It always makes people laugh when I tell them, "I'm a wedding planner, not a magician!" but I'm being completely serious. A wedding planner is a professional event planner who specializes in making the happiest day of couples' lives flow seamlessly and appear flawless. A good planner is prepared for most emergencies and knows how to troubleshoot problems as they occur.
With that said, we can't read minds, we cannot control the weather, and we cannot make things a bride has forgotten appear out of thin air if you happen to be getting married in a remote location.
Use common sense and plan your personal preparation list well ahead of time. If you have special requests, tell your planner what you want or need and she'll be happy to arrange it. But don't expect her to have special things — such as the three listed below — on hand for you "just in case," or you may be disappointed.
1. Mass Quantities of Umbrellas
Yes, we have a "Plan B" for inclement weather on your wedding day, but sometimes (very rarely), guests will get sprinkled on before they can get under cover. The good news is that there is a dry place for them to go if mother nature doesn't cooperate. The bad news is that we cannot control the weather. Nor do we carry 50 umbrellas with us at all times just in case. If you want to have one umbrella per guest on hand at your wedding, be sure to tell your planner in advance and be prepared to purchase them for your event.
2. The Bride's Favorite Cosmetics
I have a very thorough and complete bridal emergency bag that comes to every wedding with me, and it has lipstick, powder, makeup remover, hair products, and a host of other useful items in it. It does not, however, contain the bride's EXACT shade of nail polish (in the event she chips a nail while dressing). And while I have a couple sets of fake eyelashes, they're probably not the bride's preferred brand and may not be the kind she likes. If you don't create your own little bridal touch-up kit for your wedding, you might have to use what I have available in my bag, even if it's not the color you had in mind.
3. Hair Extensions
If you're thinking you want to have more hair than God gave you on your wedding day, be sure to shop for the extensions and do a trial run with a hairdresser prior to your wedding day. Even if you're getting married someplace else and can't bring your stylist, do a practice appointment to make sure the purchased hair matches your own and works on your head for the style you're planning to wear on your wedding day. Two hours before you walk down the aisle isn't the time to send somebody shopping for your hair.
Sandy Malone is the owner of Sandy Malone Weddings & Events, a full-service traditional and destination wedding planning company and Do-It-Yourself wedding planning consulting service for DIY brides and grooms based in the Washington, DC area. Sandy is the star of TLC's reality show "Wedding Island," about her destination wedding planning company, Weddings in Vieques. Sandy's book "How to Plan Your Own Destination Wedding: Do-It-Yourself Tips from an Experienced Professional," will be released on March 1st, but is available online for pre-orders now where books are sold.