There are many steps to planning a wedding – booking your venue, contacting vendors, buying a dress, writing your vows, and the list goes on. While you may have everything organized and on track (especially if you’re using our handy wedding planning checklist), there are some common wedding planning mistakes couples make that you can avoid.
Publicly Announcing Your Engagement Too Soon
You want to show off your new bling to everyone you know. But before you start changing your status on social media, reach out to your close circle of family and friends first. Call or video chat with loved ones and best friends to share the news. Then you can take to Instagram and Facebook to make your announcement.
Buying Your Wedding Dress Before Booking a Venue
Choosing your wedding gown after you book your venue means you’ll have a dress that reflects the vibe of your wedding location. You likely won’t choose a gown with a cathedral train if you’ve planned a beach wedding. You also don’t want to wear a casual, knee-length dress if you’ve opted for a formal wedding at a historic home. Deciding where you want to get married before purchasing your dress helps you choose a gown that matches both your preferences, as well as the style of your venue.
Not Using a Wedding Planner or Coordinator
If you are an incredibly organized, type-A bride who loves to plan, you may think a wedding planner or coordinator isn’t necessary. The truth is, no matter how on top of things you are, planning a wedding is a lot of work, and you need a professional in your corner to help. Especially in the weeks leading up to the big day, a planner or coordinator can handle any last-minute vendor meetings and little fires that inevitably come up. And on your big day, you want a wedding pro to help keep everyone organized and on schedule so you don’t have to worry about a thing.
Not Feeding Your Vendors
Provide a meal for those who are working hard for you on your wedding day. You want your DJ, photographer and other vendors present during your reception to be on their A-game. But that’s hard to do with low energy and a grumbling stomach. Talk to your caterer to arrange vendor meals ahead of time. Also make sure to check your vendor contracts, as some may require you to include a meal for your vendor and their assistants.
Overscheduling Your Photographer
While you want to make sure your photographer has a detailed photo list, you don’t want to micromanage her whole day. Doing this means you won’t get as many candid shots in your wedding album, which are essential to painting the story of your wedding. Give your photographer your basic list, and trust her to capture your big day.
Not Accounting for Hidden Costs
Make sure there is enough padding in your budget to handle costs you may not have included in your original budget. This might consist of extra postage for invitations, a last-minute gown alteration, and venue and vendor tips. Chat with your planner about anything you might be missing in your budget.
Allowing Anyone to Give a Toast
Your guests will have well wishes for you on your wedding day, but not everyone should give a toast. Leave toasts to parents, siblings, and/or your bridal party, and let your emcee know who should have the microphone. Do not open the floor to toasts unless you’re prepared to add extra time to your itinerary. You also might not want your second cousin to stand up and lay out your dating history to your wedding guests. Well wishes can be given privately by guests not giving an official toast.
Not Booking Lodging Early On
If you know you’ll have out-of-town guests, secure lodging at your venue, and/or reserve a hotel block soon after booking your venue. Don’t put it off thinking you’ll have plenty of time. If there is a large event like a college graduation taking place the same weekend as your wedding, area hotels could be booked as much as 6 months in advance.
Not Asking Enough Questions
You want to be as informed as possible when it comes to your wedding planning process. Don’t be afraid to ask your vendors questions, and get clarification on anything you don’t understand. Trust us, wedding professionals have heard just about every question there is. There’s a good chance you’re not going to fully understand every step of your planning process. Speak up and get the answers you need.
You Forget to Have Fun
This is the ultimate wedding planning mistake. Don’t get so wrapped up in planning that you forget why you’re doing this in the first place. You get to marry your best friend! Take time to relax and bond with your partner leading up to the big day. When your time arrives, enjoy your wedding day and don’t get hung up on any snafus.