Wedding Design Tips

You're Engaged!! ...Now What? Kicking off Your Wedding Planning

Your significant other popped the question...you said yes...Now what??  It can seem overwhelming deciding the what to do first, but if you take things one at a time it'll help cohere the wedding planning process into something manageable.

Create a budget - preferably with a pro's help.

Photo by Sally Pineira.

Photo by Sally Pineira.

You don't need to hire a full service pro for wedding planning to get the most valuable aspect of their services - setting a realistic budget.  Many times, couples underestimate their budget, because people just don't realize how much these damn things cost.  Hire a planner on an hourly or a-la-carte basis to discuss your ideas on decor, venue, time, date, and main components of the event, and have them create a budget scenario so you know what to expect. You may decide to postpone the wedding planning until you save more money, or it could help show parents and relatives the true cost and formalize any contributions.

Don't get carried away by Pinterest.

You will see so many great ideas on Pinterest, and the next thing you know you're pinning everything in sight and have 500 photos, that all represent different ideas and themes. Instead, pick your aesthetic (modern? Vintage? Rustic?) and let that guide your venue choice, and wedding decor, and don't get distracted by anything that looks off-theme.

Consider a small bridal party.

Anecdotally, I'm finding more and more couples are doing this.  It cuts down on the workload of wedding planning considerably - managing tuxes, gowns, and navigating inner-circle drama takes up a lot of time.

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Make sure Wedding Design doesn't destroy you

I started noticing that clients from time to time would become nearly catatonic with indecision about their wedding design. They'd freak out about making the best choice, whether it was using a white flower or an ivory flower - that kind of thing. The first time it happened, I wanted to shake the bride or groom and go "it's just a flower!! It will be okay!"  And I provide florals and design for clients, so it wasn't me blowing off the design, it was me knowing when to stop, when to settle on something that would look beautiful and on-theme.  And I can tell some clients were almost up at night about it!  Here are a few brutally honest tips for making sure design doesn't destroy you.

 

This couple created cute take-home centerpieces that could be made ahead and looked really modern and sleek.  No stress, no mess, super easy and guests were charmed. Photo by  Hanna Arista.

This couple created cute take-home centerpieces that could be made ahead and looked really modern and sleek.  No stress, no mess, super easy and guests were charmed. Photo by Hanna Arista.

1.  You are not going to win a medal for having the best wedding design ever. 

No one from Brides magazine is going to come out and judge it. if you want to be published, and you do want to use it as an occasion to show off your aesthetics, then tell your planner and/or florist and they'll guide you to a distinctive design that may have a shot at it.  (That said, the first priority i would think is having a thoughtful, spiritual and/or meaningful union with your true love surrounded by friends and family, but hey! To each his/her own.)  Reason why I say that is often time brides and grooms get excited about decor that has already been around the circuit for awhile and event vendors can actually guide your design to be a little more cutting edge, modern, i.e. not look like the dozens of other weddings that website/blog editors are getting every day.  So trust them. They know best.

2.  The less you debate about design, the more likely you are to make a focused decision. 

If you completely doubt yourself or are so nervous about picking the right look that you start to panic and go back and forth endlessly about the 'right' design, you're not going to make good decisions.

3.  So, decide what you like in general - not in weddings, but in your life. 

What's your apartment like?  What recurring theme do you see in your home/garden themed Pinterest boards? A certain color theme?  White and glass decor?  As sappy as this sounds, the right guidance lies within you - not in looking at OTHER'S wedding design.  So go with your gut. 

I love seeing reflections of couples' personalities!  The signage is reminiscent of the bride and groom's sense of humor, and escort cards made of wood slices and calligraphy by friends of the bride and groom guide guests to their seats. Photo by  True Photography.

I love seeing reflections of couples' personalities!  The signage is reminiscent of the bride and groom's sense of humor, and escort cards made of wood slices and calligraphy by friends of the bride and groom guide guests to their seats. Photo by True Photography.

4. And again...you are not going to win a medal for best wedding design. 

After it's all over the flowers get tossed (eventually), the favors are left rolling around on the floor or discarded, and someone else is in the same space perhaps 24 hours later getting married. And what do you want to remember? You impressed your friends with a killer design,? Or the look of your fiance's face when you walked down the aisle? Priorities, kids...priorities.