Thursday, 20 April 2017

Lessons I Learned While Wedding Planning

Today's post is a little different than usual. I'm sharing my wedding planning journey/ experience so far. I'm planning my wedding for next year summer 2018. I really hope this post helps someone out there, I wish I came across something like this to help me.


If you're planning your wedding, before you begin with any sort of planning, I would advise for you to note down what are your values, in terms of what you want your wedding day to consist of. What you want your guest to feel. what type of life you want after your wedding. Then look at your finances, I guarantee this will help you make the right choices for your wedding.


Initially, when I first started my wedding planning, I wanted everything big and extravagant.. I thought to have 500 guest in order to have everyone that we know present. I also considered getting a wedding planner to help with all the planning so I can just focus on finding my dress. However, my friends and family kept telling me that I really didn't need one. I'm generally very organised and a perfectionists.. although I already semi planned everything on my lap top, I still went ahead and contacted a wedding planner. Straight after I then realised everything planners offer I've done. Therefore, I thought scrap this and automatically I saved £1,500 or more. I'm really enjoying planning my wedding it's stressful but all worth it. This journey  has helped me put things into perspective in terms of what's  important, what we need, and what we don't need.

So far finding a venue has been a big challenge..  let me tell you something, weddings are so expensive! you will get a headache, once you realise that things cost a whole lot more than you ever imagined. Most venues are only available on a dry hire basis which means you only pay for the venue and bring in your own caterer, decorator, cake, waiters, security, ushers, photographer and videographer. All these things add up in the end and trust me its too much.


Venues that I loved and dreamed of having my wedding reception turned out to be big NO NO. It wasn't convenient at all, didn't have a car park or free parking around. Some didn't provide cutlery, tables and chairs.  These mentioned things are super important to me. Otherwise having to hire them individually would cost us too much.  (I will talk about venues in a different post.) Roughly venue prices starts from £6,000 and above. In Essex and kent prices venues start from £16,000 and above. Keep in mind that theses prices are all dry hire basis, this means you have to hire everything else separately. Unless you're born into a rich family than cool, otherwise seriously ask yourself is spending 30k or above on a wedding a smart decision? Many people fail to understand that a wedding only last one day, there's a life after, and you shouldn't start your new life in debt because that's a problem within itself. Please do not borrow money or finance your wedding to show off or to please people.


I've learned to cut out unnecessary things like expensive wedding shoes that cost £700 and above. Think about it this way, £700 can be used towards my dream honeymoon, to help create a life time memory. Why waste it on shoes that I may only wear once? I've got plenty of shoes, some are brand new in a box that I could wear. To be honest I think most people only buy expensive wedding shoes for the 1 second feature in the wedding clip.


I had to seat back and thoroughly think about what's important  to me on my wedding day. I learned that the whole wedding experience is very important to me, and ultimately I want my guest to have a good experience. Remember your wedding should reflect bride and groom, so try and meet in the middle with your partner. You will need to compromise your visions  and combine it together.

I learned  having a intimate wedding is what my partner and I want. It's important for us to know everyone attending our wedding. Therefore, it needs to be invitation only and not everyone gets to bring a +1. One thing we really need to keep in mind is not everyone you know needs to attend your wedding, SIMPLE!. Yes people will be upset, but at the end of the day, prices go up with every number of guest. For me it's important that my family, close friends and some church members get a seat.


It's also very important to start planning your wedding ahead and start  comparing prices in order to get the best deals. As soon as I  got engaged I started looking at venues, photographers, videographers and catering to compare prices. Then I narrowed it down to top 3,  then compared again and made a decision. If you're planning a summer wedding then I would advise you to book especially your venue 2 years or 1year and 6 months in advance to get your desired dates. Another tip I highly recommend is to be aware of high season, venues are more expensive between May- September and Low season is more cheaper between October - April.

In terms of venue,  look for packages meaning a venue that comes with tables, chairs, clothes, cutlery, glasses, decoration, kitchen, waiters and door man. It's a lot more cheaper paying for this all together rather than a dry hire. Another lesson I've learned is to use the people around me i.e I know a baker who can make my cake, a cater who will cook, a  graphic designer who can create my invitation. I know a singer who could sing, a photographer who can take my pictures. It really helps, so don't be afraid to use your friends and family. Honestly forget the movies this is reality, I'm not saying don't aim high but be realistic to your pocket and think about your after life your wedding. You can still have a fables wedding on a budget, go on your beautiful honeymoon and come back to reality and still be comfortable in terms of finance.

I hope these lessons I've learned so far planning my wedding helps you plan yours.

Let me know if you want to see more post like this.


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