Every bride can attest to being completely overwhelmed at some stage in the wedding planning process. They can also attest to their groom not pulling their weight and the feeling of 'does the groom really want this, when all he is doing is nothing'. Don't worry ladies, we hear you and it's all normal. Breath in, relax and know that the answer to all your troubles is a 'run sheet'. Yes, what event planners use! 'What... but how in the hell do I put together a run sheet? As event planners in a past life, we've got your back.
Don't worry, you will have the above moment too. Image by @nicoleleever.
Here's an example of an actual run sheet for a wedding that we developed with the bride. It was a very hands on wedding with the venue being hired, it was a room in a castle!, and the bride decided to bring in a caterer for food and to help set up and dismantle.
Start your run sheet from the day before your wedding. Include a table that lists everything that you need to do the day prior and anything that still needs to be arranged. Even if you have a terrible memory, that way you'll never forget to do it. Time is not so important here, so we've left that detail out. Just as long as it is done early in the day, that is fine. Put in the item to be done and who is responsible for it and voila. This way you can easily see who is doing what and if it comes to delegating something to a relative or a friend, that's easy peasy.
Now for the day of the wedding. Time, item and responsibility are the columns required again. Now is the time to be picky and meticulous. Any little detail needs to go in here. We've gone so far as to note how many candles there are and how many will be around each centrepiece! We've also listed exactly what crockery and cutlery is required and what food will be served. This acts as a complete list of things that must be and has been organised. It is in other words, how you stay completely on top of every detail. Take a read through and see if you might find something helpful for your own celebration.
The run sheet is far too much detail for anyone but yourself and the relatives or friends that you appoint to help you out. It's a good idea to appoint an event manager that is not the bridesmaid to ensure everything is running to plan on the day.
For the caterer and other suppliers, you will put together a much simpler agenda of the day that looks something like this:
15:00 Access - bump in commences
15:01 Tables and chairs to be set up first to allow for decorations
16:30 Cake delivery
18:00 Guest arrivals - champagne arrival drinks - Nachos & Salsa
18:20 Speeches begin
18:50 Tables cleared
19:00 Mains served
20:00 Tables cleared
20:30 Cake and coffee/tea served
21:30 Tables cleared
23:00 Bump out begins - caterer to return table and chairs to storage room
24:00 Bump out complete
Even though you have planned meticulously, you need to be ok on the day if the schedule falls slightly behind. For example, one of the speeches might be far longer than agreed upon. That will push everything back a little. You will probably have some buffer time anyway, for example, when guests are mingling or dancing. Some delays are reality, really, and as a chilled bride that everyone likes, you are going to be ok with that.
Here's to a wedding that's well planned and joyous and a bride that keeps all her friends and relatives after the wedding :)
And now for looking the part.