I can’t believe it’s almost been a year since Joe and I tied the knot. It’s so scary how time flies by in the blink of an eye.
As you guys seem to enjoy my wedding rambles, I thought I’d share 10 things I learnt during wedding planning. The excitement, the tears, the questions and the stresses that come along with the ride. So, without further ado…
1) Seconds after getting engaged, the questions start pouring in. Everyone will ask you have you set a date yet? How wedding planning is going? What’s your dress like? If they’re invited?
But here’s the funny thing, the questions never stop once you’re married. How’s married life treating you? Are things different now that you’re married? When are you having a baby (sigh)?
2) The Guest List.
We honestly found the guest list SO hard at the beginning. I would have liked it to have been more intimate, but was happy with the amount we had. 90 during the day and an extra 40 for the evening, mostly consisting of family and a few close friends.
Though, one of the biggest things I’ve experienced is reflecting upon mine and Joe’s friendships. Realising who’s the most important people in our lives. When you’re spending over £100 for each guest, it makes you pinpoint who is worth the expense.
3) And on that note… Weddings are darn expensive. Can you repeat, how much are those bouquets again, £100 each you say? *Checks budget and slowly sinks into the ground*.
A few of my close friends got hitched before I did, so I kind of knew what to expect. They tell you weddings are extortionate and will set you back £20-30k (which gave me serious heart palpitations).
As soon as the word ‘wedding’ is involved, everything seems to be rapidly double or triple.
The venue and food will be the biggest cost (of course depending what you have), followed by your photographer, videographer and dress. You’ll also be forking out a hell of a lot on flowers, decor, bridal make-up and hair, as well as bridesmaid and groomsmen attire.
4) Family politics and dramas.
What’s a wedding without drama? There will always be family politics of who should and shouldn’t be invited, but you need to remind them it’s your day, and no you don’t want your second cousins uncle there when you’ve never even met.
There will also be tons of arguments, last minute drop outs (grinds teeth) and people asking to bring plus ones. Let that shit go. Let it goooo.
5) You’ll learn to become an organisation queen. Organising a wedding is a humongous task, unless you can afford a wedding planner…
After orchestrating the biggest day of your life, you feel like you deserve an award. You will become a spreadsheet master. There will be a guest list spreadsheet (who makes the cut and who doesn’t), guest list RSVP responses, a budget spreadsheet, spending spreadsheet, list of suppliers spreadsheet, you name it… we probably had a spreadsheet for it. Then you will be replying to endless amounts of emails, phone calls and ensuring EVERYTHING will run smoothly on the day. You’re going to be ticking off about 1000 things (quite literally) off your to do list.
We even chased every single guest two weeks before the wedding to confirm if they are still attending, you’d be surprised how many dropped out last minute and even the day before the wedding. On the flip side, as annoying as those guests were, it saved us a bit of money as the venue was super understanding and refunded the places of those who told us two weeks in advance (not for the ones the day before though). So the key is to be organised, get a wedding planning diary, print off a wedding check list (life saver), and stay on top of things!
6) The guests.
Some guests are going to be a bit of a headache. The majority of people understand the unwritten rules and know that they have to RSVP on time. Others are going to tell you last minute that they can’t make it, even some may not show their faces after RSVPing yes (still baffles me). Or some think the day should be catered to their every needs. It’s normal to get stressed and frustrated, but, you just need to let that shit go.
A lot of people do make the day more about them and that’s fine, but for me and Joe, we wanted to make sure our guests had the best day too (just not catered to their every need).
Will they enjoy a hog roast? What about vegetarian options? Maybe they’ll enjoy a glass of mulled wine or winter Pimms after the ceremony too. How many bottles of wine per table? Oh and some bacon sarnies for the evening too. Let’s have a five tiered cake, so they can have a variety of flavours. Oh and a sweet buffet for the kids!
Your basically throwing a huge party for the people you care about. But truthfully your guests probably don’t realise that their meal and drinks cost £100 per head or that bacon sarnie cost £7 per one… or how long it took you and your bridesmaids to make 100 selfie props, but as long as it makes you feel relaxed and like you’ve done a good job and everyone’s happy. Wedding success.
7) The dress. The dress I thought I was going wear wasn’t the one after all. I imagined myself in a beautiful lacy number with long sleeves and silk buttons all the way down the back.
When I tried it on, I looked awful. It wasn’t right for my body shape and I just didn’t feel good in it.
After months of trying on near enough every wedding dress in every bridal shop in Hertfordshire, I found the one. My beautiful Clarissa designed by Eliza Jane Howell. It fitted me like a glove and I couldn’t of been more happier with my choice.
8) Invest in the memories.
Photography and videography were at the top of my list for my wedding. These are the only physical raw memories you’ll have of the day, so investing in a really great photographer and videographer will be 110% worth the expense.
It was one of the first things we booked after setting a date. We chose Cat Lane, who was absolutely incredible and I couldn’t have asked for a more lovely and talented wedding photographer. As well as Tim Spatz who captured our day beautifully on film and again was a pleasure to work with.
9) The stress. I didn’t realise how stressful wedding planning was going to be! It was only until we got into the final 3 months where I genuinely felt like ripping my hair out. I think my biggest downfall was that I wanted to be a part of everything, plan everything and create every single detail and I should of accepted help when people asked.
On the day, I was as cool as a cucumber (apart from walking down the aisle – bloody bag of nerves). Probably partially due to the fact that I was listening to Frozen’s ‘Let it go’ on repeat the day before.
I think it just got to the point where I loss my ability to care about all the niggly details, I just wanted to enjoy myself and enjoy the day.
10) The BIG day! You will think about eloping several times until the actual day rolls around… this can’t of been just me right?
My wedding was hands down the best day of my life. Everything we worked so hard towards came together perfectly. I didn’t worry about a thing. I was so calm and collected and really let my hair down.
I also didn’t get drunk, I had two or three glasses as I really wanted to remember the day.
We had everyone we loved there, it was so magical and beautiful, and most importantly I got to marry my best friend.