Weddings are stressful as heck. There are a million things to plan and coordinate, even if you’re only hosting a modest wedding. Oftentimes when things go wrong – as they inevitably do, at least a little – the blame is placed on the wedding planner. Sometimes, it really is their fault…but other times the mother of the bride just needs a scapegoat on which to unleash her wrath.
These 10 wedding planners (okay, some of them aren’t exactly wedding planners, but close enough) took to Reddit to reveal the times when they accidentally ruined someone’s special day.
Don’t read this if you are about to get married.
1. Friendly Business
“I have catered over 100 weddings in my day and never really ‘ruined’ anything or had any big disasters but I have a story of a client ruining my night.
It was a destination wedding at a private residence 4 hours from my home base at a 25,000 sq ft vacation house near a ski resort. The clients were friends and one of my original regular customers at my restaurant. In fact, they had their first date at my place.
The Bride was very insistent about having a non-traditional reception. She wanted a running ‘happy hour’ party where different food and drink stations came out throughout the day/night with no traditional sit-down dinner. The main meal part of the night was ‘small plates’ served dim sum/tapas style.
We had 10 items on the menu and my staff would walk carts up and down the tent passing out various plates. So if a cart went by with something you liked you took it, if not you waited for the next cart.
In our last meeting with the clients and the wedding planner, everyone decided that it was important for the bride and groom to have a speech welcoming everyone and to briefly explain how dinner was going to work. On the day of the wedding, despite being reminded, the bride neglected to do this. When my staff descended upon the tent people were confused; taking anything that came by their table, being upset that they didn’t get other things. After ‘dinner,’ the bride and groom give thank you speeches.
When the Bride gets up to speak the first thing she says is that she is sorry that dinner did not go as she planned and hopes that everyone wasn’t disappointed. I was on the edge of the tent with the wedding planner and my heart just sunk and I wanted to hide in the corner. The wedding planner was upset and took her aside to tell her about the inappropriateness of her statement.
This is the point in the story where I tell you that ‘dinner’ was 1.5 hours late because after the initial pictures the bride didn’t like her eyelashes and disappeared for over an hour to redo her make up. During which we had run out of appetizers (we had enough for a 1-hour happy hour reception, not 2.5-hours) not to mention how the timing affected the timing of the dinner food.
Because they were friends, especially the groom (who was paying for the wedding approx $125k) they asked me the defer $10k of my $25k bill for a week after the wedding and come final payment time, predictable the bride throws in a faux apology. I couldn’t cash that check fast enough.”
2. Music Mayhem
“For my wedding, we later found out was that the DJ who was supposed to do our wedding bailed at the last minute, so the owner of the DJ service had to scramble and send someone she didn’t know. And it totally backfired.
After all the toasts and stuff, we go up and tell him we’re ready to do the first dance. ‘Uh, what song are you dancing to?’ I tell him. ‘Um, I don’t have that one.’ What the heck? Luckily, I had driven my car to the reception even though I hadn’t planned to, and had the CD in my car.
Once the dance floor opens up, he starts playing the worst selection of music ever, including songs we had on our ‘do not play’ list.
It doesn’t take long for us to realize the guy is high as a kite and completely out of it. Needless to say, the dance floor empties out for a long time. Then, he plays Billie Jean, at which point people come back and start dancing. So, in his messed-up brain, he then proceeds to try and play the ENTIRE Thriller album. I had to go stop him after four songs.
Anyway, didn’t ruin the wedding by any sense, but was definitely bizarre and annoying at the time, although funny now.”
3. “Family reunion”
“I’ve worked at tons of weddings, from little get-togethers on the beach, to half-million-dollar galas in Manhattan. Here’s a story about how the wedding party contributed to making things lousy all around. I met the couple at a great location near the beach. I was told by the lady that they were having a family reunion. We later worked out the menu, budget, arrangements, etc, and they put down the 50% deposit. The remaining 50% was due 48 hours before the event – which was in about 4 months.
