I decided to make a list of little wedding advice I learned from my wedding with the hope that they may help you in planning for your wedding!
1. Having your bachelorette party the night before your wedding or rehearsal dinner is a BAD idea! See my previous post for evidence.
2. If your venue allows it or you're doing everything yourself, try to get as much set up as possible the day before the wedding or early the day of. Despite planning, we were setting up right until the last minute which was very stressful! You also want to delegate set up tasks as much as you can, with detailed instructions written down (I seriously wish I had done this). Otherwise, certain things can be forgotten and left behind or not set up the way you hoped. Seems obvious, I know, but I thought I had things organized and figured out but I failed to realize how difficult it would be for me to have my hand in everything being set up, there just wasn't enough time. If I had realized this beforehand I could have written down instructions for all the helpful people who were offering assistance.
3. Make a list of photos you want either your photographer or a friend with a camera to get. I did make a list of family shots to take for our photographer but I forgot about the other shots I wanted and failed to tell anyone about, so guess what, I didn't get them! I'm talking about details like the cookie favors we had in everyone's hotel room and the bar I decorated with golden dinosaurs, no photos. I even bought those giant balloons and blew them up with the intention of using them in photos with my bridesmaids, yeah, that didn't happen. I didn't get a single photo with a balloon! I know it seems silly and like I should have remembered but I didn't and if I had written it down someone else could have said, hey, lets get those shots. This is also important if you are blogging as those detail shots are needed for blog posts (like this!).
4. Have at least three people help you get into your dress, sounds excessive I know, but believe me it's a good idea. Two people should hold the zipper, one on each side and one should zip, SLOWLY! Otherwise, your zipper may break, as mine did. We were in a rush and my MOH quickly pulled the zipper up when S*#$@! that zipper became unusable. Being sewn into that dress sucked up an hour of photography time 🙁 Apparently, according to my dry cleaner, wedding dress zippers generally are kind of sensitive and you have to zip them slowly. Good to know. Luckily my mother was there and my MOH had a sewing kit so mommy dearest and skilled bridesmaids sewed me into that dress.
Also, be sure to have a sewing kit around.
5. If you plan on dancing, or are having an outdoor wedding, either find a dress that has NO train or bustle your dress. My lovely dress had a short train, it wasn't heavy and I could walk quiet easily with it. I really wasn't a fan of the bustled look so I opted out of having anything done to my train, I didn't think I would have any problem dancing in it. Wrong, that thing felt heavy and annoying by the end of the night, I bet every guest stepped on it on that dance floor and holding it up while trying to dance was not easy. Additionally, my dress was a MESS by the end of the night, the bottom was SO dirty the cleaners said they had to clean it three times! I should have bustled.
6. The time goes by in a flash, you will not have time to do everything so prioritize what things you want to do or participate in. I only got a handful of photos in our photo booth, I didn't even get to say hello to our caterers or go over to see them cooking crepes, I didn't play with our light up bocce ball or play with the kids. All things I wanted or intended to do, but with a 5 to 6 hour wedding there just isn't enough time to be wed, dance, eat, talk to everyone and do it all. Which leads me to my next tip.
7. Have a LONG wedding, start early if possible. We started at 6:30 due to heat concerns, the weather turned out to be perfect but if we had started at 5 maybe we could have had time for toasts, that's right, we completely forgot about toasts, we went straight from eating to dancing and then before you know it there was cake, more dancing and the night was over. So have a 7-8 hour event if you can! It will go by super quick no matter what so take all the time you can.
8. Hire a day of coordinator if you can, they are worth it. Be sure to go over everything with them! I thought I had done this but I really didn't. For instance, I forgot to go over the details of serving the coffee and tea with our coordinator. Something I had delegated to my father and briefly discussed with him but this clearly wasn't enough. The coffee mugs we rented didn't get set out or used and the coffee wasn't served until basically everyone had left. So that was a waste of money. I also didn't discuss clean up with anyone, so at the end of the night when us party animals were dancing, the raccoons were attempting to eat the remnants of peoples dinners. Luckily, helpful family and friends pitched in to get all the plates and dishes inside, but I should have hired people to do this or organized it with my coordinator.
9. Friends and family are amazing and will do everything they can to help you have a wonderful wedding. I was blown away by all the genuine desire to help from our friends and family, we couldn't have had the fabulous day we did without all their hard work. Ask for help, people are usually happy to give it!
Despite these snaffus we had a fabulous wedding, I wish I could do it again, minus the money and all the work 🙂 Did you guys have little things like this that you didn't think about pre-wedding? I hope my rehashing of my mistakes can help you with your planning!