Top Wedding Planning Tips to help you feel less stressed
WAHOOO your ENGAGED!!!!!
Now that you have celebrated with family and friends over the excitement of it all, you are probably thinking.,
WHAT DO I DO NOW???
This is such a common feeling and so many couples go through it, so I figured I would offer my advice as being a Wedding Photographer and also from planning my own wedding 9 years ago (holy that was a long time ago). I LOVE everything to do with Weddings, from the dress to the venue, florals and even the little tear that would fall from yours, your guests (or even my face).
My Top Tips will go as follows;
Make sure you set a budget before hand on what you are looking at wanting to spend on the WHOLE DAY!! Some of you will have a max budget of say $5,000 and others up to $50,000. Whatever the budget do know that you can create your vision both ways. Ways to stay on lower budget would be a lot of DIY and maybe lowering hours on things.
However before you do this, be sure to have an idea of what it is you VISION of your wedding day looking like. It could be a barn, a hall, an old building, museum or even just outdoor tented. Just want to have this figured out before hand or you will be aimlessly looking at venues that may not interest you and just get confused and frustrated with it all. Also make sure if choosing a venue that also provides all the food, that they have a menu that you love as well and would be happy to serve yourself and your guests.
My fav venues;
https://tanglecreekgolf.com – this one I am in big favour of due to it being my personal venue for my wedding.
Now the reason I have said photographer is because a lot of us photographers run our own business and can only accommodate 1 wedding a day. However my advice in this category is to find one with a STYLE that YOU both LOVE. There are so many different styles of photography from light & airy, to dark & moody, to more posed style or more documentary style.
My second piece of advice in this category is that even though their regular packages could be not match your budget, maybe ask if they can offer an hourly rate to maybe match your budget better. Also if they are not able to provide that or unavailable for your date ask them if they could RECOMMEND someone that would be within your budget but also has good quality and match and most are gladly able to direct you to others to help out. Also make sure that you meet with them, WE are with you from 6-10 hours of your day and we need to be able to have fun and create a comfortable atmosphere between us that you will not even notice we are there.
DJ or BAND or BOTH
Now I am not a DJ however, with being to many weddings, I feel a DJ can be what makes or breaks the mood of the dance floor. Please make sure you read reviews of who you are looking at and if you are looking at having them MC your wedding MAKE SURE TO MEET THEM. You want to have a personality that will likely match yours and make you feel like they are to trust with this responsibility. Always make sure you give them a playlist of your FAVS and also songs you may not want at your wedding (some don’t want the chicken dance lol).
Now if you are wanting a band, my best bit of advice would be again to meet with them, make sure you have heard them play and even maybe go see them play at a venue or location.
If you are wanting both, you can do that and have them set up for a bit later in the night after DJ gets everyone on the dance floor and then bring them in to play a few songs, or have them there all night and set your tone for what your looking for.
Now BRIDES this is a huge thing, however you don’t want to feel to overwhelmed in this process. First things first, SET A BUDGET for what you want to spend on the dress, and make sure you stick to that budget when you look at dresses. Look online and get ideas of what style you are most drawn to as well, so you know what you are looking for. Once you are at the dress shop let the people aware there of budget and style you are looking for.
My second advice is when you find THE ONE DRESS, and have purchased, STOP looking at other dresses!!!!! You will only confuse yourself and not having your dress for 8 – 12 months, may make you second guess and trust me the 1st LOVE DRESS is normally ALWAYS the dress.
Flowers was one of my hardest choices to make for my wedding, as I had no idea what I wanted. What helped was meeting with my florist, she helped me understand what was in season (which would help with budget) as being in season would mean that they were easy to acquire.
This one is a very wide option for you to be able to make but again BUDGET what you are wanting to spend. If you have a flower you love and that’s all you want make sure you have a bit of inspiration of what you are wanting to create with it. Pinterest https://www.pinterest.ca is an amazing tool with wedding planning especially with bouquet designs. Always make sure you do see their work and what they have produced, you can’t really see your vision of what your wanting until the day of as they can’t design before hand really.
