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Lifestyle + Travel

10 Wedding Tips You Need to Know

Did you guys know that February is National Wedding Month?
Yes, it is true! When I found this out, I did a little digging to find out what makes February the perfect month to be National Wedding Month. Obviously February doesn’t rank as one of the most popular months for weddings. The warmer months, such as May, June, and July are ranked highest with February being somewhere toward the bottom of the list. What I came to find out is that the most popular time of the year for engagements are between October and December 31st, which makes February around the time when most brides really start to plan out their special day! Not to mention, with Valentine’s Day being in February, it is already considered the month of love so why not have National Wedding Month in February? It makes perfect sense to me now!

Anyway because of this, I thought it would be a perfect time to share some tips that I learned throughout my wedding planning process. It has been almost five years since my husband and I tied the knot and I learned A LOT through that time period. I wrote this blog post a few months after I got married, but I hadn’t really touched on it again since then. My wedding day was one of the most magical days of my life and there’s nothing I would have changed about my actual wedding day, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to change anything about my planning process. Some things I knew and it helped me a ton, and then some things I just didn’t know and I would love to help you guys avoid some things I dealt with if I can.
 

10 Wedding Tips You Need to Know
  • Shut Out the Noise | Take some time to sit down, either with your fiancĂ© or alone, and figure out exactly what it is you want out of your big day. Decide on your budget, the non-negotiables you want no matter what, how big or small the wedding will be, the things you won’t tolerate, and decide on the people you want to be apart of the journey with you. Do this without outside influences and then once it is decided, stick to your guns. Don’t let anyone or anything change your mind on the things you and your fiancĂ© want. When the planning is underway, everyone will have their opinions. Let them speak, but you don’t have to listen.
  • Do What is Best For You | We live in an era where social media rules everything around us. Everyone wants to appear to have this picture perfect life and so, also, a picture perfect wedding. Don’t go into debt with this wedding stuff. Make smart decisions and remember that at the end of the day, people just want to celebrate you. I remember during our wedding planning process, every time we would meet with our wedding planner, I tried SO HARD to get Chiavari chairs. I wanted them so bad, but my husband was NOT having it. Compared to the chairs we actually ended up getting, they were very expensive. I’m thankful he was there to always talk me down from spending unnecessary money because the chairs really didn’t matter that much, but I wanted them just because they would look better. However, I’m sure the people who attended our wedding don’t even remember what the chairs were that they sat in!
  • Have Your Budget, But Have Wiggle Room Too | By wiggle room I mean a little cushion or extra just in case. Things can come up last minute and you don’t want to be stressing thinking that you’ve already spent your whole budget on other things. I remember during our wedding, it was like a week before and we realized we hadn’t bought a basket for the flower girl, a pillow for the ring bearer, and a few other small details that mattered and I was in hobby lobby scrambling trying to find these things. It wasn’t a stressful experience because we had room in the budget, but had we not, it could have sent me spiraling haha.
  • Wedding Party – Choose Wisely | A lot of women dream of the day they can get engaged and have their closest friends stand beside them and look absolutely beautiful at the wedding. They will shed a tear as you walk down the aisle and smile as you kiss your new beau. If this is all you think about when picking your wedding party, then let’s have a quick chat. Here’s the bottom line; being a part of someone’s wedding party is a glamourized job. When you accept the cute "Will you be my bridesmaid?" invitation, you’re saying yes to way more than a turned up bachelorette trip and a mimosa filled wedding morning/day. The wedding party is responsible for helping the couple plan their big day (if they need help.. some people are Type A or have a wedding planner), and they are supposed to cheer on the bride and groom and keep them sane throughout the planning and the big day. They are responsible for planning the bridal shower and the bachelor/bachelorette parties, and just overall supposed to keep a positive attitude and go with the flow. Ladies (and gents if you’re reading), you know your friends. If you have a friend who you know will not be able to hold up those responsibilities mentioned above, then they should not be considered for your wedding party and it is OKAY. We all have friends for different reasons (blog post on types of friendships coming soon) and bridesmaid duties aren’t for everyone. Some people just won’t celebrate you or be excited for you, friends included! Or maybe you have a friend that would normally be the best at this, but they have a lot going on and can’t commit to it. Acknowledge it, be at peace with it, and move on! Let them just be a guest and they can come to your bachelorette and bridal shower as a GUEST. I personally think it’s better to have three to five fully committed and supportive people in your wedding party than eight to ten for looks and a turn up. Trust me when I say this, you will save yourself a lot of drama by not choosing people who can’t and won’t commit to making you feel like a million bucks for your day. This tip was kind of lengthy, but I feel it was necessary and could probably have a blog post of its own! *rant over*
