Most couples choose to do it themselves when it comes to planning their weddings. Only 12% hire a coordinator and I wonder if it’s the image of J.Lo swooping in and stealing the groom that puts women off from consulting a professional. Okay, I’m just kidding. I give women a lot more credit than that. But I do think there might be some misconceptions about working with wedding planners that keep some folks from doing themselves a huge favor. In the movie The Wedding Planner, Mary does everything from picking flowers to accompanying the couple on a weekend trip to secure a site for the wedding. It is clear that she is very good at her job, and that she has a very high price tag. I think at one point her colleague in the movie says that the commission from one of Mary’s weddings is more than her entire salary. Besides the added cost, some people fear they will lose control over decision making, or they think that they only need a planner if they have no idea what they’re doing. But there are options! You certainly do not have to retain a wedding planner for the entire planning process. Most consultants offer services that range from concept design, to day-of coordination, to event coordination. Some offer services in their area of expertise, like our friend Ms. Jo Gartin who specializes in floral design. My friend hired a day-of coordinator to facillitate the details of the big day, and it was the best decision she made. She and her fiance still planned the wedding entirely on their own, but they had someone who to make sure everyone in the wedding was where he needed to be, that the musicians were on time and everything ran on schedule. It’s peace of mind for you, and for friends and relatives who may otherwise be called on to take care of the little things.