DESIGN AND COLOURS
There are so many colour options and trends thats for sure especially when it comes to wedding planning and weddings.
My best advice is design your ceremony and reception space to YOUR personalities, and how the feel of your day will be for you, trends are amazing to follow but if it doesn’t feel like you than DON’T DO IT.
There are so many options from chairs, to table cloths, chair covers and even napkins; again these are best to sit down with a designer and they can help your vision come to life.
This one is a hard topic, as I feel they are a great asset to have, but if you also are at a venue that has a wedding coordinator on site than feel sometimes, it could be a saving option.
Planners are great to have as they do EVERYTHING for you if that is the package you have for the day. You literally just have to focus on getting yourself ready and showing up.
However if you are pretty organized and have a quick set up and little details that you can have your wedding party help with (especially if you can set up at venue night before) than you can utilize that as an option and save some money there. This is also based on personal preference and how much you want to do before your date and on the day of.
If you are wanting to go with a planner, again make sure you do sit down with them, as they are also part of your day from start to finish, and want to make sure they will vibe well with you and your spouse as well. They will make you feel relaxed and have so much less stress they day of (they take on your stress for you).
Another area that can be easily done by yourself DIY to help save money, as you can get he invitations from Michael’s https://canada.michaels.com or you can even them create them on your own through many websites but most popular is Vistaprint http://vistaprint.ca and have lots of coupons and discounts to help save money as well.
However if you love beautifully handcrafted created and personal touches than I definitely suggest reaching out to an actual Stationer as they have such a skill that will make your vision come to life. They create a suite that is personally the two of you and your personalities and MY GOSH they are stunning. If you have a bit more and can get these keepsakes out for your guests I would definitely suggest reaching out.
Oh dessert is like one of my favourite things of all time, and opted for a cutting cake and doing cupcakes, however there are so many other options now.
You have donuts, macaroons, cupcakes, cannoli’s, cookies and cheese, etc…
I feel this is also another thing you have to go with what YOU LOVE most and can make it your own and no matter what people will love it.
Also so many options of style of cakes from naked, to fully elegant or super simple.
Always make sure you can set up a taste test of the vendor you are choosing as you want to make sure it will taste good.
One thing I did learn is that if you do cake, you normally freeze the top layer and save it for your first anniversary.
HAIR & MAKE-UP
Brides and Bridesmaids this is for you. Hair and Make up is a big thing as it makes the final touches of the WHOLE look for you.
PLEASE PLEASE stick to something that you feel is MOST YOU, you don’t want to feel like looking back at your pictures you don’t even recognize you or wish you had done it up more.
With that being said make sure you set up a HAIR & MAKE-UP Trail with who you are choosing for your stylist. You want to make sure that you will love what they have done and what you will have done your special day. Try and have it done maybe on the date of your engagement session as than you can see how it will photograph as well.
JUST BE YOU when it comes this look.
Remember Hair & Make-Up could also book far in advance as well and would suggest booking a year out.
These are the ones that get to pronounce you as husband and wife, wife and wife or husband and husband, you want to make sure that they fully understand what you two are all about. You have many options to choose from and ways for you to allow them to proceed with your ceremony, as in; you can have more religious, or have cultural traditions included. These are things that make you guys you as a person, and want to make sure that they can include these as part of your ceremony for you.
Make sure to sit down with them and go over what YOUR agenda is for your wedding day and they work around it.
LASTLY MY TOP WEDDING PLANNING TIP IS…..
STAY TRUE TO YOURSELVES FOR YOUR WEDDING DAY. THIS IS YOUR DAY AND YOU DO IT HOW YOU WANT TO DO IT.
LASTLY MAKE SURE THAT DURING THE RECEPTION YOU AND YOUR NOW HUSBAND OR WIFE TAKES 10 MINUTES AND JUST SIT AND TAKE IT ALL IN. THIS DAY GOES BY SO FAST AND YOU WANT TO MAKE SURE YOU CAN REALLY TAKE IN WHAT YOU CREATED.
Hope this all helped and stay tuned for some advice.