A few things I learned about weddings
Hello, friends! I hope you are well as you read this post. I intend to offer a bit of insight on what I learned while planning my wedding. First, I want to be clear that a wedding and a marriage are two separate things. If you are in the midst of planning your wedding or hope to in the future, please make sure that you acknowledge that preparing for marriage is SO much more important than the wedding. The wedding day will come and go, but you are committing to marriage forever.
If it's reading a book or going to pre-marital counseling or making a plan with your future spouse or a combination of all of those things, make sure that you are making time for this in the midst of all the wedding planning chaos. We did a combination of all of these things and I can say that they have truly helped us as newlyweds. I certainly do not have the answers, by far. However, I can say that we have used the tools we talked about before the wedding and it has been useful.
With that said, the wedding was truly amazing for my husband and I. We have relived that day over and over and we have ZERO regrets. I still cry when I look at the pictures because I instantly go back to that day and get all the feels again. In looking back, I learned a lot through the process and figured I could pass it on to any bride-to-be who might be interested. So, here we go ....
Instagram, Wedding Wire, and all those websites or social media platforms are a goldmine. I found my wedding dress shop (shout-out to @saavybrideboutique) and my musicians (shout-out to @duolicht) from these websites. Wedding websites can be overwhelming, but don't shy away from checking them out.
Sticking to your budget is possible. We had a tiny wedding and by that I mean we had 14 guests total. We wanted an intimate gathering with our people, good food, and a heartfelt experience. We also did not want to stress over money or go into any debt. We accomplished both of those things. I say all of this to say that you can have the wedding you want and not spend your life savings (unless that's what you want to do, of course).
People are kind. I cannot stress this enough. My village of people showed up in ways I could have never expected or imagined. From a bridal shower to a bachelorette party to desserts for the wedding to menu cards for the wedding to sending gifts from all over the place and showing love just because - I was so overwhelmed. My family lives in a different state and the pandemic meant that travel was limited. So, the friends who became family stepped up. My friends and family friends sent me gifts and love from all over the country and I could not be more grateful. Be good to your people because they will be good to you in return.
A stressless wedding day is the way to go. I had no bridal party. This meant that my mother and I had several hours to get ready for the wedding. We had lunch and I savored the moments to myself while getting ready. My wedding planner handled everything and I just sat back and relaxed. It was quiet and peaceful and it truly set the tone for the day. You may not think this is feasible if you have a wedding party, but I encourage you to find some time to yourself on that day.
A wedding planner and a good photographer are game changers. Easily the two best decisions I made in planning. It took a lot of stress off of me to see someone making my vision come to life (shout-out to Autumn Holmes). Also, investing in a good photographer was WORTH IT. Shout-out to Elbow Oak Photography and Hilary Vernon for being the best. I cherish those photographs and have gotten such amazing feedback from friends and loved ones.
Your wedding day is about you and your partner. We really stayed true to this. While our guests were on our minds and we wanted to make it a memorable experience for them, we kept the reason why we were having our wedding in the first place at the forefront of every conversation: we wanted to be together in marriage. Keeping this in mind helped us to stay focused on what we wanted and helped guide us in the choices we made. We stayed true to who we are as a couple and it meant that our wedding was exactly what we wanted it to be.
Having fun on your wedding day is A MUST. So many people told me to enjoy the day because it was going to go fast. It absolutely did. I would not say that the memories of the day are fading, but I would say that the details become fuzzier over time. What I do remember is how wonderful I felt the entire day. I wish that feeling on every bride and think that I did myself a service by doing all I could leading up to the wedding to make sure that I had a good time. It paid off.
I could go on and on, but those were probably my biggest takeaways. Ladies, what do you remember from your wedding experience? I would love to hear from you. If you're a bride-to-be, was this helpful? Drop a note or ask a question. I'm happy to help. No matter where you are on your wedding journey, I pray that it's filled with love, joy, and all types of happiness. Have the best day ever.
Until next time, take good care of yourselves, friends,