Happy Saturday, Bunnies!
Since we are just about two months away from our big day - I thought it would be fun to share some wedding planning tips since this has been a really fun and awesome experience but we've learned so much already. Here are just a few things that came to my mind right away when thinking about planning a wedding. I am hoping to share more wedding planning tips and sneak peaks soon!
1 // Spend lots of time on your guest list - This is generally one of the first things you do once you get engaged! You can't start planning or looking in to venues unless you know how many people you're inviting. I won't sugar coat this - it's STRESSFUL! The numbers add up quick but you need to be realistic about who you can/will invite. You need to factor in a lot of space for guests from the brides parents and the grooms, and you should request that list early so there are no surprises. We looked at our list a lot over a month/two months. Our venue only fits 150 so we couldn't be flexible with our number. We are right at 150 guests right now and if a few people can't attend that is when we will add a few secondary guests and/or give some friends their plus ones. If we didn't know their significant other and they just recently got together, unfortunately they didn't get a plus one. It was more important to us to have people we know well and love at our big day.
2 // Include & involve lots of family, friends & referrals - I remember right when Pete and I got engaged we started talking right away about our friends and family and who we knew and how they could be a part of our special day. We want our wedding day to reflect who we are as a couple so much that we knew involving more people who know us and are a part of our lives would be a huge factor in making this happen. Our photographers are friends of ours (I've know them for 15+ years!), our DJ is a friend of my brothers, our officiant is my brother Dave's boyfriend Mikey!, our MC's are my brothers, our florist is a friend I met online a few years ago and adore. It was huge for us to make sure these people played a big role in our day, and I really think it will make things extra special and intimate. Knowing that we have relationships with so many people involved in our big day also makes me feel so calm and even more excited about everything
3 // Remember "you only get married once" (well, most of the time) - As much as we have spent a lot of time talking about money, comparing costs and figuring out what we should and shouldn't do, we've also had a lot of "let's just go for it" moments. All in good reason of course, nothing we are doing is costing thousands and thousands of dollars. However, we also realize this is OUR big day, our only big day that we get to experience one time only. We want this to be the best day of our lives, we want to celebrate with all the people we love most, and we want everyone to go away feeling that this wedding was so "Pete and Jules" and was so much fun! If there is something we really really want to do, we are going to make it happen! I think once costs start getting added up people often cut things they normally couldn't live without. Obviously be realistic about what you can do, but remember this is your one chance to create a wedding you are beyond happy with!
4 // Focus on the fun - This applies to planning and the day of the wedding. We've been to so many weddings over the years and have had a lot of friends talk about how dreadful and time consuming planning a wedding is. I am not going to lie, if you don't have a wedding planner, this is A LOT of work! It's all wedding stuff all the time. But it's FUN! Come on, this is your day! Throughout this whole process I've been enjoying and taking in every minute. So many people have told me how fast it goes by and to savour every minute and I have taken that advice. When we talk about our wedding day, we always talk about how we just want our guests to have FUN! We want to have fun with them, and we want to be able to have lots of great moments on the big day where we can look back and say we enjoyed every single minute. If it's getting really stressful or you are a major perfectionist, look at what you are doing, use blogs and websites and lists, and get yourself organized enough that you can start focusing on how fun and wonderful planning and having a wedding can be!
5 // Choose the perfect bridal party - For us personally, our bridal party was a no brainer. I knew exactly who I was going to ask to stand up for me and so did Pete. I know it's personal preference and to each their own, but we wanted to keep it to a smaller number of bridesmaids and groomsmen. We wanted it to be our closest friends and/or family. My bridesmaids are the most important special women in my life! My maid of honour is my best friend Carly who has been a part of my life for over 25 years! I was her maid of honour when she got married and there was no doubt she would be mine, Jenna has been in my life for over 25 years too! We played ringette together our whole lives and our families are so close! I stood up for her at her wedding as well. Sarah and I have been friends since grade 9 and she is one of the most crazy awesome people I know! I also got to be her bridesmaid. Linds is my sister-in-law and is so amazing and wonderful, we are so close and I knew I wanted her to be up there with me like I was with her when she married my brother. Keeping it to a smaller intimate party also really helps with the planning. Guys, it's really tough to coordinate x amount of people for bridal showers, bachelorettes etc, the more people, the more schedules etc. Having 4 brides babes has been so simple and works perfect for me! Or maybe they are just perfect? hehe ;)