About a week ago, I took to Facebook to ask my married friends for wedding tips. As a co-ordinator, I’ve seen everything you can imagine behind the scenes. I’ve also been a bridesmaid and I’ve attended lots of weddings as a guest too. So, I know a thing or two about what it takes to make a wedding awesome for the guests, but since I’ve never been a bride before, I wanted to know what it takes to make a wedding awesome for the bride and groom!
I’m lucky enough to have a lot of friends who love marriage and weddings, so I got a lot of great pieces of advice and encouragement. I hope that you enjoy the advice as much as I did!
In order of appearance:
From Sarah Vaughan:
Hey Kelly! Been a while since our Wedding Day, in Dec we will celebrate our 13th Wedding Anniversary!
To keep your eyes on the big picture…your marriage which lies ahead, not just on your Wedding Day, as one can get so caught up (and stressed!) over small details, which seem big at the time! Keep calm, keep happy and enjoy every moment of your special Wedding day (and definitely get someone to film, so you can look back in years to come!) Lotsa love xxx
From Jacqui Garbers:
Keep a wedding planning file with your to do list in the front and then all the confirmation emails / docs for photographer, venue, DJ etc behind that. It really helps to have everything in one place. Really helped me!
From Amy Sletcher:
Dont stress, just dont. If you feel like you will stress just get someone (a co-ordinator) that can stress for you. Focus more on the marriage than the wedding, it is after all just one day 🙂 Have fun!
From Deborah Talbot:
In my opinion, unless there is a very specific type of wedding or venue that you want, I’d say go for a venue that does their own catering, tables, chairs etc. The more that they can handle, the less you need to think about.
From Talia Jacobs:
Hmmm… Enjoy each moment of the planning (and the day)… even if seems a bit stressful. -Rather laugh about the mishaps. (They’re so futile after the day has come and gone) Its SUCH a magical day, and it all flies by so so fast.
-Take a moment every now and again to soak up whats happening- coz you’ll remember those memories forever 🙂
-Don’t let people stress you out either. Its YOUR day. And you have the final say. Dont let anyone bully you into doing anything you dont want to.
-Have fun together and make time for each other amongst all the mad planning. Its just the two of you together forever.
From Cathrine Versfeld:
It goes by like a blur! Get as many photos as possible… Also, take the time to go to each table and chat to your guests (and do a pic). If you don’t plan it, you’ll regret later that you didn’t get around to it.
From Helga van Niekerk:
I just WISH I had headache pills at the reception! Combination of wall to wall smiling and a tight clasp holding my veil in place, my head was pounding!
From Emma Reid:
Spend your last evening unmarried with your respective immediate families only, no planning, no last min wedding stuff after 5pm! And have a getting ready schedule list which includes half an hour for unforseen..and make sure u have a few people who have copies of this list including phone numbers for all. Dont rush to the next thing…love ur.day begins let it flow and.unfold…stop for that extra moment outside the church, wait for the moon to rise to get that special photo…enjoy the photos dont rush to get to the reception…or finish dinner to get to the cake…
From Simone Olckers:
Plan this in advance: During your wedding, step back with your husband for 10 mins – just you two on your own, and reflect on the day while it is happening. The day flies past, and when you take those few minutes to look at everyone you love celebrating – its super special. The best advice anyone ever gave me.
From Katie Modrau:
Hmm. There are so many tips. Bit something I learned was to decide what the “important non negotiables ” are. Budget those in first and then split the rest of the budget between the other areas. That way you aren’t having a budget that keeps climbing higher and higher. It also makes you prioritise. For us – a venue with an outside option and accommodation for international guests was a must. So after that was organised we were able to allocate the rest of our budget. We don’t have any regrets in how we spent money and didn’t get into any debt.
From Emily Victoria Steyn:
Dont forget to breathe!! And smile its your day to be the belle of.the ball and a princess too 🙂
From Stephanie Lisa Joyce:
Make sure some fun things are planned into your day that will give you life long memories (your photos are the last thing you see of your day) – 1. Photo Booth. Best thing ever to see and remind you of the fun your guests were having! 2. Videographer (this could be a friend. We had Angus videoing parts of our day – I often watch my wedding. Best movie ever) 3. Photographer – I love everything about our wedding, and it reminds me over and over about our story when I look back at our photo’s – if your photographer gives the option of making a coffee table book, take it because they will do it for you beautifully! And I find people who say they will compile their own never get around to it). Side note, make sure your bridesmaids have a little clutch bag with your lipstick and odds and ends. Add in a sowing kit too incase – needle and thread. I went to a wedding where someones clothes split :)). I agree with planning for the photographer to take a crazy/normal photo of each table of guests. Ultimate wedding planning tip though unfortunately perhaps for you, was you… Having a wedding co-ordinator was just the best, and made our wedding run smoothly.
From Vanessa Germond:
Spend more on your honeymoon than your wedding!
From Janet Werner:
I regret not having a professional photographer. Our photos weren’t great and we had too many family pictures and hardly any of just the two of us. For me, photos to look back on and to display in your photo frames is a must!
From Jenny Odell:
Be content with the thought that…..”This might not be a perfect event, but it will be a happy occasion” that’s what matters. Quote from Stephanie Odell.
From Nikki Pretorius:
Pre-wedding couples councelling. You don’t have to going through a relationship crisis to go to councelling. A lot of people don’t have a clue on what it takes to be married and the changes and stresses it can put on a marriage. Start your marriage on a firm foundation.
From Jane Stephenson:
If you don’t have a wedding rehearsal, you can never make a mistake.
From Dave McNaught:
Antenuptial Contract.. it sets out the terms of engagement.
From Linette Booysen:
Don’t stress on the day, your guests won’t notice if things aren’t just right.
But the best advice I’ve heard and used was remember to connect with each other throughout the day. Yes you should take care of your guests, especially the ones from out of town, but don’t go through your entire wedding day without having experienced it together. Get the groom to set an alarm for every 15minutes and just hold hands and give each other a kiss. Check in.
From Calliopi Dawson:
Film your wedding!!! You get to relive it as many times as you like & share it! Get your family to help with set up AND pack up!!! You don’t realise how much you actually need them to help! Plus it makes it so much fun for them to be apart of the day & creates so many happy memories! Remember on the day to just enjoy every second!!! No matter what happens!!!