Planning your wedding is one hell of a daunting challenge, there are so many little details to think about and coordinating it all is a big job! Probably the easiest solution to this problem is hiring a wedding planner, however since that is more often than not an unachievable option money wise (it certainly wasn’t an option for me), I thought I would share some of the things I learnt whilst planning my own wedding.
Don’t be afraid to get stuck in –
Sometimes it can be hard to know where to start with wedding planning, it’s all too easy to get overwhelmed by the task ahead and put off making any real decisions. My advice would be to pick something you want to get sorted first, organise that and everything else should flow from there. For me it was the venue I booked first, I found everything else was easier to plan once I had my venue in place.
It’s never too early to get things organised –
You may feel like you have ages to get things planned, but trust me when I say time will fly by and before you know it your wedding day will be upon you! The weeks leading up to the wedding can become pretty hectic, so the more you already have in place the easier things will be for you. Try and at least have everything booked with a couple of months to go, so you just have the final details to focus on in the final weeks.
Utilize your own and others talents –
Weddings are EXPENSIVE, so if you or someone you know has a skill that can be used then definitely take advantage of it! For me I saved money by doing my own makeup, along with some of the bridesmaids makeup. I’m fairly artistic so I also made a lot of decorations and designed the wedding stationary myself. Our friend Kate is also a photographer, so we got her to take our wedding photos and since she is our friend she very kindly gave us a bit of a discount. Whether you know a photographer, a hairdresser, a makeup artist, a cake decorator, the list goes on, definitely see if they are willing to help you out in some way. They may be able to give you a discount, or if they are particularly close to you they may even do it for free!
Don’t take on too much –
Following on from my last piece of advice, make sure you are realistic with what you can get done in your time frame. I definitely fell foul of this myself, I left making the majority of the decorations to the last couple of weeks and I put myself under way more stress than I needed to! If I could go back then I would have started all the decorations months before I actually did! So if you are going to do things yourself, definitely try to plan them out well and give yourself more time than you think you’ll need to get things done.
Know your budget –
Be realistic with what you can afford. The sky is the limit with the amount of money you can spend on a wedding, but not many of us are lucky enough to afford this kind of luxury! Think about what you want and what aspects are most important to you. Make investments in the important parts and try to make savings elsewhere. By far the biggest investment for us was the venue, we wanted an all in one venue where we could have a beautiful ceremony, great food and a great area for a big old party for the reception! This ended up being pricey but we made cut backs elsewhere, for example I went for an off the peg dress, as opposed to going for a made to order, designer one.
Do your research –
The wedding industry is awash with options, for every item you need to tick off your list you can find yourself getting overwhelmed by the plethora of businesses and ideas google will give you! Do your research, read reviews, shop around and don’t always immediately go with the first person you see. You’ll most likely be spending a lot of money with all your chosen vendors, so make sure they are going to offer you a good service and you are going to get what you want from them.
Don’t let others take over –
Whilst you want your guests to all enjoy your wedding day, don’t forget that you and your partner are the most important people! Other people will interject their opinions and ideas, and by all means take them on board – they may come up with something you haven’t thought of. But make sure you don’t let anyone else force you to include something you don’t want. It’s your wedding day, so without being a total bridezilla what you say goes!
Don’t sweat the small stuff –
There are SO many elements that go into a wedding, there are bound to be some little hiccups along the way. Try not to let the little things stress you too much, chances are if something goes wrong a lot of people won’t even notice and if they do, it will be a story to tell! It’s very easy to put pressure on yourself, and compare your day to all the instagram and pinterest weddings you’ll have seen on the internet, but remember that nothing and no one is perfect, and its the little imperfections that will make things personal to you.
Plan some alone time for you and your new spouse on the day –
Your wedding day will fly by, and it’s difficult to take everything in! All eyes will be on you all day and you will be super busy socialising with all your guests. This means you probably won’t even get that much time to spend with your partner on the day! One of the best decisions we made was to take some time away from it all as a couple after the ceremony. If you are having a ceremony in a separate location to your reception this can often be the journey between the two. However for us we had the whole day in one location, so we took some time away from our guests to have some photos taken alone in the grounds of our venue. It was lovely to spend some time together away from it all, and we got some amazing photos out of it!
Relax and enjoy yourself! –
As much as your wedding day can bring about a lot of stress, its supposed to be one of the best days of your life! Try and enjoy the whole process, and don’t let things stress you too much. I personally found the planning process really enjoyable, it was a bit of an outlet for my creativity. Your wedding day can be whatever you want it to be, so have fun and make it personal!
So those are my top 10 tips for anyone who is planning a wedding. Obviously a wedding is a very personal thing, so you might find that a completely approach works for you, but these were the things that I found worked for me! Hopefully it will give a few of you gorgeous brides to be a bit of help in planning your big day!
Have you got any wedding planning tips? Sound them off in the comments!