outlined cloth wedding photo

Photo: Jason Burns Photography

We're Marlene and Devin from Outlined Cloth. Together we run a couple's lifestyle blog where you can find fashion and travel tips on our many adventures. You may have seen us on WeddingWire during our donut Insta takeover. Since then, we got married on July 7, 2017 at Casa Romantica in San Clemente, California. It was beautiful beyond measure and turned out to be everything we could have ever imagined. That being said, as we planned the biggest day of our life, we would inevitably encounter a few speed bumps. As picturesque and perfect as the day was, it didn’t come without its prior challenges. Luckily, this helped us understand how to navigate through conflict and discover our best way to communicate as a new married couple.

So, here are the 4 major things we argued about while wedding planning–and how we resolved them:


Money

I'm sure this is the number-one cause of conflict in most relationships, let alone when you both are about to throw down a LOT of cash to plan a wedding. Think of it as an investment and make sure you are on a united front from the get go. Devin and I began by discussing the type of wedding we wanted: Would it be big? Destination? Or maybe we would just elope? It is important to have a realistic expectation of how much everything is going to actually cost and where the bulk of that money is going. We created a budget using a detailed spreadsheet documenting each expense, and then negotiated with vendors and asked a TON of questions before hand so there were no surprises in the end. One surprise we did not factor in was the tip. Even though our vendors did not require tip (some do–read the fine print!) we did disagree on how much we were actually going to give and to whom. Our solution? Refer back to the budget and compromise on a final price. Plan all of this out BEFORE hand assuming you will be happy with the services, of course. We prepared cash in envelopes and designated the job to someone reliable. That way we wouldn’t have to talk about money during our wedding and enjoy ourselves!

Photo: Jason Burns Photography

Involvement

Many times all the planning falls on the shoulders of the bride and honestly it can be OVERWHELMING. I found myself losing my cool about a month out, when most of the the payments were due and all of the final decisions had to be made. "Do we want throw pillows for the couches? What color should they be?! How many do we need??!" These were my burning questions after dragging my fiancé to the nearest department store much to his chagrin and eventually ended with a tearful confession in the parking lot, "I can't do this by myself. My head is swimming with all the final details and I need your help." Immediately, Devin updated the checklist using the WeddingWire app. It was much easier to see everything in one place and both have easy access to it. We divided the list and set out to conquer each one–together. Oh, and we nixed the pillow idea. One less thing to worry about.

To invite, or not to invite, that is the question.

I come from a big extended family and while we would have loved to include everyone, our venue could only accommodate so many people. Unfortunately, the same can be said with good friends and colleagues. Let’s be honest, someone is bound to get hurt. How do you decide between friends and family you don’t see on a regular basis? Or coworkers you see everyday but don’t spend time with outside of the office? While this didn’t cause a specific argument between us per se, it was a source of weighted discussion. We came up with the guest list golden rule: past, present and future. Ideally, they should fall in two out of the three categories. Were you old family friends that lost touch but you still want to reconnect? Do you go out to dinner all the time and foresee them in your life as a new married couple? Have they been super helpful in the planning process and you knew each other from college? This method seemed to work well for us and helped with our biggest invitation roadblocks.

couple sitting in decorated chairs outlined cloth

Photo: Jason Burns Photography

Food

While we agree on most food-related items, we were bound to have one or two things our tastebuds didn’t agree on. For us, that is dessert. While I am a huge fan of tres leches cake (a traditional Mexican cake made up of three different milks) Devin can do without most sweets. We decided to think outside the cake box and come up with wedding dessert idea that would satisfy both of us. From ice cream sandwiches to chocolate fondue to a s’mores bar, we finally did discover there was one treat we had in common–DONUTS! With so many different flavors to choose from everyone wins! We went with a local bakery that changes its donuts monthly by sourcing from seasonal ingredients. These perfectly handcrafted donuts were a hit at our wedding. On the plus side, it was much more cost-effective and our most delicious compromise yet.

After all was said and done the things that seemed life-shattering and Earth crashing at the time really didn’t matter in the end. No one will remember the chairs or the flowers if you went with the rose gold flatware. The thing that you will take away is the time spent together with all the people that you love and remembering to enjoy the journey rather than focus on the destination. Much like marriage!