Preparing for your wedding can be extremely exciting, but it can also be overwhelming. There is nothing easy about planning for a day you’ll never forget. Between finding the perfect venue, a dream dress, designing invitations, as well as all of the additional details and customizations, there is a lot of pressure when it comes to figuring out the most effective timeline to saying “I do.” Luckily, staying stress-free while prepping for your big day has never been easier with this ultimate guide!
To ensure you keep calm and carry on throughout the process of wedding planning, follow these do’s and don’ts!
DO Establish a Budget & Monitor Expenses
First and foremost, establish a budget. Your finances will arguably play the most significant role in preparing for your wedding as it influences everything from the destination of the ceremony, to the dress that you wear as you walk down the aisle. That being said, it’s critical that you set a budget that caters to all the different elements of your wedding at the very beginning of your planning process. Doing so will help make it easier to narrow down those tough decisions along the way.
The best wedding budget will be considerate of the little things, such as the cost of customized invitations, the flowers you decorate with, the number of guests you invite, the foods that you include at your reception, and so on. For this reason, it’s essential that your budget is calculated to the maximum amount you’re willing to spend. That way if anything goes wrong or changes at the last minute, you’re able to remain financially responsible and on track along the way. As you continue making purchases for your wedding, don’t forget to monitor your expenses using a budgeting tool like The Knot or through the assistance of a financial advisor as this will help you better allocate funds as you get closer and closer to the big day.
DO Set & Stick to a Daily Skin Care Routine
Having clean, clear skin doesn’t happen overnight. It requires constant care and attention, which is why it’s critical to set and stick to a daily skin care routine well in advance before your wedding day. Allowing yourself this time will help to ensure that the skin care products you’re using have a sufficient amount of time to work into your skin and provide you with desired, visible results.
Setting and sticking to a daily skin care routine is particularly important for those of you looking to introduce a new treatment into your routine as these are normally formulated with active ingredients, which tend to have a longer timeline to visible results compared to most products. An acne cream containing a retinoid, for example, can take anywhere from two to three months before results will start to appear. That being said, be sure to address any skin concerns you may have sooner than later in preparation of the big day. If you do decide to try a new treatment product, make sure to assess the timeline of its listed ingredients first. For more information on different skin care ingredients and their timeline to visible results, check out this infographic below!
DO Add Personalized Touches
Your wedding is a unique experience, so it’s essential to treat it in that way so you can enjoy it the way you’re supposed to. This is why adding personalized touches is a must in the process of planning. Whether that means specializing in the color of your dress, the decor of your venue, or even the ceremony experience as a whole, it’s imperative that you make this day your own.
If you’re looking to add a few one-of-a-kind touches, but are not sure which route to take, try turning to Pinterest for personalized wedding inspiration. Within this social media app, you can not only look up different types of wedding themes, styles, and DIYS, but also create your own board of any pins you find while searching for ideas of personalized touches. Using this feature will allow you to store any wedding inspo you find and refer back to throughout your journey as a bride-to-be.
DO Send Out Wedding Invitations ASAP
As soon as you’ve determined the official date and venue of your wedding, you’ll want to immediately focus your attention on sending out invitations to your guests. Even if you’re not planning a destination wedding and plan to stay local, it’s best to give notice to your desired attendees as soon as possible so that they can plan accordingly, and you can figure out the number of people to account for throughout the rest of the planning process. During these unprecedented times, everyone’s schedule and traveling experiences have majorly changed, so if your wedding is expected to be in the near future, make sure to factor this into your invitational timeline as well.
Keep in mind that the development of invitations can take time, which is why you may want to give yourself some additional time to work with a designer and/or customize your own invitations. You’ll also need to factor in extra time to create copies, and triple check the spelling, font style, and wedding date listed. This is especially necessary if you’re using your invitations as an opportunity to add in some personalized touches to enhance the look of your wedding card. Remember, the quicker the creation of the invitation, the faster you can get them sent out to your guests!
DON’T Include Registry Information on Wedding Invitations
By the same token, when it comes to personalizing your wedding invitations, should you choose to do so, avoid listing your registry information on your wedding invitations. Your invitations are meant to welcome the people you love to join you on your special day, not to gather information on the types of gifts they should get you because you’re getting married. Your registry should be a word-of-mouth conversation amongst your guests as this allows attendees to have the opportunity to send you a wedding gift, without the pressure of feeling like they have to.
To avoid sending the wrong message to your guests, be sure to refrain from including any direct mentioning related to your registry or gifts— even if you’re requesting not to have any. Instead, take a more subtle approach by including the link to your wedding website so attendees can have the choice in gathering more information prior to the wedding day.
DON’T Put Off Dress Shopping
Unless you’re utilizing online bridal stores like Best for Bride to shop for a dress, you’ll likely encounter at least a couple of restrictions while shopping at bridal stores, regardless of whether you planned to get married in the midst of a pandemic or post-pandemic. If you’re like most brides-to-be, you will probably want to have a few close friends and/or family members join you on the hunt to find your perfect dress. Unfortunately, however, the number of bodies you have accompany you may affect your ability to schedule an appointment as soon as you’d like to. This is because most shops have placed limitations on the number of people allowed in an area at one time in an effort to deal with our current reality. Needless to say, the sooner you can reserve a spot for you and your bridal party, the better.
Before you head into any dress shopping appointment, you’ll want to do some wedding dress research as this will help guide you on finding the perfect look for your special day. Bridal stores are known for having all sorts of wedding dress styles, so having somewhat of an idea of what you’re looking for and taking other steps to plan accordingly will allow you to narrow down your search and ultimately, find your dream dress more quickly.
DON’T Try to Accommodate Everyone Else’s Schedules
Like it or not, you can’t please everyone in preparation for your wedding. Sometimes, you’ll have to march to the beat of your own drum and do what’s best for you, even if it’s not what’s best for other people. This means that if your scheduled date to marry doesn’t align with some of your guest’s schedule, then so be it. If one of your bridesmaids is unable to make it to the reserved bridal shop appointment, that’s their loss. At the end of the day, no matter how many adjustments you make to the wedding timeline, someone is bound to have a scheduling conflict, and that’s okay.
Although it can be difficult, it’s crucial that you stick to your guns and not try to accommodate everyone else’s schedule when you’re planning for your wedding. Truth is, you can’t please everyone, and when you’re planning for your wedding, you shouldn’t have to! After all, this is YOUR day! So, try your best to focus on yourself as you prepare to head down the aisle and be grateful for those who can be there for you, and sympathize for those who cannot.
Last, but certainly not least, try not to overstress. Wedding prep is no walk in the park, but with the help of this ultimate guide to the do’s or don’ts of proper preparation, you’re almost guaranteed to be fully ready for the big day once it finally arrives. The process can be overwhelming at times, but it’s not impossible, and like all good things worth waiting for, it’s important to be patient and put your best foot forward.
Your wedding day is one that you will never forget, so all you can do is take actionable steps to make the experience one for the books. Expect the worst, hope for the best, and you’ll be glowing down the aisle in no time. Good luck!