Hi, everyone! In case you missed it, last week I announced that I’m going to be the Guest Editor of Brit + Co for the month of May. I’m so excited about sharing my wedding planning tips with all of you in these Let’s Celebrate posts, especially after writing the chapter about my own wedding in my new book Celebrate. For my second post as guest editor, today I’m sharing five key tips to keep in mind when planning your wedding and all of the events leading up to it.
There’s so much that goes into your big day, and it’s easy to get lost in the details. When writing this post, I reflected back on what helped me to stay calm and organized throughout the process. And today I’m sharing those tips right here with all of you.
Any bride will tell you that the wedding planning process begins the minute you get engaged and ends the day you get home from your honeymoon. There’s a lot to plan and think about, but it’s also one of the most exciting times of your life. That said, here are my five top tips you’ll want to keep in mind as you enjoy the excitement behind planning and attending your wedding events…
I talk about this in my book Celebrate, but it’s important to echo it again: Getting your wedding planning timeline set in stone is key. The minute you get engaged, you’ll want to get an idea of what your timeline will be. For example, getting married six months after you get engaged will give you a very different timeline of events than getting married a year and a half after getting engaged. I recommend working backwards: Before you start working on any of the details, decide what time of year you want to get married and think about your location. Then, you can map out where your engagement party, bachelorette, bridal showers, and everything else will fall in the months in between. Click here to see our LaurenConrad.com wedding timeline and follow (+ Pin ;) Brit + Co’s wedding beauty timeline here!
Nail down the guest list and get those addresses ASAP. You’ll want to know this pretty early in the wedding planning process so that you can make sure you’re not inviting anyone to your engagement party who you won’t be able to invite to your wedding too. You’ll also want to get the contact info from each of your guests earlier on than you think. I set up an online address book system to get the email addresses and home addresses of all of my attendees, and I can’t tell you how often I used it. Having a database like this comes in handy for everything from sending out save the dates to writing thank you notes.
Now hear me out: I’m not saying that each pre-party leading up to your wedding needs to come with the price tag of a full-blown wedding. But if you treat each event as though it’s as important as your wedding, you’ll feel organized and less stressed. From catering to party décor to writing thank you notes, you’ll want your bachelorette, bridal shower and engagement party to all feel as streamlined (and as special!) as possible. After all, you only go through this process once. Also, there’s no need to feel pressure to stick with your wedding theme for each pre- party. Let each event shine on its own. If you’re doing a rustic-themed wedding but want to do a clambake for your engagement party — go for it! The world is your oyster. Pun intended.
This tip is something that can apply to every element of your wedding, and I feel strongly about it — you want your wedding to reflect you and the person you’ll be spending the rest of your life with. Adding special touches to each event will help your true personalities shine through to your guests. That’s why I love when a couple serves a signature couples cocktail on their big day, or prepares a dessert that is their favorite. I baked homemade apple pies for my wedding instead of cake because it felt more special to William and I. Touches like this will set your wedding — and all of the events leading up to it — apart.
Last but not least… I would recommend getting a “wedding wardrobe” going as you plan each of your events. I tried to plan out what I would wear to each event as ahead of time as possible, and it helped me to feel comfortable and stress-free when getting ready for the pre-parties. Even if you don’t know what you’ll be wearing exactly but you have an idea of your look, that can avoid the last-minute rushing and hassle of finding an outfit. And, keep in mind that there’s nothing wrong with having back-up outfits just in case the one you have in mind doesn’t work on the day-of.
And remember to enjoy the process! I know that can be easier said than done, but the calmer and more relaxed you stay while planning your wedding, the easier everything will be.
What other tips would you add to this list?
Let me know @LaurenConrad, and see you here next week!