1. Take your time.
Start planning early! Some couples start as early as sixteen months out, and it really helped to keep stress levels down. You can get tons of stuff done early and had time to save for the things you really want. You only get to plan your wedding once, so make sure it is a fun time, not a stressful one!
2. Be present in each moment.
Don’t forget it is your wedding day, so soak up all the love, joy and bliss! Enjoy the moment!
3. Do a first look.
If your wedding ceremony is late in the afternoon leaving limited time for a photoshoot, It is a good idea to consider a ‘First Look’. This is where the bride and Groom get ready earlier in the day and meet each other prior to the ceremony. This can also be great for reducing the nerves relating to the ceremony and create much needed daylight hours for some beautiful photography and videography. Photographers and videographers can collaborate together and find secluded areas, away from all the madness that is going on during that time of the morning. It allowed you to take a deep breath, let the moment sink in, feel all the emotions you’ll be feeling. Although this isn’t very traditional it is becoming more and more popular and is especially popular in the US. But no matter what you decide, the important thing is choosing what’s right for you as a couple.
4. Don’t get caught up in “perfection.”
The event is an expression of yourselves, but it’s not all you’ll ever be. It’s just the beginning! In fact, some of the best moments are usually the ones you haven’t plan for at all—like a fabulous photograph of my dress train all tangled up with leaves and dirt. Sure, it’s messy and not what you’re used to seeing in bridal magazines, but it’s also honest and a truly joyful moment that could have easily go south if you’re uptight about things. Embrace the unexpected, and each others opinions, and don’t let an unattainable ideal sour the big picture: You’re in this together, now and for the future.
5. Have faith that all of your efforts will be worth it.
Before your wedding you may have people telling you that their wedding day was the BEST day of their life, and they maybe very excited that they will soon be able to experience yours. During all your preparations and planning your wedding, the long, daily to-do lists and the stress may make you feel as if the day will never come. However, it eventually does! When it does come, I recommend that you try your best to savor every moment of the wedding day—from the moment you get out of bed to the moment you walked out of my wedding venue as a married woman.
6. Share something personal and unique with your guests.
Think about how you can make your ceremony personal and unique. I once witnessed a reading from The Lovely Love Story. It was a great thing to include for a very personal touch. All the guests couldn’t stop talking about how adorable and memorable it was after the ceremony. The couple still get random dinosaur post on their Facebook wall from guests about it years later. If you are hoping for an amazing wedding film, giving your cinematographers something really emotional to connect all of the pieces together with will be a great help. Cinematographers are storytellers, so having a unifying element to drive your love story will truly leave lasting impression in your wedding film.
7. Try not to stress (even when it seems impossible).
Try and remember why you are getting married, and make the event truly about (and for) the both of you. Have faith in your vendors and videographer, and trust that they will do their job well! And once it’s happening, just go with it. Even small hick-ups for example you may need to call your dad up after he walks you down the isle because he has your vows in his jacket pocket! This would be sure to get a laugh and help make your day that little more memorable.
Your wedding day will most likely feel as though it has flown by but remember to take a few minutes alone after the ceremony with your husband or wife and enjoy a sweet moment together as newlyweds. You’ll be happy you did.
8. Prioritize, prioritize, prioritize.
Most couples want their wedding day to be a celebration of the rest of their lives together. You probably want people to walk away saying, ‘That was so much fun.’ And you will be able to accomplish this if you choose the few things that are really important to you. Maybe things like the photographer and Videographer are high on your list, or a live band! Choose what is the most important and be flexible on the other details and remember to have fun.
9. Accept that you can’t please everyone.
You just cannot make everyone happy, and if you try and accommodate for others it will just make the whole process daunting. This is your special day, so make it about you. It probably the only day that you will ever get that chance.
10. Be a team throughout the entire process.
You are bound to have family or friends with well-intentions try and lend advice, opinions, and even objections to your decisions. And it’s easy for you and your partner to become divided on certain issues. But in the end, this is a celebration of your love and future together, so every choice should be yours alone as a couple. Keep your focus on what matters the most for you and forget what others think you should or shouldn’t do, Go with your heart. Keeping yourselves at the center of every decision will make for the most memorable day of your life.
