And since this is likely your first time organising such a large-scale event, it's easier than you'd think to fall prey to the pitfalls of wedding planning.
You know what they say: timing is everything. And when it comes to planning a wedding, that statement certainly couldn't be truer. So when exactly should you send those destination wedding invitations? And how far in advance should the hotel blocks be secured?
We're breaking everything down for you here, so hopefully, you can avoid some of the most common timing mistakes brides make when planning the wedding.
Top event designers (with a combined 121 years working in weddings) reveal the blunders, pitfalls, and missteps many couples make during the planning process. Read about them now—accompanied by photos of real weddings that got it right—so you can avoid them later!
Table of Contents
- 1 FAQs About Wedding Venue
- 2 What Do Most Brides Forget?
- 3 What Should You Not Do At A Wedding?
- 4 What Are The Three Things Every Bride Should Have On Their Wedding Day?
- 5 What Month Is Unlucky For Weddings?
- 6 Is Wedding Planning Stressful?
- 6.1 Contact Suppliers Too Early
- 6.2 Put Deposits Before Hiring Your Planner.
- 6.3 Procrastination In Booking Key Suppliers
- 6.4 Reservation Of A Videographer At The Last Minute
- 6.5 Sending Destination Wedding Invitations Too Late
- 6.6 Don't Secure Hotel Blocks Early On.
- 6.7 Focus On The Small Details First
- 6.8 You Don't Consider Your Guests.
- 6.9 You Buy Your Wedding Dress Before Choosing The Venue
- 6.10 You Announce Your Engagement Too Soon
- 6.11 You Rule Out A Wedding Planner Altogether
- 6.12 You Include Your Registry Info On Your Invites
- 6.13 You're Too Strict With Social Media
- 6.14 You Fall Victim To Crash Dieting
- 6.15 There's A Large Time Gap Between The Ceremony & Reception
- 6.16 You Feel Obligated To Rock An Updo
- 6.17 You Misplace Your Engagement Ring
- 6.18 You Skimp On Bridal Party Gifts
- 6.19 You Don't Feed Your Vendors.
- 6.20 Then You Downplay Your Elopement
- 6.21 You Send Thank You Notes Late
- 6.22 You Don't Say Hello To Everyone.
- 6.23 You Mistreat Single Friends
- 6.24 You Set Predictable Tables
- 6.25 You Forget The Power Of Paper
- 6.26 You Over Decorate
- 6.27 You Limit Yourself When It Comes To Dresses
- 6.28 You Don't Think Beyond "Per Head."
- 6.29 You Don't Do Your Floral Research.
- 6.30 You Think You're A Professional Cake Baker
- 7 Conclusion
FAQs About Wedding Venue
- Arranging transportation for the families, wedding party, and guests.
- Assigning someone to gather and secure gifts.
- Cake cutting set.
- Cake topper.
- Card box.
- Cash for vendor tips.
- Eating a healthy breakfast.
- Getting a good night's sleep before the wedding.
- Get plastered.
- Skip meals or dehydrate.
- Wear killer heels.
- Miss the cocktail hour if you don't want to.
- Host too much and party too little.
- Lose your husband.
- Have it out with a vendor in front of your guests.
- Complaining about your in-laws.
- A comfortable robe. You will not be wearing your wedding dress all day (we hope).
- Bottled water.
- Water facial spray bottle.
- Travel mouthwash.
- Cell phone charger.
- Travel-size package of tissues.
- Blotting papers.
- Travel sewing kit.
According to folklore and ancient Roman tradition, the title of unluckiest month to get married goes to May. While July weddings promise some troubles in the future, May weddings are sure to end in regret! "Marry in May; you will surely rue the day."
According to the survey, 40 per cent of couples categorised wedding planning as "extremely stressful", while 71 per cent thought it was more nerve-wracking than other major life events like finding a new job.
Contact Suppliers Too Early
Seriously, it does happen. Erica Taylor Haskins, the co-founder of New York-based event planning and design firm Tinsel Experimental Design, asked "brides" to find out before getting engaged! Or couples are reaching out with a wedding date in three years. "While flattering, it's a bit premature and takes our time that we could devote to other more appropriate clients," she says.
Put Deposits Before Hiring Your Planner.
If you consider hiring an organiser, always consult with them before making any important decisions about your wedding, such as booking a venue and hiring and hiring a florist. "Most event design companies also do flowers in-house and recommend rental items as part of their contract, which essentially duplicates the effort (and money spent)," he explains. She.
Procrastination In Booking Key Suppliers
Waiting too late to book your suppliers, especially for a high season wedding, is a common mistake couples make, notes Dezhda "Dee" Gaubert, owner of No Worries Event Planning. If your wedding is during peak season (for most areas, it's summer) and you wait up to six months to book a high-quality supplier, you might be missing out on the best of the best, she warns. "This includes DJs, photographers, coordinators and some florists." Vendors who can handle a higher volume, such as pastry chefs, caterers and some florists, can be booked closer to the date of the event but don't take the risk. Good sellers book quickly!"
