Do-It-Yourself Weddings: But Wait!! There’s More!!


Do-It-Yourself Weddings:

But Wait!! There’s More!!

For the Ultimate Stressful Experience – Part III

There are gobbs of things an amateur cannot anticipate (Yes, gobbs! That is the technically correct term.), and as a result, amateurs often bite off more than they can chew.  If you have an experienced guide, he/she can anticipate problems for you.  With the advice of a competent planner, you can solve them, avoid them or take a smaller bite.  More things will work better with guidance, but your stress level will still be very high.  Not only are you The Bride, but you must also fill one or more additional roles at the same time.  While you are in the middle of photography, people will interrupt to ask where you want this, that, or the next thing.  They will let you know there is not enough ice, that the cake is late, the flower girl is sick or has developed an attitude.  You are now The Problem Solver.  Believe me: It is enough just to be The Bride!  Get a competent coordinator, for Pete’s sake!


Here’s a good one for you!  You’re having a pot luck dinner at your reception to avoid catering costs.  Your Great Aunt Gladys makes her famous seafood/pasta salad as her contribution to your reception buffet.  She makes two gallons of the stuff and drives a hundred-fifty miles (3 hours) with it surrounded by ice in a cooler in her car trunk where it sits for another two hours (5 hours total) until after your ceremony.  She stirs in the yellowing mayonnaise around the edges and puts it in a lovely cut crystal bowl (her gift to you) between the fried chicken and the corn-on-the-cob. (You know what’s coming, don’t you!? Well then… enough said. Let’s hope there are more than two toilets at your reception venue.)


Your Uncle Frazier is a wine connoisseur and collector and brings an assortment of his favorites to your reception.  He is having a great time explaining the finer points of each bottle as he pours for everyone who is interested.  Oregon State Liquor Control stops by (as they often do) to check on the venue’s compliance with state laws, and they discover that Uncle Frazier is not a licensed server.  They shut him down along with your wedding, and take away the venue’s liquor license, putting them out of business.

One of your guests, on her way home from the wedding, stops along the way for a drink or two… or three.  Afterward, she has a collision with a Honda, totaling both cars and injuring drivers and passengers.  They sue the guest, the bar and you.   You are not insured and were serving wine illegally.  How do you think that is going to play out?

By seeking and following the advice of truly qualified professionals, you will avoid most of the pit-falls that add stress to your wedding day or can result in a true disaster.1

1   That isn’t to say that everyone who purports to be a professional always gets it right. Some “pros” are just amateurs who know enough to fake it pretty well. 25%-30% of officiants are simply incompetent and should not even be permitted to attend a wedding, let alone officiate. I see any number of photographers who rely upon their camera to know what to do, because they don’t. That wedding planner I mentioned? They can filter out the fakes and the incompetent for you. Of course, even the best of us – as in any profession – can make a mistake or have something beyond our control go wrong. A true professional knows how to manage it, however, and is prepared to make it right if necessary.