Post # 32
Careful with friendors. We learned that sometimes they are worth it, but sometimes you wish you had hired a pro.
My husband’s sister, who has worked as a pro photographer in the past, took our wedding pics and they did not turn out well. She must have been in over her head but was scared to admit it. We only got a handful of good shots and those are the portraits.
We also asked a friend from my husband’s work to serve as our DOC. She has planned all of the social events at their workplace and had been kind of like a coordinator at other people’s weddings. We met multiple times before the wedding to discuss the day and I had an elaborate write up of instructions of what she was supposed to do. She constantly assured me that she felt comfortable with everything, but again I think she had bitten off more than she could chew. Everything went okay, but I didn’t really get to relax because I had to spend the whole night checking up on her. And as people were starting to leave she started drinking and by the time we shut down the venue she was drunk. I had to wrestle her car keys out of her hand in my wedding dress.
On the other hand, we asked our friend to do video of our ceremony and it turned out great. But I think it worked out because it was not a huge task.
So in the end, we saved a lot of money, but we ended up with less than great results.
Post # 33
They only thing I would’ve done differently is leave more time for pictures before the ceremony. We did our first look and then hopped in cars but only had about 45 minutes for all bridal party and bride-groom shots. I’m sure it won’t be a big deal in the end, but I wish there were more pictures of me in my dress. I changed right after the first dance because my dress was getting stepped on.
Post # 34
Now that it has gone by and we have returned to regular life and don’t talk about it every 5 minutes, it isn’t the favors that we forgot to set out, it isn’t the cocktail hour food that we missed (because they didn’t matter at all!)- I just wish that I had relaxed more and enjoyed the preparations more before hand. I wish that I had just chilled out and had even more fun!
Post # 35
I wish I had remembered to ask to have the speeches taped, and that I regret. We didn’t bother with a videographer. That I don’t regret. We just bought a camera and had my uncle film the ceremony and it turned out really well. But we forgot to ask to have the speeches filmed. Oops! The only other thing that got messed up is that I only made half the menus we needed … somehow. It wasn’t a big deal, we just had them put in-between people instead of tucked into the napkins.
I second all those who recommend a smaller guest list. Our guests (70 of them — family and close friends) had to travel far to get to our wedding, and most were there for the whole weekend (we had our wedding at an inn where the guests also stayed), and that was awesome! Almost everyone made it to the rehersal dinner on Friday, so it was a whole weekend with the people I love most in the world. We also got there early and were able to greet almost everyone the minute they arrived and were checking in, so the day of the wedding we were able to relax because we had already talked (and hugged and laughed) with everyone.
I also recommend writing your own ceremony, if possible. We didn’t writer ours from scratch (had the help on a nice little book … I over-think things and didn’t want to do it all myself), but were able to make it very personal and meaningful. It’s a year later now, and people still bring it up.
Favors can be nice, too, but they aren’t worth stressing over. I painted a bunch of little birdhouses, mostly because I like painting things — sooo relaxing— (they doubled as centerpieces), and it has been really nice to go to people’s houses and see them hanging up. (I think that’s mostly because I was worried they were kinda stupid…)
Post # 36
I would have had a receiving line! We spent so much time trying to make sure we got around to each table that the whole dinner/dessert portion seemed so rushed. We were trying to get around to all of the tables in between when we cut the cake and they get it served (before the dances started). I figured it wouldn’t have been a big deal because we only had 16 tables but boy was I wrong. 160 people wanting your attention was much more time consuming than I realized lol I mean we still had a wonderful time and it worked out, but I think for us it would have worked out better to just do the receiving line and then still mingle throughout the night casually.
And the other thing is I wish that I would have just enlisted more help from my family/BM earlier on to finish things like menus and favors. They did help me a ton, but it would have been easier on us if I had made us start earlier. So on that note, I guess just always allow for more time than you are thinking. I kept thinking that it wouldn’t take long to do things, but it normally took me about 5x longer than anticipated for the DIY items 🙂
Post # 37
Great thread. Lately I’ve been wandering down a nasty road that includes silly ideas like renting hot pink tablecloths, when the white ones included by our venue are perfectly fine…. So photos, videos seem to be coming up the most. Guess that makes sense!
Post # 38
I would have forced my Fiance to go to dance lessons earlier 🙂 He wanted to do a nice dance, kept telling people we were taking lessons, but in the end we fit in like 4 lessons and a couple of group pracitices, which wasn’t enough. It was fine and people said it was beautiful, but it wasn’t what I’d wanted.
Also, I wouldn’t have hired The Pros for our DJ, photo, and video services. I could have rented a sound system and had an iPod play, set up my own video camera, and then spent the money to get a real photographer.
There were other things that didn’t go quite right, but I can pretend those went according to plan! 🙂
Post # 39
Just judging so far, I wish that more people would feel like a part of the bigger picture. More involvement from the bridal party, the groom (long shot, lol), and my parents. I know we are just starting this planning process, but I hope that it isn’t always going to be like it is. If it is, I will deal. I always do!
Post # 40
I loved my wedding, so I don’t have much to complain about. But I really wish we had more time to chit chat with our guests… but that’s something I couldn’t control (wish I could freeze time, lol!).
Post # 41
1. Try to enjoy the planning as much as possible.
I spent HOURS on looking for centerpieces. In the end, I got a great florist who was willing to work with my budget and let him do the rest. They came out fantastic.
Let friends/family do as much as you can. I had a friend make my table numbers. Gave her the few things I was looking for and she dropped them off Thursday before the wedding. Great and Done!
2. Get sleep the night before.
I didn’t sleep that much. I also was more nervous than I thought I would be and I ended up feeling really sick. Having to have my hair pulled and pinned, etc while not feeling great wasn’t fun.
Post # 42
Choose vendors that both you and Fiance love. The two vendors we had problems with were ones that only one of us were absolutely in love with: DJ- Darling Husband and photography-me.
Don’t rush into getting vendors.
For photographers: ask to see a complete wedding and references. Don’t be embarrassed about it either! I did neither 🙁
Only do those tiny little details for yourself. Liklihood that your guests actually notice things is zilch so don’t do it for them. Don’t have the wedding for others either.
No open toasts if the IL’s aren’t happy you are marrying their kid.
Post # 43
I would have worried less about being polite and “nice” and more about being direct. I wish I had practiced saying “With all due respect, this is our wedding, and this is the decision we’re making. If you can’t respect that, please keep it to yourself.”
I also would have blatantly confronted my stepmother on the day about wearing head to toe white!
Post # 44
I would have kept my dress on longer. It was SO hot that I waited until the last moment possible to put it on and then peeled it off the second the reception was over and put a sundress on for the limo ride back to the hotel and the after drinks there. I wish I had worn it to the hotel and then let my husband take it off me but I was so damn hot!