The happiest day of your life can also be one of the most stressful to plan – we’ve gathered together some top tips to help you plan the say of your dreams…without drama or headaches!
Choose a theme early and stick with it!
Some wedding styles evolve naturally out of their venue – a family get-together in a converted barn works wonderfully with a vintage, homemade theme, whilst a traditional manor house hotel tends to call for more classic designs. But what if you have more of a blank canvas to work from and are struggling to know which style to go for?
When you envisage your wedding day think about the following:
- What do you want guests to wear? Will you want them to be in black tie at a formal dinner, or something a little looser with more of a party atmosphere. Thinking about what people will be wearing will help you know whether you want a more classic and formal day or something a little more rustic and fun.
- What defines your style? If nothing else, a wedding day should reflect you as a couple. The most important thing is that the party is a reflection of who you are.
Once you have discussed these ideas through with your partner, you will begin to see a wedding theme taking shape. If you have strong connections to home and he is religious, why not compromise and have a religious ceremony and the reception close to your parental home? If you both love city life and vintage finds, you could consider transforming an urban space like a disused hall into your ideal setting and customise it yourself with a mixture of bought and homemade wall-hangings.
Budget early and stick to your guns!
One of the biggest issues with wedding planning is overspending, so budgeting is essential. Sit down with your partner, and with your parents if they’re going to contribute, and work out what you can afford to spend.
Here is a rough guide to costs of the average wedding (you may find this slightly eye-watering!)
- Wedding venue: £2,250
- Reception venue: £4,000
- Catering: £3,000
- Photography/video: £1,399
- Flowers: £600
- Cake: £300
- Entertainment: £650
- Dress: £1,350
- Shoes: £90
- Stationery: £240
- Headdress/veil: £100
- Attendants’ outfits: £465
- Groom’s outfit: £350
- Beauty: £220
- Engagement Ring: £2,500
- Wedding rings: £650
- Other wedding jewellery: £200
- Honeymoon: £4,000
This is only a rough estimate, but it serves as an example of how important careful planning in every area is to stop costs running away. There may be areas you can find some savings but overall these kinds of costs need to be anticipated.
Planning for the Weather: Prepare for Every Eventuality
We Brits know better than anyone that the forecast isn’t always a certainty. A little planning averts any soggy disasters. For example, ask your ushers to take old towels with them to the church. Then, when the last of the guests are seated, they can dry the floor so your dress doesn’t end up covered in muddy water. And don’t forget to pop a couple of umbrellas in the car, just in case it starts to pour down on the way to the church. If your event has any outdoor elements, ask the venue to make sure their is a contingency space available should the heavens open.
Keep some of the Details Quiet!
It’s so hard not to talk about your wedding to anyone and everyone who will listen. But try your best. The more you share, the more opinions you’re going to get about your choices, whether or not you ask for them, which can really add to stress. Plus, part of wowing your guests is surprising them. If they already know that you’re changing into a different dress for dancing or have booked a spectacular band, they won’t be quite as impressed on your wedding day. If that’s not enough to deter you, talking about your plans means opening yourself up to copycats, who may actually be marrying before you do!