Hey everyone! As many of you know, I’ve been planning my wedding now for about 9 months and within those 9 months, I’ve learned different things that I thought would be fun to share with all of you since today marks 6 months until my wedding! Being a bride on a budget, I know first hand how stressful planning your dream wedding can be and though I’m sure I will learn even more within these next 6 months, for now, here are my top ten wedding planning tips/advice!
- Don’t be afraid to have a Friday or Sunday wedding
When Tom and I first started discussing what date we wanted to become married, we were only looking at Saturdays within our chosen month. However, once we began visiting venues, it was clear having a Saturday night wedding would not only cost us a lot more money but also make our minimum guest count rise and create stricter time boundaries. For example, one venue’s cost per plate rose over $20 for a Saturday night wedding and required no less than 150 guests. We also would have to have our ceremony start at 6 meaning it would be dark outside by the time we even started photos. Despite this, I was still against having our wedding on a different day of the week because I was worried my family would be upset. However, once Tom and I found our perfect venue, it was clear to me that getting married on a sunday was the best option overall. Unlike Saturday, I would be the only wedding that day meaning we could have our ceremony start whenever we wanted. The price per plate would be under a hundred and we only had to have at least 100 guests, which with a guest list of 130 wouldn’t be a problem. I won’t lie, when I announced our wedding date, I had multiple family members get upset over the fact it was a sunday. This bothered me but in the end I realized this, the people who matter in my life and who love me and Tom are going to be there no matter what. This isn’t just some party, it’s my wedding and there is enough notice in advance for family and friends to take off of work if need be and for student to let their teacher know they won’t be there the day after the wedding. So if having a Saturday wedding just isn’t what you want, either due to money or other reason, than don’t have a Saturday wedding! I promise you your wedding will be just as if not even more amazing on a Friday or Sunday as it would have been on a Saturday and the people who matter in your life will be there no matter what.
- Listen to your partner Remember it’s his day to!
Shortly after getting engaged I noticed a lot of people, especially vendors, always referring to the wedding being the brides day. As the bride, it is tempting to do everything how you want and not think of anyone else. However, this isn’t just your day, it’s his wedding day too. Some partners might want their future wife to decide everything and if that’s the case, than that is fine but there are many partners out there who want to have a say in their special day too. It’s important to remember this day if about the two of you and therefore decisions about this day should be made together. You might be surprised with the ideas your future husband comes up with. For instance, I didn’t think Tom wanted anything to do with creating our centerpieces but when he approached me with these amazing ideas, I couldn’t believe how perfect they were. It meant a lot to me that he took the time to think of our wedding centerpieces and it warms my heart knowing he wants to be a part of our wedding planning process. By listening to your partner and sharing ideas with each other, it will make the whole process a lot more fun and relaxing because everything isn’t just on your shoulders. You guys are about to become a team in life, what better way to begin than planning the most special day of your lives together.
- Remember this is yours and your fiance’s special day, no one else’s!
Going off of the previous advice, this is honestly the most important tip/advice of them all! When planning your wedding, what matters is you and your fiance, that is it. I can’t tell you how many times so far I have had family members, friends, even bridal party members make comments on how we are doing things. Since we are having a Disney themed wedding, Toms brother loves to make fun of our theme and compare it to a child’s birthday party. At first, this was really upsetting but I just kept telling myself that it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks, this was the wedding theme that both me and my fiance wanted. I am a Disney-aholic and I have known for years I was going to have a Disney themed wedding. Tom was on board with it and that was all that mattered. People are going to criticize or make you doublethink decisions you make for your wedding but if those decisions make you and you future husband happy and it’s what you guys want, than nothing anyone else says should change that. You’re only going to have one wedding, why make it anything but what the two of you want.
- Don’t be afraid to speak up but be polite about it
Shows like Bridezilla, though hilarious to watch, can make a bride feel like they can’t speak up when things aren’t going how they pictured. This is not true. As I stated before, this is your wedding day so if something is happening that you don’t want, you need to say something. The thing to remember though is be polite about it. Don’t scream and yell that you’re not getting your way but instead nicely bring it up. If your bridesmaids like a dress but you really want them in a different dress, politely explain that to them. They aren’t going to be mad at you and if they are just kindly remind them that this is your wedding day and that if they were getting married, you would wear what they want you to wear. If the truly are your friend, they are going to understand this. Disagreements are going to happen but as long as your nice about things, than stating the fact that this is your wedding and standing up for yourself is not a bad thing.
- Don’t let vendors intimidate you or pressure you into booking them before you are ready.
