Part 3, and the penultimate blog, in my feedback series; featuring some valuable wedding advice and insights from some of my past couples who have looked back on their wedding and wanted to share some wisdom. It’s so interesting to hear what my couples thought was important pre-wedding, to what really wasn’t afterwards! This instalment focuses on ‘Traditions’ and ‘On The Wedding Day’ advice and tips. 😊
- See Part 1 here – for advice from my real past couples on ‘Initial stages of planning your wedding’ and ‘Suppliers/Venue’.
- See Part 2 here – for advice from my real past couples on ‘Vision, Décor & Styling’ and ‘Dry Hire Weddings.
I love getting feedback, in any form (even if it’s not always positive), because it allows me to be better at my job, and use all the information to my advantage for the future – so that my future couples can have even better weddings! As a London wedding planner, working on the amazing variety of weddings, cultures and venues this city has to offer, the whole process and client journey from start to finish is super interesting and important to me. There’s also, obviously, a great deal of emotion and sentimentality within the whole experience for my clients, and I don’t want to miss a beat on that either. So I can either ease or heighten that for them, hopefully, too.
So here is the third instalment! Over to my couples again!
(A consolidation of advice gratefully received from a few of my past couples of 2018-2019, who were happy to share on the blog for the benefit of future couples ❤️)
- Don’t do something just because ‘it’s the done thing’. We were lucky in that our families did not demand any say in how we planned our wedding. So we sat down with a list of wedding traditions and crossed off all the ones we didn’t want or felt weren’t ‘us’ – there was no dad walking me down the aisle, no bouquets, no cake cutting, no first dance, no receiving line, no father of the bride’s speech (but my mum got up to say a few words). And do you know what – no-one missed them!
- We didn’t bother with a first dance, because we both cringed at the thought of it and then realised, hey, it’s our day; we don’t need to do anything we don’t want to! We also stayed together the night before the wedding, because we live together and thought it would feel strange for us to be apart. It was nice to wake up together on the morning of our wedding. I’m also not superstitious so didn’t bother with the something borrowed stuff…
- We had some family traditions woven into our day instead of ‘wedding day traditions’ (mostly drinking ones ha ha), and also created a few new ones – we loved those parts of our day and love the photos of those bits, and they were a nice surprise for our families too! Some of them really felt like they made our two families one that day. I love the idea of creating new traditions! And booze is certainly an easy way to do that, but let me know if you need any other ideas!
On the Wedding Day
- My (now) husband and I generally agree on things, but not music – finding music we both agreed on for our ceremony was so, so difficult! I hear this a lot! Also for first dance songs! Take the time beforehand to make this a fun thing to do in the run up – I suggest with a drink. Perhaps even explore some new music together.
- Don’t give your bridesmaids too much to do on the day. They’re your closest friends. You’re not going to spend time with them if they spend all day chasing family members for photos etc. My bridesmaids kept me sane in the run up to the wedding, and kindly moved all the decorations and left-over booze back to our flat the next day. But on the day, we had a laugh, and they were there. Great advice! Plus running around on the day is what a coordinator or planner is for! The day goes so fast, spend time with people you cherish.
- I’ll never forget the look on Philip’s face as we exchanged our vows – it felt like it was just him and I in that moment. Enjoy it! And truly enjoy these moment together, as that’s what a wedding is all about!
- Try to have a little surprise or two for each other up your sleeves… Philip surprised me by taking me to The Shard for our wedding night – I remember sitting by the window at about 1am with my new husband next to me, looking out over the twinkly lights of London and crying with happiness. It was an epic surprise.
- Stash a change of shoes! They don’t have to be special (you’ll be having too much fun to care what you look like), but you will thank yourself! I changed into trainers at dinner time just to have a rest, and then had another pair of comfy dancing heels for later – and I don’t regret either. I was half worried about ruining my expensive ‘ceremony’ shoes and half worried about ruining my feet!
- Invest in a great photographer – after running around for hours as my friend’s bridesmaid, and missing literally hours of her wedding due to staged photos, I was determined to find a photographer who wouldn’t spend a million years doing our family photos and would allow us to completely relax into our wedding day so we too could enjoy all the amazing food and drink and fun we had planned for our guests. Find a photographer who is part documentary / part fun if you want to actually be part of your own wedding day! If you need any recs, please don’t hesitate to let me know!
- Don’t give yourself too much to do, either. We didn’t have the most complicated wedding logistically (I don’t think), but there were enough elements to it that I was worried about keeping everything running smoothly on the day. The solution? Laura! We used her ‘on-the-day’ coordination service (plus put up and take down), which meant we could focus on our friends and family and have fun. Best decision we made! (Thanks Anna!!)
- 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 – could not agree more!)
Thanks so much to all my amazing past couples for sharing their wisdom! And for their kind words on my input too!!
I love hearing and consolidating all these, because I obviously know the ins and outs of what has gone into planning their wedding, but often not to what extent and from my couple’s perspective particularly. Especially what they found challenging and held importance against.
The last instalment in a few weeks will cover ‘Final Words of Wisdom..’ – I’m looking forward to that one myself!
Lots of love to you and your families, if I can help with any wedding planning woes while you navigate this strange year of being engaged, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. ❤️
Please email any hellos or enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org