Why do I need a wedding planner?
A wedding is an intricate event that happens once only. As such, it demands perfection in execution, which is the result of a complex concept, costing, coordination and planning process. An administartive minefield at best. It is even more challenging when getting married abroad.
Most contemporary luxury weddings entertain a suite of anything between fifteen to thirty professional service providers, aside from the venue itself. Each demands a contract agreement with terms that need to be managed closely, including payments, briefings and general logistics and coodination. As the big day draws closer, your planner will also bring together the service providers that will work alongside each other in the delivery of their services on the day.
Being a costly affair, your wedding planner guides the budget and payment process deftly, negotiating the best deals, and being on the look out for unspecified hidden costs and mark-ups. They will ensure your wedding dream is realised to its fullest potential within budget.
Your planner will remind you of key preparations that need to be attended to during the planning process such as: the seating plan, final numbers catering confirmations, ante-nuptials, formulating an order of events, final menu tasting, table decor mock-ups, beauty treatment bookings, playlists, rehearsals...the list is endless.
Your wedding planner offers guidance and support at times that can often place unnecessary stress upon a couple.
A good planning team allows you to rest assured that each and every detail will be attended to, right up to the big day where they will co-ordinate, set-up, style and manage your wedding celebration from moment to moment, including strike/ clear and crises control (if needed). In short, a wedding planner will save you time, money, energy and stress allowing you bask in the engagement glow and enjoy preparing for your big day.
How do you charge for your services?
Our pricing is structured according to the planning package that is selected, and built into the overall (detailed) costing summary provided to our clients. Our complete scope of services per package is costed as a percentage of the overall cost of the budget/ costing summary. It is an inclusive fee and is therefore considered part of the budget.
We DO NOT add mark-ups, and we endeavour to work with integrity driven industry professionals who cost equally as transparently.
How long does it take to plan a wedding?
We could pull together a beautiful wedding in a single month if we had to - but this would be dependant on it being an intimate wedding planned with a single focus (meaning that we had no others booked for the same month).
However, most weddings commonly take between 4 months to 1 year to plan. The latter more often applies to couples living abroad as well as to couples who are laregly funding their wedding day on their own and need some extra time to save accordingly.
Wedding invitations are usually sent 3 months prior to the big day, allowing 1 to 2 months to RSVP before the 1-month final countdown when final numbers and layouts are confirmed.
What makes HEARTISTRY different from any other wedding planner?
Good question! It is vitally important that you are able to connect with your wedding planner, share a vision with them, trust them and lean on them throughout what is undoubtedly an emotionally charged period leading up to your wedding day.
We invest a considerable amount of time upfront in getting to know you. We want to understand what makes your heart soar and sing so that we can be sure to delight you with the wedding of your dreams. As such, we work closely with you - our approach is warm and personal. In order to give you our full attention, we only confirm a certain number of wedding bookings in a year. We need our energy in tact in order to give of our best!
Also, we are a fully resourced team, meaning that where other planners are outsourcing their stationary design, decor, floristry, styling etc - we have the resources to manage this in-house (depending on the complexities of your wedding) allowing us more control during the planning process and no hidden supplier-to-supplier mark-ups. Finally, we are equally as skilled on the creative side as we are on the project management side - and we are able to marry our expertise to provide an exceptional service offering.
Can we tailor-make a wedding package to suit our needs?
Obviously, we prefer to tackle a full planning package, thus allowing us full control and accountability for the complete scope of services required to execute a fabulous, complex wedding celebration.
We have created our planning and styling packages based on our experience of what most clients are looking for. However, our weddings are fingerprints - each completely unique, just as our clients - and therefore we are always willing to adapt according to your unique requirements.
Are there any aspects of the planning process that we can/ need to manage ourselves?
Whilst we advocate a personal and warm approach to working with our bridal couples, we dont hand-hold, and are the first to understand that certain elements of the process need to be enjoyed and experienced in private so that honest conversations can flow and intimate memories established.
An example of some such moments would be }
- Menu tastings
- Marriage counselling
- Venue visitation (we have found that many couples want to explore themselves - we create a proposal map of suggestions and leave the INITIAL visits to them)
- Trial hair & make-up sessions
- Trial photographic shoots
Then, there are certain things that we will ask of you at various stages during the planning process. Again, we are standing by to support and advise you as and when needed:
- Playlist for your DJ: including the Mr&Mrs entrance | first dance
- Your final guest list (unless we have managed the RSVP process for you)
- Special dietary requirements (unless we have managed the RSVP process for you)
- Final seating plan
- Special requirements pertaining to the Order of Ceremony and the general Order of Events for the day
Is there any wedding related service that your package doesn't cover?
Our scope of services is bespoke and turn-key, with the focus remaining entirely on your wedding and ensuring you arrive on this day feeling relaxed and inspired.
We are happy to help whereever possible to achieve this (including managing your guest list and bridal party coordination if required), however we step back at the point of kitchen tea and bachelor/ ette parties. We find that these are extreamely personal affairs, and are best dealt with by those closest to you, often immediate family or those from your bridal party. In saying this though, we are always standing by to offer creative suggestions or simply to bounce some ideas off of. We can also point you in the direction of honeymoon travel specialists.
What happens if it rains?
Believe it or not, rain on your wedding day is a good omen, said to be a blessing from above!
This is one area that is completely out of our control, however we take steps to ensure that we start planning with a back-up in place right from the beginning, in case of rain.
We also do regular weather checks starting from 2 weeks prior to the wedding so that we have enough time to execute our 'plan B' should we need to make the call.
Is your team adept at managing an unforeseen 'crises'?
Unfortunately, depsite meticulous planning, there are always things that are beyond our control when 'life' steps in the way. We endeavour to handle any unforeseen event swiftly and smoothly behind the scenes (as far as possible) with the aim of it going unnoticed by guests. An experienced planning team will be skilled as thinking on their feet, laterally and 'out of the box' in order to come up with solutions quickly and effect them smoothly. We assess the severityof the issue, brainstorm a series of solutions and present the problem, with our proposed solutions always at the same time. We never present a problem, without having looked into a viable solution. We also ensure that stress levels are managed by carefully choosing whom we communicate the issue with. Nine times out of ten, you wont be aware of there ever being a hiccup in the first place...
Our team will always arrive equipped to step in with minor issues by keeping the following in our 'Big Jim':
- First aid kit
- Basic sewing kit
- Emergency numbers applicable to venue, including having checked whether a doctor is present in the guest party
- A range of handy tools and accessories to pre-empt the unexpected