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  • Writer's pictureCassaundra Massie

Wedding Planning TIPS from a SC Wedding Coordinator

Updated: Dec 11, 2023

Newly engaged and not sure where to start? Here are a few tips and tricks that I’ve noticed help couples ALOT when they start wedding planning. This is for the couples who intend to do most of the planning themselves (aka not hiring a full-service wedding planner). Book your Venue first, your Wedding Coordinator second, and your Photographer third.

Here’s why this is important:

When you book your Venue first you are also securing your wedding date! This is key to booking your remaining vendors (a lot of vendors won’t send you a contract until you have a definite date). Ask your Venue for recommendations on Caterers, Bar Services and Rental Companies that they’ve worked with in the past (even better if your venue has these services already in house) and save that list until you’re ready to start interviewing. This is important because you definitely want these three vendors to have worked in your venue before.

Then ask your Wedding Coordinator for recommendations on DJs, Florists, and Bakers. Again, save that list until you are ready to start interviewing and booking. This is important because your Coordinator works veryyy closely with the DJ and Florist on your wedding day. It is especially helpful when you book a DJ that your Coordinator recommends! Most Coordinators will give you a preferred vendor list when you book with them, and your Coordinators will also be able to assist you in the early planning stages if you have questions or need advice- which is why it’s important to book with them right away after you secure your date.

And finally, ask your Photographer who they recommend for Videographers and Hair & MU artists. This is helpful because your photographer will want you to have the best of the best from these two vendors and they work very closely with the videographer. It’s important to have a photography/videography TEAM regardless of if they’re from the same company.

When you lean on your Venue, Wedding Coordinator, and Photographer for recommendations on all other vendors you are setting yourself up for the most success. It is so important that you create a vendor TEAM, and not a group of random vendors that have never worked together before. It makes your life easier and ours too!

On a tight budget and looking for easy ways to save cost?

1. Get married in the off-season, most venues charge less during the slow months.

2. Consider getting married on a Sunday-Thursday. Friday/Saturday weddings will cost significantly more.

3. Find a venue that offers tables, chairs, and linens in the contract, so you don’t have to worry about it later on.

4. Find a venue that lets you bring your own alcohol and hire someone to pour drinks.

5. No fancy Cocktail Hour appetizers. Do something easy and fun like self-serve chips & guac, or a self-serve popcorn machine!

6. Skip the favors, bathroom baskets, reserved seating signs, individual menus and programs, cake toppers etc.

7. Ask a close relative or friend to Officiate your ceremony.

8. Ask your guests to rsvp on your free wedding website so you don’t have to order stationary. Even better, send your invites digitally!

9. Thrift your vases, candle votives, and frames. You can get these things for around .50¢ each and save so much!

10. Order a small cutting cake for display/pictures and purchase a separate grocery store sheet cake to keep in the kitchen and serve to guests.

And finally- this goes without saying- keep your guest list personal! Only invite people YOU want there. Don’t worry about your parents' friends, friends of other friends, plus 1’s, family members you haven’t spoken to in a long while, KIDS. You’ll save so much cost inviting only those close to you. Small intimate weddings are just as fun!

Happy wedding planning y’all!

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