Posted on 11 Comments

10 tips for a minimum-stress wedding day

beach-wedding-615219_640

Weddings are big events, and big stress is an unavoidable factor when events this big. Even if you will be having an intimate wedding with just family and close friends, you will still have a lot of planning to do. And, unless you have previously been involved in planning an event with as many details as a wedding, there will be moments when you will feel totally stressed out.

There is only so much a bride can do to prepare for such scenarios. Nevertheless, any challenge can be tackled, if you are calm, organized and refuse to succumb to pressure.

Here are ten tips that will help you navigate the unexpected, or at least prepare in the best possible way for it.

1.Insure your wedding

Most couples overlook the importance of wedding insurance, as they are already operating on a tight budget. Nevertheless, it is a worthwhile investment, when you think of the potential mishaps that can throw your wedding into chaos. You will be working with most vendors for the first time ever, and even those with sterling reputations can disappoint or cancel at the most inopportune time. If you have a long engagement, things may change from the time you booked your venue to the actual wedding day. Then there is the weather factor; one of the most unpredictable problem-makers in the wedding world. Instead of worrying about what might go wrong on your wedding day, it is always best to have a safety net. This will help you relax, since you have a back-up and your money will not be lost, should anything unplanned happen.

There are different types of wedding insurances, and you can choose one that suits your budget and needs. Either have the entire wedding insured, or insure only those aspects that are expensive or prone to problems. So, if a blizzard comes along, or your wedding jewelry loses a gem, you can reschedule, replace or re-organize for a minimum difference in cost.

2.Do your lists digitally

list

Some brides prefer to do everything the pen and paper way, but this is tedious, time-consuming and error-prone. We think it is best to start all your wedding planning with a suitable wedding planning app. Else, designate a folder on your desktop for all your wedding planning. This will allow you to collate all the information in a single location and this minimizes the stress later on. Google allows you to organize your various documents, and with its many options, is one of the most streamlined ways to plan every aspect of your wedding. This article on the Huff Post suggests creating a Google doc with your potential guest list and all other details pertaining to it. What a brilliant idea! It is much easier this way, and you can add not just the names, but addresses and even RSVP details later, in a single place. Cloud sharing allows you to share this list with all those who are involved in the planning, thus making the entire process very efficient.

3.Take small breaks from wedding planning

You know how it is when you are planning a wedding, when you are either working or planning, planning and planning! Avoid overwhelming yourself this way. When you put together your wedding planning time-line, make sure to incorporate breaks from all the wedding planning. This will help you focus and get back to it with full gusto, after you rejuvenate yourself. If you have a full-time job, it is a good idea to take a day or two off work just to relax. And absolutely no wedding planning during those days! Plan a date with your fiancé instead! Unless you fuel your romance during your engagement, you will miss the best time of your relationship running behind details and not enjoying what you should be doing, at the time. Try to have at least a few normal weekends with friends and family and catch up on some well-deserved couple time. Your wedding stress will naturally reduce, as you will not be burning yourself out.

4.Hire help

hire help

You may believe that you are perfectly capable of handling everything yourself, and we think you are too! Still, consider hiring help for some, if not all wedding tasks. This is just so you aren’t overloaded with responsibilities, and planning is actually fun and not tiring. If you plan to DIY things, do not exceed what you can manage within the available time. Remember that you will be doing everything on a large-scale. So, account for the time, effort and resources that will go into a task. When you overburden yourself, you will not have the time or energy to enjoy your wedding day, and that wouldn’t be fun. So, divert a part of your budget to hire help. For a smooth wedding day, you should definitely consider a day-of planner. And, if you have the budget, and aren’t obsessed about micro-managing everything at your wedding, consider hiring the services of a wedding planner, or at least a part-time planner for some aspects.

5.Have someone else hear the speeches

Many brides look forward to the wedding toasts and speeches, but are equally worried about inappropriate things being said or a speech being long and boring. However, listening to the speeches yourself is not a good idea, as it can ruin the surprise for you. To save yourself any worry, ask someone you trust to hear the speeches and tell you if they sound fine. Your maid of honor or mother, or someone who thinks like you do, can do the job. Provide a crisp set of guidelines of what to look out for, so they can analyze whether the speech is fine or not,. Then, leave it to them. This will be one less thing for you to worry about, and you can relax trusting that the speeches will be great, and not to mention New!

