It’s your wedding day! All of your plans for the big day are finally in place and now you and your significant other can just sit back and enjoy the day. At least, that was the idea. However, for most couples, the day ends up feeling rushed and goes by in such a blur of well wishes, dancing, and cake cutting that at the end of the night, you can’t help but feel that it could have been done better. This, of course, is the number one reason why you should hire a wedding planner to at least assist with the day of coordination. Yet regardless of whether you hire a professional or do it yourself, you need a basic understanding of what goes into a wedding day and how to get through it without feeling that you’ve just rushed through it all. Here are some tips to help make the most of your special day.
Yes, you may have 13 first cousins, or friends from kindergarten to college that you want to have with you as you walk down the aisle, but having too many people in your bridal party is a headache that you can certainly do without. For starters, you have to keep track of everyone the day of so if you have a group that is late, they can hold you up as you wait for them to arrive or finish their hair and makeup on time. Second, a large bridal party means more people walking down the aisle which can drag out the first part of the ceremony. Aim for no more than 12 people in your bridal party. This includes the maid/matron of honor, best man, bridesmaids, groomsmen, flower girls, junior bridesmaids, ringer bearer and flower girl. Want to keep it real simple? Just have a maid/matron of honor and a best man.
With hair and makeup to do for yourself and your bridal party, it can take as long as four or more hours to get prepped for your wedding day. Add trying to take prep shots and making sure everyone is dressed and you can see how quickly the time flies – and how easy it is to get stressed out. A great tip is to have everyone spend the night at one location prior to the wedding. This eliminates people arriving late for their appointments. Another great time saving idea is to do some prep the day before. For my melanin girls, this means washing your hair which can save at least two hours. Nails and eyebrows can also be done early and still look fresh the day of.
Now this is a big one. Traditionally, wedding pictures are taken after the ceremony – usually during cocktail hour. Although there is nothing wrong with this, what tends to happen is that there is no down time for the newlyweds after they say “I do”. It goes from ceremony to pictures to reception. Save some time by taking pictures before the ceremony. If you want to save your first look for when you walk down the aisle, take separate group photos before the ceremony. That way, after the ceremony is done, the bridal party can go off to enjoy cocktail hour while the bridal couple can take their own pictures together.
The more guests you have, the more people you have to greet and say hi to. If you have guest count of 250, that is essentially 25 tables that you have to stop and visit just to get some face time with everyone during the reception. Keep things simple and manageable by having a small guest list so that you have more time on the dancefloor rather than on the sidelines.
You cannot do it all on your wedding day. You are the bride or groom and should enjoy your day to the fullest. Even if the venue provides a bridal attendant, keep in mind that they are not with you for the whole entire day. Having a planner to at least do the day of coordination will give you peace of mind that someone else is making sure that everything goes smoothly behind the scenes. Make sure that you and your planner work on a detailed timeline prior to the wedding so that you and your bridal party will have an idea of how the day will flow. All vendors should also have a timeline and each will probably give you an idea of their own respective timeline. Bottom line, the planner’s main job on the day of is to make sure that all vendors and parties involved are on time and that there is room for contingencies. Knowing that someone else is watching the clock means that you get to relax and fully immerse yourself in this special day with your friends and family.
Want an idea of how a wedding day timeline looks like? Contact us and we’ll email you a sample timeline.