There are a lot of moving pieces when planning a wedding that don’t come together until the big day finally arrives. While anything can happen, the more you plan for the day the less likely you’ll be surprised by something that comes up. Fresh out of my wedding month, I am sharing my top ten tips that I learned in hopes that they will help make your special day perfect.
Create a Pinterest board. This is the best way to figure out what type of wedding you’re going for and makes it easy to convey to your vendors, especially the florist. I spent a lot of time searching “pink, navy, and gold weddings” for ideas on how to use my color scheme. I pinned anything that caught my eye and shared it with my bridesmaids and florist.
Don’t let people talk you out of your budget. Decide what categories you are going to splurge on before meeting with vendors. It sounds really easy to just “throw things in” while you’re meeting with the vendor but if you do this with each one, the price goes up dramatically.
If you have two left feet, take dance lessons. Your first dance is a very special time where the entire room will be looking right at you. Instead of looking like middle schoolers swaying back and forth with no purpose, invest in a few dance lessons. We waited until two weeks before the wedding (oops) but managed to get in five lessons with dance instructor Amy Lawrence. She taught us a slow version of the West Coast Swing to “Let’s Stay Together” by Al Green complete with choreographed turns and a dip at the end. Not only were the lessons a great bonding experience, but also we looked like we knew what we were doing!
Make a very detailed schedule of events for the entire weekend. Include phone numbers of important people and vendors and addresses of all places. Make a column that includes who needs to be at each event. Send the schedule to the entire wedding party, family members, and vendors so no one has an excuse to stress you out with questions on the day of.
Put together a list of family members that you want in each photograph and send it to your photographer before the wedding. You’ll want to get pictures over with as soon as possible after the ceremony and before the reception and this makes it very smooth. The photographer will have the list and just need to call out the names of who is in the picture, snap, next!
Have a catchy hashtag but try to make sure it’s not super common. You’ll have so much fun at the airport the next day checking out all of the pictures your guests took. I didn’t see my phone the entire day of the wedding, which meant I had to rely on other people to post pictures, and my photographer of course!
Go with the flow. It’s really easy to let little things get on your nerves but it takes away from the happiness of the day. I had a few bridezilla moments that I felt guilty about the next day. Take a deep breath and remember that all of these people are there for YOU and want YOU to be happy.
Before you leave the venue for the night make sure that you remembered everything! I got on the bus back to the hotel forgetting my veil, lipstick, and Evan’s extra tux shirt—not to mention we also forgot our marriage license and had to go back the next day! You will put things in the most random spots throughout the day and completely forget to check around before you head out due to excitement and exhaustion.
Go on a honeymoon right away (if possible). My husband had to change his schedule for the entire year just to make sure we had enough time off to honeymoon after our wedding—but it was so worth it. You will be exhausted, your voice nearly gone, and in need of some serious R&R after a weekend packed with events. It also let’s you keep soaking in the joy for a little longer before going back to real life.
Write thank you notes as you open each gift. If this means that boxes sit unopened for a little while, that’s better! We let ours pile up and not only did people have to wait a while for their note, but it also overwhelmed us because we were having to write 10+ a night. Keep a detailed list so you remember each one.
Extra Credit: Exercise throughout your engagement. Looking great will help you feel your best but it also will help you de stress. Working out with your fiancé is a fun way to spend time together, too! Check out the post I wrote for the ClassPass blog about the best classes to take before the big day.
Photos by Katelyn James
Do you have any tips you would like to share? Comment below!