Once you’re past the post-engagement bliss and ready to dive into the wedding planning process, you may be prepared with many wonderful ideas that you’re ready to plan out. On the other hand, you may be confronted by the reality that the sky is the limit — from selecting vendors to choosing color palettes, the options can feel endless. The world is your oyster. Yet, while options are good, too many can create mental fatigue from the many possibilities that influence your decisions.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by all the options at your disposal, take a step back and consider what’s most important for your wedding. Planning your big day should be an enjoyable journey, so avoid taking on more than you can carry and turning it into a stressful experience.
Consider the following tips for silencing the noise and focusing on what truly matters most.
Find common ground
“You don’t HAVE to do anything,” states Laura Maddox of Magnolia Celebrates. “More and more, I am seeing brides and grooms finding their own options on traditions. Maybe you want to throw the bouquet, maybe you don’t. Maybe you want to have a farewell brunch, maybe you don’t. Everything is acceptable! I find it easiest to start with the global list of wants, talk about what each of these wants might cost and the logistical feasibility of them, and narrow from there.”
Leah Weinberg of Color Pop Events elaborates: “I always recommend that couples take time to separately write down their priorities for the wedding in all categories, like what vendors do they care most about, how many guests they want, what the wedding will look like, and how they personally want the wedding to feel. Come back together to compare lists. From there, there’s going to be some compromise that needs to happen in order to get on the same page.”
Let the experts guide you
“Hire a planner,” encourages Nora Sheils of Bridal Bliss. “They have an understanding of your priorities, your budget, and your wedding specifics and can suggest quality vendors that fit that. Communicate with your planner early on what you want your involvement to be in planning so everyone is on the same page.”
Kelley Nudo of Momental Designs adds: “It can be overwhelming sifting through all of the designs that populate when searching Google or Pinterest. If you have a specific vision for your save-the-dates or invites, consider hiring a stationer that specializes in custom designed pieces so you can see your specific vision come to life.”
Consider guest experience
“Great music and good food are always top priorities,” assures Kristin Wilson of Our DJ Rocks. “Besides how you look, your guests will most likely talk the most about how great the food was and how much fun they had dancing the night away because the DJ killed it. Feelings and emotions create stronger memories, so not only will your guests remember more about your big day, but so will you and your new spouse!”
Skip the unnecessary aspects
Jamie Chang of Passport to Joy shares: “Where many couples can get bogged down with planning is in the details. Thankfully, this is also where many of the non-essential items lie, like guest books, favors and extra décor. The details can definitely make your wedding special, but most of the time the details are chosen and done just because it’s expected. If a detail doesn’t have meaning for you, skip it. Go for less details, but quality ones instead.”
Take it one day at a time
“One of the biggest misconceptions we notice is that couples think they need to have everything figured out and planned all at once and this can cause undue stress,” explains Joan Wyndrum of Blooms by the Box. “It is important to break down the planning process into steps to not get overwhelmed.”
Focus on what matters most
Renee Dalo of Moxie Bright Events says: “If you're hosting a wedding, you are entering into a social contract where you are expected to feed people and offer them a beverage. My Wedding Planner brain wants you to be able to have whatever style wedding you want, you just need to communicate that to your guests. Not serving a full dinner? Then don't schedule your wedding for dinner time. Honestly? My must-haves for you would be this: be surrounded by those you love and who love you and get married. Everything else is just extra goodness.”
With the right team of vendors and a vision to guide you, you can achieve the wedding of your dreams even if it means skipping some of the traditional details that don’t resonate with you and your future spouse. Your wedding day belongs to you, so it should never feel like you’re simply checking off boxes — every detail should be personally meaningful, creating a unique and custom experience for all who attend.
Meghan Ely is the owner of wedding PR and wedding marketing firm OFD Consulting. Ely is a sought-after speaker, adjunct professor in the field of public relations, and a self-professed royal wedding enthusiast.
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