You've secured the ring, you're on cloud 9 but now where the fuck do you start when there's so many conflicting opinions and resources available. When the average weddings someone attends in a.year is two, that's not a lot of exposure to planning a lovefest that embodies what YOU want. Fortunately for you I've been to countless weddings, captured from start to finish and even had a hand in the planning process so I can help guide you and ease the overwhelming nature of planning a wedding and get you back into that elated state of mind.
Take what you think you know and throw it in the trash
Google is a fortress of information, some helpful (like this) and some will leave you scratching your head like "What the fuck is a bomboniere" weddings have evolved from what we visualise them from fairytales. To make the planning process easier take the word wedding from the equation and thing of it as a big love fest or party where you get to get hitched to your best friend.
How do you want to feel?
This is the most paramount piece of advice I have for any couple planning their big day! Sounds so simple but it will anchor you to what's going to align with that vibe. You obviously want to feel happy but do you visualise it being really laidback or more of an upbeat mood throughout.
What aspects will contribute to that feeling?
If you want to have a really fun-filled event there's a few major players that will make or break the execution of your love fest. Your celebrant is a key vendor that will set the tone of the ceremony for you and your guests. If you're keen on a massive piss up with all your nearest and dearest you'd want to focus on the drinks and food aspect, along with the music portion and finding a venue that caters to a later curfew. Your visual team will be with you ALL day so you want people that make you feel comfortable, have personality and aren't potatoes. Also think outside of the box from traditional vendors. Personally I would want my wedding to be entertaining so having performers, a live tattoo artist on site and various other theatrical elements to add that wow factor.
Chances are you've never had to plan a wedding and with such a range of prices and inclusions from each vendor can be really confusing. Remember there's not a one size fits all and the more homework you and weigh up the pros and cons of certain aspects the easier it'll be to navigate what's important to you. If budget is a massive factor condense your guest list or just elope and have an extended honeymoon!
Sometimes it's inevitable that shit will hit the fan, something will go wrong, the best man forgets the rings during the ceremony, the make-up artist is running behind which puts you 40 minutes late for the ceremony the list is endless, so allow a bit of wriggle room for error and surrender to the flow of the day.
You can make more money, you can't remake these memories
The average wedding in Australia is upwards of $50,000 - it can feel like a fair bit of money for one day so if you're going to do it the way you want you may as well do it right. A lot of couples biggest regret is planning a day that didn't really reflect who they were or what they wanted. You want to look back on this day with nothing but happiness.
Secure your dream team and ask for recommendations
Having a vendor team that you can trust will make your day go seamlessly, cutting corners can leave a lot of room for error and heartache. Avoid feeling let down or stressed by booking your must have people straight away, chances are they've worked with a shitload of epic people they'll endorse and you can rest easy knowing that they've worked together before and everyone involved is going above and beyond to make your day a success.