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North Hills Monthly

The Importance of Hiring a Wedding Planner

Jan 29, 2016 05:24PM ● By Jill Cueni Cohen

Nicole Brough

You can count on it—something will go wrong on your wedding day. But it doesn’t have to be a disaster if you do one simple thing before making any other plans: Hire a wedding planner.

“From engagement day on, it’s a production,” explained Nicole Brough, owner of Your Big Day. “Your wedding day has to be well-orchestrated, and every minute is precious because you have to be looking ahead to what is happening next. Any degree of mistake, mishap or delay can throw your whole day off; and there will always be mistakes.”

If the idea of planning your own wedding is appealing, consider these questions: Would you fix your own car? Would you cut your own hair? Wedding and event planner Tonya Edinger of Weddings of Pittsburgh has spent the past 17 years making sure that brides never know that there were any problems on their big day. “Your wedding is the most sacred day of your entire life,” she said. “You want to be fully present on this day. Remember, this is the first party that you will ever throw as a couple.”

To this end, Edinger adds that she will not take on more than 20 bridal clients in a year. “That’s all I can handle, because each wedding is unique,” she said. “You need to have the knowledge about how to plan a wedding beforehand, and even a wedding planner shouldn’t do her own wedding.”

Tonya Edinger


Family and friends may urge you to do-it-yourself, saying that they’ll help, but according to Brough, “Brides don’t realize there’s a greater room for error when you enlist the help of family and friends. You can ask them to do something small, but anything major will put stress on the bride and family members,” she said.

“If you could put an insurance policy on your wedding for it to be as close to perfect as possible, would you do it?” she continued. “You spend so much money on your wedding, but that won’t matter if there are mistakes and things run behind. Your wedding planner is your insurance policy to help eliminate those mistakes.”

“Accept the role of bride and have fun with it,” added Edinger, reiterating that the wedding day should be a fun one for your family and guests. “You shouldn’t be stressed and hyped-up, and neither should your mother or your best friend. Don’t steal the day from friends and family by putting so much weight on them that they have to be responsible for anything. When you hire a coordinator, you are also hiring a confidante who can help you deal tactfully with personality problems.”

Both wedding planners advise future brides to think about their guest list before anything else. “The guest list is the most stressful part of planning,” said Brough, adding that the size and theme of your wedding will dictate many other aspects of the event, including the venue. “Don’t step foot in a venue until you know who’s in your guestbook.”

In fact, Edinger urges brides to hire their wedding planner even before the venue is chosen. “We can refer you to vendors, and this is one of the ways in which hiring a planner will help to save money,” she said, noting that it’s the wedding coordinator’s job to deal with vendors, and since they do it all the time, they’re able to get discount rates. “You don’t want to wake up on your wedding day and have to worry about the caterer and the photographer. You need to be focused on the happiness of the entire day. Every moment should be special.”