One of the most complex things about wedding planning are the amount of decisions that need to be made, both big and small. From the favors to the reception food, there are a ton of decisions that need to be made. And whether you have a long or a short engagement period, it’s always going to feel like there isn’t enough time to get everything done. Once your to-do list is checked off, you’ll likely think of more things to add to it!
With all of the decision-making, will likely come second guessing. Here are a few of my tips on key areas:
- Wedding Dress This one catches a lot of brides by surprise. You’re in the store and you say “yes to the dress” and walk out on cloud 9. And then you start to question…is it the right style? Too formal? Right color? Too trendy? Will it be comfortable enough? Will it complement the venue? Don’t be caught off guard…this is NORMAL. I literally questioned my dress leading all of the way up to the big day. Some days I was positive that I had the most perfect dream dress, and then other times I found myself daydreaming about my “second choice.” The one thing that helped me was I actually didn’t “say yes” on the day I went dress shopping. I walked out with two top selections and was leaning towards one. When I woke up the next morning, I reviewed all of the photos that I took and thought long and hard, and ended up choosing the first dress that popped into my mind. My husband LOVED the dress and I wouldn’t have changed my mind, even if I had the opportunity.
More reading: “What To Do If You Second Guess Your Wedding Dress” from Brides.
- Wedding Registry This can be a really fun activity to focus on but the reality is that you will likely go back to your list and add/take away after you’ve already created it. Be smart with your choices and make sure you find the right compromise with your partner when selecting items that represent the both of you. Do select the”boring”/traditional things that you will need (and use every day), but don’t be afraid to add stand-out pieces like a piece of art that will mean a lot to you in your future home. And lastly, remember that you will likely receive quite a few gift cards (both to where you registered as well as other big-box stores.) The best thing about that is that you’ll have some left-over money to spend on things that you hadn’t already thought of before.
More reading: “Wedding Bells: 10 Wedding Registry Tips From a Real Newlywed” from guest blogger at Lauren Conrad.
- Wedding Theme When you first select your theme, make sure it’s broad enough to have enough room to play around with. I recommend selecting both a theme, as well as a color scheme or decor…examples could be “Heaven on Earth, elegant glamour” or “Nautical Travel, blue and white” or “Classy Country, chic barnyard.” If you put it in too small of a box, it can be hard to add additional details when things come up. Allow the theme to evolve over time, too, since you’ll likely add to your decor along the way. No matter what, if you select a theme that represents you and your partner at time point in time, there’s no reason to feel like you wish you had a “do-over.”
More reading: “How To Select Your Wedding Theme“, my blog from last week.
- Party Guest List Face it, there are a lot of people in both of your lives, but the guest list can’t be limitless. Start with the most important people and then add to it. Have a discussion with the parents on both sides to find out what their top 1 and top 2 tier requests are, and then see if you can fit them in. It is important to ‘throw them a bone’ and invite Mom’s best friend or Dad’s pastor friend, because this is a family affair. Most importantly, ask yourself these three questions to help narrow it down, “Have ________ played an important role in mine/his life?” “Is this someone who will continue to be in our lives, after the wedding day?” “Will I regret if I don’t share this day with ___________ or have them in pictures?”
More reading: “Tips for Making Your Wedding Guest List” from The Knot.
What’s most important? Trust your gut. And know that there are so many decisions that will need to be made, so it’s not going to benefit you to redo (and redo again) plans that are already put in place. It doesn’t matter HOW PERFECT your big day ends up being, you will likely still have things that you wish you did or didn’t do. And you know what? That’s normal. But, you then have a life as a wife to focus on so just keep moving forward!
Girl with a diamond ring