6.Plan the day before

preparation

Just like you plan every detail of your wedding day, plan the day-before as well, and you will find things progressing smoothly. There are a number of things that you should do on the day before your wedding. This includes setting out your dress and accessories, checking on your bridesmaids and vendors, finishing last-minute arrangements and finding time to relax. The day before can be very stressful, as there will be many arrangements to attend to. So, rather than go through the day attacking things as time allows, create a checklist and it will save you a lot of stress. List all the tasks for the day, and schedule in time for each of them. Also add some buffer time, so you can catch up on any last-minute needs, or finish off tasks that take longer than anticipated. Most importantly, you must find time to relax, catch your breath and sleep well on this day. So, if you have your rehearsal dinner on the day before your wedding, make sure you wind it up in time to get home and rest well. We also suggest that you take a look at this previous post of ours, and plan the day before your wedding day based on it.

7.Plan the day-after

You won’t believe us when we say that your wedding day will be over before you know it. Despite all that intense planning and the hundred things you took time to perfect, you will find your wedding day fleeing by. Before you know it, your wedding day will flee, and it will be time to busy yourself with what has to be attended to after the wedding. Make sure to relax and find time to dwell on the memories of your special day, while you can still remember it, by planning a relaxed and laid-back day-after. While planning the your wedding day details, also find time to sort out the things that should be done soon after the wedding. You will have to send your wedding dress to the dry cleaners, pay wedding vendors and do things like taking home the gifts you received at the venue. We think that this suggestion on the GalTime blog of making arrangements for a late hotel-checkout and booking a car service to the airport, is very sensible. It will allow you to relax before you go for your honeymoon. Make arrangements for these activities in advance, and you will not have to buzz around after the wedding worrying about them. Instead, you can enjoy time with your spouse.

8.Tackle things as early as possible

writing

The days leading up to your wedding will be chock-full of tasks. It may be tempting to put aside some of them for later, so you can relax a bit. But, remember that the pile is just going to grow. As long as there are pending things to complete, you cannot relax. So, do everything in small installments, as and when possible. It is productive to create a list of tasks you must handle, and cross them out as you complete them. Not only will this give you a feeling that you have made progress, it will also get things done faster. One thing you can start with before the wedding is, writing your thank you notes. This is easier to do bit by bit, than when you attempt it in a single go. Start writing your thank you notes as and when your gifts arrive, and it will take you less time to complete. You may even find it relaxing and enjoyable. This previous post on how to write your thank you notes may be useful for you.

9.Choose assistants for everything

Wedding planning can be exhausting, when you attempt to do it all by yourself. Always asking the same person for help may also affect the overall productivity. The better option is to ask the right people to assist you with each relevant aspect. Working with different teams will allow you to relax and enjoy the experience better. You will have family and friends who are eager to help with the wedding. So, take a short while to think of who could best assist you with each aspect of the wedding, and ask them for their help. If one bridesmaid is particularly organized and systematic, she can help you plan the logistics of ordering, altering and getting your bridesmaids dresses delivered on time. If you have a friend who has a great taste in colors, prints and patterns, she can assist you in choosing the right wedding colors, prints and patterns for your décor. So, find out each person’s strengths and make the most of it, so your wedding planning is less hectic.

10.Have a go-to person who knows just as much about the wedding as you do

help

Trust us, this is a huge stress-buster. This could be your mother, Maid of Honor or even wedding planner. The person you choose for this role should know everything about the wedding, just as much as you do, so they can be the alternate point of contact. You can direct people to this person, whenever needed, and you can focus on other tasks instead. This article on the Bridal Guide also suggests that you hand over your cell phone to this person on your wedding day, so she can do a complete job of handling any last-minute needs from the vendors or guests.

Hopefully, these tips will reduce the stress on the days leading up to the wedding, and on the day itself. Every bride will have moments where she is overwhelmed with worry and bothers that things will not go as per plan. Should this happen to you, just relax, take a deep breath, and take a look at the big picture. Everything will then fall into place.

For more wedding day tips and advice, and for all your wedding shopping needs, keep visiting Best for Bride—your one-stop destination for all needs bridal. We have everything from bridal dresses to attires for the wedding attendants, party favors, décor, wedding cakes, invitations and more to help you plan the perfect wedding day.

