Image by Natalie J Weddings.
We’re seeing more and more couples interested in DIY and dry hire wedding venues. These type of venues provide a blank canvas for you to get creative and truly make a celebration that’s bespoke and individual to you. However, these type of venues do need a lot of consideration and a lot of planning both in the run up to the big day and in the set-up, either the day before or on the actual day.
Hint – you won’t want to lay out your tables and organise your suppliers the morning of your wedding! You’re going to be busy, trust me. So here’s the part where you might want to consider hiring an ‘On-the-Day Coordinator’. For some couples, this is an essential to ensure a stress-free day for you and your guests.
But what exactly does an on-the-day coordinator do and when do they get involved in your wedding? We have Beth A Weddings here today to give us a little rundown on everything you need to know. Beth is also the custodian of one of our fave barn wedding venues in Hampshire, The Barn at Avington, so she knows her stuff.
Notes from Beth A Weddings
‘On-the-Day’ is often a misrepresentation, as most wedding coordinators will offer support and advice throughout the planning process and ‘takeover’ the planning around 1-2 months before the wedding giving them time to understand your wedding day plans and liaise with the chosen suppliers for final details.
From recommending suppliers to advising on timings, your wedding coordinator should have access to your Pinterest board and google sheets so they can let you know where to source the things you love and check there has been enough time allocated for the essentials. Many wedding coordinators come with a big kit of styling bits and bobs, so it’s always worth checking in with them to see if you need to buy everything on your list.
On the day
Your wedding coordinator is likely to be the first to arrive and last to leave. Some of the important jobs they will see to are found below. As you read through the list, think about who would take responsibility for these tasks without an on-the-day coordinator? Both you and your loved ones should be focusing solely on having a good time!
- Meeting suppliers and ensuring they know where they are setting up and have everything they need
- Styling and finishing touches – from putting out place names to styling outside areas, ensuring everything looks the way you wanted it
- Greeting guests and getting drinks and canapés for those who need some extra help
- Making sure you’re eating and drinking – so easy for couples to miss out on their wedding day as they are busy with photos and chatting
- Putting your bouquet and bridesmaids’ bouquets in water to keep them looking beautiful
- Turning rooms around – from ceremony to dinner, or dinner to dancing
- Taking extra care of friends and relatives who struggle with mobility, so they don’t miss out on things like the buffet dinner and cutting of the cake
- Lighting candles, turning on playlists, putting out evening food, replenishing the sweet bar, etc etc!
- Assisting suppliers when needed – collecting plates, serving on the bar, getting drinks for the band… the list goes on!
- Keeping everywhere clean and tidy – sweeping up the inevitable broken glass from the dance-floor
- Checking the toilets – cleaning and replenishing
- Encouraging your guests to sign the guestbook or visit the photobooth
- Helping guests who need taxis
After the wedding
At the end of the night or even the next day, on the day coordinators can be responsible for organising what needs to be returned to suppliers and when, packing your things, making note of items that have been left by guests and storing safely and wrapping and packing drink and food items that you want to keep. This allows you to have a slower start the next morning (your hangover will be grateful of this) and enjoy a leisurely breakfast as newlyweds!
Each wedding coordinator differs, so find the one that best suits your needs, style and budget. Beth A Weddings is for couples who want to do things their way and we charge £400 a day (with reduction for bookings for two or more days) which also includes full support in the build up to your wedding.