Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Wedding Consultants/Planning Heidi's Wedding

As a college student majoring in print journalism, a passion of mine is obviously writing. A more hidden passion of mine is weddings. If it weren't for my dreams of becoming a serious writer, I would most likely pursue a career as a wedding consultant. I was recently bestowed with an exciting opportunity.

I recieved the news via text message, my friend Heidi had just been proposed to by her boyfriend, Bobby. When we got a chance to talk, she spilled out all of her hopes for the wedding. She expressed her desire to hire a wedding consultant; and then revealed that her wedding budget is going to be about seven thousand dollars. The only thing that will not be included within this set budget is the wedding dress, which her mother will be purchasing for her.

After the initial excitement of being engaged, Heidi came back to Earth. We discussed some of her wedding plans again, days after our first wedding talk. Having done hours of research on weddings and the wedding industry, I gave Heidi a small reality check. The average cost of wedding consultant in the United States ranges from $1,000 to $1,500. If Heidi felt that she really needed a wedding consultant, she would be spending a very large portion of her wedding budget. Her other option would be to expand her budget by using a loan or purchasing some wedding services through a credit card. Many couples begin their marriage with a significant amount of debt often due to an expanded wedding budget. Considering that Heidi has just graduated college, she will already be entering her marriage with college loan debt. She decided that it would be wiser to stick to a budget that she and Bobby can afford without taking out a loan.

Some brides opt to be their own wedding consultant and merely use a wedding planner book to guide them through planning their weddings.

Heidi has been a bridesmaid for a close friend's wedding who chose this option. The friend did all of the planning herself, and kept herself very composed throughout the wedding planning. When her wedding day arrived, the friend became hysterical and angry. She had become a bridezilla. Heidi does not want to be in charge of all of her wedding planning in fear of stressing herself into a bridezilla as her friend did.

Because of my obsession with weddings, I feel that I will be able to plan a small wedding. I informed Heidi of my willingness to assist her in planning her wedding. So, I am now officially Heidi's wedding consultant, free of charge. My only charge is the experience of fulfilling a desire to be a part of the wedding industry that I am so interested in.

There are, of course, benefits to hiring a wedding consultant. A wedding consultant can negotiate between you and vendors; organize what needs to be done and procure necessary documents and paperwork; oversee all vendor setups on the day of the wedding; lead everyone through the wedding; and inspire the bride and groom in designing their wedding.

My tasks as Heidi's wedding planner include: compiling various lists (guest list, vendor list, budget list, etc.); creating a timeline for Heidi and Bobby to follow; going with Heidi and Bobby to meet with all possible vendors and evaluating them; creating ideas for the couple to use for various aspects of the wedding (centerpieces, invitations, etc.); and most of all, keeping the couple within their wedding budget.
I look forward to planning Heidi's wedding and intend to discover many new ideas for weddings, for planning them, and for ways to save money.

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