There's something I've realised since becoming the grand old age…
Everyone told me that planning a wedding is one of the most stressful experiences of your life. That horrified me. One I don’t deal well with stress. I’m the sort to put my head on the table and have a gentle sob. Two, your wedding should be one of the most exciting times of your life! Not an experience that you can’t wait to see the back of it.
However, having now lived through it, and having survived unscathed, I truly believe it’s as stressful as you make it. If you get hung up on the little things, like table place names, wedding favours and the weather then yes you’re going to be a bundle of stressful energy on the day and beforehand. However, if you take everything with a pinch of a salt then things will feel easier.
People also said I would find it more stressful than most as I was planning it from abroad. Actually, I found the opposite. I think when you live abroad you become a little detached from it. You have a date which seems so far away and honestly, you put it to the back of your mind. Also, you know you have to be organised. So, when we went back to the UK to find a venue we also booked the caterer, photographer, florist, and lighting. We made the most of our time and got a lot of the details sorted very quickly.
Having said all that, there are moments which will become stressful and there’s nothing you can do to change it. For example, I couldn’t find bridesmaid dresses. I waited too long thinking it would be easy to find blush pink dresses. It was not. However, my sister pulled through and found a gorgeous dress which they, most importantly, were happy in. Secondly, my hairdresser cancelled one month before. Not a great situation. So things will happen but you have to roll with them and fix it.
Although no wedding expert here’s a little bit of advice to try and make your day as smooth sailing as possible:
- Ask for help! I couldn’t have done any of it without my Mum. She became my PA who would literally solve anything and everything. She would phone people for me, send emails, book appointments, and mainly just reassure me that things would be ok. She was a real superstar and should take up wedding planning.
- Keep a spreadsheet of what you’re spending. The money creeps up and in the end it just becomes numbers. But bear in mind that those trips to hobbycraft for lace and burlap all mount up. Do you want to spend the first few months of married life paying off your wedding? No. I didn’t think so. Just be careful. As lovely as the day is it is just that. Just a day. Don’t go overboard.
- Pick a venue which allows you to take your own wine and doesn’t charge corkage. In the end, we went for a more expensive venue that allowed us to supply our own booze and it actually worked out cheaper than a cheaper venue that charged corkage. You have to be a bit canny with these things as people do try and trick you!
- Don’t leave everything to the last minute like us. As we live in Dubai and I had just got a new job we didn’t get back until one week before the wedding and hadn’t done anything about decorations. Cue lots of panic buying and late nights meaning the week before was really quite stressful when it didn’t need to be. So, be organised and don’t bury your head in the sand. The wedding will soon creep up on you!
- If you’re going away on a honeymoon or mini-moon straight after the wedding then book something relaxing. Honestly, you will feel bone-weary tired. A sort of tiredness you probably haven’t felt before and trust me all you’ll want to do is chill out.
- Don’t dissect your wedding after the big day. This is really hard and not what I was expecting. You will pull apart your wedding going through every little detail, those moments you loved and those that bothered you. Just remember how perfect it felt in the moment.
- Save money by asking your friends for help. Do you know a photographer, a person great at making cakes, a florist, a hairdresser, or a beautician? For one, hopefully, you’ll get mates rates, and two you’ll be in great hands.
- Make things yourself. Like a lot of people we loved the rustic look so I spent a great deal of time putting lace around jars and my husband spent lots of times making signs, and even a movable beer cart. Unleash your Kirstie Allsop and have some fun with it!
- Lastly, smile and enjoy it! Don’t worry if things go wrong, no one will notice, trust me. And anyway none of it will matter when you stand opposite your favourite person and promise to love them forever. Everything else will become insignificant.
So, there you have it a few tips to try and make planning your wedding a little easier. Just enjoy the moment and relax. It’s going to be amazing.
Love, Becky x