8 Tricks to Help Keep You Sane on Your Wedding Day | Bridal Advice | South Florida Wedding Planner 07-15-2016 by Allison
As a wedding coordinator, it is literally my job to make people’s lives easier. Weddings can be overwhelming and chaotic. Almost always something comes up that wasn’t planned or expected I.E- grandma Betty falls on the dance floor and breaks her hip, your venues air conditioning unit poops out, it rains right before you are supposed to walk down the aisle outside… Etc.. etc.. I’ve been to so many weddings now that I’ve seen, fixed, and even prevented a lot of the common mistakes that pop up. I’ve put out fires (both literal and figurative), altered dresses on site, and re-designed a bridal bouquet in just minutes before the ceremony.
Chances are you’re planning a wedding for the first time—so, the things that are obvious to me, won’t be obvious to you until it’s happening. So, whether you hire a coordinator to put out fires for you, convince a friend to help out, or you decide to run the show yourself, here’s some of my best advice and some tricks I’ve learned from years of experience! (And no, I’m not just talking about a bag with extra bobby pins and tissues—though that’s a good thing to have too!)
1. TELL A LITTLE WHITE LIE…OR A FEW:
I recommend telling your family, wedding party, and maybe even your groom a few little fibs during your wedding weekend. Timelines are key to a stress free event. Letting your bride tribe know that your rehearsal is 15 minutes before it really is won’t hurt anyone and will save your sanity in the long run. This is a fool proof way to make sure that people are where they need to be when they need to be there. Listen girls, late happens so why not be prepared.
2. DON’T STARVE… ANYONE:
One of the things that almost always gets left to the wayside is eating. That goes for the couple, the wedding party, the vendors…everyone but the guests. Have a plan in place ahead of time so that the whole wedding party gets fed while they’re getting ready—this will keep a lot of people from becoming hangry!
Also, your vendors need to eat. They love you, and they’re there for you. But without food they tend to forget how much they love you, if you get my drift. Please, please, please make sure there is enough food and enough time for everyone (yourself included) to eat!
3. NOT ALL PENS ARE CREATED EQUAL:
There are about a million different guestbook ideas out there. Regardless of which version you choose: please make sure to test out the pens that you want to use in advance. It’s a heart wrenching when your guest book, (or Jenga set or guest quilt) is covered with smears before you ever get to read it.
4. WIND AND ESCORT CARDS DO NOT MIX:
If you’re having an outdoor reception and you plan to assign seating—avoid the simple tri-fold card. Why? Just imagine a bunch of tiny pieces of paper with peoples names on them…flying around the yard. Think: Sea glass, terracotta tile, painted windows, starfish… pretty much anything but tiny pieces of paper for an outdoor venue!
And while we’re at it—alphabetize those suckers in advance. There is nothing worse than scrambling to put 200 items in alphabetical order just thirty minutes before guests start arriving!
5. WALK THROUGH THE DAY…BEFORE THE DAY:
A minimum of one time, (or twenty-three times) in the planning process—you should walk through the actual venue in person (and in your mind). This is the time to think about the flow of the day, exactly where you want that beautiful eucalyptus garland you had to have, and how it will all come together. This is also when you will realize that you printed really beautiful programs…but you have no clue how guests will get them. Now, you know to ask your cousin Sarah to hand them out. By thinking about the day from your perspective, a guest’s perspective, and even the vendors perspectives, you’ll be able to prepare for all kinds of kinks, and work them out in advance. Extra bonus: do this with your florist and coordinator 3 weeks prior so everyone is on the same page and you have enough time to grab any last minute items and order an extra arrangement for that table at the front door that you completely forgot about.
6. CONFIRM…EVERYTHING and then confirm again:
This is task that will be completely off your plate if you work with most coordinators and planners, but about a week or two before the wedding, you should confirm with all of your vendors and key players. Send out an email, your timeline, and your wedding day contact list to everyone involved. A lot of your vendors will ask for this, so it’s best to beat them to the punch.
7. PUT YOUR PHONE AWAY…ALL DAY i repeat all day:
It is your day and you will be surrounded by loved ones, so put (or give) your phone away. Worried that vendors or guests will call you for important information? Pass it off to a friend or family member to manage. Kick the your phone habit for a day and stay present with your guests. Your emails and Facebook notices will all be there tomorrow! (I promise.) Not to mention—where, exactly, in your dress or suit were you planning on stashing that thing?
8. SOMETHING WILL GO WRONG:
This isn’t just me being a Negative Nancy—this is the truth. No matter how much planning and effort you put into scheduling, assigning, and delegating—something will be forgotten, lost, or messed up on wedding day. It’s best to know that in advance. That way, at 9am on wedding morning when you can’t find your shoes and your sister has to drive forty minutes back to the house for them, you can just agree with everyone and the universe that that was the big moment. And after that, it’ll be smooth sailing!
Photos by Shea Christine Photography