When Shit Hits the Fan...

The Reality of What the Behind the Scenes of the Big Day Can Look Like

Wedding Expectations

Brides all have the expectation, whether verbalized or not, of a “perfect” wedding day.  Personally, the advertisements promoting “perfect” really annoy me.  Something will always happen, sometimes big things, sometimes small, but inevitably something always goes wrong.  Shit happens, even on wedding days

Floral Reality

A few weekends ago, for example; I was using 100 peonies in a few different colors.  These were the brides “must have” flower in her bouquet and everywhere.  It’s peony season, so what could go wrong you ask?  Well, each bunch as we open to prep blew up...the heads either just fell and fall or the flower basically exploded the bloom petals everywhere.  We called and got replacements and when they arrive we open and tuck them in the cooler.  My assistant is sputtering as he is working that he is loosing more than he can use in the centerpieces.  I go to make the bouquets and there are no peonies....only 18 Usable out of the last 50!  I was about die!  So I call every floral wholesaler I know and began the process of searching for 60 burgundy peonies.  One place had 10 stems....I’ll take them!  Then another wholesaler calls a New Jersey grower....they go up and pick 70 stems and overnight them to me P1 before 10 am delivery!  They arrived and were Fabulous! Finished the wedding and all was stunning! Then my blood pressure finally dropped and all was good.

 
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Advantage of a Planner

One of the things you get when you hire an experienced planner is all the vendor relationships they have.  The value of this one thing can not be overstated.  You just never know when your planner needs to call on the relationships for a “favor” that will save the day and your wedding even if they are not the vendor originally hired for your wedding.

Vendor Relationships - Cake Disaster

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One example of fabulous vendor relationships with bakers happened many years ago in Columbia SC.  Ronny and I were setting up the reception, the ceremony at another site was going and last minute reception details were being addressed.  The band was doing a sound check, the bar service was doing the final setup, caterer was preparing to being hors d’hourves and the baker setup the five tier cake that was a special flavor with specific filling that’s the bride requested.  As the band was tuning, all of a sudden the cake started to lean....and then it just collapsed and hit the floor.  We saved some of it from the base tiers and brought that into the kitchen. 

Disaster Averted

Then the phone calls to all the bakers we had relationships with began.  The cake hit the floor, I need five tiers...what do you have?????  We got two base tiers from one, two from another and the top tier from the third baker.  This baker had a large amount of butter cream and agreed to come to the venue, stack the frozen tiers from the other bakes, frosted them all, did the original design decorative piping, I did the floral topper and the cake was finished as the brides parents walked into the venue to check everything out.

I went up to the father of the bride who had been instrumental in the entire wedding planning process and said ....” the cake looks like the one you ordered, but it is not.  The original cake folded and hit the floor”. There is a bit of it in the back that we can serve to the bride and groom and special family members, but when the cut the cake, it I’ll not only be partially frozen, but also not the cake they ordered and I don’t want them to freak”. The Dad took it in stride, let his daughter the bride know at the appropriate time, they cut the cake and guests never knew the difference.  The funny part of the story is, during the night, family members would come to us and ask to have some of the special cake that hit the floor and they did not care that it was a cake mess, they just enjoyed it!  The stories that began that night from the band and family were hysterical!!!  Every time we worked with that band, that bar service and caterer, they ALWAYS brought up “The Cake the hit the floor” story. This was one that could not have been saved without the fabulous vendors who all pitched in to create a replacement cake in no time!

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I went up to the father of the bride who had been instrumental in the entire wedding planning process and said ....” the cake looks like the one you ordered, but it is not.  The original cake folded and hit the floor”. There is a bit of it in the back that we can serve to the bride and groom and special family members, but when the cut the cake, it I’ll not only be partially frozen, but also not the cake they ordered and I don’t want them to freak”. The Dad took it in stride, let his daughter the bride know at the appropriate time, they cut the cake and guests never knew the difference. 

Finding Humor in the Oopsies

The funny part of the story is, during the night, family members would come to us and ask to have some of the special cake that hit the floor and they did not care that it was a cake mess, they just enjoyed it!  The stories that began that night from the band and family were hysterical!!!  Every time we worked with that band, that bar service and caterer, they ALWAYS brought up “The Cake the hit the floor” story. This was one that could not have been saved without the fabulous vendors who all pitched in to create a replacement cake in no time!

Use a Professional

A lot of wedding ceremonies use birch arbors and they can be stunning.  For all you DIY folks out there, when you put up an arbor, and you have ordered flowers for it...be sure the arbor has been stabilized properly to compensate for the weight of the flowers.  Recently, this was not done properly, and just as we were preparing to hang the flowers, a gust of wind came up and blew the arbor so it was headed right onto the front.  Luckily, we caught it, ran support wire to stakes to secure the arbor, hung the flowers and all was ready for the wedding with no one being the wiser.  It's often the little things that catch you and can become one of those moments you really don't want to know about on your wedding day!!

So as you can see, with the proper planning and support, your wedding can be your perfect day!

Lauren Dragon-Cook

Wedding Boss Life, 205 Sugar Maple Lane, Spofford, NH, 03462