You have sat down with your fiancé and dreamed up your big day. Now what’s next?

There are two options: to dive into the planning yourself or look into hiring a wedding planner. Think of planning your wedding like purchasing your first home – can you do it by yourself? Absolutely. Is it helpful to hire a realtor and consult a financial advisor with the process to ensure every i is dotted and t is crossed? ABSOLUTELY.

Hiring a wedding planner is a large investment, no doubt.  With that said, I can ensure you, it is one that will pay off as you leverage his or her expertise throughout the course of your engagement. A good wedding planner knows how to maximize your budget; where to save and where to not cut on cost. At CJDE we introduce our clients to the best vendors in the business, that fit their style and budget. We host parties for our clients to meet these vendors personally, at events like our Engagement Party Bubbly Brunch Where they otherwise may not be able to.

Your planner should have the perfect mix of an organizational Type A Personality while bursting to the seams with creativity, which is why I love (and am biased!) to our wedding planning, floral and design inclusive perspective. I wouldn’t conduct my business any other way and my clients love the one-stop-shop offerings we provide.

In addition to being an organized, budget-managing multi-tasking queen, it is just as important to truly “click” with this person. You will be spending 1+ years together and much of your wedding day with this person. They should be someone you genuinely like and feel that they are a true confidant. I can’t stress this enough.

Last but not least, as I feel that this is the most important, hiring a wedding planner provides you and yours with a go-to advocate for your big day and every major decision leading up to it. Often brides ask me why they should hire a planner if their venue comes with an event manager. Event managers are fantastic assets to the wedding planning process, especially those who work for hotels or venues that also provide the catering. With that said, their main role is to be the liaison between the venue and/or catering team ensuring venue rules are followed and the catering menu gets executed flawlessly.

Your wedding planner’s main role is to be YOUR number one advocate. To ensure the programs are printed in the perfect shade of gold you selected, to ensure you’re happy with the revised sweets table to reflect the now food truck that will be arriving at 11p (often after this event manager has left for the evening). I cannot stress enough that both roles are incredibly important – however one cannot substitute for the other. At CJDE our planners will meet with you as much as you need. There are no hour-limits to our full-service plans nor do we leave your wedding reception until after the very last dance. We are there with you from the beginning to the very end. And love helping every step of the way in-between.

After all, your wedding is the largest party you will throw in your life! 200+ friends and family will travel from around the world to celebrate you and yours, all while you wine and dine them for one epic love-filled night. Your planner should be a friend, a confidant, who looks after you and puts your budget, wishes, hopes and dreams first. I’m so lucky to be such dear friends with my brides years after their weddings have passed.

For more information on CJDE full-service wedding planning, please email me at

Hiring a Wedding Planner Chicago

Photography: Amanda Hein Photography




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