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For all of you who got engaged over the holidays, this is going the perfect new blog mini-series for you! I’ll be sharing advice from past brides on what the best and worst decisions of their planning were.
Today, my lovely florist friend Leah will be sharing tons of her advice for future brides. And what’s also awesome is that all of the images in this post feature Leah’s blooms!
Best Wedding Decisions
One of the best decisions we made was to rent our venue for 2 days. Since I work in the wedding industry, I wanted to be greatly involved in all the set up. Setting up for a wedding is messy, and unattractive, and hard work, and there was no way I was going to be able to have the venue and myself looking pretty on the same day. By renting the venue for both Friday and Saturday, I got to play, and futz to my heart’s content on Friday, and, it gave my little micro-managing heart a little peace and calm. Not everyone needs this option, but, if you have a big vision for your wedding, and it’s going to take a lot of time to set up, it’s not a bad idea to consider renting for 2 days. And, if you’re a control-freak DIY bride, like I was, it just makes so much sense.
When we were planning our wedding, we knew we wanted it to be a beautiful, fun, and delicious party, but, we didn’t want to lose site of what we were celebrating. The ceremony, the commitment you are making to each other, is a vital part of the day. We hired Bethel Nathan because, quite simply, she’s the best. Neither my husband (oooh, I still get a thrill writing that!), nor I are religious, but, we still wanted a ceremony that had some gravity to it, but tempered with levity, and a sense of us. I’ve been to weddings where the ceremony felt completely alien to what I knew of the couple, and it was important to me that our ceremony was reflective of our relationship. We received so many compliments on our wedding ceremony, and friends that we have known for years declared that they learned something new about us that day.
Hire a wedding planner. A real, honest to goodness planner. Not your cousin, who thinks she can do it, and definitely not one of your bridesmaids! Since I work in the wedding industry, and, again, am a control freak, we opted not to have full planning, but to have a month-of coordinator. Knowing that I had a professional to put out whatever (hopefully, metaphorical) fire arose on our wedding day gave me huge piece of mind. My husband’s not a worrier, I do enough of that for us both, but, I know that he, too, felt better knowing we had a planner to take care of everything. I just got to coast through the wedding day, which was amazing.
Pockets in your wedding dress. Best idea ever. I pinned my engagement ring to the inside of my pocket, so I couldn’t lose it, and could easily slip it back into its rightful place after the ceremony. In addition to that was the lip balm I cannot live without, and tissues that I kept fishing out through the ceremony. I like to be prepared.
I decided to be clever and purchase a bridesmaid’s dress as my wedding dress, with the intention of dying it the color I wanted. This dress was only $400, instead of the $3,000 dress I fell in love with. I convinced myself that the dress I bought was almost like the $3,000 one, and that with a little adjusting, it would be great. It wasn’t. And, I didn’t decide that I hated it, until my final fitting appointment. Thank goodness for ready to wear wedding dresses from J Crew and BHLDN. I rush ordered several dresses, hoping to make up for my mistake. Luckily, I found a dress that I loved, and that wasn’t too crazily outside of my financial comfort zone. My advice here, is not to get too caught up in a good deal. That good deal ended up costing me more money.
I do, slightly, regret not having a brunch for the day after our wedding. It would have been nice to see everyone, again, especially, as we had many out of town guests. The next day was a little bit of a letdown, after all the buildup. I didn’t have one because there was no more room left in my brain to plan one more thing. I wish I had taken my best friend’s offer to organize something for me.
This regret is one that most people won’t have, because they’re not crazy. I insisted upon collecting vintage glassware for our wedding, rather than renting it. It really did give me great joy to collect it, and, I had no problems finding enough, and I did save a little money by purchasing it, rather than renting it (I found really good deals, but, if we factor in all the time I spent looking for glassware, I did not come out ahead), the issue was with the insane amount of time it takes to clean all of that glassware, and then, keep it clean, while storing it, and transporting it to the wedding venue. I wouldn’t do that, again, just because of the cleaning. Sometimes, it’s better to just rent.
-Leah of Bespoke, Moniker Warehouse 11/14/15
Stay tuned for more advice from past brides next Thursday in Part Two!