Real Advice from My Past Couples – Part 1

I’m always really keen to get any feedback about how couples felt before, during and after their wedding.  And if they have any advice they’d like to share and how they found working with a wedding planner.  Mainly so it can help me gain a better insight into how the experience was for them.  Even though I’m married myself, I find this incredibly valuable – and I always want to help where and I can and do my job even better next time.  To be able to help more as a wedding planner, to understand how different areas of the planning affected them, how their preferences and venue(s) affected any choices, and so on. 

 

 

So here is the first instalment!  Over to the couples! 

(Gratefully received from a three of my past couples of 2019, who were happy to share on the blog for any future couples ❤️)

 

Initial Stages of Planning Your Wedding

  • We were the last couple in our set of friends to get married, so had been to quite a few weddings before we planned ours. When we started thinking about what we wanted, we pulled together what our highlights had been at other people’s weddings – and discovered it was the people, the food, the drink, a relaxed atmosphere… So those are the things we focused on.  (I agree, atmosphere and guest comfort are always tops for me)
  • We [also] spent the most money on food and drink – we have both been to enough weddings to know that guests love (and remember) a free bar, and due to our limited guest list and a donation from our parents, we worked out we could just about afford it. Needless to say, we had a few guests blaming us for their hangovers the next day!  (If you can’t afford a free bar entirely – which is totally understandable btw, why not try to work it out for just part of the day?  You can always DIY this part then switch to a paid bar later on… let me know if you need any help or advice on this or how to do this!)
  • The hardest thing about planning a wedding was the flippin’ RSVPs!  Seriously, people don’t read invites, don’t respond on time, they sometimes even add people that you haven’t even invited! I never thought managing RSVPs would be so difficult…!  (Read as… send them out in LOADS of time!)
  • I wish I had planned time for more wedding dress shopping. It was *so* much fun – and I only went to one shop!
  • And on that note… Don’t go to a bridal store if you can’t afford at least 50% of the range. You will inevitably love a dress you can’t afford, and it’ll just make you sad.
  • If you are the one getting all the stress, doing the organising – because one of you will be – do talk to your other half about it.  Sometimes it can feel a bit like hard work.  
  • I’d also recommend a book by Rock N Roll Bride (it’s not just for brides) – it’s a really refreshing, modern take on getting married and was my go-to bible when planning.

 

 

Suppliers/Venue

  • If you are an introvert bride like me, pick a venue with a [specific] guest limit.  My husband is more extroverted than I am, and even though we had already settled on our ideal wedding venue which had a cap of 60 guests for dinner, his initial guest list, just for his side, was 92 people! Needless to say, it got whittled down, so that I could invite some people as well (!).
  • Get advice from a wedding planner! They will always pick up and ask things you never even thought about!
  • For your ceremony venue, make sure that you are really, really clear with the ceremony people about the songs you want played and when. Double, triple check and tell them, again and again, and again. Ours got our ‘recessional’ song wrong which we were a bit gutted about. (NB. Laura wasn’t involved in this part of our day!)  (That’s also where my wedding brief and supplier contact before hand comes in too – even for just an On The Day Coordination service.)
  • We found our ideal suppliers… Through Laura! We got Green & Envy to do our flowers and they were just beautiful. Lucy understood what we were looking for right from the outset, and just made everything look so pretty with her wonderful floral creations. She actually makes your wedding Pinterest flower board a reality, she’s that good.
  • I don’t regret blowing money on…. Flowers – see above. Our venue went from lovely, to completely dreamy with floral garlands draped over mantle pieces. Oh, and it wasn’t a budget buster.
  • But I have [also] recommended hiring Laura to literally anyone that mentions they’re getting married because frankly I have no idea why you would want stress on your wedding day, and Laura makes sure you can just enjoy it. (Thanks Alison! As a London wedding planner, I have loads of flexible pick + mix services btw!)

 

 

Ah thank you so much for that last bit Alison!!  I wasn’t fishing for that, I promise!!  But I thought it was nice to finish there for today….!  I completely echo all of the above, which is easy to reflect on now of course, but hopefully this gives you some food for thought 😊 

Big thanks to Michelle and Simon, Alison and Philip, and Anna and Sam for sharing their wisdom! 

Next instalments to come over the coming weeks include advice from some of my past real couples on:  Vision, Décor & Styling, Dry Hire, Traditions, On the Wedding Day, and some other final wise words…

Stay safe and love to you and your families,

 

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Photo credits: Story and Colour Photography from Anna + Sam’s wedding, and Alexis Jaworski Photography from Alison + Philip’s wedding.


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