Once you decide to hire a wedding coordinator, how do you find the right one? Asking for recommendations is often a better bet than searching the Yellow Pages, where you're likely to find dozens of wedding consultants offering their services. A trusted florist, salesperson at the bridal salon, caterer, or photographer may be able to offer suggestions, but the best way to find a good planner is to ask another bride. If you've attended a wedding that was a sweeping success, chances are good the wedding coordinator who planned it will work well for you, too.
When interviewing potential coordinators, ask to see photographs of events they have planned and for lists of references you can call. Keep in mind that looking through a wedding coordinator's portfolio is not always the best test of her ability, since the choices may actually reflect the tastes of the bride and groom. But do keep an eye out for the coordinator's attention to detail and the consistency of her vision -- did everything appear seamless? Or did the tablecloths and centerpieces work but the chairs seem out of place? Was the band located in a convenient spot for dancing? Were the flowers fresh?
Be sure to follow up with the references, too. When you call, ask questions such as: Did the coordinator help you to achieve what you wanted for the wedding? Would you use her again? Did she listen to comments and concerns about the wedding, and were they addressed before the big day? Find out how the coordinator responded to any last-minute crises.