Your Questions Answered in our new “Ask BE” Column!
Planning a wedding by yourself can be very overwhelming. I know because I see it throughout the week when I meet with potential Partial Planning/Design and Month of Coordination clients who took on the challenge of planning some or all of their wedding themselves.
Most brides or couples who choose this route usually have a bunch of questions with no real way to get insightful answers or a professional perspective. So, in addition to packing our blog with valuable information that you can use while planning your wedding, we will be answering your burning questions.
Today, we have a question from Erin who is having trouble rallying up her fiancé and bridesmaids to help her plan her wedding. Can you relate?
My name is Erin and I am newly engaged. My fiancé and I have picked July 15, 2014 as our wedding date. I am very excited and look forward to the wedding day and being married but I am doing everything myself and its getting a bit stressful. We picked July because we thought we would have enough time to plan but now my fiancé wants me to make most of the decisions and none of my 5 bridesmaids are really helping me at all or they drop the ball on little things. Am I being unrealistic here? Do you normally see just the bride planning the wedding? How can I get them to help?
Thanks so much for your question. I see this a lot so do not feel like you are an anomaly. Wedding planning is filled with a lot of tasks, decisions, logistics, etc. and I’m sure it can be very stressful for you.
Asking your fiancé and your bridal party to be more involved in planning your wedding is not unrealistic. They are the closest people to you so you shouldn’t feel bad about asking them for help in completing tasks or making decisions.
Here are 5 tips that I use with my clients that has helped them get their bridal party and/or fiancé more involved in helping them with specific tasks.
1. Discuss Your and Their Individual Expectations
Being a bridal party member requires an elevated level of commitment and responsibility and it’s important to communicate those responsibilities to each potential bridal party member before they take on their role. Certain aspects such as the time and financial commitments are important things that your potential bridal party members should be able to consider before agreeing to be in your wedding. If they have already committed and you haven’t had that conversion, it’s still important to have this discussion with them. If you find that they are not involved now, it may be because they didn't really understand everything involved in accepting the role.
It’s also very important to discuss expectations. This includes what you are expecting of them in their role but also what their expectations are of their role in the wedding and you as the Bride. Now, this should not be a discussion where you are demanding things from people but more so a conversation of the kind of things you will need help with, how often you will meet with Bridal Party members, etc.
2. Discuss Their Interests and What they Would Like to be Involved in
Studies show that people are more engaged and involved in activities that directly benefit them. With that said, I suggest having an additional discussion centered on what each person is interested in being involved in. Do they love fashion and want to help you pick out the bridesmaids dresses? Do they love flowers and want to come with you to pick a florist? Are they really good at research and want to help you find some of your vendors?
Having a good idea of what they are interested in will help you strategically delegate tasks that they will be more interested in completing and more likely to complete on time.
3. Define Roles With Specific Tasks
What many brides may not realize is that the majority of your bridal party have not been involved in a wedding in the roles you have them in (e.g. maid/matron of honor, best man, groomsmen, bridesmaid, junior bridesmaid, etc.) so they have no reference as to what they should actually be doing. Providing definitions to their roles will help them gain a better understanding of the role they play in the grand scheme of things.
Here is a link to a guide which helps define the roles of each member of your bridal party. Provide a digital copy to each member who is unclear on the traditional responsibilities of their role.
4. Provide Deadlines For Tasks
Another great thing you can do is to provide deadlines for important tasks you delegate. Be sure not to give a deadline for every single task, just things that are time sensitive and that need to be completed in a timely matter such as purchasing attire, making appointments, etc. Studies also show that many people work a lot better when they are given a deadline.
5. Hire a Wedding Planner
Hiring a wedding planner would be the best advice I could give you. Having a team of people behind you who work with you to make sure everything is to your specifications and are dedicated to making the planning process stress free and enjoyable is the only real guarantee. And you’re in luck! I am not booked on July 15th haha =]. My partial planning/design package seems like a good fit for you.
I hope this was helpful to you Erin and anyone else who may be going through a similar situation.
Do you have a question? Fell free to message us with your questions through our Facebook page. We love hearing from you.
Next Thursday we will be talking about the 4 letter F word you should avoid while planning your wedding.
See you then.