22 August 2014

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Debate: Do you need a wedding planner?


Debate wedding planner - 051_Debate-wedding-planner-1.jpg

No: Louise Grant 

Louise runs Louise Grant Weddings, a series of short workshops and consultations to help brides and grooms plan their own weddings

Anyone can plan a wedding; you just need to have the right knowledge to do it. The months before the event can be a very daunting time and if you don’t have any experience with  managing suppliers, you can come up against many common pitfalls. Having a wedding planner doesn’t necessarily stop this from happening. They charge a large sum of money and throughout the process they will reveal little nuggets of  information to you. By the end, you may know everything you need to plan a wedding, but wouldn’t it be more helpful to have all this information at the outset? Couples need to feel  empowered from the off so the planning becomes as enjoyable as the day itself. There are always going to be challenges, but if you know how to choose and brief suppliers, read contracts, how and where to cut costs and then bring together themes, menus and decor, you can go through the organisation process a lot more confidently. My workshops teach brides and grooms how to avoid all the problems I was faced with at my own wedding without shelling out thousands of pounds.  

Yes: Bruce Russell  Bruce was recently appointed official wedding planner at The Savoy

Essentially, it comes down to time management. Couples today work hard and parents often aren’t as involved in the planning as they used to be. With all the media available, brides get very overwhelmed – a wedding is a very personal event and emotions run high. A wedding planner is an unbiased person that gives couples a realistic idea of what they can do. For example, they may want something that will use 95% of their budget in one go – I can suggest an affordable alternative. People worry that wedding planners take over, but I always reassure clients that it isn’t my wedding, it’s theirs. They tell me what they want and I tell them if it’s possible or provide them with all the options. The last thing you want on your wedding day is to be chasing the florist or finding out where the lead singer of the band is. It is important to have one person who knows everything rather than having lots of individual suppliers to deal with. A wedding planner is someone you will build a relationship with and end up trusting implicitly, so you don’t have to worry about anything.  Not everyone sets out thinking they will have one but they always appreciate the investment.

This was first published in Square Meal Weddings 2012

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