Reservation Of A Videographer At The Last Minute
Rachel Jo Silver, the founder of Love Stories TV, has seen this happen over and over again: The bride puts having a wedding videographer in the "optional" column of her to-do list, then panics trying to find someone at the last minute when she realises it's a staple. But, in reality, not having a videographer is the number one regret she hears from brides, so take her advice and don't procrastinate!
Sending Destination Wedding Invitations Too Late
According to destination wedding planner Sandy Malone, owner of Weddings in Vieques, destination weddings have entirely different deadlines for invitations (and RSVPs) than at home weddings. "Because everyone has to travel to get to a destination wedding, you have to send dates and travel information up to 18 months before the big day. However, you can mail formal invitations out after one year. However, they should still have an RSVP date of eight weeks from the date you mailed them." Don't delay sending out your invitations, or you'll have a hard time planning and budgeting for all of your various events at your wedding destination," she cautions.
Don't Secure Hotel Blocks Early On.
Waiting too long to book hotel rooms, especially in a big city, is a big no-no, notes wedding planner Marilisa Schachinger of Martel Event. "While it might seem like a straightforward task to put off, if a city has a big conference or sporting event on the same weekend as your wedding, you can fully book them even more than six months in advance."
As soon as your date and location are confirmed, she suggests locking hotel blocks in two or three hotels so that your guests have plenty of options and time to book their accommodations.
Focus On The Small Details First
Some brides focus too much on the "little details" from the start and fail to sort out some of the bigger planning pieces until too late, says Greg Jenkins, founder of Bravo Productions. "For example, deciding on napkin rings, wedding colours, and linens should come after you have already contracted a room and a caterer."
Before tapping into Pinterest, buying magazines, or bookmarking blogs, think about the type of celebration you want. Do you envision a black-tie evening affair or a more casual daytime party? "List your priorities," says Mary Thornton, owner and event planner at Party Party in Fairfield, Connecticut. "What is most important to you? For example, are you a foodie, or is music your thing?" This kind of pre-planning will make selecting a venue and setting a budget much easier.
You Don't Consider Your Guests.
Your friends and family will likely travel, and at considerable expense, to attend your wedding, so make sure they are comfortable. Provide transportation to and from the ceremony and reception, and stock their hotel rooms with basics like drinks and snacks.
You Buy Your Wedding Dress Before Choosing The Venue
Before booking your bridal salon appointments, know the type of wedding you're planning and where. "Yes, you can wear whatever you want, but if you purchase a low-key gown and book the Plaza, you may wish you went bigger and bolder, with the venue in mind," says Ashley Douglass, owner and creative director of Ashley Douglass Events.
You Announce Your Engagement Too Soon
Remember to share the big news with your inner circle before updating your status on social media. Tell your family and closest friends first, preferably in person or by phone or Skype (so they see the ring!) if they're long-distance. Then change your Facebook status. And after the outpouring of congratulations, be sure to post a quick thank you to the well-wishers.
You Rule Out A Wedding Planner Altogether
The most stressful planning period? The week before the big day. That's when handfuls of unforeseen details arise, leaving some brides sorting out spreadsheets instead of connecting with friends and family. Avoid this by hiring a week or even a day of planner. They will handle last-minute vendor meetings and fires, so you don't have to. If budget is a concern, some planners even offer hourly services.
You Include Your Registry Info On Your Invites
It may sound old-fashioned, but word of mouth is still the best way to loop everyone in on your registry. Ensure those closest to you (your parents, your partner's parents, and the wedding party) have your registry details handy because they will likely receive phone calls and emails from guests inquiring. Another way to easily share registry details is via a wedding website with a distinct URL.
You're Too Strict With Social Media
Your guests will understand if you ask them to avoid taking pictures during your ceremony or posting anything until after it's over. However, they likely won't be on board with your limiting their sharing of the festivities on Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook in the days preceding and following your wedding.
You Fall Victim To Crash Dieting
No bride should feel as if they have to change themselves ahead of their wedding. But if you do wish to adopt better habits, instead of drastically reducing calories or abstaining from whole food groups a month before your wedding date, ease into it. Try adopting a well-balanced eating plan or fitness regimen six months before the big day. Then, focus on gaining confidence, stress-relieving practices, and good habits that will follow you way past your walk down the aisle.
There's A Large Time Gap Between The Ceremony & Reception
If your ceremony and reception are at different venues, do your best to minimise the in-between time, which may leave guests with nothing to do. However, if a large time gap is inevitable, make sure they have the option of being entertained by planning an outing or setting up a hospitality lounge, with drinks and snacks, at the hotel where they will be staying.
You Feel Obligated To Rock An Updo
Ever worn an updo a day in your life? You don't have to start on your wedding day. Instead, wear your hair in whatever style makes you feel prettiest, whether it be an updo, an intricate fishtail braid you found on Pinterest, or simple waves.
You Misplace Your Engagement Ring
When in a public restroom, resist the temptation to remove your engagement ring while you're washing your hands. The possibility that you might leave it on the sink's ledge or, worse, drop it down the drain is too great a risk to take.
