The (Second) Most Important Investment You Can Make in Regards to Your Wedding Day

Randi Fracassi of Poppy Lane Events is featured on our blog today to talk about the importance of hiring a coordinator or planner! If you're planning a wedding, you will definitely want to hear what she has to say.

I recently posted on my own blog a post regarding the most important investment you can make in regards to your wedding, where I discussed that it’s not a material investment you need to be conscious of…you need to make the investment into your relationship and into your marriage after the wedding and the celebrating. And trust me, I still hold true to that conviction and piece of advice. Your wedding is one day, but your marriage is forever.

So, if investing into your relationship as a married couple is the most important investment you should be making, what is the second most? What could you do to make sure that your wedding day is perfect? And not break the bank in doing so?

Let me tell you: it’s in hiring a coordinator or planner.

Wait what? Doesn’t’ it cost money for those services? And my venue has one, so why spend the extra money?

Now, before I become too engrossed in how to find a coordinator within your budget, and that yes, it is a possible thing no matter your budget to hire someone, let me explain what exactly is it that coordinator and planners do that separates them from a venue coordinator, your photographer’s timeline, and the DJ or Band emceeing throughout the night.

What really make an outside coordinator different than one provided by your venue or enlisting your photographer’s assistance is that they’re one and only goal is to make sure you get the absolute most out of absolutely everything relating to your wedding. From reviewing all vendor contracts to make sure that they will be held accountable for their services, to troubleshooting issues outside the realm of the venue’s property lines, and following up post-event to make sure the level or service and products were to everyone’s standards. When you hire a coordinator for your wedding day, you’re hiring an expert whose sole interest is in you, and will not lose focus from making sure that problems are resolved, vendors are managed, and that you and your spouse are happy with every aspect of your day.

I’m not saying that your other vendors are out to get you; but, they’re occupied with making sure their agreement with you is being fulfilled, and while a reference or referral is rather easy and freely given when asked, asking for these vendors to work outside of their scope or do more than their contracted services can actually inhibit them from doing their contracted services to the best of their ability…and therefore, you end up with a bad client experience, or not getting everything that you were contracted.

So here comes the kicker: hiring a coordinator means contracting another vendor, which means spending money. Most often than not, when couples evaluate what is valuable to them on their wedding day, it’s in the means of material and physical goods and services (ie, photography, food, and good music are the most popular answers I have received from my clients). When you think though on how you want to feel on your wedding day, the first and foremost answer is going to be “happy”, following closely by “stress free”. When you enlist in the help of a coordinator or planner, you are investing in those feelings and how you want to spend your day; hiring one then, should be of the utmost importance in securing happiness and making sure that you, your spouse, your families, and your friends are not stressed throughout the day.

It’s also worth to note though, that once a couple hires a coordinator or a planner, they on average save couples the cost of their fees. There aren’t a whole lot of concrete numbers on this, but when you have that third party on your side negotiating contracts, already knowing vendors within your budget, and have an arsenal of experience in making sure that you get the absolute most and best quality for your dollar…they pay for themselves every time.

Looking back on your wedding day, you’re going to want to remember the details: the look on your spouse’s face when they see you, how it felt to feel your wedding band slip onto your finger for the first time, laughing during the Best Man’s and MOH’s speeches, and wishing as you do your grand exit that they night would never end. You’re not going to want to remember the limo or Uber being late and not knowing where they should be, or about how you didn’t have time to properly get your hair and make up done because you had to set up that morning. You above all, don’t want to reflect on the stress and problems that came up, but the little moments and the good time you spent with your friends and family. Having that third, neutral party whose sole interest is making sure you enjoy your wedding day, rather than only relying on a venue’s coordinator, a DJ’s emceeing, and your photographer’s timeline as a way of managing your wedding will inevitably lead to more stress, and increase the likelihood of contracted goods and services not being fulfilled. Acknowledging these things, and wanting those happy and stress-free memories, is why hiring a coordinator or planner is the (second) most important investment you can make while planning your wedding.

Happy planning,



Randi Fracassi

Owner, Poppy Lane Events

Randi Fracassi is a wedding and event planner based in Baton Rouge and Shreveport, Louisiana and owner of Poppy Lane Events. With a love for details and a focus of creating gatherings that bring family and friends together, Randi and her team are known for their simple, minimalistic take on bespoken and intimate weddings and events. Outside of Poppy Lane, Randi renovates old homes and apartments, listens to true crime documentaries and podcasts, and goes on adventures with her Airman, Samuel.

Guest Blog - Average Wedding Costs in Louisiana

We've compiled the average cost of having a wedding in Louisiana based off figures from The Wedding Market and from averages we know of in our area for 2015 weddings with a 200 person guest count. 

Now remember, these are averages, and not every wedding is the same. Many of you will spend a lot less than the average, some by half. Some wedding couples will spend more or less in different categories. How does your wedding add up?

Market Average    $40,693

Attire & Accessories
Dress Accessories    $226
Tuxedo/suit/other Accessories    $101
Tuxedo/suit/other Rent/purchase    $203
Wedding Dress/es    $1,226
Beauty & Spa
Hair Service    $66
Makeup Service    $105
Manicure & Pedicure    $44
DJ    $728
Live Band    $1,706
Musician/s, Soloist, or Ensemble    $611
Flowers & Decorations
Boutonnieres, Corsages    $144
Bridal Bouquet    $148
Bridesmaid Bouquets    $179
Event Decorations    $446
Event Table Centerpieces    $1223
Flower Girl Flowers    $85
Flower Petals    $95
Gifts & Favors
Gift/s for Attendants    $104
Gift/s for Parents    $120
Tips (for all services)    $485
Wedding Favors    $235
Ceremony Programs    $121
Engagement Announcements    $105
Guest Book    $59
Invitations & Reply Cards    $228
Postage    $106
Reception Menus    $124
Save the Date Cards    $112
Table Name and Escort/place Cards    $83
Thank You Cards    $89

Engagement Ring    $3,386
Wedding Bands    $1,254
Photography & Video
Digital or Photo cd/dvd    $305
Engagement Session    $396
Prints and/or Enlargements    $237
Wedding album/s or photo book/s    $428
Wedding Photographer    $2,344
Wedding Videographer    $1,068
A La Carte Services    $957
Day of Coordinator    $825
For Getting Started    $883
Full Service    $2,886
Month of Direction    $1,085
Venue, Catering & Rentals
Ceremony Officiator    $208
Event Accessories    $325
Event Bar Service    $2,378
Event Food Service    $4,771
Event Location    $3,628
Event Rentals    $1,719
Hotel Room for After Reception    $309
Limo Rental    $480
Other Transportation    $515
Rehearsal Dinner    $577
Wedding Cake/dessert    $422

Written by Virginia Conway, owner of A Day to Remember - Wedding & Event Planning, LLC and Publisher of Southern Celebrations Magazine. Get your copy of Volume III by clicking the image below!