We are back with more wedding planning advice.  (See part one.)  Janice from Bellwether Events was so kind to write a second post with five reasons to not hire a wedding planner.  A word of caution to the sensitive soul, the following advice is frank and honest direct from the professional, just how we like it!  It might not be what you want, but maybe need, to hear.  Take it away, Janice:


Photo Credit:  Amie Otto Photography

If you are spending $15,000 or less on a wedding for more than 100 guests in the Washington, DC area, I would usually recommend that you do not allocate money for a planner.  An experienced wedding planner will charge at least $1,000 for their smallest planning packages, and that is a large percentage of money to allocate in your budget.  There are online tools you can use to get you through the bulk of your planning (I like the Martha Stewart planning tools).  Bottom line:  feed and entertain your guests first.

Are you having a 16+ month engagement?  Do you work (or go to school) 40 hours a week or less?  If you answered yes to one or both of these questions, you likely have the time “on your hands” to plan the wedding yourself.  This does not take into consideration whether you WANT to plan it all yourself.  That is another topic altogether.  But, imagine that you want to, and you truly have the time to (the average wedding takes 250+ hours to plan), then go for it!

What do I mean by this?  Well, I have had brides want to hire me because they wanted help with decorations.  What they really needed was a florist.  I’ve also had brides who wanted to hire me because they wanted help with hanging twinkle lights.  Moral of the story:  hire the professional that you need, not someone who you think could be an inexpensive or multitasking substitute.

You shouldn’t hire anyone you don’t trust, or can’t bring yourself to trust.  If you don’t trust your wedding planner (or any other vendor) then you are probably not going to release control.  And, if you aren’t going to release control, then you aren’t going to enjoy yourself – either during the planning or on the wedding day.

Please don’t hire a planner (or any other vendor) if you don’t have the right attitude.  Wedding planners are humans who provide a service.  No planner is going to be your servant or your punching bag.  If I was your planner, I assure you that I am going to work really hard for you, and do my best.  A planner should be your wedding stress release, not a place for tension.


Thank you so much, Janice, for giving it to us straight!  For more from Bellwether Events or if you are looking for a wedding planner in the area, check out Janice’s website here.

Looking for more?  Check out our tips and advice page.

*Bellwether Events is one of our fabulous sponsors.  For information on our editorial policies, please click here.

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