Wedding Planning FAQ

Do we really need a Wedding Planner?
Nope! However, there are some reasons you might want one. If you've never planned a big party before, you may not want to spend every waking hour scouring the internet to figure out how to do it. Or perhaps you are otherwise occupied with things like finishing your PhD, planning a cross-country move, working full-time, spending time with loved ones, and generally living life. Maybe the idea of finding a venue that appeals to your aesthetic and is big enough for all your guests and also fits into your budget or comparing the countless details of catering proposals just doesn't interest you even a little bit. Or you might have some very specific ideas but no clue how to turn them into reality. That's where a wedding planner comes in. We can give as much or as little assistance and guidance as you wish.

What about a Wedding Coordinator?
No matter how detailed your plans are, there will be things that have to be done by someone on your big day. Setting up decorations and seating assignments; cueing the musicians to begin the ceremony; making sure Grandma's heirloom cake topper gets onto (and safely back off of) the cake; retrieving you from the bathroom before the DJ starts the first dance; getting your gifts and personal items back to you at the end of the night... These are just some of the things you'll have to manage if we're not there to do it for you. As a bonus, we'll also review the wedding plans, organize the final details and get them to everyone involved, and handle emergencies large or small throughout the day. So no, you don't have to have a wedding coordinator... but there is a pretty good chance you'll love having one!

What if our wedding budget is really small? Can you still help us?
Yes, definitely. Our services are customized to your needs, and we don't judge people on their budgets. Some budgets do not allow for a professional coordinator, but we offer an array of a la carte services (including training a person of your choosing to be your coordinator) that may fit your needs, so schedule a consultation and let's talk! We think everyone should have the peace of mind that comes with a wedding planner, and we will do our best to accommodate whatever budget you have.

We want our wedding to have handmade details, but we can't DIY our way out of a paper bag. Can you help?
We've got you covered! In addition to planning services, we are pleased to offer "Decor Design & Handmade Help" - If you are feeling overwhelmed by your DIY projects or want a handcrafted look but don't know where to start, we can be your crafty best (new) friends. Whether you need a brainstorming partner, a designer, a sample-maker, or someone to do it all to your aesthetic specifications, we're here for you.

Do you do LGBTQ Weddings and/or Civil Unions?
Hell, yeah! When we (two ladies) got married, it was important to us to have a celebration where we live, with our friends and family; but it was also essential to us to be legally married, even though we couldn't do that where we lived. So we threw a Chicago wedding and then made it legal during our Boston honeymoon.

We are really thrilled that as of June 26, 2015 marriage equality is the law throughout the United States, and we will gladly help plan or coordinate your wedding in Illinois or elsewhere.

Are you going to make us buy or do things we don't really want?
No way! In fact, we'll probably try to talk you out of things we sense you don't really need. (We really love saving people money!) Your wedding is just that - yours. Our job is to turn your choices into reality, not to choose them for you. We are happy to offer opinions, advice, and solutions, but all the wedding decisions are ultimately up to you.

Can you do a (secular, interfaith, pagan, steampunk, alternative, Victorian, roller rink, indie, cake-free, Monday afternoon, poly, fill-in-the-blank) wedding?
You bet. We love offbeat stuff, and we love to research things we aren't familiar with. We embrace diversity, new traditions, old traditions, out-of-the-ordinary things, and the-way-it's-been-done-forever. We are super excited to hear your ideas and brainstorm how to turn them into reality. Whatever your vision is, we will make it happen.

Do you do events other than weddings?
While our main focus is on weddings, we know that many other events could benefit from a stage manager. We can help with birthday parties, bar/bat mitzvahs, anniversaries, fundraisers, or whatever else you're planning. Please contact us for a quote.

Our wedding is taking place outside of the St. Louis area. Do you travel?
We LOVE to travel, have current passports, and will happily plan or coordinate your wedding anywhere in the world! We simply ask that you cover the cost of travel (and language interpreters, if needed) in addition to our fee. We've got a flat travel fee of just $1000 for weddings in North America; all other destinations are priced upon request. Please see our travel page for additional details.

How do you choose the vendors you recommend? Do you get money/swag/perks for suggesting them?
We only recommend vendors that we have personally worked with, and who we feel provide excellent service; or vendors who have been recommended by people we trust. We never accept kickbacks from vendors, because we don't think that's ethical.

Do you offer any discounts?
No, and here's why - first of all, we strive to keep our fees as low as possible while paying ourselves fairly, and we know that Crafty Broads couples want to be fair to all of their vendors! Secondly, in order to make the best unbiased recommendations to you, we do not accept commissions of any kind from other vendors - so we don't have a slush fund to compensate for discounted rates. Finally, it wouldn't be fair to couples who are paying full price that other people are getting the same service at a lower rate. If you have a particular budget that you need to stick to, please let us know upfront so that we can make recommendations that will fit within it.

What if I can do all the planning and organizing and really truly only need you for the actual day of my wedding?
When you book us for coordination, we are committing that entire weekend to your wedding, since we can only do one event at a time. There are parts of our service that are essential to doing a good job (even if all we're doing is running the timeline) that we would never exclude, no matter how well you have planned - such as walking through the space with you in advance, attending/facilitating your rehearsal, and going over all the details with you and your vendors in the weeks before your wedding. Finally, and the main thing, is that we are at your service for the entire day - and sometimes, even with the most meticulous planning, situations arise that require professional attention. Since our commitment to you is the same regardless of your preparation, we do not offer discounts on our fee.

The Crafty Broads were, without question, the best money we spent at our wedding. Cindy knows everything, and she also knows what's important - we had some vendors who seemed uncomfortable with the choices we made, but these ladies know that, at the end of the day, the goal is to get married. If we were omitting something that might be important she would let us know, but we never felt like she was judging us or the choices we were making, and that's really awesome, and not super common in the wedding industrial complex. There is nothing else that could have been more worth our money.

- Amanda & Nick, Chicago IL

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