It's time to talk about all those little things that every bride forgets before their wedding. When it comes to tips for staying stress free and advice on planning your wedding, you know I'm going to keep it real! Because, let’s be honest, wedding planning can be a lot to tackle. It is one of the most exciting times in your life and you will remember it for the rest of your days, but sometimes… it can be really hard. Too many things to remember! A "to do" list that is a mile long! Friends and family wanting to share their thoughts and inputs on your special wedding day whether you ask for it or not!
It is ok! Take a deep breath and know that you got this! I’m here to help you step back, game plan, and tackle the wedding planning process with ease and enjoyment. Like I said, it really is such a fun time. All of your closest friends and family are turning towards you and your partner to celebrate your love. What is better than that?!
Today, I’m sharing with you the top 10 things every bride forgets in lead up to the wedding day. Some items are practical and deal with vendors and contracts while other items are the small details to make sure you look "oh so perfect" standing at the wedding alter!
Check out my list below and use it to help you create your wedding planning game plan!
1. The marriage license
Don’t forget to not only obtain, but also bring, your marriage license to the ceremony! Every state has different rules and regulations on what is needed for a legal marriage to occur. Check out your state’s lawa few months before the weddingso you know what needs to happen to make sure your wedding is the real deal! Some states require you have the license in hand a few weeks before the wedding, while others will let you get it the day before. Whatever the rules are, make sure to follow them to make your wedding legal.
2. Wedding rings
You already have that beautiful engagement ring, but both you and your partner get to add some additional bling to your fingers! Don’t forget to order your wedding bands with plenty of time before the wedding and bring them to the altar with you too!
An added pro tip - get all of your rings professionally cleaned at the jeweler the week of the wedding so they really sparkle in your photos and on the day of!
3. Saving paper goods and special items for the photographer
You took all the time and energy picking out your invitations and additional special items for the wedding day, make sure you get them professionally photographed by your photographer!
Don’t forget to order a few extra copies of your paper goods not only for any potential mistakes (we all have been there… it happens and is ok!), but to save a clean, unused copy someplace safe to give to the photographer the day of the wedding.
An added pro tip - If your invitations are two sided, meaning you want a picture of the calligraphy on the front of the envelop and the liner on the inside of the envelop, you will need two copies of your invitation, not just one copy.
4. Accessories for all of the wedding weekend outfits
You know I have all of your wedding fashion needs covered in my the ultimate bridal fashion timeline, but I want to give a special shout out here to remember the accessories for all of your wedding weekend outfits. Don’t forget to try everything on with your wedding dress to make sure you like everything together. If you need to find different earrings you want to know well in advance to swap them out!
Also, don’t forget to pack it all and bring it with you! Make a list of every item that goes into each look for the weekend so you can not only quickly pack them, but also be confident that you have everything on and ready the day of the rehearsal dinner or wedding. (For more, check out my post on what to wear to your rehearsal dinner and what to wear the morning of your wedding!)
5. How to bustle your wedding dress
Bring a friend along to your final wedding dress fitting to learn how to bustle your dress. If a friend can’t come, have the seamstress hang your dress up on the hanger and show you how to do it yourself while you videotape her on your phone.
A wedding dress bustle can be a little complicated and the last thing you want is being delayed to join the reception as your bridesmaids try to figure out what string ties to what snap and how to make your wedding dress dance floor ready!
6. Day of wedding game plan
I believe so many brides are stressed out the day of their wedding because they are worried about all of the little logistical and administrative needs that naturally come along with any big event. There is so much to make sure happens!
Don’t put this stress on yourself. This day is for you to relax and enjoy yourself. If you don’t want to hire a day-of or full service wedding planner to do it, that is totally fine! Assign people in your bridal party or a family member/friend to be in charge of all emergencies, to-do lists, and the things that must happen that go along with the wedding day.
Make a "day of the wedding" game plan ahead of time. Have all of your conversations with your vendors done and details shared with them on time, location, and "day of" point of contact. They SHOULD NOT be coming to you with questions or problems. Have all of your final payments and tips complete in envelopes and with someone whose job it is to hand them out.
Be selfish today! Don’t work your own wedding. Enjoy it.
7. Post reception plans
Along the same lines, make sure you have all of the plans figured out for post wedding ceremony and reception needs. You spend so much time planning to get to the event itself, you often forget about the aftermath!
Plan a getaway car for you and your new husband or wife and your plans for the night. If there was a limo for your wedding party, make sure they have transportation plans home. Pack what you want to wear post wedding dress for the evening and any clothing needs you may have for the next day. This is especially important if you are heading straight on your honeymoon!
Finally, figure out the wedding venue clean up plans. Have someone in charge of grabbing your things out of the bridal suite, picking up any gifts and decoration items that need to be saved. Your venue contract likely has details on when things must be removed so you want to respect these and have someone else in charge of handling it so you can enjoy your first morning as husband and wife!
8. Self care
Before, during, and after the wedding take care of yourself. Eat healthy food, drink lots of water, and do the things that help center yourself and keep you calm. It is so easy to get caught up in the stress of wedding planning and a stressed out, worn out, and overwhelmed bride doesn’t look good on anyone!
Do the things that make you the most happy and healthy during the entire wedding planning process, including the day of the wedding. If you want to go for a run or be alone to meditate - do it! There are no rules to follow, make it the day you want for yourself.
9. To take a break!
Wedding planning doesn’t have to take over your life during your engagement! Don’t forget to take a break from it every once and awhile and do the things that are not wedding related that mean a lot to you. This is especially true with your daily interactions with your fiance. It is so easy to have every conversation and interaction be about the wedding. Don’t let it. Make a rule that no wedding talk is allowed during date nights. Consciously ask your friends about what is going on with them, instead of letting the much easier - and sometimes more fun! - topic of your wedding take over every conversation.
I know you want to talk about your wedding with everyone - and you totally should! But it will also be really good and healthy for you to keep connected with everything else going on it your world. It will help you relax and enjoy the engagement and wedding planning process.
10. What the wedding is really all about - you and your partner
Finally, piggy backing on making sure you take a break during wedding planning, don’t forget what this whole wedding planning process is really all about - your love and lifelong marriage to your partner.
Focusing on the event itself, the wedding, is only natural. You want to make sure it is perfect and everything you always dreamed it to be. That is ok. Do it. Make the day absolutely beautiful and perfect. But don’t forget that the wedding is only one day, and your marriage is for the rest of your life. That is what it is all about.
Lean into your partner during the wedding planning process and enjoy the amazing day the wedding will be with your husband or wife and don’t ever lose site of the bigger picture while planning the big day.
I hope you took some notes and added a few lines to your "don’t forget to do" list for the wedding day! Pull on the community you have around you to help with all of the various details that go into wedding planning. You want to be relaxed and calm, cool, and collected for your big day. Remembering all the little details will help you do just that to start your first day as a married couple off right!
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