reach out to the supplier don’t be afraid of asking for references from real brides or asking them any questions you have doubts over.
Genuine suppliers want to help you and will happily answer concerns. If the supplier new, you don’t have to be concerned, everyone starts somewhere and this lack of experience is probably being represented within their price.
Sticking to a Budget
A well-written budget is the first things I do for all my clients. Often I hear from friends ‘we’ve gone way over budget’, and normally the reason for this is not writing a detailed enough budget in the first place.
The key steps to writing a successful budget are:
1. Set your max figure – now take away 5% to set aside for a contingency.
2. Break down your budget into categories e.g; flowers, then sub-categories, table flowers, bouquets etc.
The more detail you go into, the more accurate your budget will be. This will also help you in supplier choices so when you receive detailed quotes you can compare easily.
3. Finally, set your three priorities for the wedding. What are the three things which are your most important must-haves? This could be a band, photography, or free drinks for guests.
Take your time over this as it will play a factor in your entire wedding planning. Then do your research into how much they cost. Once you have these three items you can work the rest of the budget around them.
If you do end up heading over-budget, revisit the budget and remind yourself of your three priorities, this will help you to reduce other areas and get back on track.
Too Many Guests and Not Enough Room
So you’ve written your guest list and then gone on the hunt for a venue, but the venue you love won’t accommodate your guest numbers so what can you do?
Highlight your list according to priorities, grab two highlighter pens and highlight one colour people who must be invited and label these guests A and the rest the other colour B. Now work through the B list and see if you can reduce.
Common ways to reduce are:
• Do you need to invite plus ones you’ve never met?
• Can you speak with your parents and reduce the number of their friends or change them to evening guests?
• Do you want to invite children?
Make sure you print some spare blank invites and once your RSVPs start to come in you can then invite some B list if you have space.
Guests Who Don’t Reply to RSVPs
Sadly it’s more common for guests not to respond to RSVPs than to respond to them, so try and make it as easy as possible for your guests.
This can be done with an enclosed stamped pre-addressed reply envelopes or email addresses so they can quickly email you.
Always have a date on your RSVPs that’s a couple of weeks before your final numbers, so you have the chance to chase up on RSVPs.
And if all else fails…
If all of this sounds like too much hassle, then hiring a wedding planner can take a lot of these stresses away. They will manage the entire wedding budget, RSVPs and supplier research for you.
If this is a little out of your budget, I also offer a wedding inspiration package where you can meet with me over a two-hour meeting and I will recommend suppliers based on your vision, provide templates for budget planning, timelines and inviting and tracking guests.
This aims set you up for the perfect start in your wedding planning journey.