When it comes to planning a wedding, it’s hard to know where to begin. Questions like; should we pick a date first? What about the venue? How many guests shall we invite? How much will it cost? are likely to appear from the moment you get engaged. With so much to decide its often overwhelming and mistakes can be made. What you need is someone who specialises in all things wedding to help you. Luckily, we have found that someone. Emily Andrew from Emily Andrew Events, previously known as ‘Your Norfolk Wedding’ has years of experience and this month she is sharing with us some of the common mistakes made when planning a wedding. Take it away Emily –
The most common mistake is not setting a budget. All too often couples will begin planning the most expensive day of their lives with little consideration for the financials. Sadly, the end result is that the money doesn’t stretch as far as it should and couples have to make decisions on expenditure which could have been avoided or they overspend and begin married life with massive credit card bills! My biggest tip is to do some research before you begin getting too carried away with booking suppliers. Approach the planning fully armed with research, priorities and a budget.
Badly planned timings.
When it comes to your actual wedding day think about a schedule for the day. This will be so important for all your suppliers involved and I would certainly advise getting the input into it from your photographer, caterer and venue. The photographer will need to make sure they have enough time to capture all the shots you have requested, while considering the best light, backdrops and that all important ‘golden hour’. Include the travel time for your guests, especially if the wedding is over more than one site (for example a church then a reception venue) and include in this the time it takes to park multiple vehicles and the walk your guests will be making in heels and posh clothes! Your caterer will need to know the time that you wish to eat, cut the cake, have reception drinks etc so that food doesn’t spoil and also so your guests aren’t given a protracted wait for refreshments. In my book you can never have too much detail on your timing schedule, even the most laid back of wedding days needs to have certain timing milestones to ensure everything still happens in a calm and smooth way.
Not considering you guests’ experience.
If I ask my couples what the most important thing about their wedding day is, the first thing they will say is getting married, the second thing will be that they get to have an amazing day with their guests and they have a great time too. I have heard too many sad tales about guests not enjoying weddings so my adage is “happy guests, happy couple!” Common complaints are not being fed and watered at the right time, the wrong food or too little food/drink, not being comfortable ie too hot or too cold (particularly a concern at outdoor summer weddings with no shade!), the speeches going on for too long, the music being too loud, being too squashed during the meal, having too many group shots and lack of information about the proceedings for the day. Also, think about smaller guests, there is nothing worse than grumpy, badly behaved children at weddings! Think about food and drink for them, their seating arrangements, and perhaps some activities to keep them entertained. Really think about designing your day with your guests in mind to make sure that they leave your wedding with nothing but compliments and fabulous memories.
Having no contingency plan.
Ok, so top of the list here is the British weather!!! This is the one thing you have zero control over!! My top advice is to plan for rubbish weather and great weather, especially if you are having a summer wedding. I always say to my clients if you are planning for wet weather and then you get fabulous weather it is a bonus but don’t expect great weather and then be disappointed and upset if it rains! So, plan for wet weather, whether this is having a stack of wellies ready and loads of umbrellas, a venue which has space for your reception to all be inside or politely reminding guests to be prepared for inclement weather on the invites your send out, there are many options. Prepare a contingency plan for if the weather is wet and you were planning to be outside and COMMUNICATE this to your wedding team so the venue, caterer and photographer etc can all be prepared.
If any of these topics are keeping you awake at night maybe you should consider some professional wedding planning support. More details of my services can be found on my website: http://www.yournorfolkwedding.com/what-we-do/.