Just like any relationship, the one between a bride and her your wedding planner is built on quality communication. There are things you should say and things you definitely shouldn't say if you want the outcome (i.e. your wedding) to be a raging success. So avoid all the stress and pissing your planner off at the same time by not letting these no-no phrases leave your lips.
"My [insert family member] does florals as a hobby and offered to help!"
While wedding planner Marilisa Schachinger of Martel Event loves when couples want to incorporate family members into the planning details, unless that person is a licensed professional, it often adds more stress and work than relief or help. "My hope when brides hire me is that trust my vendor referrals and relationships that have been vetted and proved top-notch. When brides ask to involve family members in large logistical details, it can come across like they don't value your expertise."
"My [insert friend or family member] thinks I should..."
According to Greg Jenkins, founder of Bravo Productions, this indicates there are too many people in charge, which creates a 'Fellini Film.' It's a hodge-podge, mish-mash of decisions and input, often resulting in chaos for the planner, he tells us. Basically, too many cooks spoil the pot. "Brides and groom should make the final decisions. Whoever signs the contract is the one who has the say-so."
"My friend said her planner did such and such..."
As a planner, Jessica Janik, founder of The Invisible Bridesmaid, hates hearing this line. "You hired us for a reason to fulfill your dream of having the best wedding." This is why she advises her clients not to talk to anyone about the specifics of their big days. "You never know the real reason behind the advice people give you and everyone's style is so different. In order to have a wedding that's truly 'you' its best to leave everyone else out of it."
"Well, we can spend more than we said."
Followed by an embarrassed giggle...grrrr! It's frustrating when brides and grooms give a budget to work with, and then continue to overspend on every single item, despite my warnings, says wedding planner Sandy Malone, owner of Weddings in Vieques. "Do they not understand how we squeeze and pinch every penny to try to keep them on budget? If they have a bigger budget, why not tell us that up front so we can help them make realistic decisions? We want our clients to feel satisfied that we'll keep them on budget, but we can't do that when they're spending based on a secret budget inside their own heads." True dat!
"I know we said $75,000 was the budget but we need to cut it to $40,000."
Oh and we don't want to compromise on the design either. Uh yeah, okay. This is especially infuriating when couples wait until the last minute to let their wedding planners in on this little tidbit, notes Jenny Orsini, Owner and Creative Director of Jenny Orsini Events Inc. Lynn Jawitz, owner of Florisan Wedding and Event Design in NYC agrees. Her biggest pet peeve? Photos of multiple million-dollar weddings ripped straight from Pinterest along with the phrase, "But I'm on a budget." Well, turns out, "lavish Pinterest weddings cost money, and in weddings as in life, one gets what one pays for."
"I'm not sure what my budget is."
The reality is, you have a sense of your budget, but you may think that if you give the planner a high number, she will spend every penny, points out Nicole Matthews, founder of The Henley Company. Rest assured, a professional planner is not trying to bleed your budget dry. "Instead, our job is to provide and find value. So when you tell us you have no budget, we never believe you." Remember: even a range is helpful. Also, be clear about what your budget includes. "Is it just for the ceremony and reception, or are you also including the dress, rings and honeymoon? A professional planner will help you to manage your budget from concept to completion!"