15 Wedding Planning Tips From Our Newlyweds
Our newlyweds share the wedding planning tips they wish they knew when planning their special day. Read on and take advice from the experts themselves!
4 Min Read
So, you're engaged and ready to pop your wedding planning shoes on. How exciting! To help you confidently plan your day, we've sought the help of experts (AKA, our newlyweds)! As the ones who've walked the aisle, they have a unique understanding of wedding planning. Including what to do, what not to do, and little tips to keep your day running smoothly. Here are 15 top tips our couples wish they knew when planning their big day:
1. Have a Great Team Behind You That You Can Trust
It’s so important to have a good team behind you that you trust to handle things on your behalf, from your family and bridal party to your coordinators. We wanted to have venue staff we could trust too. We actually knocked one wedding venue off our potential list because we didn’t have faith in their ability to pull the day off or handle those little things that crop up. Having trust in your team means you can be completely present during your day. It makes all the difference!
2. Consider Keeping Your Wedding Plans Private
At first, discussing your wedding plans with friends and family might sound like a great idea, but it could lead to unwanted opinions! Keeping your wedding plans vague and avoiding details with your nearest and dearest will ensure your day stays about you as a couple.
3. Provide a Place for Guests To Share Your Wedding Photos
Organise a place where guests can easily share their photos and videos of your wedding day with you (like an Instagram hashtag, dropbox or google photos album). The pictures and videos our guests took really captured the day and the moment.
4. Keep Copies of All the Important Stuff
Wedding planning is so exciting, but it does involve a lot of work. I would recommend writing everything down. Have lists and back-ups of all the admin stuff, such as invoices, terms and conditions etc.
5. Plan in Buffer Time When Getting Ready
I wish I'd known how fast the process of getting ready would fly by. I had everything planned out and was so on time. But it takes one thing to throw off the timetable. I went from calm and relaxed to rushing photos with my parents and bridesmaids to stay on time. Honestly, everything feels calm until you put your dress on! Planning buffer time for myself would have been hugely helpful and allowed me time to slow down and savour these moments.
6. Invest in a Great Photographer
Our top tip is to spend time researching photographers and invest in one you truly love and trust. We didn't do this for our wedding, and I really wish we did. Your wedding photos will stay with you for life, and it's so important to have someone who can capture the feel of your day. Luckily our wedding videographer did this for us. I would 100% recommend booking one!
7. Don’t Forget Your Wedding Lighting
Along with booking your wedding venue as soon as possible, I would recommend looking into venue lighting. We didn't think about this or factor it into our budget! Investing in lighting, either by doing it on your own or hiring a production/lighting company, will bring all those beautiful details you've spent time and money on to life! It makes such a massive difference to the overall design and ambience of the day.
8. Decide What You Want Before Making Any Decisions
I wish I had known how everything comes with 100 options. Do you want a first dance? Great! What about your last dance? Or do you want confetti? Great! Do you want that loose, in bags or cones? Everything had endless options - which was good but overwhelming.
To anyone planning their wedding, I recommend deciding on your wedding vision before making any decisions. Doing this will help you say no to spending extra money only because there is a sixth option you never considered. If you never considered it, you probably don't need it.
9. Start A Gift List!
Creating our Wedding Shop gift list became so much more important than we expected. It wasn't just about adding the gifts we love but became a time when my partner and I could sit down together and really think about what we want our newly married life to be. Most of the wedding planning process is about the big day, which (of course) is incredibly special, but a gift list is about the future. We added experiences to look forward to, where we knew we'd have quality time reserved together. We upgraded our furniture to match both our styles, including artwork from a local artist. And so many other things that have made our home well, ours! Plus, it really makes gift-giving a whole lot easier for guests.
10. Go With What YOU Want
The top tip we received was: ‘your guests don’t know what they COULD have had, so go with what you want’. It was amazing advice that stopped us from agonising over options, trying to please everyone else, and worrying about people thinking we’d made the wrong choice. Your guests won’t even know what the other choice was! This advice was so liberating.
11. Have A Wedding Website
Make communication with your wedding guests as easy as possible. We had guests reading dates and times wrong! Having a wedding website with all your dates, times and details published as soon as possible will save you (and your guests) a lot of hassle.
12. Make a List of Easily Forgotten Things
I wish I had known more about the little bits: a pen for signing the registry and another for the guest book. Or, signs for the day, cake boxes for the guests to take that extra slice home. Luckily my mym was a great help with this! But a list of all the little things you could easily forget is a must!
Our List Of Little Things
- Cake cutting set
- Cake boxes (for any leftovers)
- Hangers for your wedding dress (preferably nice ones for photos of your dress!)
- Phone charger
- A robe for hair and makeup
- Emergency sewing kit
- Pens (for your guest book and registry)
- Contact list for important people
- Overnight bag (including any meds you may take)
- A mini speaker for getting ready and a bottle of bubbly
- Reserved seating signs
13. Print Out Your Questions for Your Registrar
I wish we had all our questions or stipulations for the registrar printed out, ready to ask them in our (very brief) meeting before the ceremony. Emails sent ahead of time aren’t always remembered!
14. Stop Comparing Your Wedding to Others
Stop comparing your wedding to others. Comparison is the thief of joy. Stick with what you want, not what others have or what's on social media!
15. If You Don’t Have a Wedding Planner, Assign Someone in Advance
As we didn’t hire a wedding planner, accountability on the day was the hardest thing to establish. Who is actually responsible for ushering guests, answering questions on the day or dealing with anything that might not go to plan?
My sister ended up being that person on the day, but we should have assigned the task in advance and talked about expectations together. Make sure you have a clear idea of what is happening and when too. We didn’t have a wedding rehearsal, but in hindsight probably should have!