Advice to a Future Bride: Part 1

Today has been a trying day with all this wedding stuff.  I recently had the first of two bridal showers this past weekend and it was so much fun!  Who wouldn’t love being showered in gifts and told how great your wedding is going to be?? Today I woke up, opened my fabulous new dishes from Crate and Barrel, washed my luxurious new towels and basked in the first wave of awesome household presents I received from beyond-generous women.  However, as I continued to divulge deeper into the wedding planning, I had probably a gazillion mini breakdowns.  I went from the wedding-fun to the wedding-horrors.

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So in the midst of throwing invitation envelopes out the window and begging the local printing place to do an emergency favor, I realized all of my bridal regrets in planning this wedding.

Disclaimer: These are my own personal findings and every bride is different. 

Hire a Wedding Planner

I know it seems frivolous.  When I got engaged I didn’t think I needed one either.  “Oh, I have my sister and we already have so many ideas.”  As soon as you utter a similar sentence, pause and document how much free time outside of work/school/kids etc you ACTUALLY have during the day.  I have worked 2 jobs for the past 2 years, I have an internship as well, Adam and I are both students in college and we both took Summer classes during our engagement, Adam works 4 days out of the week, and my sister(who honestly has been amazing) has 2 children and is busy as it is.  Hiring a planner would have forced the schedule to move along and they would have done all the footwork.  The hardest part of starting the planning was  finding a caterer and reception hall.  If I had had a planner, they would have figured out what I wanted and brought back all the options in half the time it took me.  I eventually just got so frustrated with finding a caterer, I chose anything no matter the price.  I’m hoping it works out with them and is worth the cost so I will have to get back to you on that one.  Wedding planners will also do all the things like printing/organizing/addressing the envelopes and coordinating responses.  May seem like a small task but it turned into multiple days of work and tons and tons of stress.  Honestly though, hire a planner if you don’t have LOTS of time to devote to planning.  Because no matter how much help you have in your friends/family, the decisions ultimately come down to you and your choices which will leave you doing the true work.

Don’t Talk About Your Wedding Ideas

Not to be rude, but sharing my wedding ideas with other people who weren’t directly involved in the wedding planning usually backfired on me.  People have good intentions and want to help and share all their ideas however it was a bit much sometimes.  When they asked me about my wedding plans, it was typically reciprocated with what they thought and what vendors they think I should use.  While I know they were just trying to be helpful, so are the other 100 family and friends that I see often.  It became overwhelming for me so I learned to keep wedding talk to pretty basic topics or topics that were set in stone.  If anyone sensed that I was still on the fence of a band or DJ, they were more than willing to offer their “advice.”  If I provided more set in stone information, it was harder for anyone to make a comment about what I should do.

Make Your Invitations Clear

I don’t know about anyone else but in my situation, Adam and I were not letting guests bring dates unless we knew them personally or they were married.  However my invitations were not very clear on this subject.  While the envelope would only have been addressed to the only people who would be invited to the wedding, some guests have responded with a date that probably weren’t supposed to.   And I am way too nice to call these people and un-invite their already invited guest.  I wish that instead of leaving the response card open, I would have written the number of guests for them along with their name.  Seem rude? Maybe to some people, but when space and funds are limited, I’d much rather make sure I can afford to seat and feed all of the people we know and love than overspend and over-seat because people brought unknown guests.  On the other hand, if you are allowing guests, make sure to label envelopes with the person’s name and “guest.”  Either way, make sure your guests have a clear picture of what you are expecting back in return.

Do Not Be Afraid of the All-Mighty Registry

Adam and I did our registries months prior to this blog post however it became scarce fast due to the bridal showers.  So I have had to go on to register for more stuff.  This is NOT a bad thing mind you, but I should have just manned-up in the beginning and registered for what we really wanted.  When we were cruising through Target with our handy-dandy scanning guns, we were really excited however cautious. “We can’t make people buy us that!  That is too much.  Maybe we should just get one set of towels instead of 4.”  Now I realize that people actually want to buy you these things and are looking for a “set” of something to buy you.  Just go bold and buy those whole sets of towels and dishes.  It will be worth and guess what….people will buy you these things!

Ignore the Rude Comments

It’s hard to believe, but I’ve actually found some people make some potentially harsh comments about the wedding planning.  Honest quote from a few people: when I told them what beer we will probably be having: “Yuck.  Why not Stella Artois?” or 4 months before the wedding someone says “You still haven’t sent out invitations?”   In the moment, I smile and usually walk away but those comments eat at me every time I have tried to make any decision about the wedding.  “Oh I love that idea! But wait…I don’t know if so-and-so will like it.”  I wish I learned right away to ignore all of those rude comments.  They have maybe influenced some of the decision making.  When I express my worries to my mom she has always said “Do what you want! It’s you’re wedding.”(Can I just say that I love her “screw-em” attitude)  Well mother, your voice has finally sunk in.  After writing all of these checks of big bucks to vendors and such, I have realized that I don’t care if anyone likes the ribs or if people think the ceremony is cheesy.  Adam and I are choosing the wedding that we want because it is our party(do I sound like a greedy kid yet?).  So I have finally been able to smile at the rude comments and forget them right away.  Do what you want for your wedding! If you want to have ribs instead of steak at your wedding(or whatever your choices may be)- do it.  Those rude comments are neither here nor there of importance.

Wait To Go Dress Shopping

First let me clarify: I love my dress! I mean….I absolutely, 100% adore it.  However, I chose it pretty quickly.  It was the first part of wedding planning that I jumped up and down to go do.  Sometimes I wonder that if I waited I could have gotten a better deal somewhere or found something a bit more unique.  If I could give some advice about dresses, just chillax about the dress and do that after you have some solid wedding plans done(i.e. reception hall and ceremony finalized).

I hope these didn’t sound too harsh but today has definitely been a bit rough with almost 10 hours of straight wedding planning, so why not vent on my blog right?  Although these may be my small or large regrets of wedding planning, there have been a lot that I have done right.  Stay tuned, because that will up later this week.

Thanks for reading my mini-meltdown.  🙂

39 days until the BIG day!

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6 thoughts on “Advice to a Future Bride: Part 1

  1. I totally feel your pain and agree with everything! The funny part is when people say “This is the best time and the time to enjoy” but really planning a wedding is super stressful! I come from a big Latin family so there was lost of drama, fighting, and unsolicited advice and opinions! If i could go back in time, I would have kept the planning to myself! Anyways! Congrats on your upcoming big day! Take lots of bubble baths and have a book to jot down all the ideas so you don’t juggle them in our head!
    Kat | http://www.poshbykat.com

  2. I am currently in the process of planning my own wedding and have come across a lot of these hurtles. Your advice is spot on. Thanks so much for sharing this.

  3. Good stuff here! My wife and I learned these lessons–and more–the hard way. Planning a wedding is way more stressful than I had anticipated. A wedding planner would have been a huge help.

    The day of your wedding will go by so quickly, so make sure you and your beau sneak a few minutes to pinch each other and bask in the fact that what is happening is fleeting, but real.

    Enjoy!

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