Photo credit: Morgan Houghton  www.morganhoughtonphotography.com    

Photo credit: Morgan Houghton www.morganhoughtonphotography.com

Hey guys! 

Here is a post/ how-to guide for wedding vendors! Such an integral part of making any wedding coming alive. As much as you want to do it all - you can't do it without amazing partners-in-crime. Read on for tips and tricks! 

Alright, once you have your wedding venues, next is nailing down vendors. Where do you begin? How do you know what you need? First up, is a key learning that I found super helpful through the process. 

Key Learning: Exercise your network! Talk to your family and friends, find out from recently wedded couples who they used for their vendors and what their experience were working with them. Listen to their feedback and see if you need all those services or not.

Everyones needs are different. It is highly dependent on your wedding size. wedding venues, the vibe you want, budgets and what your priorities are. In my experience below are the vendors every wedding needs (again this is dependent on the above mentioned factors, you can customize it according to your needs) 


  1. Food caterer
  2. Decoration
  3. Tents 
  4. Photographer 
  5. Videographer 
  6. Cake 
  7. Chairs 
  8. Wedding planner or day of coordinator 
  9. DJ 
  10. Hair and makeup artist
  11. Transportation (incl. limo, party bus and transportation for out of town guests) 
  12. Alcohol
  13. Florals 

Now that you have the list, its time to start planning! See below for an easy-to-use planning guide! 


Phase 1: How many events require vendors?

People involved: Bride + Groom

What: Make a list of all your events. For every event write down what vendors need to be involved. Example: Sangeet- Food, Decor, Photographer, Videographer, Chairs? , DJ, Hair and Make up Artist and Alcohol.

Phase 2: Make a separate vendor list according to your need

People involved: Bride + Groom

What: For every vendor, detail your need from them. Ex. Hair and Make up: Needed for Event 1 (date and time), Event 2 (date and time) and Event 3 (date and time). 

Phase 3: Vendor Research

(Includes building an excel to keep the information organized)

People involved: Bride + Groom

What: Use google, your own network, instagram and facebook to narrow down a list of choices for each vendor needed for the wedding. Social media and websites make it easy to view their work. Especially for things like decor and photography, have a vision or vibe in mind for each event and then look for a vendor that matches your aesthetic. If you don't have anything in mind, no worries - the vendors are professionals and can help create an amazing experience for you.

Key Learning: Food is one of the most important aspects your guests will remember. Its a high impact vendor, so spend extra effort on researching potential choices for this. Think about places you like eating locally as a starting point.  

Phase 4: Vendor Outreach

People Involved: Bride + Groom (remember to divvy up equally so you don’t over burden one)

What: Use the 'contact us' info online to reach out to vendors. In your outreach email - detail your need from Phase 2, and tell them what you need and when. (description of what you need, dates, # of hours commitment, times etc.). This will ensure you get meaningful information back with less amount of back-and-forth. 

Phase 5: Vendor meetings 

People Involved: Bride + Groom +  Optional: parents or 1 other family member from each side to meet with each shortlisted vendor contacts.

What: Meet with all vendors in-person if possible. Ex. For food venues, it can include a tasting/ price quotes meeting, for photographer and videographer, the meeting is for you to gauge personalities, tell them your expectations and view their work. For vendors that require extended personal communication, like the wedding planner or day-of coordinator, you have to see if personalities and management styles match and align with what you are looking for. Remember to read reviews online or get feedback from previous clients of the vendors whenever they are available.  

Phase 6: Finalize Vendors

People Involved: Bride + Groom + Optional: parents or 1 other family member from each side

What: Sign vendor contracts, pay deposits and make a work back schedule of deliverables with all vendors. Read the fine print. Ex. for chairs: delivery and pick date and times. for decor: set up and take down costs etc.   

Hope you found this wedding post helpful! Please use the www.mannatsmode.com/contactus page to tell me what else you want to read about. 

#Jannat2018 #JannatLife 

Love and Light,