During a speech by the bride at one of my recent weddings she said something that really resonated with me. “I’m so happy that today has finally come and I’m so happy that I never have to do this again. Planning this wedding was the most stressful thing I’ve ever done.” Ask any recently married couple and I’m sure they’ll agree, wedding planning ain’t easy. Well guess what? Wedding planning and your wedding day don’t need to be filled with stress. Here’s a few tips to make the whole process a little more chill.
do you boo
As soon as you start wedding planning you’ll be bombarded by opinions. Your mom thinks you need to invite all 30 of your cousins, your dad wants to do a million family photos, your girlfriends think that they all need to be bridesmaids. Its a lot, and trying to do everything that everyone else thinks you should do will just lead to a bunch of stress and end up turning your day into the opposite of what you envisioned. The only opinion that matters when you’re making all of those planning decisions is your future husband’s. There are no wedding “rules” anymore and you can design your day exactly as you both want. You can politely tell everyone else to take a hike.
keep it small
I’ve been to a LOT of weddings. Like close to 70. And something I’ve never heard a bride or groom say after the fact is “ I wish we invited more people and spent more money”. The common thing I hear from past couples is that they wish they had invited less people. The more guests you include in your day the more it becomes about them and the less it is about you and your husband-to-be. A rule that my husband and I made when we were creating the guest list for our wedding is that if we wouldn’t invite somebody over to our home for dinner then they probably didn’t need to be a part of our wedding. The same goes for wedding parties. Trust me, your friends will totally get it if you don’t ask them all (or any of them) to be in your wedding party. They can still be involved in other ways like all of the festivities leading up to the wedding, getting ready or take on the role of an usher or mc. The more people you have in your wedding party the longer you will spend getting ready and doing photos and the less time you’ll get to spend with your partner and guests. True story, I once shot a wedding where the bride was late because her maid of honour was having a meltdown about her hair and the bride had to help her redo it. That’s not a chill vibe.
hire a team of experienced vendors
I’m a firm believer in the philosophy that you get what you pay for. If you’re opting to spend the money on vendors for your wedding then you want to make sure that you’re hiring a team that knows exactly what they’re doing. The more things that you can take off of your To Do List then the less stress you’ll have during the planning process and more importantly on the day of. If you know that every aspect of the day is being handled by a pro you’ll truly be able to relax and be present . If you haven’t considered having a wedding planner or day of coordinator I can’t tell you enough how much better your wedding day will be if you hire one! Having someone to oversee everything and make sure the day is flowing smoothly is worth every single penny. Also, hiring people to deal with set up and tear down is such a great investment. Even though your family and friends say they’d love to help you clean up the next day, they most certainly do not. Trust me, I’ve been roped into this and there’s nothing worse than going back to clean up the dance floor with a raging hangover. True story, my husband and I were so tired and hungover the day after our wedding that we abandoned all of our wedding decor that I had planned to sell at the dumpster behind the venue because I just couldn’t deal. Here’s a link to my post of local vendor recommendations
choose the right venue
Choosing a venue can be one of the hardest aspects of wedding planning. Having to hire a caterer or worry about how your guests will get home or building a dance floor can all lead to many other stressful decisions. Choosing a venue that’s right for you and what you’re envisioning will definitely ease some of those decisions. I love shooting at restaurants. Choose one that already has amazing decor and great food and you’re basically good to go. Also, if its located within the city then you don’t have to worry about transportation. Another great idea is choosing a dedicated wedding venue that is kind of like a one stop shop. There’s one that even has flowers and an officiant included in their package, win!
spend more time together
I think one of the things that contributes to a stressful day is not being with your person. You’re marrying your teammate and not being together to deal with any issues that come up together can be very stressful. Some of the most chill days that I’ve been a part of were when the bride and groom spent their day together. Its such a weird concept to me that its your day but you traditionally spend a majority of it apart from each other. Break the rules guys! Spend the night before getting a couples massage in your room, have breakfast and a mimosa together, get ready together, do a first look early in the day.
Don’t sweat the small stuff
Shit happens yo. Unfortunately you can’t control everything. It might rain, it might snow, your wedding may have to be moved inside. Guess what, it doesn’t matter. Some of my favourite weddings were in the rain or snow and they turned out perfectly. Your sister bought white candles instead of cream, you forgot your earrings, the flowers aren’t the perfect shade of blush - doesn’t matter. At some point you just have to let go of the things that didn’t get done or that aren’t perfect and roll with it. Trust me, your guests wont notice and neither will you. This is another reason to hire experienced vendors as well, if there’s a fire to be put out they’ll deal with it quickly and calmly before you even notice.
So, take a deep breath, go to a yoga class and try to enjoy the planning process. Namaste!