The toughest part about planning your wedding is that – well, you’ve never done it before. While you may have a sibling or friend who has, and maybe you’ve attended quite a few weddings in your life, there’s a good chance you weren’t paying much attention to all the tiny details as a guest.
I’ve been to enough weddings (and I remember some of the “oops” moments from my own) that I’ve compiled a short list of things do keep in mind as you’re planning your day out:
1. Have a “details” box for the photographer.
You’ve spent months, if not years, planning your wedding day, and the photographer will want to capture all the details – from your shoes and bouquet to the rings and invitation suite to the perfume and jewelry you’re wearing. Instead of handing the rings off to the groom or best man, have a box set aside with any details you want to be photographed.
Examples of details to include:
- Florals or bouquet
- Ring pillow and flower girl basket
- Perfume and jewelry
- Invitation suite
- Programs or bulletins
- Anything special to you
2. Bring extra shoes for wearing in the grass.
If you’re looking for some natural portrait shots (which I highly recommend), there’s a possibility that your heels will sink into the ground or that your ceremony shoes will be ruined or dirty before the wedding. Pack an extra pair of flats or heel stoppers – I’ve even had brides walk through muddy ground wearing tennis shoes to get the shots we wanted! Unless your dress is short, the shoes won’t show.
3. Have an extra “someone” for those pesky little tasks that will come up.
The maid of honor is going to be there all day long, but she’ll have her hands full (literally) holding your dress and being in the pictures. It’s also great to have a personal attendant, but even they will be busy most of the day. Having an extra attendant or helper to run errands, wrangle the guys when they’re needed for photos, pay the vendors, or get juice boxes for the flower girl can go a long way in making the day run smoothly. If possible, try to have an additional helper (or two personal attendants!) that can handle these tasks.
4. Remember to walk through the reception entrance with your DJ or wedding coordinator.
This one is personal for me! When Sam and I were walking into our reception, we realized we hadn’t asked anyone – the DJ included – to announce us as we walked in. In fact, we didn’t really know how a bride and groom entrance is really handled, so we just quietly walked to our seats amidst some awkward clapping as guests realized we had arrived.
It was fine. It didn’t ruin the day. But it’s one of those things that until you get married, you won’t think of!
5. Have the florals delivered directly to you, not to the venue.
You’ll need the bouquet for your detail shots (see above) as well as for the first look and bridal party portraits. Plus, I’ve had brides that realized there was a problem with their order (for example, not enough boutonnieres were delivered) and were able to ask the florist to correct the order because they saw the flowers early in the day.
6. Stop and take it all in.
You’ll probably hear this from everyone, but it bears repeating: This only happens (God willing) once. Yes, you want this day to go perfectly. (It probably won’t, and that’s what will make it all the more special and unique.) Yes, you’ve planned it to a T. Yes, you want the photographer to capture everything and you want everything to be beautiful. It’s totally normal and OK to feel those things.
But also remember – this only happens once. And at the end of the day, you’ll be married to your best friend. How cool is that?
I can 100% tell you that you won’t remember it all. (That’s why you hire the photographer to capture those memories for you so you can sit back and enjoy the day). So take it all in, and enjoy every minute of it!