You Skimp On Bridal Party Gifts
It's important to thank your attendants with a tangible gift to show appreciation. Sit down with your fiancé and consider what you've been asking financially of your wedding party. Many spend upward of $1,000 on flights, attire, and hotels. You're certainly not required to match what they've spent, but the amount should convey sincere gratitude for how much time, effort, and money they have put into your wedding. As a rule of thumb, something between $75 and $150 should suffice.
You Don't Feed Your Vendors.
The last thing you want on your wedding day is a low-energy DJ or an exhausted photographer. So plan on feeding any hired hands working during the reception. It includes your wedding planner, photographer, videographer, DJ or band, and their assistants (but not your florist or the ceremony musicians). Work their meals into your budget and consider it part of their fee. (Many vendors stipulate that the couple is to provide a meal in the contract.)
Then You Downplay Your Elopement
Just because you're eloping doesn't mean the day isn't special; it's still your wedding, and there is reason to be excited and celebrate. "Don't forget to indulge in the bridal aspects of your day," Nickel says. "Get a special dress and a bouquet, and perhaps even set up a table, complete with your dream centrepiece and a bottle of champagne, for dinner for two." Then, when you return home, announce your elopement to family and close friends.
You Send Thank You Notes Late
Let's set the record straight: You do not have a year to mail your thank you cards. Instead, for gifts received for the engagement party or shower, send a thank you within two to three weeks of the festivities; for gifts sent before the wedding date, send a card as soon as possible but definitely before the wedding; for gifts given on the wedding day itself, mail a thank you note within three months; and for gifts received after your wedding, send one within two to three weeks.
You Don't Say Hello To Everyone.
These days, most couples forgo the formal post-ceremony receiving line. Instead, make it a point to circulate among the reception tables after dinner. If you have a large guest list, schedule the table greetings into the day-of timeline and make an effort to find something sincere and personal to say to each guest. Another idea is to hand-deliver your wedding favours as you make your table rounds since it's the perfect way to catch everyone.
You Mistreat Single Friends
Sure, weddings are a great place to meet people but don't throw all your single friends haphazardly at one table. Instead, seat people based on their shared interests, not marital status. Go through your guest list and draw parallels. Connect guests with similar hobbies, jobs, or interests, and make everyone feel comfortable by offering a mix of familiar and new faces at each table.
You Set Predictable Tables
You and your guests have attended countless weddings with uniform round tables topped by a single floral arrangement. Add some personality by changing it up. "The room looks more interesting when each table is different," says Alethea Harampolis of San Francisco–based Studio Choo. Try experimenting with table shapes, alternating round, square, and rectangular tables. Then mix larger vases with small groupings of greenery or bud vases with a single bloom.
You Forget The Power Of Paper
We've conceded many great things to the digital realm, but physical invitations and thoughtful handwritten thank you notes will never go out of style. So enjoy the process of designing them with a talented stationer or editing them yourself with premade styles.
You Over Decorate
While you may be tempted to adorn your tables with odds and ends reminiscent of your backgrounds, travels, and interests, remember that tasteful, well-placed arrangements impress without cluttering or overwhelming your guests' view.
You Limit Yourself When It Comes To Dresses
When trying on gowns, remember that not every dress style flatters every figure. Piecemeal gowns, for example, or those in which "the bodice is one style and then the hip or skirt is a completely different fabric or texture... don't transition smoothly and can visually cut the body in unflattering ways," explains Terry Hall, Kleinfeld Bridal's fashion director. Likewise, thin fabrics such as silk charmeuse or chiffon skim the body and tend to magnify every little detail.
You Don't Think Beyond "Per Head."
Couples often build their budget around a per-head price, forgetting the extras—flowers, band, photographer—that aren't included in most venues' packages. These extras can often double the price per head, sending couples way over budget. Instead, think about a fixed total and divide each element by a percentage of that amount.
You Don't Do Your Floral Research.
Before selecting your arrangements:
- Read up on flower costs, temperament, and fragrance. The peonies you love may be cost-prohibitive if you are getting married when they are not in season, and lilacs, gardenias, lilies of the valley, and hydrangeas may wilt in the hot summer sun.
- Don't put perfumey flowers like lilies on the tables since they can overpower the food.
- If you must have them, carry them in your bouquet.
You Think You're A Professional Cake Baker
While asking your mom to make your favourite dishes or baking 50 pies yourself the week of the wedding might seem like a way to personalise the day and save money, the menu is best left to a caterer. A professional will know how to estimate the amount of food to buy properly, prepare a meal on a large scale, when to serve different courses, and accommodate guests with dietary needs or restrictions.
So, you've got engaged, and now it's time to start planning your wedding! One of the first steps in creating your guest list. It can be a daunting task, but don't worry; we're here to help. This article will walk you through everything you need to know about making your guest list, from deciding who to invite to handling RSVPs. You can create a guest list that reflects your unique style and makes for an unforgettable wedding celebration by following our tips. Congratulations on your engagement, and happy planning!