The Big Day – 6 Helpful Tips for Planning Your Wedding
Despite the cold weather, wedding season is upon us and in full swing. Bridal shows are already popping up in preparation for the spring weddings, June brides, and next trends in all things “wedding.” It can be hard to pick out the things that will be most important to you and yours on the big day, so I’m here to whittle down just a few of the things you won’t want to overlook or be scared to try.
1) Don’t be scared of trends
Though going for a classic, timeless wedding is the safest route for pulling off a classy affair, what would we do if our parents had done the same? There would be no platform shoes, 80′s poofy dress shoulders the size of your head, or regrettable bridesmaid hats–you know, the things we love to hate.
The point is, while you should always trend toward tasteful, the right trend can be the sweetest little sign of the times. A little splash of chevron here and there, a silly photo booth, a candy bar, or burlap table runners are tasteful enough to avoid wedding regret, but don’t expect your children to do the same for their weddings (maybe your grandchildren).
2) You Don’t Have To Do EVERYTHING
When making plans for how you want everything to look, don’t neglect to plan how the evening goes. Know your crowd, and if you recall witnessing the d.j. painfully beg all of the unwilling singles to come to the dance floor to catch the bouquet or garter at the last wedding you attended, you may want to skip it. If you know your single girlfriends are the type to clamor over one another and put on a good show in order to snag that bouquet, but you don’t love the idea of your husband climbing up your dress in front of your grandmother, toss the bouquet and skip the garter. It’s up to you.
Skipping some of the played-out customs also saves a big chunk of time that can better be used for dancing. By the time you incorporate introductions, time for the crowd to eat, toasts, first dance, parent dances, dollar dances, bouquet toss, garter toss, newlywed games, cake cutting, etc., your guests may begin to feel fatigued before your carefully-planned reception has really even begun.
3) If YOU Don’t Change “Wedding Music,” No One Will
I believe there will come a day when we can all attend a wedding and not have to hear “Celebration” by Kool and the Gang. For some reason, the wedding soundtrack has hit a rut and has somehow changed very little since the introduction of the Electric Slide in 1976. Many d.j. companies have gotten better about tailoring their playlists to the married couples’ requests, but don’t think for a second that they don’t have THE WEDDING PLAYLIST that hasn’t changed in 30 years ready to go at any moment.
If you like dancing, list out some of the songs that make it impossible for you to sit still. Pay attention to your every day personal preferences because I can almost guarantee that “YMCA” by The Village People is nowhere to be found in your iTunes. Justin Timberlake, Lorde, Michael Jackson, The Strokes, Pharrell, Prince — yes. Def Leppard–not so much. There’s plenty of good music, both old and new, to please the entire crowd without having to listen to “You Shook Me All Night Long” on the most romantic day of your life. Your d.j. is not the star of the show; the two of you are. Your d.j. should be there to compliment all that you have carefully planned by helping to express you and your spouse’s personality.
4) Look Like Yourself
This tip applies to men as equally as it does women. Are you a brunette? Your wedding is not the time to go blonde. Never had a goatee? Why are you going for one on your wedding day?
Your friends and family have gathered to see YOU at your happiest. Don’t try to look any different than your best. This means that spray tan level 5 may not be the best bet for someone who is always fair-skinned. Consulting with an eyebrow stylist a week before the big day…not a good idea. And men, leave the experimental haircuts and facial hair for the honeymoon.
Kate Spade “Twirl”
5) A Little Perfume Goes a Long Way
Everyone knows that your sense of smell is the sense that most directly triggers memory. One of my favorite things that my husband and I did before the wedding was picking out perfume and cologne that we did not wear until our wedding day and honeymoon. This may seem like a simple thing, but every time I wear the perfume or my husband wears his cologne, I am flooded with memories of sitting in the park with him after our wedding, and browsing the Charleston City Market, Folly Beach, and the historic gardens of our hotel grounds in South Carolina on our honeymoon.
The scent of your wedding perfume or cologne can immediately change your mood if you’re having a bad day and, if only for a moment, take you back to one of the happiest times of your life.
6) Don’t Use This Cake Topper; It’s Sad.
If you want to convey that you forced your spouse into marriage and that life will no longer be fun for either of you compared to his heavenly, wife-free life of gaming and devil-may-care eating habits, then I guess this IS the cake topper for you. Images like these seem harmless to some, but they tend to trivialize the occasion and can actually offend those who have come to celebrate something as special as the marriage of two people they love.
Planning a wedding can be overwhelming, but if you concentrate on the things you love the most, planning can be fun rather than daunting. If dessert is your passion, get the best cake you can find along with cookies, doughnuts, and plenty of candy. If you love to dance, don’t skimp on the d.j. and give the gift of great music to your guests. One thing you do know is that you love your fiance. The biggest piece of the puzzle is already in place.