1/ Prepare Your Vows Early
Image by Eric Kelley Photography
Prioritising your vows will put all that planning stress into perspective. We all know that vows are incredibly precious; the declaration and promise of love and loyalty are essential to a wedding ceremony. If you keep your vows at the centre of your planning - writing, reviewing and practising them as often as you can then it will help to ground the whole planning process in what really matters - that being the love that you share with your partner.
2/ The Shoes Need Breaking In
Image sourced from Pinterest
Brand new shoes: beautiful, but they can often mean extreme discomfort for your feet! Break them in a few weeks before the wedding date by wearing them around the house. If they’re a pale colour, you could even put a pair of blue shoe-protectors on them to prevent scuffing or getting stained.
3/ Include All the Parents
Image by Levien & Lens Photography
The bride’s father walks her down the aisle, and often the bride and groom dance with their father/ mother at the reception. Get creative and find some other ways to include all the parents. Consider presenting them with a handwritten thank you note, having them make a speech or arranging a joint walk down the aisle!
4/ Make the Most of the Items You Buy
Image by Aaron and Jillian Photography
Opt for items that do double duty, either on the wedding day or for later. Wedding favours are a classic choice for this: add a name tag to turn them into seating cards, or gather them creatively to function as centrepieces. Set up some beautiful vases on a table for yours and your bridesmaids’ bouquets to create additional décor while also providing a practical place to store the flowers. Make the gifts to your bridal party something they can use on the day – a clutch, jewellery or another accessory. Or choose wedding décor – suitcases, lanterns, potted plants – that you can use at home later.
5/ Curate Your Wedding Party
Image from Leave her Wilder
Often brides and grooms-to-be have great instincts for who will make a good bridesmaid, groomsman - they know them best after all. But before you’ve made your final decision, stop to consider the balance of personalities in the groups.
Do you have someone who’ll bring the party? Be trustworthy and reliable? Keep you calm, or listen to you if you need to vent? Weddings aren’t all positivity and excitement, so it can be so rewarding to have the right group of supportive and loving people at your side.
6/ Befriend you Vendors
Though you will have a professional relationship with your vendors, working closely with people on something so personal and significant will be a great deal easier if you have a friendly rapport. You will know whether this kind of relationship is possible by sitting down with them before booking.
7/ Jewellery Goes on last
Image by Paul Santos Photography
Hair spray, perfume or other mists have the potential to dull your beautiful gems! Make sure they make the finishing touch to your look to prevent any makeup or mist residue spoiling the shine - ensure they stay gleaming.
8/ Prepare a List of Things you Want to Keep
Image from Uncharted Colour Story
Avoid the unfortunate possibility of loosing things in the pack-up chaos by making a plan for any items you want to keep. Whether that is a copy of the programme, or menu, a boutonniere, your groom’s handwritten vows, or pieces of décor, be sure you gather them together yourself or delegate someone to do it for you - in either case, the list will help!
9/ Use Collaborative Systems
Google documents can be shared, reviewed and edited by multiple people, making it the ideal place to compile a shared list (This might include the bride and/or groom, different members of the bridal party, family of the bride/groom to-be). Something like Google Drive or Dropbox can also lighten the amount of back and forth correspondence and attachments – They are quick to update, and everyone has the access to view any changes you make.
10/ Prioritise Your Guests Needs
Image by Henry + Mac Photography
Of course, the wedding is your day, but each guest in attendance signifies love for you and the individuals desire to celebrate and share in your happiness. Make them a big priority in the planning and on the day by personally talking to each guest and thanking them for their presence, be considerate of any needs or requirements when it comes to food, accessibility and seating, and don't forget to send a thoughtful thank you note to each guest after the big day.