The Essential Wedding Planning Guide
Your wedding will be one of the most memorable events of your life. But let’s be honest, planning and organising a wedding is not easy. There are so many details that demand attention, so many things that can go differently than planned, and on top of it, you worry if it will fit your budget. That’s the reason why professional wedding planning is a big business.
But planning a wedding yourself has its advantages. You can be certain that the wedding is going to be according to your taste and have your authentic signature. You will feel more in charge of both the process and the outcome of your efforts. You don’t have to do it all the way yourself, but making your own plan from scratch is surely better than taking on a ready-made program.
While it might seem easier just to let other people run the show, if you delegate everything to others, you might end up feeling even more stressed since you might get to a point where everything seems out of your hands. That can be frustrating, considering that in the end – it is your day.
Fortunately, there is a way to avoid much of the nervousness and madness that comes with planning and organising such a big event. Your biggest friends are reliable people and – planning. A lot of planning.
Here are some tips on what not to leave out when you’re just starting to plan a wedding.
Tools of the Planning Trade
High-grade organisation includes a lot of note taking and paper handling, so make sure you have this in mind. There are a lot of tools that can help you out.
For example, using a binder to track of all your wedding plans is of great help, since you can store many useful items such as photos, magazine articles, business cards, contracts and receipts along with your notes. Also, when having an important call with your contractors or guests, your trusty binder will make all the information available in mere minutes, saving you a lot of time and nerves.
A Numbers Game – Budget and Guests
Since the number of guests impacts everything regarding the organisation of your wedding – from the size of the space and the number of tables, to the amount of food and drink you need to provide – you have to make at least a close estimation of the number of guests you’ll have at your ceremony.
These two numbers are related in the sense that your budget will decide how many guests you can actually afford to have.
Avoid Amateur Service
Everyone hires professional photographers and decorators for their big day, right? However, that can cost you quite a bit. And your friend just got a new professional camera he’s now learning to use. Another one of your friends has done flower decorations for ages in her flat and at her daughter’s birthday parties. You’ve already asked if they would like to take on these significant roles at your wedding, and the answer was they would be thrilled to help you out. Sounds great, right? You get to save money and have that personal creative touch of your friends added to your celebration.
While this sounds wonderful in theory, in reality, it might not work out as smoothly as you have imagined. Except in case your friends are indeed pros, or you’re so laid back that you don’t really worry about the final result as long as you have your friends around you, there are some genuinely good reasons to hire professionals. For example, photographers – besides being good in capturing the moment, wedding photographers are specialised in dealing with guests in a non-intrusive, polite and efficient way. That takes years of practice and experience. With designers and arrangers, besides knowing how to make perfect decorations, they have to have experience in how their design will work in a particular space.
So at the end of the day, people hire professionals not because they lack talented friends, but because the professionals actually know what they’re doing. And in the case something goes wrong, it’s a lot less stressful to get cross with a stranger than with a friend who was kind and just wanted to help out.
Look for Recommendations
Another great thing about hiring professionals is that they can lead to other professionals. Weddings are a specific field of business, and chances are that one expert you like will lead you to other experts you will also approve of – venue owners can make recommendations for catering, or arrangers that have experience with the space you’ve rented; arrangers can make recommendations for photographers, and so on. Chances are these people work well together as a team, which is vital if you want everything to run smoothly.
The only exception to the “accept the recommendations” rule might be wedding bands. The venue may offer the services of a particular band by default, but that doesn’t mean you will like it. So, make sure to check if you do, and consider other options. The wedding band is a quite independent part of the party, so it’s not that important for them to get along with everyone else. What is important is that they are seasoned players and that they can stand long hours playing. As for the style – you will know what suits you and your guests best, so pick accordingly. Having your first dance to an orchestra you’re not fond of is a perfect way to ruin a precious memory.
Learn to Let Go
Take a business-like approach when planning and arranging all the details of your special day, but make sure to relax and enjoy the day itself to the fullest. When you feel like you did your part in planning your perfect wedding, try to sit back and enjoy it – let other reliable people handle the rest of the tasks, whether they’re pros or not. A fabulous pre-wedding party may help you relax and blow off some steam. Have fun. Have you seen our wedding looks for 2018?