I wish I had known this before meeting with vendors. Vendors main goal is to get you to book them and they are going to be as pushy as they can to get you to sign that contract as soon as possible. When I won a free engagement photo shoot at a bridal show, I was thrilled to meet with the photographer to discuss the details of our shoot. However, when we met with him, all he wanted to discuss was being our wedding photographer. Book after book he showed us and kept talking about the packages and prices and the awards his company has won. I originally wanted to wait till after our engagement shoot to decide but by using the scare antic that by than our wedding date could be booked, we wound up booking with him that night. Though our engagement photos came out great, we did run into multiple problems that now worry me for our wedding day. I wish we would have waited and met with other people before signing the contract. Photography is very important to me so I just hope that come our wedding photos, we don’t have any issues. When going into vendor appointments, make it clear from the start you are just looking and comparing right now. They aren’t going to be happy with this and will still push you to book but you need to stay strong until you are 100% sure this is the vendor you want to work with.
- Don’t be ashamed to buy things that say Bride or have anything to do with being engaged/getting married
Listen, you are only going to be a bride once (hopefully), so have fun and enjoy it! Recently, I have bought multiple products that say Bride or anything to do with getting married. I’ve had people tell me it’s dumb to have these things and that it’s obnoxious but honestly I don’t care. Years from now, I will still have these things to remember the crazy wedding planning process and maybe even pass them on to my own daughter when the time comes for her to get married. So buy those bride pajamas and “I can’t keep calm, I’m getting married cup”, this is your only chance to do so!
- Go to Bridal shows
When I went to my first bridal show, I was so overwhelmed because at the time, we didn’t even have our date set. However, I had a ton of fun, learned a lot, and even won free stuff! Bridal shows are a chance to meet different vendors, try some yummy food, and just enjoy the fact that you are getting married! In total, I went to three bridal shows and I enjoyed each one of them! We have all our vendors now but honestly if another bridal show pops up, I will most definitely go anyway.
- Have an engagement party!
So this obviously happens before any of the rest of this, possibly before you even have a date picked but it’s still important! An engagement party or get together is a chance to celebrate your engagement with your friends and family and pretty much start off the entire wedding planning process. An engagement party is also a great place to announce your bridesmaids and make them feel special. At mine, I had made boxes up for each of my girls that contained a hand-painted glass, bridesmaid sunglasses, hand sanitizer and other little things and presented it to them one by one a long with a short speech. I felt it made the whole thing more personable and was so happy I had a chance to do something like that in front of my family and friends. Wedding planning is also going to be stressful so having one fun party to celebrate your engagement before diving into wedding planning also is a great way to prepare for that stress.
- It’s okay to want to dress up and look nice for your bridal shower
For some reason, most bridal, like baby showers, are surprises for the bride. The bride isn’t allowed to know when her shower is, where her shower is, or even help plan anything to do with her shower. Now i’m someone who doesn’t like to be unprepared and enjoys looking my best at family gatherings, especially one centered around myself. I told my mom and maid of honor that if they must keep the date a secret either tell me the morning of or make sure I think I am going somewhere else where I put makeup on and do my hair nice. I also told them I want to pick out a dress and if it must be a surprise, make sure to have the dress there for me to change into. Some of my family and friends were upset that I felt like this but I look at my bridal shower just as everything else, this is my day. If I don’t look how I want on this day, overall I will enjoy it less than if I did. This is just me and that is okay. They need to understand this and if you are like this as well, just know it is okay to feel this way and your family and friends need to obey your wishes and if they must keep it a surprise, do it in a way these wishes are still met.
- Wedding planning is stressful but it also should be fun and memorable so enjoy the process and document everything.
Planning your wedding should be the most stressful/amazing process ever. This is the day you have been dreaming of for years. This is the day that you will be marrying your best friend. When you think of the months leading up to this day do you want to remember being stressed and crying because things aren’t going perfect or do you want to look back and remember the joy you felt when you booked things for the first time. That feeling you got when tried on your wedding dress for the first time and just knew it was the one. If you understand that everything is not going to be perfect and that’s okay, the pressure of planning your wedding decreases and you can actually enjoy the process. My last piece of advice for you is truly to document everything with your wedding planning process because years from now, you will be thankful you did.
Well that’s it for now. Even writing these I thought of a few more but as we get closer I will do another post similar to this one for you all. I hope you enjoyed these 10 tips/advice for planning your own wedding and maybe even learned something. If, when reading this, you thought of any more that might be good for me to know, please comment them below! 🙂
Until next time my darlings,
Kaylee D. ❤