It's no secret that planning a wedding can take a lot of work. You’re busy enough as it is with your everyday lives and adding on the stress of planning for what is likely to be the biggest day of your lives can be a lot. From all the vendors that you have to connect with, the deadlines and having everything fit into budget; things can easily get overwhelming. Here are some wedding planning tips from some of the top vendors in Vancouver to help you get started with your planning!


Planning: Sweetheart Events

Table setting for wedding

3 Things To know Before hiring a planner
Take a moment before you meet with a wedding planner to decide what level of package you are interested in and what are your expectations of that planner. If you are hiring someone for the whole kit and caboodle, are they doing decor services, helping with set up and tear down and doing your welcome BBQ the day before? Are their unique traditions or personal elements that they should be aware of? To quote accordingly and to ensure you receive the best experience, we need to know all expectations upfront. You should also have an idea of who you are meeting and their aesthetic. Do your research! With many planners to choose from, it is key to hire a planner you connect with and can trust they understand your wedding vision fully. Lastly, know your planning budget. We don’t want to try and offer a larger package that might be more than your budget. Instead, we want to hear what you have and then we can customize something that is an ideal fit for your needs and your budget.

How do you keep everything on schedule?
In the last month before your wedding, we will create a detailed timeline of the day fully colour coded with everyone’s responsibilities. After all, it is a wedding and things don’t usually stay on track for timing. To stay on track, I create buffers in my timeline to ensure that if we do go off track we will eventually catch up. Ex. most ceremonies will not take thirty minutes but in the timeline, I will allow thirty minutes of time just in case. After all, we don’t want you to feel rushed or pressed for time on your wedding day.

How many times do you typically meet with couples during the planning process?
During the planning journey, we meet with couples monthly to stay up to date and discuss the next tasks to tackle on the list. Please note we are generally in touch with our full planning clients weekly but we schedule a monthly meeting whether face to face or over Skype to ensure no detail has been missed. For our day of clients, we meet with them one month from their wedding to discuss logistics and walk through their venue together before the wedding day. 

Dress: Truvelle

Designer working on wedding dress pattern

3 Things Brides should know when looking for a wedding dress
1. We recommend shopping with a smaller group and having an emotional cheerleader in the bunch.

2. If you plan on doing more than one appointment in the day, be sure to give time in-between for relaxation & rejuvenation. Always eat before appointments.

3. Have a budget in mind and research ahead of time.

How far in advanced should I start shopping for my wedding dress?
Our dresses are made-to-order and so it is best to place your dress order 7-8 months prior to your wedding, allowing time for production and alterations. With that said, our recommendation is to start looking a year in advance, as this provides

A healthy amount of time to not feel rushed or pressured into making a decision right away. If time is not on your side, don’t worry. We offer fair rush fees and can accommodate weddings a couple of weeks in advance.

Do I need to make an appointment to look for bridal gowns?
You are more than welcome to pop-in without an appointment, but we do recommend making one. Having an appointment guarantees a stylist’s full attention and a change room! 

Decor: Bespoke Decore

Table setting for a wedding

3 things brides should know before hiring a wedding decorator
Have an idea of what style of wedding you want. There are many different decorators with distinct styles and you want to make sure you pick the best match!

Think about the level of service you’d like - if you’re more DIY or prefer having a more hands-off approach.

Be upfront about your budget. This will help with aligning expectations and preventing any disappointments.

Do you provide site inspections wiTh your services?
Yes! For our full design clients, we will visit the site with them to really get an understanding of why they chose that particular space and how to create a design that pulls together the beauty of the venue with the style of the couple. For rental clients, site visits can be added as an additional service.

How can I help you get more creative?
You can let us know how involved you want to be with the creative process. Some couples are hands-on and have a clear idea of what they’d like to execute - others don’t! And that’s ok. As long as we can get a sense of your personal style, the vibe you’d like to create and we connect personality-wise - we can take care of all the creative details that that will make your wedding decor stand out and represent who you are as a couple. 

Florals: Celsia

Bride holding a bouquet standing with her husband

3 things to know before hiring a florist
Have the basis of your wedding planned. We cannot stress it enough, it is hard for us to secure your wedding date or design for your venue without knowing the specifics.

Know what your aesthetic and vision are. We love it when brides come to our consultations with Pinterest boards and photos of what they are inspired by. There is a lot of thought that goes into each and every design we create and we want work with you to help create that beautiful wedding you have been dreaming of.

Research your flowers and your florists! Know what flowers you love and what design style you like! It is okay to not love every single flower. And it is absolutely okay to not love each and every florist’s specific style.

How far in advance should I book a florist?
Typically, we would suggest that you secure your florist about four months before your wedding date. However, that can change depending on when and where you are getting married. If your wedding is in one of the busy summer months or if it is out to town, we would suggest securing your dream vendors ahead of time to make sure that they are available for that day!

Do you offer specific packages or is everything customized?
We know how unique each wedding day is, so because of that, we offer completely custom packages, no matter what your budget is. Every couple that inquires with us will receive a personalized to their needs quote and is welcome to come to our studio for a consultation where we go into all the details. 

Stationary: Fox & Flourish

Calligraphy pen and card

What levels of customization do you offer for wedding stationary?
Our invitation suites and day of stationery + calligraphy work are all completely customized to each couple. If you prefer a bit of a template to work off of, please view our website for past examples of our work, or visit our online shop section to directly order our standard selection of calligraphy place cards, calligraphy envelope addressing, and calligraphy escort cards.

What printing processes do you use?
We don’t currently offer printing services, however, we work with many notable and experienced printers locally who we are happy to put you in direct contact with. We can provide any suggestions needed for printing methods and best practices, as well.

How far in advance should I order the stationary for my wedding?
We advise getting in contact with us approximately 8-12 weeks before you plan on sending out your invitations, depending on how much you want done and how many pieces you need, as this will allow ample time for the design process as well as a typical printers’ turnaround. For day of collateral such as place cards, seating chart etc, please get in contact with confirmed information at least 6 weeks in advance (guest list with correct spelling, signage copy etc). 

Cake: The Cake & The Giraffe

Three tier wedding cake with a green design

3 things to know before purchasing a wedding cake
Getting a fake a cake won’t necessarily save you money.

More often than not, the “super simple” cake you’ve saved as inspiration is much more complicated than you might think!

I love creating something unique for each client! Bring in your inspiration and let’s use that as a launchpad for your custom creation!

Do you offer organic, gluten free or vegan options?
Yes to gluten-free and vegan! Some of the ingredients I use are already organic, but If someone wants all organic, I can accommodate that upon request.

How far in advance should I order my wedding cake?
The sooner the better! Especially if you are getting married in the summer!