This is the third post in our blog series to help you get ready for your interviews with possible wedding vendors. Choosing the professionals to work with on one of the most important days of your life can be overwhelming. We hope these tips can take some of the stress out of the planning for you. In this last post we have included tips and questions for you to ask any potential florist, photographer, and DJ.
A Floral Designer
Flowers tie your colors together. The proper floral designs for your day will bring your “vision” together. With coordinating dresses, linens and even the cake, your flowers will add a softness to your overall decor, no matter what colors you choose.
Getting down to business…
- How many weddings have you done?
- How many events or other weddings will you schedule on the same day?
- Who will be putting together the arrangements for my event you or another floral designer in your shop?
- Do you specialize in a specific type of design (i.e. traditional, modern, trendy?)?
- Can you work within my budget?
- Do you offer packages? Or is everything a la carte?
- Can you give me recommendations to maximize my budget?
- Do you charge a delivery fee or set-up fee?
- Do you offer a service to move my flowers from the ceremony (if it is off site) to my reception? If so, what is the charge for that service?
- Will there be an itemized price list of charges?
- What flowers are in season at the time of my wedding? Is it better for my budget to use in season flowers?
- Can you give me flower recommendations for my budget, color scheme and style?
- If I am planning a “green” wedding, can you provide organic, sustainable grown, and pesticide free?
- If I provide a picture of a bouquet or arrangement can you recreate it?
- Where can I find samples of your work to see some designs in the style I am looking for?
- Do you draw sketches or make mock-ups of what my flowers will look like?
- If I would like fresh flowers on my cake, will you work with my baker to decorate it the day of?
- How far in advance do you create the arrangements, bouquets, etc.?
- Is there a way to preserve my bouquet after my wedding?
To make your sit down meeting with a floral designer the most productive, you will want to have decided on a few things for your wedding.
You should have an idea for your color scheme. Bring a swatch or photo of your bridesmaids’ dresses (if you have them chosen.) The florist can help you with ideas for shape, colors, and flowers for bouquets and boutonnieres. Keep in mind what linens and table items you will use.
Bring with you photos of flowers that you like. They should be able to give you ideas to personalize those ideas into something special for you within your budget.
Your flowers are a main part of the décor for the day, make sure you feel comfortable with the business that you hire to take care of your floral needs.
Nothing lasts longer from your wedding day than your vows and your photographs. Your relationship with the photographer you choose could last a lifetime. If you like them, they could potentially be taking your picture for years to come. Think….pregnancy photos, baby photos, family photos, etc. The photographer you choose should make you feel at ease. It is very intimidating to have hundreds of photos taken of you in one day, this person could potentially be with you from getting dressed all the way to your send off at the reception.
Getting down to business…
- How many weddings have you photographed?
- Will you be the one photographing my wedding day?
- Do you bring an assistant? Will this assistant be shooting as well?
- What type of equipment do you use?
- Do you bring back up equipment?
- Will you be shooting any other weddings that day?
- Have you photographed at my venue before? Do you have samples of my venue?
- Do you have sample albums or products?
How long before I see my photos?
- What are your packages?
- Do you shoot and charge by the hour or by the event?
- If my event runs longer what is the charge per hour?
Photos and Products…
- Do you have a list of potential photographs for the day?
- Do they hold the copyright to the photos?
- Do you receive edited images?
- Do they offer printing services, or are you responsible for the final printing of photos and albums?
- Will they help you design a wedding album?
- Can you show them photographs you like, for them to replicate?
Now ask yourself…
- Do I feel comfortable with this person?
- Does their photographic style match what you’re looking for?
Let’s Dance…Hiring a DJ is not just about playing music.
A DJ acts as the emcee of your reception. They can be in charge of the accompanying wedding music and set the tone for your guest experience at the reception. A bad DJ can leave a lasting impression on your guests. Make sure you hire who is right for you. You should always hire someone with experience. “Uncle Joe” may be able to mix tapes, but when it comes to keeping dancers on the dance floor, and making sure your reception timeline runs smoothly, someone with experience is invaluable.
When you are interviewing a DJ you should ask the following to get a good idea of their experience level, and it helps you find out if you “click” with them.
- Are you familiar with my venue?
- How many weddings have you done? How many do you average a weekend?
- What do you think, sets you apart from other DJs?
- Are there other services you offer, such as lighting, photo booth, others?
- How far in advance should I book with you?
- What do you do if nobody is dancing?
Getting down to business…
- How is your pricing broken down? Does the price include set-up and take down of your equipment?
- Does your price include use of wireless microphones, speakers and sound system (for toasts)?
- Are there additional fees that I might not know of?
- How much time do you need for the set-up of your equipment? This is important if you have a venue with a set number of hours available.
- Do you have a video from a wedding or event like mine?
- What do you wear when working a wedding/reception?
- Do you need special cords, electrical or spacing for your equipment, that I need to let me venue know about?
- Do you have backup equipment?
- How much space do you need? Do you need a table or do you bring your own?
- How many people will you have staff my event?
- Would you like a vendor meal provided?
- Will you work with my playlist?
- Do you take requests from guests?
- Are you willing to keep the reception on track so guests are entertained?
- Do you have ideas for ceremony music?
- Do you have new ideas for special dances for the reception, or traditional reception events i.e. garter toss, bouquet toss, or money dance?
- How many toasts are too many?
- Do you need a break during the reception? If so, do you set up music to play during that time?
- Do you have other employees, or are you the person that will be working my event?
- How often do you add new music to your collection?
- If I have special music genre requests, how is the best way to accommodate them?
- Can I provide my own music to incorporate into the event? If so, what is the best way to get it to you?
- Can I give you a list of songs that I don’t want played
We wish you good luck on your search for the perfect wedding professional for your special day. These are important decisions. These businesses have the potential to be long term service providers for you in the future. As always, we can give some recommendations of vendors we regularly work with to help you on your search. Check our website for our Wedding Professionals list.