It's hard to plan your wedding when you don't know what you don't know! That's why a wedding planner (or at least a day-of coordinator!) is absolutely crucial - and today I'm excited to feature one of the best, Jill Brown from Sunkissed Events. She has tons of wedding experience under her belt and is sharing today 3 of the top mistakes brides make when planning their wedding. Read on to avoid these mistakes as you plan your wedding!
To begin, I would say the #1 mistake brides make is booking the venue or vendors prior to determining your overall budget. Typically, the first thing in the bride's mind is choosing a date, which means choosing a venue. Once the date is chosen, your thoughts will probably move to the budget you have set or been given. The problem is that the first step of securing a venue may already put you over their budget based on the percentage allowed for that item. Then you will have to think about what areas you can trim to make up for it, often making the process extremely tough!
This same concept goes for the photographer you oooooh'd over prior to getting engaged. Once you've booked them and you realize that you've spent $1000 over your allowance for photography, you are trying to figure out what you can cut to make up for it. If you work smart to start, there will be so many less obstacles when it comes to your budget. Even if you can't get a hard dollar amount, you should do some budget research for the amount of guests you anticipate having and a budget estimate prior to picking a venue. The venue might be gorgeous and they might have your date available, but it's really something to consider at the very beginning. There are a lot of great wedding budget calculators online that can be used to help you avoid these problems - like this one from the Knot.
Side note from Maria: I always recommend that brides choose their top 3 priorities and allocate the largest budget percentage to that first, then choose everything else based on the remaining priorities. This will allow you to keep a beautiful venue or your dream photographer without breaking the bank!
The second mistake brides often make is to assume that transportation is not necessarily a must for your wedding guests. While I firmly believe it's a wonderful gesture should it work within your budget or if 75% of the guest list are out-of-towners, I often remind couples that it's not their responsibility to figure out how guests are traveling to your wedding and leaving at the end. With Uber, Lyft, and other transportation services so popular and readily available, these are great options to share with your guests in a welcome bag letter or on your wedding website.
Lastly, the most common mistake I see is brides who want to DIY everything during the week of the wedding! I love it when brides put special touches on the decor or details, but the week of your wedding should be enjoyable and not stress-filled. Spend time finishing any items that you have chosen to DIY several weeks before the wedding or plana DIY night with your bride tribe. Find easier ways to make escort cards or table numbers or simply have a local printer complete the job so all you have to do is pick them up and not stress over the details. Another suggestion is hiring your day-of coordinator to complete those tasks for you, as they have an abundance of resources and likely know a quick and easy way to finish them. The last thing you want to feel is overwhelmed when your family and friends arrive in town the week of and you are trying to complete unfinished tasks!
I hope this has been helpful to any bride wanting to avoid common wedding mistakes! Whether you're planning a wedding in Hampton Roads, Virginia, or beyond, these tips will provide invaluable as you plan.
Next year will be seven years in the wedding world, but it still feels like yesterday when Sunkissed Events was a one-woman show. Now we have six ladies on our team! My background is Fashion Design, graduating from Virginia Tech then spending some years in NYC as a designer. After relocating to Hampton Roads, I spent some time in retail managing and then as a clothing designer. Once I was engaged and starting planning our wedding (a year & half engagement!) I realized my passion for this industry and how well I seemed to fit right in. My main goal, always, is to make our couples wedding day the most enjoyable experience for everyone, bride, groom, family, friends and yes, their vendors! When I'm not sending brides down the aisle, my husband and I enjoy traveling, eating at our favorite local restaurants, beach days, bike rides and loving up on our two cats, Chloe and Sunny. [Photo by Sarah Street Photography]