Let's talk WHAT TO EXPECT from your wedding planner

If you’ve just got engaged, one of the questions you may be asking yourselves is: do we need a wedding planner? Well, the truth is there’s no ‘one size fits all’ answer to that question, but having a wedding planner does make the whole process a lot more time and cost efficient, fun, and stress-free. Think of it this way… If you’re renovating a house, of course you can choose to do it on your own, but it’s a lot easier and safer to hire a professional. In the same way, a wedding planner takes the guesswork out of wedding planning. That doesn’t mean you don’t get to be involved in the creative process, but you do get to skip the hours it takes to implement those ideas! It also means you and your families can focus on what’s truly important in the lead-up to the wedding, and on the actual day. I think that’s why, as a KZN wedding planner, whether I’m working on a big luxury wedding or an intimate elopement in South Africa, there’s always a moment the bride turns to me and says: “I don’t know what we would do without you!”

But what does a wedding planner actually DO? The answer actually depends on the planner, since some only provide on-the-day coordination or styling, while others offer full service planning. Here at Oh Happy Day, our approach is fully comprehensive. This allows us to combine all our skills – design, planning, styling and coordinating – and provide our clients with the highest level of service.

As an example, we recently planned the luxury KZN wedding of South African beauty blogger, Tori of Kiss, Blush and Tell, to her husband Marc. (I recently shared all the details on this beautiful wedding, and you may also have seen the gorgeous feature on Junebug Weddings). Here are some of the ways that Oh Happy Day worked with this lovely couple to make their dream day a reality.

Consultation and Communication

Typically, wedding planners start by meeting with the couple to get a sense of the overall picture, review the budget and discuss design ideas. Throughout the process, we continue to work with you closely to keep you informed and offer help, advice, and sometimes a reminder or two. By the wedding day, it’s like we’re old friends! Tori and Marc live in Johannesburg, so we planned their Durban destination wedding through a combination of Skype consults and one on one meetings, and also helped with scheduling their meetings with other vendors, including their cake tasting.

Booking Vendors

There are so many wedding suppliers out there, and you probably don’t have the time to meet with all of them. A wedding planner can give solid recommendations based on past experience, and knows how to get the best prices – and the best results! We source and manage the correct vendors for your unique vision, and we curated an absolute dream team for Tori and Marc! (You can read more about all of them here.) This is what the bride had to say about them:

“I can honestly say I had the ‘dream team’ in terms of vendors. They have all worked together countless times so really just made the day so seamless. Every single one of them was extremely professional and worked their magic to perfection. I really felt very lucky to have the team that I did.”

Venue Visits

Finding the right venue is so important! You want a place that feels magical to you, but that will also be able to provide the facilities you need. A wedding planner will help you source and find a venue. After it is confirmed, they will also coordinate with the venue manager, as well as any other suppliers. Tori and Marc chose a stunning venue that meant a lot to the bride. However, it wasn’t a traditional wedding venue, so Oh Happy Day attended various site visits with marquee suppliers and caterers to view the space, as well as meeting with the venue owner. We combined one of these meetings at the venue with the meal selection/tasting, which was such a fun day!

Design and Details

We love helping our clients translate their vision, personality and style into the wedding design – that’s why each of the KZN destination weddings we plan is unique! Your planner will help you create a unified look, and enhance your ideas with beautiful, memorable details. For Tori and Marc’s special day, we arranged décor viewings as well as a floral mock-up ahead of time, and then made sure everything looked picture perfect on the day!

On the Day Management

Speaking of the big day, an important part of a wedding planner’s job is to coordinate the wedding day based on an agreed-upon timeline, liaising with vendors to ensure prompt arrival, handling any nasty surprises, and making sure everything runs to schedule.

Here’s what Tori had to say about working with us:

“I can hand-on-heart tell you that getting a planner is the only way forward for many reasons BUT the main being that this is why I actually loved the whole lead up and the day. It was SO stress free. I loved the planning process and loved being involved in it from start to finish. A big factor in enjoying this process was having the planning team I had (Oh Happy Day). They took any unnecessary stress off me and thought of things I could never have done on my own. They were a dream and I feel like they became so much more than just planners to me.”

Congratulations again to Tori and Marc! If you’d like to chat with us about planning a destination wedding in KZN, do get in touch! As Tori says: “This will be the best money you will spend. Take my word for it.”

Top image by Vanilla Photography