Keeping our wedding relaxed and fun was a huge priority for my husband and I when we planned our wedding just two years ago. We kept going back and forth after every decision we made: How do we keep this feeling like "us," like a causal party, and not like an stuffy traditional wedding that's not who we are. To be honest, it was hard! It felt like every decision threatened to move us closer to "traditional" and away from what we wanted. I know the feeling of frustration well, and wanted to give you some advice on how to push through it and make sure you get the wedding you actually want.
#1 Don't be afraid of saying "no."
Whether it's an idea from your mom that grosses you out, a vendor who's just not picking up what you're putting down, or a venue that threw out some outrageous requirement... remember you can walk away! Tell mom "no," find another vendor, or tell that venue you won't pay $80 for a tablecloth.
Some close friends of mine had booked one of the most popular June wedding dates in Colorado at a venue they loved up in Evergreen. At first the decision seemed perfect! The venue was going to lift a lot of the planning burden off of their shoulders with inclusive vendors and in house catering. Sounds great, right? It was, until the venue starting tacking on all their extra "fees" that weren't included anywhere in their original price quote, and the food bill came in at almost twice what they expected it to be. They were so stressed, and felt totally trapped by the venue contract they'd signed. It was the hardest decision ever, but just 4 months before their date, they cancelled the venue and started looking for other options. They now have a beautiful location that fits them perfectly, have simplified a lot of the "fluff" that they had been wrapped up in, and feel like they're having a wedding that's actually theirs again. That feeling is priceless!!
#2 "Check" your decisions
My amazing planner for our wedding, Brindle & Oak, gave me some of the best advice as we were finalizing some of our wedding plans. Michelle said, "For every decision you make, ask yourself WHY you're doing it. If the answer is 'for us' keep it, if the answer is 'for mom' that's okay, but if the answer is 'isn't it what we're supposed to do?' Ditch it." We skipped a ton of things that are just "traditional" and didn't have any meaning to us as a couple, and found creative ways to put a spin on it to make it more unique to us.
I always thought father/daughter dances were a little much... they seemed founded in some archaic tradition that marked the "giving away of the daughter" to a new man. Um, gross. I also hated the obligation that this act was supposed to make everyone cry? Like I'm not going to see my dad again? He and I are super close, and see each other at least every other week. I didn't feel the need for obligatory tears to be shed for some old-timey tradition... plus, I'm super close with my mom too, and that left me with no way to honor her in the same way. We nixed that one, and the mother/son dance as "just not us." I did dance with my dad at my wedding, but it was to a random song that came on that made us feel like it.
#3 Vendors are here to help!!
It's our job as a team to make your wedding happen just how you want it to. Don't be afraid to lean on us, ask for favors, or tell us what you need! We've all done this hundreds of times and we know how to make the day run smoothly.
It's a huge help to have either a delegated friend that you trust 100% to have your back, or get a day of coordinator for your wedding--Prive Events is one of my favorite planners to work with. The last thing you should be doing on your big day is running around trying to make sure all the tables look how you want them, that the ceremony has the right number of chairs, or that your partner is actually getting ready when they are supposed to be. That's a great way to forget all about why you are having a wedding in the first place, and remember nothing but stress and worry from the day. Many venues have a coordinator that you already get to work with, but if not, it's worth every penny to find one that clicks with your vibes.
I know, it sounds a little cheesy. But, it's so easy to get wrapped up in the details and obsess over the little things that really don't matter all that much. If you feel that happen, just pause, take a deep breath, and get your head screwed on right again. Keep going all through your wedding day too, and intentionally take moments to breathe and take it all in. You'll remember the day so much better and appreciate it so much more!
Got any other good tips? Leave them in the comments below!
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