THE DIFFERENCE- WEDDING PLANNERS, DESIGNERS, AND VENUE COORDINATOR
Hiring the right professionals to make up your vendor team can make all the difference in your planning experience, but in their quest to find the right person for the job many brides become confused at the choices within all of the titles. Do you need a designer? A planner? Or what if your venue already has a coordinator? It’s important to know that there is a definite distinction between each of these roles and becoming educated on the roles these wedding pros play will save brides from a lot of frustration as their planning progresses.
A wedding planner is your go-to logistics pro. The planner is the one that will take your vision and event needs and effectively build your wedding day from the ground up. Budget creation and management, contract negotiation, timeline building and implementation are all ways a wedding planner will put the foundation into place to ensure you are on track and avoid any potential “fires”. Using your budget as a guide, he or she will also refer or hire vendor professionals to be a part of your wedding day dream team- the ones that will create the dynamics and flow unique to you and your wedding. Above all else, your wedding planner should be someone you can use as a soundboard, seek advice, and trust to guide you to the right choices for your wedding.
A wedding designer is the pro that handles all of the amazing aesthetics of the wedding- the way the event will look and feel, from start to finish. A designer will work with you to hone in on your likes and dislikes, style, and help you to find ways to infuse your personality and unique details into the wedding. This wedding pro will have the tools and team to bring your dream to fruition- ranging from party rentals, linens, lighting, furniture, flowers, décor and even custom built items- and the expertise to weed out from the vast array of choices in the industry to present you with options that work with your style and budget. The designer’s role is to take your vision and expand on it, creating a well-curated, highly personalized and perfectly styled event that will amaze you and your guests.
A Note on Planning and Design Services
Wedding planners and designers often work together to ensure the most cohesive result for the wedding. However, it’s important to note that it is the industry-wide standard to contract these services separately, even if within the same company, and here’s why: Both services are extremely time consuming, labor intensive, and require full time dedication to be done correctly. By combining the two inclusively, there is bound to be details left out of either process, leading to frustration or lack luster results. No matter what, both planners and designers should be able to provide proof of continued education to ensure they are on top of trends and standards worldwide.
A venue coordinator is often an employee or sales representative for the venue. It is their job to know the ins and outs of the property, and will handle your lease or rental agreement to reserve the venue. From there it is their job to manage all aspects having to do with the venue’s agreement with you- from staffing, to rental hours, communication with you and your planner/designer, and sometimes even overseeing food and beverage services and banquet orders if catering is provided in-house. What a venue coordinator won’t be able to do is manage or negotiate contracts with your vendors outside of the venue, build a timeline outside of your scheduled hours at the venue, or assist you with any other aspects of planning not related to your ceremony or reception venue. In short, the venue coordinator is there to assist you and your wedding professionals to ensure questions are answered, rules and regulations of the property are adhered to, and everything on the venue’s end is in order to ensure a seamless flow on the wedding day.
Brandi Reiland, Owner + Creative Director
Soiree Weddings and Event
mcWED strongly endorses each of our coordinators. When consulting with a coordinator ask about design services. Never assume that an individual who is employed by a venue is an "event coordinator." Research event professionals thoroughly.