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4/26/2020

Real talk: Questions from Actual Couples Wedding planning during COVID-19

I know many of my readers are facing a huge struggle with the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on their wedding plans. I’ve touched on this subject before, but now we are in deep, and everyone seems to have their lives on hold in one way or another. Now, we need to talk about the unexpected: what happens if you are planning a wedding during all of this?

Regardless of the plans you have made up to this point, there are dozens of moving parts surrounding COVID-19.

As vendors and couples worldwide are navigating a multitude of tough choices, I am doing what I can to be a source of information. in the post below, you can find a Q&A  submitted questions about wedding planning during COVID-19. I will keep my ear to the ground and continue updating these posts, and as always I am available to answer questions via email or Instagram.

I reached out to local wedding vendors and resources to get a feel for how they advise people to best navigate the current crisis. If you see something missing, leave me a comment and I will update this list!

In addition to the below, you can find more resources here and here.

1. My wedding will be by end of June. Should I postpone it? If yes, what should I do first?

It’s hard to say because things are changing weekly and even daily. I would recommend contacting your venue and finding a future date that works for you then check to see if your vendors are available. If you’re going to worry about having the wedding of your dreams right up until the date I recommend rescheduling so you can enjoy your wedding and all the events leading up to it as well. If you are set on your date you need to be prepared that you may have to cancel so come up with an intimate ceremony plan so you can get married on that date. You will likely lose all deposits if you don’t reschedule at least a month before.

-Maggie Hartnet, Reliable Rentals

2. I have decided to move my wedding from late April to September. Will my colors still work for a fall wedding?

Not necessarily… a seasoned designer knows how to bring your vision to life. I’ve designed a spring wedding vibe in the fall… he/she will know what to use or not to use to bring the colors you want to life.

-Jessica Jones, Blooms N Blossoms

Have fun creating custom color combinations to coordinate with the season.

-Pam Jean, The Beauty Patrol

3. Do you have any advice on collecting people’s e-mail addresses for updates regarding potential postponement? I need to keep all 175 of my guest informed and don’t want to do it more than once!

My advice is to get your wedding party and parents involved. Break the list into sections based on who each person may know and ask them for help. You can also ask them to let the guests know to expect an email by a specific date for updated information and encourage the couple to utilize a free wedding website which can be included in the email.

-Kimberly Carmen,  A Southern Engagement

First speak with your wedding planner as we have several resources ranging from a FREE simple change the date card to conversations with invitation specialists who have options with their companies for free or reduced cost reprints. Several companies are even reprinting just 1 invitation with the new date as a keepsake at no cost to the client. A Southern Engagement typically doesn’t recommend save the dates unless the wedding will be around a major travel date as those funds can be used elsewhere in the budget.

-Kimberly Carmen, A Southern Engagement

5. Will floral wholesalers have anything florals to provide once the CDC lifts their guidelines on events? What if I can’t get the flowers I want?

Yes! It just depends on where your florist is ordering from locally or not. each florist would know if they can get in or not but I would advise brides to prepare for substitution if needed. As of right now even with covid. Wholesalers are still getting flowers in but they are limited until covid lifts!

-Sara Busby,  Sarah Rae Designs

Flowers are available right now. We do encourage brides to be flexible with your florists on flower types and varieties. Some flower farms have closed due to the pandemic… which is out of our hands. Please be flexible… if your heart was set on peonies and your wedding date had moved, be open to new flower types. Flowers are an agricultural crop, therefore so much of this is out of our control. Flowers ARE available… we just ask that brides be flexible and understanding if we can’t get something we had planned to use.

I’ll also add that your florist will go over the options and let you know what’s available and what isn’t . So much of our flowers are imported … and many of us are attempting to order US grown flowers right now. Don’t be afraid to ask questions…but also keep in mind that we can’t control what’s been affected in the fields, shipping delays or flower farm closures.

-Jessica Jones, Blooms N Blossoms

6. I have chosen to postpone my wedding and the entertainment I have contracted won’t get back to me on new dates. What do I do?

First of all congratulations of moving your wedding date, and having more time to plan. I would make sure that you utilize all avenues (email, text, phone call. companies website) to get in touch with them. If you have not received a response within 72 hours, then send a second email and make sure to list the dates that you are considering moving your wedding to. Then after 48 hours if you have not received a response and choose to move forward with other entertainment options, draft a letter and sign it cancelling their services, and send that certified mail to the company address. In the letter please address the numerous calls, texts, and emails you have sent.

-Rick Mitchell, www.absolutelouisville.net

Well first of all, the entertainment does not sound like much of a professional, if they are avoiding you. I would try contacting them by phone and mail one last time, certified, saying I have been trying to contacting you about my date change and you have not responded. If you do not respond by a certain date. I will be forced to look elsewhere for my entertainment. I also expect a refund of any deposited money. This letter is also being sent to my attorney.

-Jack Miller, www.soundtraxxdjs.com

7. Are all of the weekend wedding dates basically gone for 2020 and 2021 now?

I can only speak for my venue but we still have a few weekends still left in 2020. Late fall & into winter. We are just starting to book for 2021. Our venue is usually booking a year out – so we are right on schedule.

-Colleen Sutton,  Richwood on the River, LLC

8. Is it unreasonable for me to ask for a refund on my deposit if I have a vendor isn’t available on new date?

If you’re considering canceling your wedding instead of rescheduling, know that in any case of cancellation, you are unlikely to receive deposits back from your vendors. Also, if your wedding is paid in full and you’re within 30 days of the date and have paid final balances, you are unlikely to receive any monies back. The best most vendors can do is to work with you to reschedule your wedding for a different date.

-Giselle Smith, Lovely Leaves

You can ask and read your contract to see what their policy states. Many wedding vendors have non refundable policies in place but some will offer a credit for future services.

-Pam Jean,  The Beauty Patrol

9. I have not had a chance to go dress shopping yet…is should I be worried that  production on wedding gowns could be delayed? What about alterations?

First thing’s first is do not be worried! Most of our designers are running right on schedule and others are keeping us updated weekly on dresses that could be running late. If you are a 2020 bride that has not purchased their dress yet, you may want to take advantage of our Virtual Bridal Appointments. Our alterations people are going to accommodate as many people as possible and we do have a list of several that will be able to help.

-Lauren Montgomery,  The Couture Closet

10. Is it reasonable to come up with a ‘plan B’ for our wedding before we’re ready to commit on postponing?

Absolutely reasonable. Keep in mind when planning Plan A and a Plan B that weddings are going to look different for a while. They are going to have to be smaller and more intimate. Or a small private ceremony now with a HUGE party to celebrate in the future (get to wear that dress twice!!!) If you decide to do a private ceremony, think about making a video of it happening and play it at the reception later so everyone can “be there” for your “I Do’s”.

-Lauren Montgomery,  The Couture Closet

 

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