Posted on 9 Comments

10 Top wedding dress tips for your destination wedding

Destination weddings are adventurous and fun, but come with their fair share of challenges. The logistics of planning a wedding from far away is seemingly complicated, as you have to do most of the things based on an instinct and trust, instead of seeing or checking everything in person. Nevertheless, many couples opt to get hitched this way, and have their minds set on getting married in a faraway, exotic land as this once-in-a-lifetime occasion has to be as special as possible.

Choosing a wedding dress, however, is one thing that you can do in person even when you are having a destination wedding. Even so, choosing a destination wedding dress is usually more complicated than choosing it for a wedding held in town. Not all wedding gowns are travel-friendly, and with many more factors to consider, making the right choice can be a little tougher than you can anticipate. So, here are our top tips to help you choose the right wedding dress for your destination wedding and to get it there.

1.Before going wedding dress shopping, know your destination well

Whether you are getting married in your own backyard, or in an exotic beach in the Caribbean, you will always benefit if you research the general conditions at the place, before you go shopping. This is especially important if your wedding is to be held elsewhere, where you aren’t familiar with the place, weather and any other factors that should affect your choice. So, find out all you can about the place before you begin looking for your dress. This will help you narrow down your choices to just those that will work. Check on the internet to find out all you need to know. Additionally, consult the venue manager and hotel where you will be staying, for any other information you may require. If you have friends who have visited the place, or are currently living there, gather information from them and find out what options will be practical.

2.Start shopping early

Just the fact that you are getting married abroad, shouldn’t limit your wedding dress choices. Every bride has a certain idea of what she should wear on her day, and if you always wanted to dress in an elaborate gown, you shouldn’t forego your dream because of the destination. Wedding dress options are numerous, and if you start your search well in advance, you will be able to find a choice that appeals to you and will also be practical. Make sure you have enough time to scour through the collections available at boutiques, research and attend dress appointments where you get to see your shortlisted choices in person, and pick a dress that is fully satisfying.

3.Know what you should about fabric

Not all fabrics are equally suitable for all types of weather. Your dress choice should also be based on fabrics that are suitable for the weather at the destination. If the location is particularly humid, you may be better off choosing fabrics that don’t show sweat. On the other hand, if your dream destination is really cool, you may have to cover your shoulders to feel comfortable, or at least accessorize with a warm stole or jacket. Another thing to remember is that some fabrics are more resistant to wrinkling than others. This becomes important when your dress has to travel with you, so it looks fresh on your big day. Here are some tips to help you decide on the right fabric for your wedding dress

  • Natural fabrics are best for hot climates. However, materials like cotton can wrinkle easily. Lightweight, natural fabrics like silk are better as these breathe. Consider mixes where the fabric doesn’t show sweat, and is light and less prone to wrinkling.
  • When getting married in a cold destination, choosing a heavy gown may make transportation a pain. Instead you can go with natural fibers like cotton, silk and wool blends that may be layered to keep you warm. The other option is to consider accessories like stoles, boleros and jackets to keep you warm when you are outdoors.
  • Don’t rule out the possibility of rain or snow. If your destination is particularly prone to showers, your fabric choice is very relevant, as some fabrics will stain on contact with water. Duchess satin is one such example. So, make a suitable choice based on this aspect.

For more practical tips on what will work in different weathers, we suggest you take a look at this article on the Weddings Abroad Website.

5.Be aware of customs to consider

There may be customs that you are unfamiliar with, at the country where you are to be wed. So, make sure to check in advance. Certain places of worship make it necessary for the bride to cover her shoulders and knees during the ceremony, and you do not want to be unprepared for it. In other cases, certain dress styles may not be suitable according to the local customs and norms, and it would be disrespectful to not consider them. When you do your background research, you should learn of any such customs or expectations. You can plan your dress choice accordingly.

6.Discuss alternative options with your bridal salon

Some designer collections allow you to choose between two fabrics, for certain designs. Discuss this possibility with your dress consultant, so she can direct you to dresses that can be done this way. Also do your homework before-hand, so you know which materials make the list. If the bridal boutique also has their own dress collection, it may be easier to get a dress custom-created in a fabric or design of your choice. So, check this out. Most bridal design boutiques will be open to considering your specific needs. If you find a dress that matches your vision, discuss whether you can have it made in another fabric, so it will work for your wedding. Your consultant should be able to give you a general idea of how it will look in the chosen fabric and perhaps show you other pieces in it, that will give you a fair idea of how the end product will be.

