By Packy Boukis
Wedding consultants wear many hats. They create a budget, a payment schedule, vendor referral, vendor liaison, wedding coordinator, attend meetings with vendor, educate the bride on questions to ask vendors, creates a wedding day schedule, attend the rehearsal and the day of the wedding carry out the wedding day schedule. A wedding consultant must be a master at communicating, sending out letters to verify changes, to verify terms of contracts, and to thank. I am however, accustomed to wearing several hats, being a mother of four. In addition to being a Mom I have been a teacher, secretary, demonstrator, counselor; health food consultant, and bridal consultant. All of these things laid a solid foundation for the business of wedding consulting.
I use my clerical skills to create a personal binder for the bride to place all information pertaining to her wedding. It also includes a database of vendors, the budget, a list of all vendors, their addresses, phone numbers and any other numbers they have, such as fax, beeper, and cell phone. My teaching background helps me educate the bride in the areas she needs to learn including, interviewing vendors, and how the wedding business works. Demonstrating skills are helpful when I am explaining the personalized binder. I was a bridal consultant in a department store and have registered many brides. I go with my brides to help them register. I give them information that is in their best interest when they are registering, not the best interest of the department store. Being healthy is basic to any business; I understand how the body works, and how important balance is to the body and to life in general. I eat a diet which includes a large amount of whole foods. In times of stress, such as the day of the wedding, I am able to withstand pressures because I have quick and convenient food I am able to access very easily.
The first thing I did when I decided to be a wedding consultant was to check out the associations that wedding consultants belong to. It was then I found out that there are several wedding consultant home-study courses on the market. I am so glad I thoroughly checked this out. I found a class that would put me in business very quickly-- within three months. The Class is offered by June Wedding Inc., from Temple, Texas. Robbi Ernst III is founder and president of the association. His association is very much respected in the industry. You will find him quoted in many wedding books as well as wedding magazines, in addition to an article that appeared in the Wall Street Journal. June Wedding Inc. was also featured in the New York Times (May 25, 1997). It was in this course I learned to create a business plan. I designated certain months to do press releases, and review magazine articles. The association you belong to is very important. I have just returned from a JWI conference where I met the Executive Editor of Modern Bride magazine Mary Ann Cavlin. I have also been mentioned in the August/September issue of “Modern Bride” magazine.
Many brides are drawn to my services because I am on the net, and it makes it easy for them to communicate with me.. In addition to my private consulting business where I offer a variety of services from a onetime consultation, to a full production I call the “Love Story” package, I am the resident wedding consultant for a site here in Cleveland, called Cleveland Live. I also do a chat for wedding consultants on the “iVillage” site of America on Line.
I am very happy being a wedding consultant. It is a lot of work; however it is very enjoyable, I believe it is what God prepared me to do with my life. It gives me the freedom of time, time to include the things in my life that are important. Having my own business allows me to make choices about the quality and quantity of my business. I enjoy helping couples realize their vision of the wedding day.
If anyone would like information on being a wedding consultant, e-mail me. I would be glad to help you connect with information. Or if you have American Online drop by the career chat on the “iVillage” site.