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When to Call It a Day

Five tasks you should leave to the pros, according to Josh Brooks of the event- planning and design company Fête.

1. Day-of décor. You’ll already have plenty to think about as you get ready. “You can design the look and select the flowers stem-by-stem, but do your best not to spend the hours before your wedding assembling arrangements and worrying about keeping flowers fresh. The brides who don’t let go ... you see it.”

2. Event coordination. “The bride shouldn’t be the one to alert the band to play for an extra fifteen minutes because dinner is running late.” While day-of planners have become very popular, they typically charge $1,500 and up. If you’re looking to go cheaper (and you don’t mind imposing on guests), put any friends with project-management experience to work.

3. Photography. Sure, it’s tempting to hire a friend—particularly when money is tight. But “experienced photographers know how to adjust to different lighting and how to get the good shot. They know when the mother will start crying and can be in the right spot. I’ve had clients say, ‘The photos make my wedding look ordinary.’ And then they resent the person who took them.”

4. Day-of transportation. You don’t want to worry about getting stuck on Canal Street.“You want a driver who can circle if parking is a problem and knows alternate routes because traffic is a nightmare, especially in New York.” And be sure to get the driver’s phone number.

5. Hair. “It’s a tempting cost saver, especially if you’re planning a low-key look. But if you’re doing anything other than what you normally do, hire a stylist. Nerves can really get in the way.”

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