• November 5, 2015

    Keep calm and plan your wedding part 2: A busy woman’s guide to wedding planning

    Planning a wedding is brilliant and exciting but it’s also overwhelming; another thing to do in a world where we’re already spinning too many plates and are expected to spin them all well. But wedding planning is also one of the most important plates you’ll ever spin, because you’ll only ever do it once (that’s the plan anyway) and, just like your wedding day itself, the planning should go just how you want it to and not be just another thing to tick off your everlasting to-do list.

    So how do you plan such a big life event whilst keeping it fun and stress-free? In all honesty, I don’t know, but I have found a couple of ways that so far, are so good.

    Hitched.co.uk

    There are loads of websites out there but this is the best one we’ve found. Along with loads of great information including venues and honeymoon destinations, it also lets you input when your wedding is and creates a bespoke calendar so you can track what tasks you should be doing when, to make sure everything’s done in plenty of time. (Choose the email option to receive alerts when it’s time to plan something to make it even more efficient.) Hitched.co.uk also has a budget planner, appointment tracker, guest list planner, chat room and loads of competitions – everything you need and more!

    Assign planning time

    Wedding planning can take over your life – all anyone, family and colleagues included, can talk about are your upcoming nuptials and for the first week or two after I got engaged, wedding talk took over mine and my fiancé’s lives. It was all we talked about and it had to stop. We limited ourselves to evenings and weekends (no colour scheme discussions on the train to work, no lunchtime texts about who to invite), which worked well and still allowed us to organise all we needed to in those first couple of weeks, such as a date and venue. Having this assigned time also made it relaxed and fun because neither of us felt that we should be doing something else – all of our focus was on the wedding.

    Create specific wedding-chat groups

    If you think you’re excited about your wedding, the chances are that your bridesmaids are going to be twice as excited (they don’t have the stresses that you have – for the most part for them it’s just great fun!) so to confine their wedding talk I created a secret Pinterest board just for us and a group Whatsapp chat. This meant that as well as avoiding the same questions from all of them individually, everyone was involved in the same conversation. It also meant that when I was working and in my non-wedding zone, I could turn off notifications, avoid Pinterest and get on with my other tasks. I highly recommend this tactic.

    Arrange wedding planning weekends

    Okay, so we all know that your wedding day is only about the two of you who will be committing your lives to each other, but in reality, there are a lot of other people who want to be involved and who you’ll probably want to involve too. (All of whom are probably also busy with their own to-do lists.) Which is where wedding-specific weekends come in. I planned one recently for myself and my bridesmaids which allowed them to meet each other, for us to talk about the important things (their dresses, the hen party, how they’ll get to the church) and for us to even go and try on dresses, all in one dedicated weekend, rather than talking to them sporadically and trying on outfits with them individually.

    Get a wedding planner

    Although I haven’t opted for this, it’s one of the easiest ways to plan a wedding. Having somebody plan your wedding will ensure that everything is booked and arranged with military precision, with the added assurance that they’ll run all aspects past you first. Not sure about paying out more of your hard-earned money? Use your in-house events planner.

    Whatever your venue, you should be allocated an events manager and you can use them as much or as little as you like. Not sure what decorations would suit the wedding breakfast room? Get them to sort and source. Can’t think where would be best for photos or the DJ to set up? Ask them to send across options, a room plan or just liaise with the entertainment company themselves.

     

    Avoid: wedding fairs

    Lastly, one thing I would strongly advise against when planning a wedding is going to wedding fairs. I went to one last month and although it was a nice day out and I’m glad we went (my Mum, future Mother-in-law and Maid of Honour came along too), the choice of everything from colour schemes to flowers to entertainment and even bridal underwear is overwhelming! And whilst you might go with near-certain ideas in mind, once you’ve seen everything you could have, your mind will start re-considering everything you thought you wanted.

    If it’s a fun, girly day out you want, then definitely go (although avoid paying full price – there are discount codes online and in wedding magazines), but if you just want inspiration, buy up some magazines and log in to Pinterest!

    Happy planning!

     

    Stephanie Bolton

    @Stephanie Bolton

     

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