Letting Your Guests Be Guests
Now let me first say, that when my husband and I got married, we did have a family friend step in to oversee the logistics of the ceremony-- but that was primarily because my staff at the time was a team of 2, and they were already going to be helping in other aspects of the wedding weekend.
That being said, if I had the staff then that I have now, I absolutely would have utilized a professional to orchestrate our big day for several reasons:
It prevents them from being able to fully partake in the day. While it can be tempting to cut corners wherever possible, you are doing your friends and family members a disservice by not fully allowing them to celebrate with you as a guest. Think about it-- oftentimes, it’s the people who are the closest to us that we are asking to set out tablecloths, fold napkins, light candles, etc. rather than taking in the moments of the special day.
They have never done this before. Oftentimes brides will ask a cousin or friend from church to oversee the day. While they are more than willing to help, they typically have little to no experience in the wedding industry. This makes things like inclement weather and last minute vendor issues more difficult to overcome, because they simply don’t have experience with how to solve the problems that may arise.
They’re not asked to work the whole day. Although the ceremony is undoubtedly the most important part of the day, we so often hear of family friends who are asked only to assist with the ceremony itself, and then are excused to join the reception as a guest. This can lead to trouble when things such as the cake cutting, toasts, and end of the night send off arise in the schedule, as there is no longer someone ‘steering the ship’ to direct the other vendors.
It’s not fair to your photographer. Wedding photographers are quite often asked to be the timeline developer, the dress bustler, the hair and makeup touch up artist-- in addition to creating beautiful photos for you to remember for years to come. Trust me when I say, that this is not their job. Do they do it? Yes, absolutely. Should they have to? No. Will your photos potentially suffer as a result of your photographer having to juggle 500 tasks on the day of the wedding? Possibly. And is that a risk that you’re willing to take? I hope not.
Conflict of interest. Whether you realize it or not in those first weeks of engagement bliss, planning a wedding is stressful, and it’s important to have someone objective on your side. When you agree to let your mother in law’s best friend step in as your day of coordinator, you may also be signing on for a whole lot of unnecessary drama and mounting tension. If something goes wrong (which inevitably, something always does), the last thing you want to do is feel animosity towards one of your family members or friends-- particularly if it was something that could have been prevented by hiring a more experienced planner.
Admittedly, it takes a village to pull a wedding together. Looking back at my own wedding video, I was amazed at just how many people organically stepped in throughout the day to make sure that small details were being taken care of. However, asking someone who has no experience to completely take the reins on the most important day of your life is a risk that I would advise against taking.