Who needs a wedding planner? My bridesmaid is an AE

I’ve heard of wedding season, but it has become wedding year for me. Within a year, three of my best friends got engaged and began planning their weddings. I was honored when all three asked me to be a bridesmaid and be part of the wedding fun! What could be more fun than being part of your best friend’s special day?!

When my first engaged friend asked me to be a bridesmaid I gladly accepted…and quickly Googled “bridesmaid duties.” (Hey, I’ve never done this before!) I quickly learned that being a bridesmaid doesn’t just mean you get to go wedding dress shopping with the bride and do a funny dance when you enter the reception hall. The search yielded a long list of typical duties, including scouting wedding venues, writing out invitations, planning the bridal shower/bachelorette party and preparing for potential challenges during the wedding. Basically, the bride should be able to depend on me and her other bridesmaids for any and everything she may need leading up to and during her wedding. Luckily for me, working with clients on a daily basis has primed me with the skills I need to be efficient and successful at this whole bridesmaid thing. Coordinating, managing and being proactive are just a few things that our clients depend on us for — and they’re exactly what a bride needs.

With the wedding quickly approaching, the first item on our to-do list was to find the bridal gown and bridesmaid dresses. Surprisingly, this happened fairly quickly and easily. The next big items on the list were the bridal shower and bachelorette party, which will both be on the same day. This is where coordinating client film/photo shoots and other projects in the past will be helpful because I recognize the insane amount of planning that needs to happen for everything to go smoothly.  So let the planning puzzle begin!  Where do we start?

Since I’ve never done this before, I approached it the same way I would a new project at work — by setting up a meeting. The maid of honor and I kicked off the planning process by sitting down with the bride’s family members to discuss budget, venues, invitations, menu and other logistics. After that was all nailed down, we got into the really fun stuff, splitting up tasks such as requesting quotes from various vendors, ordering decorations and researching games, just to name a few. I gladly assigned deadlines for these tasks. (What can I say? I like deadlines.) After numerous meetings and multiple drafts of party agendas, everything came together nicely. The entire day — including pre-bridal shower and post-bachelorette party — was planned to the hour.  By using the approach I would for a client project, the planning of these events was seamless and efficient.

I’m happy to report that the very first bridal shower and bachelorette party occurred this weekend and was a success! Though the guest of honor didn’t completely stick to the agenda, it was her special night out, so I didn’t make too much of a fuss over it. The wedding will take place in Jamaica in November and I know this weekend’s events were just the beginning.  As for the other two weddings, I’m about to start nailing down an even more intensive project — a joint bachelorette party in Las Vegas. Stay tuned!