Before you hire a wedding decorator to create the theme and decor materials for your wedding ceremony and reception space, do your homework. Ask questions about the decorator's creative inspiration, business practices and sources before you make your final decision. After all, your wedding is one of the most important days of your life, and you don't want any last-minute surprises.
Deposits and Refunds
First, interview a few professionals so you can compare their prices against each other and against your budget. Some wedding decorators require that you pay a deposit before any work begins. If there's a deadline for the deposit to be nonrefundable, you'll need to know that before you sign any contracts. Some wedding decorators charge more for a rush job (for example, two weeks before the wedding). Some may give you a lower estimate if you're having your wedding during the off-season, when there's less work to go around. Be sure to ask the wedding decorator if she has a refund policy, so you'll be able to get all or at least part of your money back if you're not satisfied with her work.
Ask to see each wedding decorator's portfolio. It's important to know if a decorator can pull off the theme you've chosen. (Searching through portfolios may also give you some ideas for your own wedding or reception.) Ask each decorator what his training and experience are, how long he's been in busness and whether he has experience decorating for particularly large or small ceremonies.
Even after you've seen each decorator's recent work in a portfolio, ask for references. Contact previous clients and ask about their overall satisfaction with their wedding decorator's work and work ethic. Also, ask to see photos of previous clients' wedding decor so you can see the color scheme and accessories in photos that haven't been retouched.