  • Be Vocal About What You Want | Don’t be a jerk or a "bridezilla", but be clear about what your expectations are for your wedding day and the events leading up to it. I was so afraid of coming off as a bridezilla that I didn’t really speak up a lot on things I wanted. I would have loved to have a bachelorette trip, even if it was somewhere close, but like a weekend of fun with my girls, but I never told them that. I was worried about accommodating everyone’s feelings and pockets and I just didn’t speak up when I should have. When it’s your wedding and you’re the bride, you have the right to say what you want to say and let people know the things you really want to do. Now granted, there were some things that I really didn’t have an opinion on and so I gave my bridal party free range to just do what they saw fit for me. For example, I let them have full creative control over my bridal shower. I think I just told them I wanted it to be ‘me’. They definitely delivered! My bridal shower was Winter Wonderland themed because it was in February and because one of my favorite Disney movies is Frozen, and that was their inspiration for it. You guys, it was so special. They had a video slideshow of photos of some of my closest friends and they made these cute little cut-outs with pictures of Marcus and I in them, the fruit display had a ‘J’ carved out in a watermelon for my new last name. The details were just spectacular! My Bachelorette party was a lot of fun too! I just didn’t give them any inclination on what I wanted, but I am blessed to have friends who still made sure I had a great time even without direction! Speak up ladies!
  • Where to Splurge? Photos and Videos Last Forever | This is something I tell every single bride that asks me for advice on where they should allocate their budget. If you want to know where you should splurge in your budget, get the photos and video. I cannot tell you how many times I have watched our wedding video and cried, and obsessed over our beautiful photobook. Every time I do one of those things, I am instantly taken back to that beautiful April day. Once the wedding day is over, all you have left are your memories. The cake will be gone, the food will be forgotten (I honestly don’t even remember all of the food we had at our wedding), and you will most likely never wear your wedding dress again. The photos and the video are what you will be able to look back on and show your children one day. I am so grateful to my beautiful cousin and her husband who made sure we were able to have this precious memory of our day. It was the best wedding gift ever and helped us a ton since we paid for our wedding ourselves. 
  • Make Sure You Have Time to Get ALL the Photos You Want | Since we are on the subject of photography, I need to put this tip right here. To this day, although our wedding photos are beautiful, I feel that I did not get all of the photos I wanted. Everything was so rushed! When we met with our photographer before the wedding, he asked us if we wanted to do a first look and I was adamant that I did NOT want to do that. I guess you can call me old fashioned when it comes to this; I wanted the first time my husband saw me to be when I was walking down the aisle. Looking back, I wish I had thought that through a little bit more. I now understand why my photographer was stressing this to me. Had we planned to do a first look, we would have gotten way more pictures together. Trying to get all of the shots with family, the wedding party, and with your spouse after the ceremony is over can be so hectic because you don’t really have a lot of time between the ceremony and the reception. If I had to do this all over again, I would do the first look and…. (my next tip).
  • Really Plan Out the Morning Of Your Wedding | You guys… let me just tell you. My morning of was not thoroughly planned well at all. My first mistake was agreeing to drive to the hair salon to get my hair done the morning of my wedding. I’m a loyal customer and the person who did my hair at the time told me that she couldn’t come to me that morning because she had prom girls that had appointments too, but she would come and touch me up before the ceremony started (which she did). However, I started my wedding morning sitting at the salon waiting for my turn to get my hair done. This took up so much time. Once I finally got to the church, I literally only had enough time to say hello to my bridesmaids, and I had to get my makeup done. By the time everything was finished, all I had time to do was get dressed. No cute "getting dressed" photos with my girls in the cute monogrammed shirts I got them, and no fellowship. Granted, the day turned out fine! I didn’t end up sad or stressed or anything, but when I look back on it I’m like man, I could have done that day a little different. This was just an area that was foreign to me and I did not properly plan at all. Don’t be like me y’all! My cousin SaCara did an excellent job planning her morning of her wedding day. We had this super nice hotel suite, we had light bites and mimosas, the makeup artist was there and we all got super cute "getting ready" photos and it was fun because we actually were helping each other get ready. I’d encourage you guys to think this portion of your wedding through as thoroughly as possible so that you can have a smooth experience.
  • Have Money Allocated to Tip Your Vendors | By your wedding day, most (if not all) of your balances should be paid in full. However, it is always good practice to tip your vendors after their service is complete. If you have a wedding planner, be sure to give them envelopes with a check or cash and then label each one for each vendor. Give this to your wedding planner or if you don’t have one, a trustworthy person the night before your wedding to give to each vendor before the end of the night. Doing it the day before takes the stress off of you and that way, no one will be coming to you on your wedding day asking you money questions. You should just be enjoying yourself!
  • Don’t Forget That This Is Supposed to Be FUN! | God willing, you will only be getting married one time in your life, so you want to make sure that the experience is an enjoyable one! If you feel yourself getting so stressed out that you’re upset and overwhelmed, lean on your wedding party and/or step away from whatever it is that is upsetting you. Don’t forget to delegate and try not to sweat the small stuff. Your wedding day is going to by so very fast and so all of the planning you’re going to be putting in for MONTHS will be over in a few short hours. Remember that and remember that nothing is perfect. Expect the worst and hope for the best.

