After shooting 100’s of weddings and being asked by clients for tips throughout the years, I have compiled these top 10 tips to help you have a great wedding day. I hope it will prove useful to you on your wedding adventure!
1. Do it your way!!
Create the wedding that suits you as a couple, don’t be influenced by what the magazines or family tell you. You don’t have to follow traditions. If the bride wants to make a speech go for it. Don’t like to dance, don’t have a first dance. Don’t like cake? Have a cheese one instead. Do the things that make you happy, keep the traditions you like, and create some traditions of your own! It’s your wedding day; so don’t be afraid to put your own personal stamp on it. I have shot a wedding where the couple had a Celtic pagan ceremony, which was followed by the civil ceremony to make the wedding legal. It was very important to them and it looked great in the images!
2. Make some time for yourself and your partner
It’s hard keeping the energy levels up when you are the centre of attention for 12 hours! It can be tiring catching up with everyone and being on best form for your guests without the chance to recharge those batteries! Take some” sneak away” time throughout the day for just the two of you, even if it is for 10 minutes, and it will give the two of you a chance to savour the new feeling of being married and just be your selves for a while. A bigger break is a must after the wedding breakfast and speeches so you are recharged enough to put those boogie shoes on in the evening!!!
3. Start planning and booking far in advance of the date.
Giving yourself plenty of time to book your suppliers will allow you to meet up with a few and really get a feel for what you want. A lot of the top suppliers especially Photographers and Venues can be booked up to two years in advance. If you give yourself plenty of time to plan, you will hopefully have more choice of suppliers without hearing the dreaded ‘already booked’ from a supplier you have set your heart on.
4. Stick to your budget.
Don’t send anything until you have worked out a realistic budget. The Venue is the most expensive, and you must be realistic and strict yourself when choosing a venue you can realistically afford. You don’t want to overspend here and then have to compromise on other big expenses like your dress and photographer. You need to factor in all of the details for your budget to work, and don’t forget the small things like alterations and gifts. It all adds up, be realistic and you will have it covered!
5. Don’t stress the small things/ assign somebody for that job.
You have spent a lot of time and energy getting your dream day organised, now its time to enjoy it!
Before the wedding, assign your trouble-shooter, (a bridesmaid or mum?) To take care of things if they go a little wonky. Your wedding is too precious to let the small things get to you. Focus on all the love and well wishes you are receiving and bask in the limelight! Your trouble-shooter can sort out Uncle Fred’s missing Vegetarian meal.
6. Forget about the weather!
You live in the UK. Where sometimes we can have 4 seasons literally in a day. Get over it. If you want guaranteed sun have a destination wedding. You might end up with rain for most of the day, or you might just hit the jackpot and get beautiful sunshine. It doesn’t mean you can’t plan for the wet weather though. Either way be prepared and purchase some funky wellies (essential for festival/Marquee weddings) and splash in a few puddles like when you were 5. You loved it then so why not now? Some lovely co-ordinating brollies for you and your bridesmaids will look also great in the photographs.
7. Looking good in the photographs.
As a documentary wedding photographer, other than a couple of 15 minute sessions to grab some family photos and some relaxed couple photographs I shoot the day as it happens. If you follow the last two pieces of advice you won’t be stressed if the flowers are late or the wedding meal is 30 minutes late, and I will capture loads of great moments of you having the time of your life!
8. Savour every moment.
You might think this is an obvious thing for you to do, but you might be surprised how quickly your wedding passes. They say time flies when you are having fun and your wedding day will fly past. Don’t be so tied up with getting the perfect day, so you forget to enjoy it! Your wedding is about you is a massive celebration of the love you have for each other and your families and friends. Your wedding and the planning should be happy and memorable at all times. Taking the small mini breaks together (from tip 2) will give you time to reflect and savour the beautiful moments throughout the day.
9. Choose suppliers you click with.
Obviously an element of pricing will factor into your decision, but don’t be scared to stretch a little for the elements of the day that are important to you. You want suppliers who still have passion for what they do, not just the price tag that motivates them. It’s important you connect with and trust your suppliers. A wedding day is a team effort and all the suppliers have to work together so choose people you can see are flexible and are team players. If they still love what they do its because they want the best for you on your wedding day!
10. Keep hydrated and fed during the day
Usually nerves in the early part of the day might curb your appetite, but you must remember to keep well hydrated and well fed during the morning or you might feel an energy drop midday, when you need to be at your best. Likewise, throughout the day, remember to pace yourself with alcohol, and drink plenty of non-alcoholic drinks.
I hope this list of top 10 wedding tips for a great wedding day will help you plan and enjoy a one a million day!
If you are looking for a wedding photographer that will capture all of your best moments while you get on with enjoying your day, I would love to hear from you.