Photo: Michelle Lindsay Photography
Wedding planning can be stressful, but there are so many people who are ready and willing to help make your planning experience run smoothly, including your family, friends, and yes, your vendors, too! We asked wedding vendors to share their favorite stress-busting wedding planning advice.
“Prioritize. Making a list of your top five ‘must-haves’ on your wedding day will help you stay on budget and get the wedding you have always envisioned."—Melissa Kramer of Kramer Events in San Luis Obispo, California.
“The best way to reduce wedding planning stress is to hire a good wedding planner. A good planner will handle all the details of your day to take the stress away, so that you can enjoy it and not have to worry about a thing. I can't tell you the difference in stress level (for all involved) for those weddings that have a planner vs. those who don't.”—Chris Schmitt of Chris Schmitt Photography in Thousand Oaks, California.
“Make the time to take a walk with your future spouse a few times a week. Let the designated time act as a ‘wedding walk’ where you discuss upcoming decisions that need to be made, priorities, and issues, Try not to let wedding talk dominate all of your conversations outside of this time. Your relationship will be better for it.”—Melinda Lynch of Festive Designs in San Luis Obispo, California
“Stop trying to make everyone happy. Don't be surprised if you are bombarded with ideas, suggestions and requests from every side from the moment you announce your engagement. Although you should be considerate, it is unwise to try and please everyone. Be true to your vision, and remember that this is your day. This will help you establish boundaries and have the wedding you always dreamed of.”—Olga Pomeransky of Best for Bride in Etobicoke, Ontario, Canada.
“We have two words that every couple should embrace as their wedding day nears: delegate and trust. Assign small duties and tasks to your family and wedding party. Use them to ensure that you don’t get stressed and that you can enjoy the weeks leading up to your wedding. And trust your family, friends, and vendors. You have involved them in your wedding day because you have faith in them. Continue trusting them as the process continues and your date nears. They will be your biggest champions so trust that they will pull through for you.”—Jennifer and Susan Willinger of HoneyFitz Events in Los Angeles, California
“Choosing the right vendor team for you is key! The right team of professionals can either ‘gel’ together, or in some awful cases, be each other's worst enemies. Listen to the vendors you adore, and ask for their referrals too. You want your day to run smoothly, so a team of great vendors, with years of experience, comradery, and passion for all things weddings will make your day truly magical!”—Ashley Powell of Agape Planning in Orange County, California.
“Plan early! We've seen hundreds of couples over the years and most of the time the least stressed couples on the day of the wedding are those that booked their major vendors a year in advance. I think it's directly related—more time planning equals happier couples. If there's no graph showing that, there should be!”—Paul and Stella Santiago of Boffo Video in Fullerton, California
“From the early beginning of your engagement, setting a realistic budget is essential. It gives you a good idea of how much you and your partner need to save for your special day. While going through the planning process, it also gives you an idea of which vendors fit into your budget so you don't go over. There may be some wedding items you don't want and the budget can change to accommodate those changes. Budgets help to define goals, especially when its something that costs a lot but is very worth it (i.e. great food). A good budget will help you stay on track with your finances and in turn will not stress you or your relationship out!”—Tanya D’Angela of Classy Affairs in Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada
“It's so tempting to jump ahead on your wedding checklist and rush through your planning. If you are able to follow a 12 to18 month wedding planning timeline, slow down, take your time and enjoy the process. We often find that when our couples try to rush the timeline, they end up getting burned out. Your wedding checklist is designed to allow you to still enjoy time with friends, date nights with your intended, and family time. The last thing we want is for you to lose yourself in the midst of planning the happiest day of your life!”—Alisha Chadee of Whim Event Coordination in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
“Although all the details that go into making your wedding a special day are important, don't let yourself get swept away in the swirl of minutia. Go with your gut when making wedding decor decisions. After you have looked at three options, go with the one that initially captivated you the most and then stick to it. Stop looking! You'll end up with a severe case of "analysis paralysis" as you succumb to the ‘paradox of choice.’ Besides, it's so nice to be able to finally check things off that mile-long wedding to-do list.”—Erika Bernhart of Strelitiza Floral Design Studio in Austin, Texas
“Don't lose sight about what the big day is really about! If you remember that celebrating your love and commitment with everyone you care about is the most important part of the day, you won't stress over the napkins matching the bridesmaids dresses perfectly.” —Lindsay Quinn of NST Pictures in New York, New York.
“A client of mine said that the best thing she and her fiance did was take weekly dance lessons. Sure, it takes some time out of your week, but it’s a time to enjoy being with the one you love and it really blows off some steam. And then, come your wedding day, you can show off all your new dance moves!” —Lisa Gordon of Lisa Gordon Events in Chicago, Illinois