We’ve seen meltdowns and we’ve seen families torn apart because of wedding stress. Do yourself a favor and follow this general outline, and we promise you’ll have a more stress-free wedding day.
1. HIRE A WEDDING PLANNER
A wedding planner can be your best friend leading up to your wedding and on the day-of. If you don’t have the budget to hire a planner (although they can often save you money with specific vendors) at least hire a day-of coordinator. You can also check to see if the site provides a day-of planner (Brookside Gardens, in Berthod, CO provides a site coordinator and so does the Garden Room, Loveland, CO) They’re on your team and are willing to bend over backwards to make sure that everything gets taken care of. And while you may have a friend, mother, or relative as a planner, who’s going to be making sure the reception is setup when they’re busy being in the family pictures? Nothing is better, nor can be replicated, than a wedding coordinator AND your best friend can enjoy themselves as a guest, not a planner.
2. PLAN OUT YOUR WEDDING DAY SCHEDULE
Your DJ, photographer and coordinator should be able to help you with this. From the bridal party getting ready to when you’re planning on cutting the cake. It helps answer questions prior to your big day, which by the time you’re done, you won’t want to answer anymore questions. It also helps you realize if you’ve forgotten any events and helps prevent you having to scramble and throw something together while you’re trying to get ready. Wedding planners, DJ’s, and photographers have done this many of times and can have some of the best advice for your wedding day.
3. PLAN FOR THINGS TO TAKE LONGER THAN YOU EXPECT
… like 5x longer than you thing. That appointment you made to get your nails done? You have to wait in line and it’s no longer a 30 minute appointment. Driving to and from the hotel? Normally 5 minutes, but because you’re trying to coordinate 15 different cars, it’s now a 30 minute task. One of the keys to your big day is to enjoy it. Enjoy the time leading up to the ceremony, where you can spend time with your best friends and family. Enjoy the moments when you’re exchanging vows, it only happens once, so why rush? Plan for events to take longer, much longer, than you expect. It’ll help you keep a realistic schedule and help you relax when you’re not rushing around. Bottom line, allow for more time than you ever think you’ll need…even to go to the bathroom.
4. PLAN FOR FAMILY PHOTOS
A good photographer should have asked for a list of what family photos you want prior to your big day. This lets then know if there are divorces, ill grandparents, unusual family dynamics etc. Discuss this list with your fiance so you know exactly what shots you want for the big day. Moving forward it is IMPERATIVE that every single person in the photos knows when and where they need to be for them– meaning you have to let them know. If you want to take family pictures at 5, tell your family to be there at 4:30, guaranteed your Aunt Selma is going to be 20 minutes late. But in actuality, because you’ve planned for things to take MUCH longer, they’re really on time and you’re sticking to your schedule. If you want to take pictures AFTER the ceremony, have the priest announce it prior to you walking back down the isle or put a little note on the back of your program. This way, it reinforces where people need to be at a specific time.
5. BE FLEXIBLE
You’ve planned, made your list and there’s nothing else you can do. If you’re running 5 minutes late, it’s not the end of the world. The day is about YOU. The ceremony isn’t going to start without you. They’re not going to cute the cake without you. People are there to celebrate your wedding. Not theirs. Not Aunt Selma’s. Yours. Attitude is everything. If you successfully get married, it’s a day of success, regardless of how everything else has gone.