10 TIPS FOR THE WEDDING DAY
Updated: Apr 4
Your wedding day is one of the biggest days of your life. For most of you, you’ve spent a lot of time, money, and resources planning the day down to the minute. You want everything to go perfectly, but I’m going to let you in on a little secret. No matter how much you plan, something is going to go wrong and it probably won’t be your fault either. It’s just the way it is, so accept the fact now. But here’s the good news, none of your guests will probably notice the little screw-ups. The only reason you’ll notice is because you’ve put so much time into all the little details and have set very high expectations for yourself. I’m sorry to burst your bubble, but don’t worry. I have a few tips to help you keep these mistakes to a minimum so you can have the wedding of your dreams. A lot of things went wrong at my wedding, so here are 10 tips that we followed or wish we followed for the big day.
1. Have Your Musician at Your Rehearsal
If you’re having a musician play at your ceremony, make sure you invite them to your rehearsal. This will be good for both parties. It allows for the musician to get an idea of when to play what song and your bridal party will know how the music plays into the processional and recessional.
2. Hire a Day of Coordinator
I know what your thinking, can we afford yet another expense for our wedding? Well, good thing is you don’t need to actually hire a professional. Anyone can do the job, so long as you fill them in on all the details of your wedding. Ask a family friend to step in and I’m sure they’d be happy to. A day of coordinator will be extremely useful in taking care of last minute items and making sure you all stay on schedule. Your day of coordinator can also serve as the liaison between you and the emcee, should you need to make any changes. So ask around, and I’m sure you’ll find someone who would be glad to help.
3. Check On the Venue Before the Reception
Between hair, makeup, and pictures, I know you’re going to be pretty busy the day of the wedding, but checking on your venue the day of is a huge way to prevent any mishaps. Wake up extra early if you have to, or squeeze in some time into your schedule for stopping by your venue to make sure everything is exactly how you want it. If it’s not, at least you can delegate your wedding planner or a family member to get things in line before the reception. When I checked on my venue on the day of, I was able to meet with my band and address any last minute questions. I also noticed the tablecloths for the cake tables were missing and got it squared away in time before the cakes arrived. It will only take you a few minutes but will leave you feeling much more at ease knowing everything is all set.
4. Take Bridal Party Pictures Before the Ceremony
This is something I wish we did, but because of the additional cost for the extra hour, we opted to do our bridal party pictures outside during cocktail hour. I know one hour sounds like ample time, but it’s definitely not if you have a blended family or a large bridal party. It also leaves you feeling rushed and your face will show it in your pictures. Instead, schedule your bridal party pictures before the ceremony so that you can have the adequate time you need for your preferred poses. You can start off with your first look and then proceed to taking bridal party pictures and family pictures. The extra money for the extra time of photography is absolutely worth it. These pictures will be all you have left of your wedding day, so make sure you don’t skimp out on this part of the wedding.
5. Consider Only Having You and the Bridal Party Introduced
If you plan on making your grand entrance with your bridal party and family, I recommend you rethink it. Having you emcee introduce your grandmother, great-grandmother and step-grandmother can be tiring for your guests. Not to mention, it also leaves more room for your emcee to mispronounce more names. You’ll also have to worry about rounding up the entire family in the correct order, since the emcee will already have a preset list you need to follow. Instead, try to stick to just your bridal party or just you and your partner. It will be much easier for you and your emcee and quicker for your guests.
6. Have Everyone Seated During the First Dance
This may seem obvious, but ask your emcee to ask the audience to be seated during your first dance. During our wedding, we immediately went straight to the dance floor after our introduction and had our bridal party standing on each side of the dance floor, making it really hard for our guests to see. If your going straight into your first dance like we did, make sure you have your bridal party take a seat like the rest of the guests so that everyone has a chance to see the special moment.
7. You Don’t Need a Wedding Favor for Each Guest
I know you think your engraved key chains are super cute, but let’s be realistic… Not everyone is going to want to add your names to their keychain ring. And even if your wedding favors are absolutely fabulous, some people are just going to forget to grab one on the way in. Some families will also only take one per family, so keep this in mind when ordering.
8. You Don’t Need Cake for Each Guest Either
I know you don’t want anyone to be left out, but trust me, not everyone is going to eat cake. By the time you cut the cake, some people will have already left too. In an effort to avoid any cake going to waste, have your emcee announce that the cake has been cut and is ready to be eaten. Some people are just to shy to get up if they haven’t been given permission. Or even better, if you have servers, ask that they serve your guests the cake, rather than relying on your guests getting up for the cake on their own. They will be much more inclined to accept cake when it’s being offered to them.
9. Have a Meet and Greet Style Picture Line
Unless you are looking forward to being asked every thirty seconds to take a picture in a poor-lit area, arrange a time during the night for pictures. We had a special backdrop where we asked guests to form a line for pictures. We made it like a quick meet and greet event, where guests come up and say their congratulations and take a quick shot with the photographer’s camera. This ensures you get quality pictures with a quality background. It also serves as a great time to thank your guests for attending.
10. Enjoy Yourself; It’s YOUR Day!
I know this probably isn’t the first wedding article you’ve read. If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably already scoured those mainstream wedding websites looking for tips and advice on a variety of things. But before you overwhelm yourself, I want you to know it is YOUR day… and your partner’s, I guess. So if you want to go against the books, do it. You are paying all this money for the big day, might as well do it the way you want. There are so many “rules” and “traditions” for weddings, it’s just too hard to follow them all. From the order of the processional to the way your guests should be seated, you will find all sorts of ridiculous rules that are completely unnecessary. Do whatever feels natural to you, and I’m sure you will be much happier. And remember, if things go awry, no one probably even noticed, so be happy and be married.