About a month before the ‘family reunion,’ she lets out it’s actually a wedding.
She said she had read online that the wedding industry rips people off, and it was better to not say it’s a wedding, but some other type of party. Jeez… So, we made some adjustments now that I actually knew it was a wedding.
48-hour countdown comes, and no payment from them. I almost blew it off but decided to put up my own money and do the job anyway. Paying for all the rentals, all the food, and staff, etc.
The wedding and reception get underway, still no payment. And no mention of it from them.
They then proceed to be rude and abusive to my staff. This is a party of about 150 people. They slam the bar we’d set up and everyone is pounding drinks. About two hours into it and everyone is hammered. And the complaints and abuse are pouring in nonstop.
My staff remained pretty chill about it. We’d worked many weddings and receptions before, and knew this type of behavior was typical.
So, as things die down, I had to go deal with getting paid. I finally got it, but not before getting a trashed ear full from the bride and her mother, who was trying to work out why they should get some discounts.
There were at least 50 people who were plastered. I offered to let the police sort it out. That must have gotten their attention. They paid up – about $5K in cash, which was weird – and left.
These people obviously thrived on abusive relationships. They wanted to have a cr*ppy time – and wanted someone to blame it on – and they got it. Out of all the weddings I’ve been to and worked at, these people took the cake. Literally.”
“As the best man in several recent weddings, an event staffer is the best place for blame.
On the most recent one, the mother of the bride was utterly insane and we had a couple small things that we noticed right away were going to go “wrong” (they were fine, but the mother of the bride was going to go insane because it wasn’t the way she wanted it). So we grabbed the event manager and asked them if we could, with their assistance, put the blame on one random staffer.
So he called in a staffer on their day off, we paid her $300 in cash, and the mother of the bride chewed her out for a couple minutes while we look disappointed and then the mother of the bride “fired” her from the event staffer company (which is just really funny to me that the mother of the bride actually thought she had the ability to unquestionably fire someone from a career at somewhere else and it would be totally accepted). The girl was in on it the whole time and said that if she could get paid for entire day of work plus $300 for 45 minutes of work (including driving to the location), she would love it.
The rest of the time the mother of the bride would find things wrong and then say “Well, this must have been that girl’s doing. I am glad I fired her because she was worthless” and we all just said “definitely, great decision”. Made the day so much easier. I really wish this was my idea, but it was the father of the bride’s idea. I can only assume he has done this in the past.”
5. Candle Catastrophe
“I worked for a florist – I look back on them fondly as the sarcastic florists because that’s what my bosses were behind the counter. They were amazingly good at what they did, but they didn’t take ridiculous cr*p from people and if you were going to be a j^rkthey were going to riff sarcastically on you for months to come.
The biggest jerks were without fail the ones who were spending the most money. We had one family spending a ridiculous amount (something like 40k on the flowers alone) and the mother of the bride had the biggest meltdown I’ve ever seen. There had been a discrepancy in the type of candles ordered for the floral garland that went on a ledge around the room. My boss had written down from their initial consultation that they wanted 3 inch pillar candles to be placed in mini arrangements every few feet along the garland. The arrangements and garland were beautiful, but when we were there setting up the bride’s mother threw an absolute fit and insisted that they were supposed to be 4 inch pillar candles. It was the day of the wedding, we were in a remote resort town, and there was no way we would be able to get replacement candles in time. She insisted that they were too low and that the flames of the lit candles would sparkle too brightly in everyone’s eyes. She wanted us to comp the entire cost of the garland. My boss was super diplomatic and polite but stuck to his guns and was like, “Um, no, not a chance in hell.”
For months afterward he’d make constant jokes with us about it. He’d say things like, ‘Hey, do you know if the State laws have been updated yet? What’s the policy for how tall pillar candles have to be for a couple to be considered legally married?'”