I hope these tips meet you where you are and add value to your life!
If you aren’t getting married or are already married, share this with someone who you think may benefit from it. Are their any specific aspects of the wedding planning process/wedding day that you’d like me to blog about? Drop me a comment below and let me know guys!
Thank you so much for reading! xo


16 comments

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. These are fantastic tips! I got married in November of 2018 and it was MAGICAL. However, I definitely look back and wish I could change a couple of things - mostly prior to the day itself. Like - not asking ONLY friends and family to help, but actually hiring out, because while friends and family might be free, they're also waaay more drama haha!

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  3. These seem like great tips to plan a great wedding! So many details, this really helps I'm sure! Xx.

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  4. Gorgeous wedding photos and great tips! Love all the details! xoxo Sarah

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  5. Emily Wilkinson2/27/2020

    These are all such great tips & ones I implemented when I got married da few years ago too!

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  6. These are great wedding tips! I followed something similar and it definitely helped a smoother planning process!

    www.rdsobsessions.com

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  7. remembering that your wedding is about you and your groom, not anything else is always good to have in mind, and letting all the hiccups on the wedding day not bring down your mood - because there is no point in fixating on the small stuff when you should be enjoying your day.
    Chic on the Cheap

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  8. Our wedding was in February!!! Your pictures are beautiful. I will say I was a very laid back bride and that really helped to keep my stress levels low throughout!

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  9. These are such great tips!! Absolutely love your gorgeous photos too! We definitely splurged on our photos and it was the best decision!

    Lizzie
    www.lizzieinlace.com

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  10. I always think back to my wedding 11 years ago and wish I was more vocal when creating my registry. My MIL talked me out of so many things I still wish I had!

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  11. So many amazing wedding tips! I have a few friends getting married this year and I can't wait to share this post with them!

    Rachel
    www.hello-her.com

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  12. Anna English3/03/2020

    This is such a great, thorough, post! Pinning it for the future.

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  13. A great post girl friend! We have been married for a little over three years but definitely wouldn't mind doing again - weddings are so just fun, sweet, and special!

    xo Laura Leigh
    http://louellareese.com

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  14. Your wedding pictures are absolutely stunning. And so many great tips here.

    ❥ tanvii.com

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  15. I’ll have to pass these tips along to my cousin who is getting married this year! Great advice. Pictures would definitely be high on my priority list too.

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  16. All great tips! My husband originally didn't care about a video but I insisted on it and now he's SO glad we did it. Definitely worth the splurge!

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