My Top Wedding Planning Tips
During my 20 years in the wedding industry, there’s a few things I’ve learned along the way that can help your wedding day run just that little bit smoother. Now, I’m no expert and I’ve only been married once. BUT I have attended hundreds and hundreds of wedding over the years. And these are the wedding planning tips I’ve learned that make your day so much run so much smoother.
I LOVE making lists. And make a list for EVERYTHING. Because will be plenty of things to put on that list when organising your wedding day. But first things first…you must get some funky stationery and who doesn’t LOVE a little shopping trip to Typo? And there’s something weirdly satisfying about crossing stuff off a list. It’s that feeling of accomplishment.
Delegate – Excellent Wedding Planning Tips
Don’t be afraid to offload some of your wedding preparations. You don’t have to plan this gig all by yourselves. And there’s a good chance you’ll have some very keen family and friends willing to lend a hand. Plus, if you’re still undecided about who to pick for your bridal party, it’s a perfect opportunity to hold “auditions” for the role.
The Big Day
Have a think about where you’re getting ready. This is a really useful wedding planning tip! Hair stylists, make-up artists and photographers LOVE a bright, airy room with beautiful natural light. If you’re able to arrange a room like this your vendors will be eternally grateful. Most hotel rooms have great window-light and let’s face it, trashing someone else’s place in a pre-wedding frenzy is so much more fun.
Your Wedding, Your Way.
Don’t be afraid to break with “tradition” and have the wedding exactly the way you want it. Wedding celebrations should represent your own personalities, your likes and style. Make your day your own. It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. The day is only about you and your loved one. So, make the day yours and if you want to wear a black wedding dress, arrive in a truck or have your brother as your brides-person, go for it!
One of the most important wedding planning tips is to remember to enjoy yourself. Weddings are hard work and they can be exhausting! And once your day starts, the wedding day goes really quickly. So make sure you take time to ENJOY yourself. Allow extra time for everything. If you have 30 minutes’ spare after hair and make-up (which I ALWAYS suggest), kick-back with your favourite people, pop the cork and enjoy yourselves! And try to sneak off with your husband/wife for five minutes during the day to enjoy each other’s company. You’ve planned this day for a long time so don’t forget to enjoy it.
Your Photographer Is Your Friend
Yes I am! Because your wedding photographer is with you all day long, you need to really LOVE them! Or at least like them a whole lot. I’ve helped brides get dressed, boys get dressed, pinned buttonholes, delivered cakes and flowers and forgotten mothers-in-laws. You should have a connection with your photographer. Find a photographer who feels like an old friend. Someone you can share a laugh with. Because if you do, your wedding photos will be fun and full of candid moments. Because wedding photos are so much easier when your photographer feels like a friend.
These are pretty much the two magic words all photographers and videographers dream of. Because it means we won’t be dodging cameras, iPhones or the dreaded iPad during the wedding ceremony. We won’t be tripping over Uncle Bob as he tries to beat us to the shot of the bride and groom walking up the aisle. Trust me when I tell you, if I am EVER a guest at a wedding or function, I am NOT taking my camera. Because it means I won’t be enjoying the moment, I’ll be busy looking for the kiss, a smile or laugh, a moment to photograph. So to the guest, ENJOY the ceremony and let the professionals do their job. Cause nobody is putting that iPhone pic up on a wall. There’ll be plenty of opportunity to crack out the phones during reception shenanigans anyway. And sometimes those iPhones actually come in handy…
Wedding Planning Tips-Do Your Homework
As with many industries, there are a gazillion photographers, celebrants, hair-stylists and basically any wedding vendor you can imagine. We all have guidelines we need to work within. Budget and location for example. If you look long enough you will find the cheapest vendor. But ask yourself…what are you actually getting? I’ll use photography as an example because it’s what I do, but this applies to ALL vendors. We’ve all heard the horror stories about inexperienced photographers and devastated couples. If you booked a ‘cheap’ photographer for your wedding day and later had nothing but regret…how much money have you really saved? I’m on many wedding forums and see constantly couples who booked a “photographer” friend because they were cheap. However, they missed important photos of family and loved ones or their work was not of professional standard. There’s no do-overs people. It’s a one-time only gig so PLEASE make sure your photographer knows their stuff.
So yes, by all means work within a budget. But please remember, as with any vendor, you’re not paying for someone to point a camera and give you digital files. You’re paying for their expertise, their accumulative experience from hundreds of weddings, the manner in which they round up guests; knowing instinctively from vast experience exactly how the day will run. They’ll know how to expertly compose those family shots under the pressure of a time frame and yes, I am one of those who will ALWAYS make people take their sunnies off and phones out of your pants pocket. Photoshop cannot help a rectangular shaped groin people and unless you’re a rock-star, sunglasses in photos are not cool.
Remember…owning a pair of hairdressing scissors does not make one a hairdresser. I have a pair. Would you pay me to cut your hair? Look for quality and professionalism over price. Look for reviews and look at entire wedding portfolios. You may pay a little extra now but regrets last a lifetime.
Don’t Worry About The Weather
What if it rains? Well, we will most likely get a little wet. But you know what? We can’t control the weather. Believe me, as a complete control-freak I’ve tried. But sadly no amount of sun-dancing has stopped the rain. So any stress is a complete waste of energy. All we can do is plan for it. Develop a back-up plan, get some awesome umbrellas, stock up on hairspray, maybe even gumboots. They’re fun and unique. And if it does rain…we can get some pretty amazing pics.
Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff
And finally, don’t sweat the little things. I can guarantee that once you lay eyes on each other, you won’t care if not everything goes to plan. The most important thing is you married your best friend. And you did it your own way, in your own style. And it was perfect.
If you’ve found my wedding planning tips useful and need a wedding photographer, I’d love to hear from you! I have photographed over 600 weddings during my 20 years in the wedding industry. I know weddings! My approach to your wedding day will be fun, creative and of course, professional.
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