Browse Posts


Browse Posts

tips & advice

Browse Posts


find us elsewhere

ma maison
wedding event & Venue

Hi there! Welcome to the Ma Maison blog. Stay a while and say hello!

Wedding Planner 101 with Ellen Westcott

Ask the Expert

Photo Credit: Geoff Duncan Photo Credit: Geoff Duncan

Coordinating all the details of your wedding can be a massive task when you may not have the free time to do so. Hiring a wedding coordinator can relieve stress and frustration from your day-to-day routine. Ellen Westcott of Westcott Weddings filled us in on what we can expect from her and her team as well as general wedding planner questions brides may have.


Why should a bride hire a wedding planner?

If you have never planned a wedding before, you should hire a planner! Simply put, planning a wedding is unlike planning for any other event or party. It is likely the largest, most important (and most expensive!) celebration of your life. As a planner, I am here to make sure you can enjoy the planning process and focus on preparing for your marriage, just as much as your big day.  A few specific examples…

1.    We have an eye for design. In a Pinterest-saturated world, it can be nearly impossible to plan a unique, personal day that still feels cohesive from beginning to end. We’re here to help you filter through the endless possibilities to find the ones that suit you best, and then we’ll refer the best team to execute your vision. (See #2!)

2.    We know which vendors to recommend and can save you the time and trouble of “Googling and guessing.” At Westcott Weddings, our goal is always to pair you up with vendors who are the best match for you in terms of style, personality, and budget.

3.    We know and manage logistics. Behind every seamless day is a detailed plan—think timelines, layouts, and vendor correspondence. We will also keep you on track throughout the planning process, and we are onsite on the day-of to ensure that everything goes according to plan. On your wedding day, your only concern should be getting to the venue on time (and if we’ve arranged transportation, you can check that off the list, too)!


What services do you provide? What would you do for the bride?

Westcott Weddings provides full-service design, planning and coordination services. All planning services begin with a design consultation and conclude with day-of event management. 

When should a bride book a wedding planner?

As soon as possible! Reach out as soon as you have secured a date and venue, and we can assist with the rest. (We LOVE to be involved from the very beginning.)


How do you determine your fees?

Westcott Weddings charges a flat rate, depending on services booked.

Do you have packages a bride can choose from? If so, what is your most popular package?

Westcott Weddings has a handful packages that we use as a starting point, but we are always happy to customize a service package for you. Reach out via our website and we would be happy to share more detailed information with you!


How do you differentiate yourself from other wedding planners in the area?

That’s a great question—there are so many wonderful, talented planners in Austin and the Hill Country. I think it comes down to finding the best fit for you. As with the rest of your wedding day team, your planner should be a fit for you in terms of style (design and working style!) and personality. This is someone you will spend a lot of time communicating with over the next 8-12 months. She will also be there for many special moments throughout the actual day, like sending you down the aisle. We hope that by the day-of, our team feels like just another friend in the room (albeit, a professional, organized, timely one!).

Photo Credit: Michelle Boyd Photography Photo Credit: Michelle Boyd Photography


What should a client look for when hiring a wedding planner?

Experience, style, and personality fit. If you have already booked other key people on your wedding day team (venue, catering, photographer), ask them for recommendations. If you LOVE these people and are excited about working with them, chances are they can refer a planner you will love, too. 


Any tips for how someone can best trim a wedding budget?

Trim that guest list! It seems impossible, but it can be done and is truly the best way to keep your budget in check.


How many weddings or events do you coordinate per month?

It depends, based on the season, but usually no more than two weddings per month. To give each celebration the time and attention it deserves, we work with a limited number of couples each year.


What do you do during the reception when you’re done coordinating a couple’s ceremony, dances, cake cutting, etc.?

We make sure everyone is having fun and enjoying the rest of the evening! We also typically start cleaning up and packing up in any spaces that we are finished using (for example, the ceremony site). We wait for your getaway car to arrive and make sure it’s stocked with food, cake, champagne, and your personal items. We make sure your favors are ready to go. We light sparklers when it’s time (and make sure no one starts a grass fire with them)! We check in with the rest of your vendor team to make sure they have eaten and have water. (Oh, and we may grab a bite to eat, rest our feet for a few minutes, and post a sneak peek of your beautiful day!) Once you and your guests have departed, we oversee cleanup at the venue before heading home. We are usually the first ones to arrive and the last to leave.


Planning your wedding and need a little assistance? Contact Ellen here to see how she can help you with the wedding of your dreams. Ma Maison and many other venues require their couples to hire at least a Day of Coordinator. Trust us when we say it is worth it to have another go to gal who can answer all questions on your wedding day!  


Ready to bring your dreams to life?



Follow along