Our venue is a bare venue – as in, we hire the bare bones – the land, the rooms, the facilities. Everything else we want, we have to bring in ourselves – the catering, the alcohol, the decor, the people. There are so many pro’s to having a venue like this (wahey BYO alcohol!) but one major con is that there is no one to do the stuff on the day.
The stuff is things like – setting up the tables, putting out placecards, hanging up decor, dealing with the caterers when they have questions, cueing the music for the bridesmaids, keeping an eye on the time and moving guests in to be seated for dinner, collecting any lost property at the end of the night. You know, STUFF.
Many wedding venues include a coordinator (usually the owner, or event manager) who you can liaise with prior, and who just handles these things on the day. When I was bridesmaid at a wedding a few years ago, the wedding coordinator of the venue was waiting when our car pulled up to the ceremony, with glasses of water. I remember thinking that it was so thoughtful – she knew we might all be a bit flustered (especially the bride), we might need to just stop, take a few breaths, and a sip of water to help our dry and nervous throats – and so she had pre-empted it and was ready. Even better – the glasses had straws in, so we didn’t ruin our lipstick at all. It was just so organized of her, even though she probably does that many times in each wedding season – I know I really appreciated it!
With other venues, you are lucky that the decor is pretty much done for you. The venue is how it is, the table settings are how they are – you just turn up and get married. This can work extremely well if you are planning a wedding from overseas and don’t want to be burdened with all the extra decor planning, organising, and setting up. Check out my friends Dayna and Matt’s wedding details recap – they got married in a gorgeous venue in BC, Canada – where everything was handled for them.
But back to the Topp Wedding. I knew (from reading MANY blogs like A Practical Wedding) that I.COULD.NOT.DO.THE.STUFF.MYSELF. I also knew that delegation was going to be a necessary – something that I am not very good at. Because our wedding is a semi-destination wedding, I didn’t want to ask any of our guests to do the stuff – if they were travelling to come to our celebration, then I wanted them all to enjoy themselves, rather than be bothered by the stuff. I thought about whether we had any family friends (or their teen children) that we could ask to help – but I knew that a) I might not trust them fully to get it right and b) some of the things we might ask of them could be out of their confidence level (ie. instructing suppliers to do certain things).
Please say hello to Aimee.
Aimee is a friend of mine who I (way back) met on twitter and then face to face when I was up in Auckland. We both were living in Canada at the same time, and she spent time in Whistler with me and Jase, and we spent time in Vancouver with her. We moved on to London, while Aimee moved back to Auckland – and, as luck would have it, started her own Wedding Planning company called Your Perfect Day (can you hear the chorus of angels singing right now?). When Jase and I got engaged, and once I realised what I was taking on with planning from overseas – I got in touch with Aimee to see whether she thought she could help us at all. Her email back to me 100% sealed the deal – I knew I needed her there!
Fun fact: Aimee is a Whole 30’er too!
Aimee’s “day of coordination” package means she will:
– confirm the vendors in the lead up to the day
– create a detailed timeline for distribution to all relevant parties on the day
– coordinate and manage the rehearsal the day before
– manage the wedding day set up – the ceremony area, the reception area, and anything else required
– manage and timekeep the suppliers delivering and arriving on the day – florist, hair & makeup, celebrant, caterers etc
– completely manage everything ON THE DAY – all enquiries, problems and crises will go to her and not to the bride/groom/bridal party/family members
– stay to the end of the night and coordinate the pack down of the venue including centrepieces and linen, presents, any lost property, and straggly guests
– plus anything else we might throw her way
I feel really lucky that we will have Aimee there on the day. With this being her business, she has the experience and knowledge to read the situations and preempt anything that we might not have thought about. While I am a super organised planner myself, knowing I have someone I trust (and a friendly face that I know personally) to hand over to means I can completely relax on the day, and not worry about anything. That’s the plan anyway!
You can check out Aimee’s website here: Your Perfect Day.
Are you a planner like me? Would you hire an expert or go with a friend on your day?
Want more wedding goss? Catch up here with the rest of A TOPP WEDDING posts:
A TOPP WEDDING: The Venue
A TOPP WEDDING: The Engagement
A TOPP WEDDING: My Bridesmaids
A TOPP WEDDING: Asking the Bridesmaids
A TOPP WEDDING: The Photographer
A TOPP WEDDING: The Celebrant
A TOPP WEDDING: The Invites