No matter the size of your celebration, planning a wedding is sometimes a recipe for being overwhelmed, especially if it’s your first time planning any sort of important event. While there are certainly a lot of resources out there—and guidance from your vendors to bear in mind—there are some things that you still might miss the mark on when planning a wedding. To ease the stress, we asked top wedding vendors to share some wedding tips that they wish their clients followed more often.
Overall, your vendor team and your planner are there to make sure you don’t miss a beat during the planning process. Hindsight is 20/20, and many couples don’t know what to expect on their Big Day. That said, wedding pros have seen it all, and with many worst-case and best-case scenarios under their belts, they know what works and what doesn’t. Make sure that you’re mindful of all the small details and wedding tips!
“Have an idea of what your realistic budget will be and what you would like it to include. Do a little research when it comes to planning and what you would like to see on your special day. Having an idea of what special elements are priced prior to contacting vendors will save you a lot of time and heartache if the items you are dreaming about are out of your budget.” —Charlene Jefferson-Johnson, CWEP, C2Detail Events
“My number one wedding tip that I wish clients would follow is to trust their vendors! Planners have vetted their pro team and only work with those that will deliver for their clients. So, trust in that and know that your wedding is in good hands. The more you micromanage, the more your wedding vendors are on edge and likely to make mistakes. The best weddings are those where the client expresses their wants, and the planner elevates it and executes with a solid team.” —Nora Sheils, Rock Paper Coin, Bridal Bliss
“There is a difference between a planner, coordinator and designer. They each have talents and skill sets that overlap; however, their focus is very specific come wedding day. It’s important to know what your needs and wants are so that you hire the correct professional for you.” —Shakila Booker, SML Assisting
“Fill out all of our forms and documents. Believe us—we dislike them as much as you do, so we’ve consolidated and condensed them to the most important aspects/elements possible. It never fails that a client says, ‘Oh, we aren’t doing it that way, so we don’t need to fill this form out,’ and then we are standing with a parent who has a different expectation in the middle of the event, and we are unable to help because we don’t have a list of family names, or a complete list of reserved ceremony seating, or a photo shot list to work off of. We promise this is to help you and help your events run smoothly!” —Juls Sharpley, Juls Sharpley Events
“Backup plans are sometimes overlooked when it comes to outdoor weddings in particular, and it can be a huge mistake on the day of. It’s great to be optimistic about weather conditions, but not having shade from the heat, fans to keep everyone cool or even a tented reception in the event of rain can put a huge damper on your wedding. Comfort is key, and you want to have the right measures in place and rely on your planner for the details. Even if you don’t end up using your plan B, it’s better to be safe than sorry!” —Kevin Dennis, Fantasy Sound Event Services, WeddingIQ
“It’s your wedding! When my clients ask, ‘What are we supposed to do?’ regarding the bouquet toss or cake cutting, or any other traditional aspect of their wedding, I always respond with, ‘Whatever you want to do. It’s your wedding, it’s your day, it’s your celebration. There are no must-dos or supposed-to-dos, regardless of what anyone has told you. Focus less on ceremonial or traditional aspects and more on memorable, personal moments that make your day yours. The day should be fun for everyone, including you. So, if you want to ditch the cake cutting, ditch it! And if you find the two-step down the aisle completely boring, do a cartwheel. It’s not about anyone or anything else, it is all about you (both of you)!” —Kashe Mowatt, 876 Events & Rentals
“If your budget does not allow for redecorating a venue space, then look for a venue with character that is beautiful as is. Whether it is the interior or exterior of the space, it can be extremely costly to decorate an entire venue space. Try looking for a venue that requires less décor, such as draping or hanging lighting fixtures.” —Tira Lynn Grant, Tira Lynn Events
“Have fun! Sometimes, couples get so caught up in ‘all things weddings’ that they lose their excitement and stop having fun. Everything you do will be a part of your wedding memories so make them count. Even if you don’t want help with the entire wedding planning process, hire a planner with day-of-coordination (event management service) so you can leave all the details to them. Your only job will be making memories and enjoying the ride as the groom and the bride!” —Gequinn Mattox, Yourz by Dezign Events
“Hire an event planner! It makes everyone’s life—the couple, vendors, venue, etc.—that much easier. There are so many logistics and behind-the-scenes matters that clients are unaware of, and an event planner is always on top of it, which makes it possible for vendors to do their job correctly, efficiently and, most importantly, to your expectations. Your vision may work in your mind, but a wedding planner is an experienced professional who has worked with most vendors and venues in the industry and can facilitate the creation of your vision within what is—or is not—possible.” —Vanessa Naranjo, MPE Event Group
“As a custom stationery/signage designer specializing in laser cutting acrylic and printing personalized wedding decor, I always recommend not adding the date to your specialty stationery and decor. Wedding dates may be rescheduled due to illness, natural disasters, venue closures or personal conflicts. Leaving the date off can save hundreds of dollars—even thousands—in reprint fees.” —Lauren Atwaters, Ten23 Designs