Upon our very first meeting with any of our clients, one of the first things that we like to talk about is vendor bookings. Many of our couples have already made some progress with their arrangements, and just need help, guidance… and yes recommendations. We wouldn’t be very good wedding planners without being able to point our couples in the right direction. Working with as many different couples as we do, we tend to see similar patterns and trends in vendor bookings. And more often than not in an attempt to pull the budget in, or keep a wedding personal, some vendors are passed over all together. And many couples will tell you, after it’s all said and done – that they’ve regretted it. Want to know the 3 most commonly overlooked vendors?
1. DJ or Live Music
iPod music. Great idea in theory. When a couple explains that they’re playing music off their iPod, I can’t help but feel nervous. Most couples tend to do this because they would argue that the DJ does all his best work from his mac anyway. What they fail to remember is that the DJ brings along his PA giving you great sound, can often bring along a wireless microphone if you need one for the speeches, can sometimes MC for you, can start as well as stop and cue music at any time. Perfect for bridal entries, first dances, or pulling a song half way through if it’s not a crowd pleaser. They’ll be able to cue tracks according to the mood of your guests, and sadly the folks at apple haven’t managed an app for this particular function yet. There are so many variables when it comes to playlists on an iPod. Do we notice the difference when a DJ or band is in control. Most definitely. Yes an iPod will probably save you money, but in terms of the guest experience and a having an awesome night, is it money that you are able to save elsewhere?
2. The Master of Ceremonies
The MC has such a crucial role, and you really don’t know what a bad MC is, until you’ve sat through a wedding and cringed. Being the official host for the evening they are responsible for keeping events moving. Along with your wedding planner and floor manager, probably one of the most important jobs when it comes to making sure that everything is as it should be. To be a part of a wedding which looks amazing, with the most exceptional food and wine, only have to have it tainted by the brides uncle who is also the MC is quite distressing. Bad jokes, clunky delivery and introductions, and sense of humour (which only you’d know after watching Ricky Gervais in an episode of The Office) really says it all. If you don’t know anyone capable or confident enough to MC your wedding, invest in a good MC. No it’s not lame. Your guests will thank you, and so will you – when your food leaves the kitchen still hot because the MC is doing his job correctly!
When it comes to videography, it has been a huge shift to the more popular cinematic experience which we see much of today. Unfortunately the humble videographer had such a bad reputation back in the days for making bridal parties do ridiculous things (that they’d never usually do), and produce a montage of the day’s events to a video clip with a tune from Grease as the backing track. Yes it was always going to be hard for them to regain their credibility and get the great kudos that they really deserve today.
Hiring any decent videographer is a costly decision, and if you’re going to do something – do it right. But don’t make the choice not to hire a videographer based old school thought that their work is staged, tacky and superfluous. Videography doesn’t need to be any more staged than a candid photographer from the best studio. Many couples who’ve invested in videography have said that it’s one of the best choices they’ve made. And couples are really spoiled for choice with how they can use their videographer today. Super 8, cinematic productions (check out our all time favourite clip below) and same day edits to name just a few. Cheap? No. Worth a second thought? Absolutely.
But before you dismiss these vendors, give it some more thought. Is there a better way for you to keep the budget lean and mean? Are you better off forgoing a few guests off your list that you’re unlikely to still be in touch with in 10 years anyway? In our experience though, before you dismiss a vendor because of the numbers on paper, weigh up the pros and cons, and speak to people! Never make a choice based on the cheapest option alone, and make sure you do your research – because in our experience, you’ll get what you pay for.