6. Perfectly Pink
“One of my instructors in culinary school owned a super high end bakery before he became a professor. He once had a bride who wanted a particular shade of pink sugar flowers on her cake, but she would not bring in a color swatch no matter how many times she was reminded. So, the wedding rolled around and Chef just did his best to guess what color she wanted. When the bride saw that the cake wasn’t the perfect shade of pink she had a total meltdown in the midst of all of her guests. On the floor sobbing and screaming. THEN she took Chef to court and sued because the color of the cake caused the couple to be unable to consummate their marriage. (I mean, amongst other things like emotional trauma.)”
7. Suit Up
“Morning of my brother’s wedding. All the men are out having a round of golf outside of town while the women go to the salons to get their hair & nails touched up for the big day. Beautiful. Sunny. Playing a great round, and one of my brother’s best in his life. The sun & starts have aligned.
Then the Best Man’s phone rings…
Answers said phone, is chipper & cordial. It’s the rental place that has the rest of our party’s Tuxedos and that they’re ready for pick-up at the previously specified time (I’m Canadian Military and the sister-in-law wanted me in uniform, no tux for me, huzzah). All appears well as the BM goes through the list : “Pants are pressed? … Shoes were shined? … Vests were proper colour? … Jackets had the right flowers to be pinned on? … … … What?”
At that last statement the BM’s face turns a dazzling array of colours that I had previously only seen at a dance club. White, to green, to red, to purple, to what I can only describe as “Crimson Murder.” The jackets are not ready and had not been ordered. Wedding is in 4 hours. Mass amounts of swearing ensues. BM hangs up and without saying a word starts heading to his car to return to the city (a 45min drive that he achieved in about 20). BM had the original contract in the car & showed it to the company proving that the jackets were, in fact, on the order.
End of the day, after using quite possibly every threat known to mankind, jackets are procured from another rental place about an hour before the wedding and everything went off without a hitch afterwards. Good times.”
8. No staff
“I’m a photographer – at a wedding last year, the planner forgot to send the final payment to the venue. The night before the wedding, venue hasn’t been paid and tells the staff, you get tomorrow off. The planner shows up morning of, the place is empty, not set up and the food isn’t being prepared. Then, she has the audacity to claim she “saved the day” by going there and realizing sh^t was all messed up, getting the payment to the manager who, in turn, scrambled to put on the reception. I gave mad props to all the kids and adults who showed up to serve that night – I probably wouldn’t have answered that call when I was in high school. The planner was passing appetizers and claiming how much she was helping doing so. The weeping bride and her screaming mother in the hallway thought otherwise.”
9. No photographer
“Not a wedding planner but I once attended a wedding where the fucking photographer forgot to show up. She penciled in the wrong date or something, and they even held off the ceremony for an hour trying to reach her – and it turned out she was on location somewhere else or otherwise unavailable.
I’m not a nuclear physicist, but I saw a meltdown that day, and it was the bride’s mother. I’m surprised any of us are still alive.
What ended up happening was someone ran to walmart and bought them out of those little Kodak disposables, and everyone just took candid snaps.”
10. He got his revenge
“I can top a lot of these. When my little sister went to get married, her fiancee’s Aunt in Law was a wedding planner and they were getting married in his home state. Well since we didn’t really know anyone up there, my dad decided to let her plan the wedding with a budget of 35,000 dollars. The DAY before the wedding she presents my dad with another bill of 35,000 dollars and says the wedding cannot go on unless he pays it…. Luckily my dad has just sold some farm equipment from our dairy, so he has the cash and he pays it. The wedding does turn out to be a really nice wedding, but afterwards my dad STILL received calls from the dj, the photographer, and other people saying she hadn’t paid them. My dad doesn’t want to press charges since she is now related, but she didn’t think that A LOT of her business came from the dairy industry and my dad is well known in it, so he quietly let it be known what she did, and she stopped getting any business from the dairy industry. She still claims she took a loss on the whole thing, even though she built a brand new addition to her house after the wedding…”