headsets, be gone - what planners really do –  do I need a wedding planner if I’m having a modern wedding?

6 September 2018

When someone mentions a wedding planner, your mind immediately goes to to one of two things: J-Lo or Monica from Friends (I think it’s genetically programmed, it happens that frequently).

But with their tangible stress levels and their mouth-mic headsets, they don’t exactly instil an idea of calm into you, which is odd, considering the whole point of a wedding planner is to make you feel calmer about your day – not even calmer, just calm. Period. We asked Lemonbox Studios, event designer extraordinaire, to give us a run down of what wedding planners actually do, and where they fit into the modern day wedding (spoiler alert: they totally do.)


What do wedding planners do?

A good contemporary planner will take on board all of your ideas and think creatively about how best to achieve them. They’ll draw on their experience to guide you through the process, point out the practical stuff but will always work towards creating what it is that lies at the core of your dream day. This is true across all aspects from recommending the best suited suppliers, to pulling together all your pinterest images into a cohesive look or helping design the flow of the day so that those all important details aren’t forgotten.

They are literally there so that you can put your trust in them in the knowledge that all your thoughts or concerns are put to rest well in advance. They’ll become your sounding board, confidant and basically your wedding sista from another mista and will always go above and beyond to make sure the day is how you imagined while taking away any of the stress.

The modern minded wedding planner no longer embodies Monica from Friends complete with that headset and uppity bossy attitude! Whilst they would, of course, comprehensively manage all the various vendors involved in your day they also realise the importance of building relationships and will already have established working partnerships with a variety of suppliers that they can recommend. But they would also be aware that it needs to be a collaboration so that each supplier is able to maintain creative input rather than be dictated to. It’s important that everyone works as a team cohesively and enjoys the process in order to produce their best work for your day. It’s your planners job to ensure that happens.

A more subtle and relaxed approach on the day is definitely called for to guide everything along in a low key and non disruptive manor but ultimately that can only be achieved by a meticulous management process during the build up to iron out the potential hiccups in advance ensuring that the day itself is totally chill. Imagine a swan serenely floating by on a calm lake but beneath the water it’s legs are working crazy hard to keep it moving so smoothly (ahem… did we actually just compare ourselves to swans? Yes yes I think we did!). A comprehensive schedule is key, as is communicating with all involved to ensure everyone is dancing to the same tune long before the day itself even rolls in to view.

The last thing you need to be thinking about on the morning of your wedding is straightening up a rogue dinner candle, lining up chairs or setting out favours. Wedding planners are perfectionists… it goes with the job description and they are there to make sure every detail is in place so that you can focus on walking down the aisle and drinking champagne instead!”


Do wedding planners fit into a modern, style-led, relaxed wedding?

“These days, there is a definite trend for deviating slightly from the traditions, instead choosing the elements and details which are most meaningful to incorporate into the day, creating a far more personal experience. Often this goes hand in hand with opting for a flexible blank space venue to put your own stamp on, a bespoke running order for the day, perhaps family style dining, handpicked suppliers and lots of personal details. Essentially an easy breezy day that reflects the couple’s personality but also flows seamlessly from ceremony to drinks, then dinner to a belter of a party without quite as much of the pomp and fluff that traditionally goes along with it. The idea of a clipboard wielding wedding planner keeping a watchful eye over the day’s proceedings just doesn’t seem to fit with that mould.

However with so many bespoke elements to think about; vendor management, set up logistics, design, styling, timings, seating plans and not to mention budget control it can be a lot to take in. Then you chuck in full time jobs, honeymoon planning, school runs, family politics and all the things that life in general throws at you it can then all become a bit overwhelming. Suddenly that contemporary laidback wedding you were dreaming of is bogging you down and that is where employing a wedding planner can be completely invaluable whether it encompasses the full service from start to finish, the design of your day only or perhaps even just a helping hand on the day itself.”


Can I pick and choose the wedding planning services that are relevant to me?

Of course! Every wedding is different, every couple is different, and that means that everyone will require different services. Some wedding planners specialise in certain things more than others, but a lot of wedding planners will do things you never dreamed you could outsource. The Wedding Enthusiast, for example, offers a solely supplier suggestion service: “Being in the wedding industry means you collect a little black book (or a little peach book, in my case) of suppliers who are the creme de la creme of what they do. If you have an image in your mind’s eye of what you’re looking for – or even if you don’t – I can take that brief and gather quotes from the best suppliers to make it happen. It’s not the same list every time, either, so none of my weddings will look the same. It’s a big peach book, come to think of it!”

Lemonbox Studios also do so much more than wedding planning: “Our clients rarely describe us as Wedding Planners, to be honest we’ve been called everything from Wedding Angels to Stealth Wedding Ninjas but one that definitely sticks out was from a Groom who during his speech referred to us as “Wedding Architects” and somehow that just seemed to fit. We helped them build their dream day, outsourced and managed the people involved, we provided creative support and a design that brought their day together in terms of how it looked and felt but on top of that our role was to also design the structure and support them through the whole process. So yeah… “Wedding Architect” kinda sums it all up and has a pretty nice ring to it. Although we’ve always fancied getting ourselves a set of nunchucks…”