Sonnet Weddings and Events

Hey wedding planning couples and visitors to my vendor blog! This week I chatted with Maddie Ward who owns and manages Sonnet Weddings. I love Maddie’s passion for creating gorgeous, one-of-a-kind events that really reflect the couples she works with. Maddie was so approachable and friendly and I know you’ll enjoy learning more about her and her passion for planning weddings and other events!


Sonnet Weddings

Q: What do you do currently?

I’m a wedding planner and I own the wedding planning company Sonnet Weddings. I have an awesome associate planner, Melissa, who also plans weddings with me!

Q: How did you get involved in working in the wedding industry?

I moved here from Austin, TX where I started in events planning food and beverage tastings and festivals. My down the street neighbor was a wedding planner (Emily of Bird Dog Wedding – you have to check out her amazing work!) and I worked for her doing wedding planning before my husband and I moved to Fayetteville for his grad school program. And let me say – working with brides and grooms and their families is SO EASY AND FUN, especially compared to my past life working with chefs and wine makers 🙂

Q: What’s the most important thing a couple should consider when choosing their wedding coordinator?

Well right off the bat, you must must must have chemistry with your planner. Your planner, photographer, officiant, and whoever is DJing or MCing are the folks whose personality will be a part of your experience and guest experience. Especially your planner and photographer – who basically follow you around all day!

After that (and again this is true for all vendors) make sure the cost fits your budget and that what they are offering is what you want. We list all our pricing and package details on our website so that folks can know right off the bat if it’ll work with your plans!


Sonnet Weddings

Q: What advice do you have for couples who are considering eloping or having a smaller, more intimate wedding? Do you feel like it is still beneficial for them to have a coordinator? Why or why not?

If you’re eloping or tiny-wedding-it because of budget concerns then I would definitely not recommend a full planning package. A better fit would be our hourly consulting where we can talk about anything as well as our two online courses that will help you put together your layout and timeline and otherwise de-stress your day!

When choosing any vendor – start by following people whose style you like on instagram and then watching videos of them. It’s like a pre-meeting where you can rule out folks you don’t vibe with. Then narrow it down to one to three folks who seem like they might fit your budget and needs. In that first meeting, do a gut check and see whether their perspective seems to gel with yours. My typical first question in meetings is (well… after I ask about your pets and look at pictures!) “what are your biggest priorities – and remember – they can be different for each of you?” It’s important for me to start with understanding your needs. One time a bride let me know that in another meeting with a vendor the first question was asking who her dress designer was. Okay, dresses are beautiful yada yada but the first question!? As a bride, that would really make me feel put on the spot and as if it was a litmus test for how much money I had to spend, etc. I try to plan in a holistic way and get to know the couple first and then do the best I can to support their plans!


Sonnet Weddings

Q: What tips do you have for couples who just aren’t sure where to begin when it comes to selecting their wedding coordinator?

When choosing any vendor – start by following people whose style you like on instagram and then watching videos of them. It’s like a pre-meeting where you can rule out folks you don’t vibe with. Then narrow it down to one to three folks who seem like they might fit your budget and needs. In that first meeting, do a gut check and see whether their perspective seems to gel with yours. My typical first question in meetings is (well… after I ask about your pets and look at pictures!) “what are your biggest priorities – and remember – they can be different for each of you?” – and one time a bride let me know that in another meeting with a planner the first question was asking who her dress designer was. Okay, dresses are beautiful yada yada but the first question!? As a bride, that would really make me feel put on the spot and as if it was a litmus test for how much money I had to spend, etc. I try to plan in a holistic way and get to know the couple first and then do the best I can to support their plans!


Sonnet Weddings

Q: What is the most rewarding part of your work?

I love being a sounding board about stressful things – weird family dynamics, what to do about that one friend who you kind of don’t really want to ask to be a bridesmaid but feel obligated to, that sort of thing! It’s fun to use my past experiences to help couples avoid stress!

Also, the design part! About 70% of my couples book me to help them create the design/look/feel for their wedding (the other 30% are just planning and coordinating) and I JUST LOVE IT. Getting creative about inspiration, making a day feel and look like the couple, getting to know their taste– it’s all super fun.

Q: Any other tips for couples who are planning their wedding for 2021?

Woo doggy, you’re a brave soul for planning during a pandemic. Find community if you’re stressed – wedding websites and blogs like A Practical Wedding have amazing folks on their comments sections who are going through the same thing you are and have brilliant ideas and solutions to problems that I’m sure you’re facing. My other advice is: you’ll never regret being too careful or too safe!

Maddie Ward manages Sonnet Weddings. You can find more information about Sonnet Weddings on their website or Instagram page.


Sonnet Weddings

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