A quick engagement (à la Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson or Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin) isn’t the only thing that’s speeding up in the wedding world. Wedding planning used typically be a 12-18-month event, but shorter timelines are now the norm with a six-month timeline being the sweet spot many couples aspire to to execute the ultimate party. How easy is this to do? Is this timeline realistic?
Wedding planning on a six month timeline is really not that difficult says Brittany Frid, CEO and creative director of Frid Events in Kanata, Ontario (she recently helped a couple pull off a wedding in four days…more on that later). We asked her to share all her tricks and tips for pulling off your dream day on a seriously tightened timeline.
Can you pull off a wedding in six months (or less) without a ton of stress? “Absolutely! Six months isn't an issue if you are flexible when it comes to location. Other than that, it's a matter of prioritization and organization right from the get-go.”
What are the secrets to pulling off this type of party? “I suggest starting with clear expectations and a discussion with your partner about how much responsibility you can handle, together and independently. Hiring a professional planner will help you dramatically if you don't have much time or interest in planning. Allow them to use their connections and expertise to efficiently whip together a beautiful event. If you have the time and energy to plan your event on your own, you will need to consider your budget, what your priorities are for the event, determine any traditions or customs that you would like to incorporate into your day, and select your wedding party. Review a wedding planning checklist and delegate tasks between you, your partner, your family and your wedding party. Set deadlines and start with quickly getting contracts from reputable primary vendors such as your venue, officiant, photographer, caterer, DJ, florist, stationery and hair/makeup artists. Once they're booked, it's just a matter of filling in the details, finalizing orders, sending timelines and tracking payment schedules.”
How important is flexibility in this type of planning situation? “You shouldn't have to settle when it comes to your wedding. There are compromises you might have to make to ensure you get what you want though. For example, change your date to a Friday evening if Saturdays are booked at your favourite venue, or if your photographer isn't available for your wedding day, have them shoot your engagement session. You will find suitable alternatives that are within budget and surprisingly perfect if you're willing to be open-minded.”
What will be the biggest challenge if you choose to plan a wedding on a short timeline (ie. a venue, finding a dress, a planner...)? “Finding an available venue will be the biggest challenge as they are often booked up to two years in advance, followed by finding the right photographer. You can buy a dress off the rack, caterers are typically able to coordinate multiple events a day, and most other vendor categories are over-saturated so you can find a reputable and available company fairly quickly. The most effective thing you can do is to ask a trusted vendor with a similar style to yours who they prefer to work with and take all of their recommendations.”
Why are short timeline weddings becoming a thing? “My planning team is typically hired eight to 12 months before the event. I honestly think couples are simply anxious to jump in and be married. The length of time together before engagement has dramatically increased over the last decade: our couples spend an average of eight years together before engagement. Most of them met in university and wanted to get established in their careers before tying the knot. Once they do make the decision though, they're ready to go all in!”
Will this trend become the new norm? “It already is! Our couples are usually 30 years old when they get engaged and I believe the average age of engagement is only going to get older. With more disposable income in the household, the security of a good job and the desire to start a family soon, there's really no reason for them to wait longer!”
How did you plan a wedding in four days! Dish. “We had a bride call us from Sweden in April. She and her fiancé were coming to Canada the following week and desperately wanted to get married due to residency restrictions in Sweden (she's originally from Canada). They explained they needed help finalizing the contract with the venue, finding a caterer and hair makeup stylists, ordering all of their rentals and florals, and coordinating their wedding with 65 guests. They were flying in the following Monday, and their wedding was being held that Thursday. Thankfully, my company offers a combination of services, from planning to stationery and florals, and the couple trusted our judgment when it came to making all of the major decisions. We tackled the planning and coordination, made their florals and stationery in house, rented all of their decor and did the entire set up/tear down. All they had to do was get the marriage license and their attire. We met for the first time just as the bride walked down the aisle!”
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