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Wedding Chat with Sande | Q&A with a Wedding Coordinator featuring Vanessa Bazan

A big question all brides have is "Can I do this myself or should I hire a wedding coordinator?" A wedding is a huge event with lots of moving parts and can be both stressful and intimidating. When we were planning my daughter's wedding, we didn't use one. I have a Type A personality who thinks she can do it all but can quickly go into crazy mode. We were very blessed that the mother of the groom, Diana Alarcon, stepped in and helped us tremendously with her quiet creatively, help and ideas. She should be a planner for sure! Everything she does is so pretty!

I photographed a wedding last fall that Event Coordinator Vanessa Bazan, owner of Carried Away Event Planning helped plan. I always love it when a wedding has a coordinator because I know it will flow well. So she was the perfect person to feature for this article. Hope this helps you decide whether or not you want a coordinator to help with your wedding!

Me: Thank you Vanessa for sharing your knowledge with my brides! I have a few questions for you. First of all, with Pinterest, the internet and all the information out there, why should a bride hire a coordinator?

Vanessa: I get it — hiring an external source to plan your special day can leave you asking questions like: Why should I hire someone if I can do it myself? Weddings are already costly, will it be worth it in the end? Consider the value, savings and reassurance a full-service event planner can provide. Here are a few reasons why you should definitely consider investing in a wedding planner:

  • Staying Organized: It may seem like an impossible task to keep track of all these decisions, bookings and meetings, but with the help of a wedding planner, all these arrangements are made for you in a timely and organized fashion!

  • Saves you Time: Wedding planners will make those important calls and check-ups for you, making the whole process of planning a wedding that much easier!

  • Saves you Money: A planner knows where you can cut costs and save money, and whether your budget is feasible for what you envisioned for your wedding. 

  • Saves you Stress: Not only do you deserve to be worry-free on your wedding day, you should also enjoy your engagement!

  • Saves Relationships: A wedding planner will take the stress off your family and friends on the big day, freeing them from the tedious, busy work that happens behind the scenes.

  • Saves your Day: As with any big event, there are so many unforeseen circumstances that can arise. With a planner’s meticulous itinerary, their bridal emergency kit, and their expert crisis management skills, they are prepared to gracefully handle anything.

  • Saves Memories: F rom set-up to break-down, wedding planners will be there to make sure that your driver is punctual, your make-up looks flawless, and you can relish in every moment of this celebration. If there’s one universal truth about weddings, it’s that the time always passes too quickly.

Me: That all sounds so fabulous! There is so much to take care of and keep up with! So what should a bride think about when choosing a coordinator/planner?

Vanessa: She should ask the following questions:

  • Are you available on our chosen date?

  • Have you ever planned a wedding on short notice?

  • How long have you been working as a wedding consultant?

  • Do you receive commissions from any vendors?

  • What are you fees?

  • What can I expect from you as my planner/day-of coordinator?

  • Can you work within our budget?

  • How will you dress on the day of the event?

  • Will you guarantee backup arrangements if you suddenly become sick or otherwise unavailable on our wedding day?

Me: Are there different types of wedding coordinator services?

Vanessa: Yes! I offer three packages:

Day-Of Coordinator: This package begins 6 weeks prior to the date of the wedding. I provide day of coordinating and management services, take over communication with all of vendors and arrange for all final payments. I also create itineraries custom designed for your wedding ceremony and reception. I will provide copies of the itineraries to the DJ, photographer, officiant, and ceremony musician. A room diagram is created to ensure every vendor is in his/her proper place and set up correctly. I also supply an emergency kit with beauty items, first-aid, general preparedness items, tool box, sewing kit and much more.

Partial Planner: With this package, my clients can expect services to start 6 months from the date of the wedding. Along with the day-of coordinating services, provide assistance to help you select and consult with any remaining vendors, make final payments to vendors and help you stay within your budget. I will attend meetings with your vendors should you desire. I email my clients monthly checklists to ensure we are getting all last minute details out of the way.

Full Service Planner: With this premier package, my clients can expect services to start a year before their wedding date. This package is for the couple who wants Carried Away to guide them through the entire wedding planning process, from start to finish. After a consultation with my bride and groom, I help them manage every single detail of their wedding. Services include assembling the team of service providers, handling all communications with them, attend all meetings with providers plus arranging all payments to providers. The Full Service package also includes 1 assistant on wedding day. If you want a completely stress free wedding day, this is the package for you!!

Wow! What great information - hope this answers everyone's questions about whether or not to hire a wedding planner! Thanks so much Vanessa for this valuable information!

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