7.Make your dress dreams come true with the help of a talented dress maker

If you are unable to find a dress that meets your expectations, while being practical too, turn to a dressmaker for help. Custom creating dresses is a great idea, especially when you want something specific. This allows you have a dress that matches your exact measurements, that will also contain all the features you desire. A talented dress maker will can even work with existing dresses or fabric from heirloom wedding dresses to recreate a gorgeous dress, based on your specifications. If you already have chosen a dress, but you think it is necessary to make a few adaptations, let your dressmaker know as early as is possible. Not only will a good dressmaker be able to guide you on what should be done to render a dress suitable for a particular condition, they will also be able to implement these changes appropriately so it isn’t uncomfortable to wear.

8.Contact your airline to find how you can transport your dress

It would be ideal if your dress salon can deliver your dress to the destination. This may, however, not be possible unless the company has a branch in the location. In this case, you will have to find the best possible way to get your dress to the wedding safely. Although most airlines allow you to carry your wedding dress in your hand luggage, how it will be handled is a matter of concern. Most airlines will agree to hang it in their first class wardrobe space, if they have one. Consider yourself lucky, if this facility is available. Your dress will most likely arrive with minimum possible damage. If your airline doesn’t have this provision, things get complicated. If this is the case, there is an option you should consider seriously and this brings us to the next point.

9.Book your dress a seat on the flight

No, we are not joking! Although we know that this can be expensive, at times this is the only way to get your dress to the destination with minimum possible damage. Brides are always advised to carry their gown on them, and not check it in with the rest of their luggage. Even while you have it with you, there is the risk of having it stashed in an overhead compartment, due to lack of space. Now, if you are lucky enough to be able to hang it up beside your seat in a garment bag, you will still risk it getting crinkled in the cramped space or stained from an accident. So, unless your bridal salon is able to ship your dress directly to the destination after all the works and alterations are complete, consider flying your dress to the location in style, on its own ticket. The only other option is to get yourself a special wedding dress carry box, and choose a dress that will pack perfectly. Chiffon wedding dresses usually fit the bill. So, if a separate ticket is off-budget, take this route.

10.Get yourself insured

When it comes to wedding insurances, it is largely a matter of choice. Although you may feel it is a waste of money, taking an insurance on your wedding is a good idea when you are getting married away from home. The chances of things going wrong, and your dress being damaged are higher when you are traveling with it, than if you just had to take it home from the salon. Finding a solution for the mishap may not be as easy either. So, be wise and insure it. This will not only cover any likely unexpected expenses, but will also allow you reduce your stress to a certain extent.

11.Find a local dry cleaner for last minute touch-ups

Even before you set out for the wedding, check if there is a reliable and recommended dry cleaner at your destination. This information will come in handy, should your dress require any last minute touch-ups. Make sure that the person has experience handling wedding dresses, and will be able to steam or press your dress, without damaging it. If your dress isn’t too disturbed during the journey, simply hang it up in the bathroom and run the shower for few minutes, till the room becomes steamy. All the while, make sure that the dress is nowhere near the water, so it can’t get wet. Most of the crinkles will come out within minutes of it being in the room, and your dress will be in top-shape for your wedding day.

12.Quickly prepare it for preservation after the wedding

Whether you choose to keep your wedding dress as a keepsake, or intend to sell it off after your wedding day, it is imperative to attend to your wedding dress soon after the wedding. Your dress may have stains or show signs of damage after all the wear and tear it undergoes on the day. So, you should get it dry-cleaned and preserved within minimum time. If you have a long honeymoon planned, send your dress home with a trusted bridesmaid who can get it to the cleaners as early as possible. Meanwhile, pack it into a clear plastic bag and hang it up just like you did before the wedding, so there is no further damage to it.

Are you planning a destination wedding for yourself? If so, enlighten us about your wedding dress shopping experience or ideas that helped you choose your dress.

