Wedding consultants coordinate as much or as little as a couple wants them
to. Some items they deal with are the invitations, flowers, cake, photographs,
catering, clothing, location, music, parties and even the honeymoon.
Tasks involve everything from budgeting, scheduling, taking bids, negotiating
prices, working with printers and tasting food to making sure vendors get
paid, acting as a liaison with wedding party members and fixing last-minute
For your services to be attractive to brides and grooms, you have to know
a lot about the business and be willing to do small and big things.
Be ready to describe the best wedding locations in your area, discuss the
menus of a few caterers and recommend a dressmaker. Know the price ranges
that will fit your clients.
When they ask you about a trend in wedding favors, know this year's, not
last's. Be able to tell which family member traditionally pays for what and
who sits next to whom.
Develop a flair for decorating. You may be asked to set up the flowers
in the church and come up with a theme for the reception.
You might be handed the less glamorous job of removing the flowers and
cleaning up the church. The microphone may be yours to announce the wedding
party at the reception.
If the dressmaker loses the dress order or the reception hall burns down
the week before the wedding, you're the one who must find a replacement dress,
locate a new hall and calm a hysterical bride.
A wedding consultant is really an entrepreneur with a specialization. All
the skills you need to run any small business come into play.
Plan to work weekends -- or any day a bride or groom needs you.
"You need to be very diplomatic, full of ideas and quick at making decisions,"
says wedding consultant Laura Schell. "Be a good organizer and good at exploring
all avenues. Basically, being a people-oriented person is very important...one
with logic and good thought processes."
Most wedding consultants are self-employed. But some jobs are available
at large hotels and wedding venues.
The best ad for your services is someone else's wedding disaster, says
Schell. "Most who come to a consultant have seen other weddings go wrong or
friends totally stressed out. They are usually couples with active careers
and lives who need someone they can rely on."
Consultant Mary Ann Jordan of Chicago says wedding consultants need resourcefulness,
tact, class, good taste, tenacity and a focus on details.
Someone with a disability may be able to participate in this field if they
have a lot of energy, can meet and communicate with people and can be on site
to coordinate physical details.