Don’t freak out, but… There’s a ton of things that can go wrong during wedding planning. It’s just a fact. To help combat this, though, we put together a list of 17 mistakes that you could make when planning your wedding. Keep in mind, though, there are things we might have missed and the most important thing is to be ready for anything.
Make your budget, make it smart, and stick to it. Deep in debt is no way to start a marriage. Discuss your budget with every contributor, whether it’s just you, or you and your parents, or whomever. Consider how much every little thing is going to cost. Keep in mind that catering is going to take a huge chunk of that and everything else has to fit in around that. Don’t forget the details, either. If you have a set dress budget of $1500, for example, that doesn’t mean you can spend the entire $1500 on just the dress. You also have to consider a veil, shoes, underclothes, etc. Things can really start to add up if you don’t plan accordingly.
Don’t try on the most expensive dress or look at the venue out of your budget first. You’ll wind up falling in love and either completely blowing your budget (see above) or being disappointed when you have to go with something different. You also can’t get attached to anything else too early. Things go wrong and you have to be able to get past it with as little complications as possible.
How could you possibly do anything too early, you ask. But believe us, it’s possible. Especially when it comes to your wedding party and save the dates. You want to make sure your very best friends are up there standing beside you when you tie the knot. Setting this in stone too early could mean making a rash decision or ending up with someone you quickly fall away from. Save the dates should go out no more than six months in advance. The only exception is for destination weddings. Those should go out eight to 12 months in advance.
There’s a lot that can go wrong if you are doing things too late. It’s a good idea to stick to a calendar, like this one from The Knot. Don’t try to lose those extra 10 pounds too close to the wedding. Getting your dress or alterations too late can be detrimental. Make sure you’re also reserving everything, not just your vendors, well in advance. Need transportation, like a limo? Take care of it early. Need hotel rooms for yourself and/or guests? Take care of it early. Better late than never does not apply here. Rather, the early bird gets the worm.
The number of guests you intend to host can have a major impact on the budget. Think catering and venue size. Not only can this hurt your wallet, but it can also affect your enjoyment of your event. You want to make sure that everyone who shows ups is someone that is going to positively impact the event.
Hiring a friend might be for you, if your main goal is saving money. However, using a professional for the major things (like photographer or DJ) is usually the better way to go. They are professional for a reason. They have done this before and will act professionally in any situation.
Things are going to be stressful. That’s just a given. But one of the worst things you can do is let that stress come between you and your finance or you and your planning team.
Changing your mind is only acceptable before deposits have been paid and before anything has been ordered. There may be ways around it, if whatever your first pick was is detrimental, but the goal is to not let this happen. Especially the closer the wedding gets. Changing your mind doesn’t work one month before your wedding.
You will absolutely drive yourself crazy if you try to do everything by yourself. If you don’t want to go the wedding planner route for whatever reason, please at least enlist the help of some close friends and family members. And make sure your fiance has their share of responsibilities.
The wedding is important, sure, but it’s also meaningless if you can’t actually get legally married. Check with your local laws to make sure you get your license at the right time. And just as important, you need to make sure your license makes it to your ceremony.
Trying to change your diet, exercise routine or beauty/skincare routine last minute is a big no-no and you could end up with more adverse effects than positive ones. Eating better, exercising more and having a great skincare routine can really help you look great and feel better on your wedding day, but you should start months in advance to give your body time to adjust and give you time to figure out what works best for you. These are all things that work well as a habit, not as a single month of hardcore changes.
While it’s ultimately up to you whether or not you want a videographer, we can’t recommend them enough. We always hear one of two things: couples who absolutely love their videographer and couples who wished they’d gotten one. If you need more convincing, here’s a post why videographers are amazing.
Yes, we know, it’s your day and you get to make all the decisions. While that may be true, that doesn’t mean you should try to take over every detail. Accept help and opinions from people you trust. And when it comes to your vendors, they almost always know what’s best. Your photographer, venue and whoever else have been doing this for years. Believe us when we say they know how to make your day go off without a hitch and without too much direction.
You’d be surprised how many people notice when they don’t get a thank-you note. It’s not only good etiquette, but it gives you a chance to personally thank your friends and family for going out of their way to spend the day with you and spend a little bit of money on a nice gift. That deserves some recognition and you would want the same courtesy.
And along with that, forget to feed your bridal party. It’s a super busy day. You are running around getting ready and making sure everything is good to go. It’s easy, especially when nerves kick in, to forget to grab a snack at various points in the day. Prepare ahead of time to ensure food and water is on hand for you and your party. You definitely don’t want to be passing out from dehydration and low blood sugar during your ceremony.
Make sure all your vendors have a plan in the event something goes wrong. If your photographer comes down with pneumonia, who’s taking their place? If the DJ’s speakers break, where is he getting new ones? And if weather impedes your ceremony, what is your rain plan? Knowing these things ahead of time allows you to handle any problem thrown at you with grace and only mild frustration.
It is so important that you feel comfortable with your photographer for your wedding. You want to look happy and completely natural in the pictures and a big part of that is being comfortable in front of the camera. To help with this, we suggest two things: being on the same page with your photographer before you book them and doing an engagement session with the same photographer. Meeting with multiple photographers before you book gives you a chance to see different styles and personalities before choosing your favorite. You’d be surprised how important that is. Many wedding photographers include an engagement session in their package and you should 100 percent take them up on that. For one, you’ll get gorgeous pictures. And secondly, you get the opportunity to warm up to the photographer and their camera before your big day.
There is so much room for error when it comes to planning a wedding. We definitely suggest making lists and following a detailed calendar to make sure you cover all your bases. But whatever happens the day of your wedding, just remember that the most important part is that you’re marrying the love of your life and you have a lifetime of happiness ahead of you.
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