With a little care and planning, it is possible to find the perfect dress for your wedding and get it intact to the destination. At Best for Bride, you can find collections that are specifically created for the destination wedding. The Mori Lee Voyage Collection is one of these, and you will find a fabulous selection of dresses in this collection. To check it out, or browse through all the other collections we feature in our inventory, visit our website by clicking this link here.

Posted on 3 Comments

10 top tips to help you plan and enjoy your honeymoon

couple

After hectic months of planning and bringing together a wedding, a honeymoon is a huge relief for most couples. This is the time when you and your new husband can finally find the time to relax and enjoy each other’s company, and finally settle into being newly-weds.

While a honeymoon is more about the experience than the place where you go, you may find that certain destinations are more enjoyable than others. So, the place where your best friends enjoyed their honeymoons may not always be the best place for you. The ideal place to honeymoon at depends on your personality, budget, and many more factors. And this is why you need some help to choose the location you should go to.

Here are ten top tips to help you plan and enjoy your honeymoon after considering all possible factors

1.Determine your budget first

The first step to planning your honeymoon is fixing your honeymoon budget. Although you may like to visit the far East or set off on a safari in Africa, it will be impossible unless you have the budget for it. Decide on your honeymoon budget soon after you begin wedding planning, so you can make your reservations and avail of the best offers. Sit down with your partner and chalk out the maximum amount you can afford to spend on the trip. Once you know this, you can then look at the various locations that will fit into this range.

2.Plan how much time you can take off

You will have to consider the amount of time you can take off work, to decide on a practical honeymoon destination. You will already be taking a few days off for the wedding. So, the question is how many more days can you afford to stay away from work. To travel out of the country, or to a place with several must-see tourist attractions, you should have an extended leave. There is no point in spending most of your honeymoon traveling to the place, and not enjoying it because you have to return soon. If you do not have enough leave to accommodate the traveling time and also a few extra days, it may be better to settle for a place nearer home. The other option is to have a mini honeymoon for the moment, and save the real vacation for later, when you can afford it in terms of time and money. Either way, make sure you have your honeymoon soon after the wedding. It is a well-deserved break, before you get into the routine of daily life.

3.Decide what type of place you would like to visit

It is imperative to choose a spot that is interesting to both of you. Think of the type of place you would enjoy most. Is it a beach, where you can relax and snooze in the sun? Or would you prefer to visit a destination with historic sites? Perhaps, you would prefer an adventurous trekking trip in a scenic location, instead of the above two. Basically, find an option that is interesting in most ways to either of you. You should also consider how much time you would like to actually spend on sight-seeing, as this will help you plan your itinerary. A good honeymoon destination will be one that both of you are eager to visit. For this take both your tastes into consideration, and find a place that has something to offer both of you.

4.If you can’t decide, create individual dream lists and compare

What if you and your to-be-husband aren’t on the same page and fancy different locations. Let’s face it, with so many options out there, it can be difficult to decide where to visit. Or it could also be that you want a bit of all these places, and can’t decide. We have the solution to your problem! We suggest that you both make your individual lists of the top five or ten places that each of you would love to visit. Then compare the lists. The places that figure on both lists, is what you should be looking at. And what if these places are not practical options due to budget constraints or lack of annual leave, or anything else for that matter? Find a location that comes close in providing a similar ambiance, and settle for the next-best. Save the actual choice for another celebration, say your first anniversary or the next holiday you go on!

5.Consider weather conditions and other factors at the destination, at the time

When looking at honeymoon spots, don’t forget to pay attention to the local conditions there at the time of your wedding. You may be able to get cheaper deals, if the place you plan to visit provides off-season rates at the time. However, if the weather isn’t favorable at the time of your visit, it may not be such a great idea. For example, do you think it will be exciting to visit a beach during hurricane season, or places in Europe in winter when many spots are closed due to unfavorable weather conditions? Apart from the weather at the place, you should also give due importance to other conditions that may affect your trip. This could be conflict situations or natural disasters that the place is still recovering from. Your ultimate aim is to enjoy your honeymoon, and you may not be able to do so, if the place is under turmoil of any kind. In that case, either put your honeymoon off for later or settle for an alternate location that provides a similar experience.