11. Remind yourself what’s truly important.
The biggest piece of advice we can offer for brides and grooms planning their wedding day is to never forget that this is a celebration of the union between two people.
12. Celebrate your love (and let others share your joy, too).
“Tyler and I both went into our wedding knowing it would be incredible because at the end of the day, we were to be married, and that was the main purpose. Our advice is to understand that a wedding isn’t about perfection. It is about the love you share and the vows you say. Everything else is a bonus.
Also, remember it isn’t all about you. Yes, it is your wedding and the celebration is in your honor, but a wedding is also an opportunity to thank all of the important people in your life who love and support you. It is to celebrate love, and it is meant to be fun! Enjoy it!” —Desiree and Tyler
13. Take one thing at a time.
“You can be easily overwhelmed in planning a wedding without a full-time wedding coordinator. But once you select the date and venue, the rest will fall into place. Think about the three most important things to you, and work on those next—whether it’s the photography, dress, food, music, florals, etc. Make a list and slowly cross things off as you go.
The biggest thing is that when your wedding day finally arrives, it literally flies by in the blink of an eye. All of the planning, stress, money, and time put in over the entire year comes and goes in a flash the day of your wedding, so try to enjoy the whole process. At times, you’ll be stressed and overwhelmed, but just enjoy the entire engagement and planning period, because when it’s all over, you’ll miss it and want to do it all over again!” —Malia and Brandon
14. Take time to enjoy each other’s company.
“It’s so easy during wedding planning to not take time to check in with each other and just get straight to wedding to-dos. During our one year of wedding planning, it felt like every time we saw each other, we had wedding decisions to make and appointments to go to. At the end of the day, the wedding is just one day in the lifetime of a marriage. It’s important to have a good foundation going into it.
Lastly, make sure to take little moments throughout the wedding day to savor everything—the emotion, the sights, the smells, the sounds. The wedding day goes by so quickly and before you know it, all of that planning is over.” —Diane and Paul
15. Kiss your husband as many times as you can.
“All the stress you had before the big day…just let it go. It is what it is, and stressing will only damper your big day. If it’s out of your control, let it be out of your control and just roll with it. Cherish every moment because it goes by so fast. And kiss your husband as many times as you can that day. It’s all about the two of you, don’t lose sight of that.” —Megan and Steve
16. Consider the environment when planning your wedding.
“I know that it can be hard to see past the day itself, and you’re just doing whatever you can to craft a beautiful event, but there is often so much waste that goes into a wedding. It’s just one day in your life together, but the environmental toll can continue long after the day is done. Go simple, modern, vintage, or minimalist—any of these routes will help you reduce your impact on the environment and will likely save you money. So many people told us how blown away they were by our wedding, and yet, we spent less than $15k on the entire affair and managed to keep things very green.
Also, I highly encourage couples to ‘pay it forward’ and give away anything they created or bought for their wedding. I plan to give away almost every single thing we made and thrifted for our wedding so that they can have a second (and hopefully, third, fourth, and fifth!) chance to make someone else’s dream day come true.” —Amber and Nate
“Take the time to eat on the day of your wedding. Tristan and I didn’t slow down or eat anything all day, and by the time the wedding was over, we were so worn out and hungry!”—Nicole and Tristan
18. Keep the big picture in mind.
“What I mean by this is there will undoubtedly be times of stress, fighting (a lot of fighting), angst, and anxiousness before and during the wedding. What kept us sane was knowing that at the end of the day, it’s just not that big of a deal. After the wedding, you will be husband and wife for the rest of your life—the wedding is just a big ol’ party.” —Lu and Joon
19. Hire a day-of coordinator.
“The biggest piece of advice I have for brides and grooms that are planning a wedding is to hire a day-of coordinator so that you can enjoy your wedding day. Your coordinator allows you to take in all of the details and actually spend time with your guests and family. “—Alyssa and Aaron
20. Don’t sweat the little things.
“Our biggest piece of advice would be to plan ahead, don’t procrastinate, don’t sweat the little things, only do things that you can afford, try not to do anything wedding related two weeks before the wedding, enjoy your big day, and don’t forget to steal a couple private moments just as husband and wife throughout your wedding day. Things will be stressful as you plan, and things will go wrong on your wedding day, but don’t forget the big picture.” —Pearle and James