The moment the dust settles after popping the question or saying ‘yes’ – when all that hysterical euphoria starts to stop swirling with such ferocity – the excitement of planning a wedding starts to sink in. Most newly-engaged’s waltz into this process filled with excitement, anticipation and pure undulated joy but, a couple of weeks into it, the reality starts to become a little less perfect.
There are things on the wedding planning list that are nice to know. Things like where the good dress shops are, which planners did whose weddings and any tribute bands that are worth checking out on Youtube. Then there are things that you need to know; things that make the stress manageable, the choices less daunting and playing the role of conductor-slash-bride a bit easier to enjoy.
- Know Your Numbers
Nothing is going to frustrate you more than picking a venue and then sending out invites, only to discover there isn’t enough space for all the added extras that make up a wedding – catering staff, band members, waiters and dance floor. The unwritten rule is: allow at least 25 square feet per guest. It may seem like a not now, but not when the party kicks off. Or- check with your dream venue, they’ll let you know how many guests they can accommodate comfortably.
- No Double-Booking
Before you swap your pencil for a pen and decide on a date, check all the possibilities of there being a crossover. Ask around your social circles to see if there is another wedding, check if there are any trade fairs, conference events, charity do’s, or anything else that could see people say no, traffic become a problem and hotels to be booked up.
- Don’t Underestimate Undergarments
This is the dress you will be wearing in every photo from your big day onwards – that photograph that family will always look at when they flick through albums – which is why you need to be fully prepared at the fitting. That is why you need to consider your undergarments. For a full list of advice, check out this list at www.loveandlavender.com. But, to sum it up, you need to think about the bra you will be wearing, whether you will wear Spanx on the day, and what sort of slip you will be wearing under your dress. It all matters, and it will all prevent you from having a mess meltdown on the big day when you try everything on.
- Vendors For Help
The people you hire do this full time. This is their living. Their calling in life. So, use them. Use one vendor to help you decide on another. When you have chosen a photographer, ask them to recommend a florist with excellent blooms, ask the venue’s manager if they remember any incredible bands that are worth speaking to, and ask any planner’s you meet about good caterer’s. Nothing beats a little bit of social proof. We were thrilled when our cake bakery had nothing but awesome things to say about or coordinator.
- Think About The Kids
If you are a conventionalist, then you’re plan is to get married, enjoy the honeymoon period and have kids, which is why you need to accept that some of your guests will have kids, and that is why you need to have a kid policy. It could be that you welcome kids with a hug and a smile knowing that kids are awesome; it could be you decide to have a zero child policy; you could only embrace the kids in your immediate family; or you could get a childcare service in. Whatever your choice, decide ahead of time so that you aren’t freaking out on the day wishing you had decided ahead of time.
I looked around the web for how to handle this delicate situation, and found what I think is the perfect wording for my wedding site:
While children are a joy and a blessing, we respectfully ask that this be an adult-only ceremony and reception, barring the few little ones who are in our wedding party. The Mayflower offers a babysitting service at $25 an hour with 4 hours minimum. Please give them a call at (202) 347-3000 to arrange.
This not only clearly sets my expectation, but offers a solution! (I also asked my SIL if, as a mommy, she found it appropriate. She said definitely and that Ryker will not be attending any other weddings with her but ours so she can have fun and let loose!)