I’ve found my very own version of Jennifer Lopez. I think my planner would kill me if she saw that, but truthfully, now that I have my detail-driven wingwoman with the contract signed, sealed, and delivered, I can breathe a sigh of relief.
I honestly wasn’t sure that I needed a planner at first. Given my experience with weddings and my set vision for how I wanted it to look, I felt like I’d be butting heads with whomever I ended up choosing. But for my mom’s sanity, and frankly, my own, we decided to hire someone to help us stay on track. We have so many big ideas for everything little thing, we felt like it would be best to have someone stand by and make sure that it all went smoothly and helped us stay on time and on budget. (It’s also nice to have someone manning all the contracts and pointing out when things are overpriced, not timed appropriately, etc.) Power to the girls who pull it off on their own—it’s a true art in time management.
There are a number of talented planners in the Twin Cities, and though I only was able to meet with a few, I think it’s safe to say that I got the full experience with interviewing them. For me, it was tricky finding someone who could execute my vision without overloading me with details yet still include me in the execution. (I don’t even know what I really mean, so it was hard conveying that to planners.)
Some planners have the amazing ability to come in and create a grand affair and all you have to do is say yay or nay to ideas. I wanted to get my hands dirtier than that. However, since we very well may be planning a wedding in my front yard, I knew I also needed someone who had immense experience and could take over the week of the wedding so my mom and I could breathe easy.
I attended each meeting with a plethora of questions: How many people will be there on site? Are you used to traveling for weddings? How do you prepare for the worst-case scenario? Can you send me examples of your work? What are your extra costs? What type of schedule do you have the day of? Week of? Do you have relationships with vendors? Do you have referrals? The list went on and on. And after each meeting, I weighed the pros and cons and talked it over with both my fiancé and my parents. (I wanted them to both feel comfortable as well.)
In the end, I decided it was most important that I had a planner who was an experienced traveler, had assistants available to travel the weekend of the wedding, and was someone that I felt comfortable with and confident in—yet would ultimately let me dictate the vision.
For me, that person was Amy Red from MiMi Design. But it might be someone different for you. What were the most important traits when you picked yours?
My advice is be patient. If you’re looking for that perfect J.Lo wingwoman, trust me, eventually you’ll find her.