How to Communicate with Wedding Vendors

wedding vendors

It’s time to plan your wedding and tie the knot!

Planning a wedding is fun for some brides and grooms, yet for others it can be full of ups-and-downs. Some of the “downers” in wedding planning is the mis communication and difficult contacts with vendors. Since a large portion of wedding planning is communicating with vendors, I decided to reach out directly to other wedding vendors to hear what they had to say about preventing miscommunication.

These are the tips from some San Diego wedding experts on how to prevent miscommunication and effectively communicate with wedding vendors:

Know Yourself – by Sean Capshaw, Resolusean Photography and Event Planning

The more you know yourself, the better you’ll know how to express what you want and expect from the vendors. “Know yourself…It makes your communication with a vendor much clearer when you can voice your likes and dislikes plainly and openly. Choose a vendor that is compatible with your personality and communication style,” says Sean Capshaw, 2009 Wedding Photographer of the year for Professional Photographers of San Diego.

Do Your Research – by Erica Kuhne, Studio 13

Hair Extensions Expert Erica Kuhne suggests, “Do your research!!! Remember that typically you get what you pay for. Just because vendors spend a lot of money on advertising doesn’t make them more talented. Get referrals and be cautious!”

Reduce Time Wasted with Potential Vendors – by Phyllis Cheung, My Wedding Concierge

“Make sure that you have set your budget before you visit with vendors. Knowing your price range will help you determine which vendors you can afford.” Says CEO Phyllis Cheung of My Wedding Concierge, the only comprehensive wedding blog search engine and the top downloaded iPhone wedding apps. She also recommends, “Find your reception site first – Some reception sites will only work with certain vendors. Try and decide on a color scheme/inspiration for your wedding before meeting with vendors – By doing so, when you meet with vendors for the first time, you’ll be able to gauge if their ideas are in sync with yours.”

Follow Up & Don’t Assume – by Sean Capshaw, Resolusean Photography and Event Planning

“Follow up verbal conversations with an email or contract to spell out and recap the specifics. Read your contracts carefully and make no assumptions, if it isn’t discussed and noted in your contract it isn’t going to happen. If things start to go astray, communicate quickly so it can be rectified. Waiting only makes it fester and become an irritant.”

Stop It Before It Starts – by Phyllis Cheung, My Wedding Concierge

“Stop it before it starts. It is always best to ask questions and repeat back what was discussed. This helps both parties stay on the same page and avoid miscommunications. An apology for not communicating well enough in the first place or for not understanding or properly perceiving something could be a good thing. Even if neither side feels they were responsible for the miscommunication, there should at least be an attempt made to clear the air and resolve the situation.”

Be Realistic – by Sean Capshaw, Resolusean Photography and Event Planning

“Be sure to have realistic expectations. Don’t plan on getting steak for a salad budget.” Be realistic on what you expect from each vendor.

Find Your Fit – by Christopher Stavros, Babycakes

“Start with word of mouth referrals from friends, family, and people you know. Do your research, and then try a few vendors out. See who you connect with and what makes the most sense for you. Referrals are the best ways to go,” says co-owner Christopher Stavros of Babycakes, providing wedding cakes from whimsical to elegant.

And my two cents (as the relationship therapist)….

Since I asked other vendors about their advice, I decided to throw in my two cents as the pre-marital therapist below:

Have FUN!!

Instead of going down the slippery slopes of the negativity, have fun and enjoy the planning. This is your wedding….so enjoy the planning process. Avoid falling into the stress of finding the “perfect” vendor, stop the negative thoughts, and don’t make the planning feel like you are at “work.” Instead get excited, enjoy your creativity, and stay positive.

About Jennine Estes, MFT

Think of me as your relationship consultant, I'm your neutral third party that can help you untangle the emotions and help you figure out what's really going on. I am a Marriage and Family Therapist in San Diego, CA. Certified in Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples. Supervisor. I write relationship and self growth advice for my column Relationships in the Raw. Creator of #BeingLOVEDIs campaign. MFC#47653