Wedding planning for beginners….

When I first started wedding planning I had no clue.  I’m the first of my friendship group to get engaged/married so I don’t have many people I can turn to for experience or how to do it.  

Have a plan.  And stick to it

There’s going to be people who say you can’t possibly do this, or you absolutely must do that.  Those people are wrong.  Make a plan early on, obviously make sure it’s within your budget and is physically possible, and stick to your guns.  You’re going to get a LOT of unwanted ‘advice’ throughout the planning process, but if you stay firm and don’t let other people’s opinions sway your ideas you’ll be a lot happier.

Set a budget early on

This way you won’t start looking at a £10,000 dress if you know that realistically your budget is £2,000 max.  At the end of the day, it is only one day and it’s definitely not worth taking out loans / credit cards / going into debt over.  Work out what you can realistically afford without having to live off of pot noddles for the next 3 years.  We set a budget and planned the wedding for so far in advance that we only needed to save around £500 a month.  It seems so far away at first but it comes around very quickly!

Don’t let Pinterest take over

We’re unfortunately in the age where Pinterest is the ‘go to’ for wedding planning.  The thing is there’s also so many websites dedicated to ‘Pinterest fails.’  Do you really want to risk that on your big day?  Yes Pinterest is amazing for ideas, but if you have no crafting experience whatsoever don’t suddenly decide you’re going to make all of your invites yourself, or start making wax seals for envelopes.  Keep a board of ideas but use them as inspiration or a reference for ideas.  Don’t rely on it, and don’t expect them to come out as perfectly polished as Pinterest would have you believe.

Being traditional isn’t always good

We looked at one venue before booking.  If you love it, what’s the point in looking around?  You’ll just be wasting yours and the venues time, if you know what you want and it’s available go for it! Also Ben didn’t ask my dads permission before we got engaged, I’d always said I didn’t want him to.  Obviously I understand in some situations it’s non-negotiable and it has to be done.  But I’ve always seen it as I’m not their property, that’s my opinion and I would’ve hated for Ben to have asked.  

Plus ones aren’t mandatory

Despite what everyone would have you believe, you’re not the worst type of human if you don’t give everyone a plus one.  if this isn’t in your budget, or not something you want, people are generally pretty understanding.  I’ve seen comments before of ‘no ring, no bring’ and how people are social units so must be treated as one person….personally I don’t want to look back at my wedding photos in 10 years time and not know who half the people in them are. It simply comes down to inviting the people you want there celebrating your day, not what society expects of you.

Don’t stress….too much

Things will go wrong, it’s inevitable.  I’ve had to ask my maid of honour to step down, the DJ we originally booked we had to change, the bridesmaid dresses all arrived in different colours, the time of the ceremony changed after we’ve ordered all of the invites, and my make up artist bailed on me.  There’s still 4 months to go so I know theres plenty more things that could go wrong! These things happen and it’s just about dealing with the best of a difficult situation. Obviously you want your day to be perfect but you have to keep in the back of your head that this just might not happen. If it does go perfectly – bonus! 

Keep everyone in the loop

When you’ve got a ‘day of’ plan and timeline let people know.  Your groom, your bridesmaids, your photographer, the makeup, the hair….literally everyone involved with the wedding needs to know where they need to be and at what time.  If you’ve booked your makeup for 11.30 for you and your bridesmaids but they think they have to organise their own you’re asking for a disaster.  Make everyone aware early on what they need to organise/ pay for themselves and there won’t be any confusion.

Have someone you can vent to

Weddings are stressful, everyone knows that!  Be it your fiancé, your maid of honour, your best friend, have someone who you can trust.  Sometimes you just need to get a rant out about something that seems insignificant – like centrepieces.  Just make sure you don’t vent too much and forget to ask how they are! Check beforehand if they’re in a position to let you vent.  The last thing you need is to dump all of your wedding drama on someone who doesn’t need it!

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