It’s been a few months since the last ‘Advice from the Married Side’ but I am pleased to say that today it is back in its regular monthly feature. I have so many amazing real weddings on the blog and for each one I feature I ask the couple a number of questions, one of these questions being advice for other couples. Sometimes the answers get lost amongst the pretty pictures, so each month I bring you a selection of these brides (and grooms) words of wisdom! I hope there will be something amongst these experiences that help you while planning your own wedding……….Happy Planning!
(Photo by McKinley Rodgers Photography)
- Don’t believe in any wedding superstitions or stereotypes- they suck!
- Look into local suppliers as cheaper alternatives
- We used an app called Capsule Cam and flagged this to our guests in their wedding invites. Everyone uploaded their pictures from the day and we ended up with over 1000. It was amazing seeing everything from different people’s different perspectives and lovely to have this whilst we waited for the professional photos.
- We also used Wedding Window to create our wedding website. This was great to keep people updated on the details of the event and it had an email account associated with it that we could communicate to guests through
- Even when it feels like you are getting too stressed or spending too much money on ‘just one day’ it really is the best day ever and you will love every second and it will all be worth it!
- Definitely do not spend more than what you could afford. A great wedding does not need to be expensive. Decide what are most important to you and spend money on those things. Everything else, spend accordingly or cut out completely.
- We wanted to do all sorts of unique things but our budget meant some things had to be left out or tweaked. Just remembering why you are doing this in the first place, takes away any bride/groomzilla moments.
- If you can, choose a first look or allocate an hour after the ceremony for time and pictures with each other. You will cherish those moments.
- Don’t get hung up about the little things, it doesn’t matter if things don’t match or go to plan, what matters is what you guys as a couple really want because this is a day that you will remember for the rest of your married life.
- Get it videoed so you can watch it back and see the little things you missed!
(Photo by Wedding Photography to Love)
- One thing I would say is allow for some time off before the wedding – I concentrated on booking leave for after the wedding but the week before was genuinely a knackering experience, so if you are DIY’ing a lot – factor some time beforehand to get stuff ready!
- Don’t worry if you haven’t as much time as you’d like -ask friends and family, ours loved having the chance to be involved.
- Make sure you leave yourself plenty of time, especially if you intend on making things yourself. Do not underestimate how long it will take
- If you are planning on including a DIY element, start preparations as soon as possible to avoid the emotional meltdowns I experienced! Take offers of help when they are made, as people genuinely do want to get involved.
- Making your own decorations etc can be really enjoyable but start about six months before you actually need it to be finished because it’ll take far longer than you imagine.
(Photo by India Hobson Weddings)
- Focus of the important things and priorities. Plan your budget and stick to it. Be realistic.
It’s about you spending the day together and important people being there and having the day planned helps you be as relaxed as possible.
- Keep lots of to do lists and create an agenda for the day early on, so that you can get your head around all the timings throughout the day.
- The whole planning process was an exercise in letting go and letting others help us
- Invest in the right vendors- choose people who are a joy to work with and that the two of you can connect with on a professional and personal level.
- Enjoy every moment if it becomes stressful grab a coffee and a cake and come back to it another time
- Make your day personal to you. I know there are so many lovely images and ideas out there on pinterest, but don’t overload yourself. Use the inspiration, but just choose a few things really personal and relevant to you as a couple. Otherwise you might drive yourself crazy trying to incorporate every existing trend out there – shoving sparklers into mason jars while sewing heart bunting to hang on an antique dresser turned sweetie bar.
- And don’t stress too much about any last-minute things you have to do before the wedding. Set yourself a date and anything that hasn’t gotten done yet by then, forget it. Honestly, on the day these other things won’t matter – you’ll just be so happy to be marrying your best friend. I admit I was overwhelmed a few points during planning wondering how the whole thing would look and feel, but when I look back at my wedding photos now – what I love most and what makes me smile are the people and the setting, the wonderful emotions coming through, that defines the day for me.
(Photo by PNM Weddings)
Making the Wedding Personal
- I think it has to be go with your gut and do what you want. We were lucky enough not to come under pressure from family/friends about our day. I can honestly say that I would not change a single thing about how the day turned out – it was just how we wanted it. So many people have said that the wedding was very us and to be honest, that’s the biggest compliment ever. We did what we wanted to do without paying too much heed to convention.
- Make your wedding in a way that represents you as a couple and remember that this day should be all about the two of you.
- Make sure you are planning the day YOU want, not anyone else. You can’t please everyone – people will appreciate you trying to be accommodating, but it’s your special day so deal with unreasonable demands politely but firmly.
- Make sure you stay true to what you want, no matter if no one else agrees! It’s your day and what you both want is the only thing that matters, if you sacrifice too much for others you will regret it.
- If you organise a wedding that you feel comfortable with and that reflects both of you as a couple, the day will be so much more relaxing. Remember you are the one spending the cash, so you need to let go on the day and just enjoy every minute of it.
- It’s your day and even though it might be stressful at times and people may put in their two pence, remember they only care. If you stick with what you want then on the day everyone will enjoy it more because you have been yourselves, and it will be a reflection of the lovely people they know
(Photo by Mark Tattersall Photography)
On The Day
- My personal advice would be enjoy it. I tried my hardest to be laid back (I’m a pretty laid back person anyway but also very organised – if you can be both) and even I in the final week found it very hard to relax (I started grinding my teeth in my sleep). I did a lot myself and I wouldn’t change that but in doing a lot I piled on the pressure. You can spend a lot of time worrying about how things are going to go on the day BUT what will be will be and ultimately it is the people that make it.
- If tiny details aren’t 100% on the day-don’t sweat it -you’re the only one who’ll notice! Try and take moments to sit, breathe and absorb the day-I never believed them but it does go so fast!
- On the day itself, try to take a step back every now and again and soak it all in. I had all the best intentions of doing this and my day still feels like it passed in a 5 minute blur! Take time to talk to as many guests as possible as some will have taken the time to travel long distances to be there for you. Above all, make time for each other, just the two of you. It’s your day, after all!
- Whatever you are stressing about you won’t care two hoots about on the actual day. Also, small things can turn into unnecessary massive decisions, take a moment to think about the what the day means to you both and what you want to do and everything will fall into place.
- We had some good advice to take a moment to look around and take it all in. We had a quiet moment taking some extra photos away from everyone; it was both really fun and nice to be just us two. It’s well worth it!
- Smile- someone is always taking your picture! Stick with clear liquids- heaven forbid the glass tumbles and spills on your dress as it did in my case
(Photo by One Day Studio)
- Try to get all small details finalised at least a few weeks before the wedding. This will give you ample time to relax, enjoy and be fully present and absorb every single moment and emotion of such an important day in your life, instead of worrying about logistics and material things.
- Make a list and check it twice – and thrice! – as it’s satisfying and reassuring to tick things off a list.
- The best bit of advice I could give is be as organised as you can write lists for lists! Buy a note book and carry it around everywhere so if you see anything inspirational you can make a note.
- If you don’t have a huge budget then work out together what the things are that you both really want and don’t feel pressured to do other things ‘because that’s what you’re supposed to do’. Don’t stress about small things, you won’t care on the day.
(Photo by James and Lianne)
I hope you found these pieces of advice helpful. If you are already married is there anything you would like to add ? Was there anything in these words of wisdom that has resonated with you?
Is there something you would particularly like to ask me for advice? any questions just email me [email protected]