6.Plan and book early to find the best offers

Do not wait till the last minute to book your honeymoon trip. The closer to the travel date you start looking for tickets and accommodation, the more money you will have to spend. Once you settle on a location, immediately set out to book your tickets, accommodation and any other package deals you may like to use at the location. Check around and you may find an early bird discount. Sign up for newsletters and track popular airlines to the destination, to learn about any offers around the time. Also check their social media sites to learn about special deals and discounts. It is not just about the travel, but you may also be able to avail better deals on sight-seeing tickets and similar other choices when you look early. So explore your options and find out the best deals for your money. If you look closely, you may even find good package deals which club accommodation with meals or sight-seeing options that take your money further.

7.Do your research about what you must take along

Different locations call for different needs. It is not essential that your hotel will provide you all the things that you require for your  stay. Plan your luggage depending on the weather, available resources and other factors. When visiting some countries you may have to carry along mosquito repellent and bug spray. In other cases, it may be thick winter gear to tide through the cold. The best way to know is to check with the hotel where you will be staying. Call up in advance and find out how the weather at the time of your visit will be. Then ask them what will be included in their package and what you are expected to bring along. You should also check online to confirm you haven’t forgotten anything. Remember that it may not always be possible to buy some things that you may require, after you reach there. So, it is best to carry everything you need with you. You should also find out whether there are any dress restrictions at the place. Some tourist spots may not admit people in clothes that do not cover the shoulders or may not admit you if you wear shorts. It is best to find out in advance and be prepared for it, rather than go all that distance and be unable to visit these spots, just because your attire is unsuitable for these locations.

8.Don’t forget the essentials

Even if your are certain that your hotel will provide you the basic amenities, stay prepared by packing in essentials like towels and toiletries. Create a checklist in advance, of all thing that should go into your suitcase. Tick it off as and when you pack these into your bag. This way it is unlikely that you will miss carrying anything you may need. If you are traveling abroad, make sure to carry photocopies of your passports and other documents that may help you, if any unforeseen circumstances arise. Remember that the electricity connections in the country you visit may not be similar to your own. Find out in advance and carry adapters to make sure your electronic devices can be charged without issues, once you reach there. Also inform your family or friends of how you can be reached when you are there. Leave the contact address of your hotel and don’t rely entirely on your email or social media network, in case the internet connection isn’t reliable at the place you are visiting.

9.Tell everyone that you are on your honeymoon

You will have to travel using your maiden name, since it is unlikely that your name change documents will all be sorted out in time for your honeymoon. So, book your tickets and accommodation in your maiden name. Nevertheless, let everyone know you are on your honeymoon. Most airlines, hotels and hospitality services like to encourage and pamper newly weds who choose their services. So, tell them you are celebrating your honeymoon, and don’t be surprised if you receive special upgrades, a bigger room, bubbly to celebrate your first journey as a married couple, or a token gift. Although all this doesn’t really matter, as it is all about you enjoying your newly married experience in the most exciting way, it certainly does increase the fun factor. So, right from when you arrive at the airport to check-in your luggage, make sure you tell the people you are dealing with about your new relationship status. Who knows, you may set out on your journey in business or first class, with a welcome upgrade. Wouldn’t that be fun!

10.Make up your mind to relax and enjoy your time

Unless you’ve been to the destination you are visiting, you may not really know what is in store for you. You may find the ambiance different from what you were expecting, or surprised with some other aspect of your holiday. Whether the situation is just as you expected or entirely different, make up your mind to enjoy it. So, if you think the place is hotter or if the hotel room is not to your satisfaction, just take it in your stride. Think of the bigger picture—you are here to celebrate with your partner, and let the trip be just about that. Don’t worry about things back at home, and make the most of every opportunity that arises. Try to make memories that will last forever, collect mementos to remind you of the exciting trip, relax and enjoy! Plan couple activities and cozy up and spend time finding out more about your husband. Return rejuvenated and refreshed to start your life off as husband and wife. This welcome break away from normal life will give you that perfect start to face life’s challenges and struggles together.

Plan a wonderful honeymoon and you will enjoy your wedding even more. For everything that you need for the perfect wedding, we are here to help you. From fantastic wedding dresses to wedding vendors to bring your dream wedding together, we have everything you need in one place. Visit our Best for Bride website to find out more about all the services we offer, and keep visiting our blog for more tips, inputs and advice on everything wedding-related.