If your officiant is affiliated with a church or synagogue, you're often expected to make a donation to that institution. If you're a member, you'll probably want to give a larger amount than if you're not. However, if you're getting married there and they're charging you to use the space, feel free to give a smaller amount. Tipping the officiant, both nondenominational and denominational, is also appreciated.
Put together a wedding planning schedule and do things one by one, in a logical order, so you don't take on too much too fast and end up with everything snowballing around you. Don't hire any vendors before you've confirmed your date; don't design your cake before you've envisioned your flowers; and don't book a band before you've settled on a space.

Dress shopping starts with the silhouette. One of the most popular styles is the ball gown wedding dress, which has a full skirt, fitted bodice and a cinched waist. This style will define your waist and highlight your bust. If you’re looking to create a little extra curve, try corset bridal gowns to give your style even more drama. Plus size wedding dress collections are available, however nearly all Azazie dresses can be custom fit for all sizes.
In a three-ring binder, compile all your correspondences with vendors, notes you make during meetings, and photos or tear sheets from magazines you want vendors to see. Set up a special email address dedicated to your wedding, and store important vendor numbers in your cell phone. For on-the-go planning that keeps everything in one place, download the The Knot All-In-One Wedding Planner app to keep all of your planning info digitally on-hand at all times.
"This event is an expression of yourselves, but it's not all you'll ever be. It's just the beginning! In fact, some of the best moments were ones we didn't plan for at all—like a fabulous photograph of my dress train all tangled up with leaves and dirt. Sure, it was messy and not what you're used to seeing in bridal magazines, but it was also honest and a truly joyful moment that could easily have gone south if we'd been uptight about things. Embrace the unexpected, and each others' opinions, and don't let an unattainable ideal sour the big picture: You're in this together, now and for the future." —Teresa and Ben

If your guest list is bursting at the seams, assess the plus-one scenario. Do a faux seating chart in your mind, and imagine whom your single pal would sit with. If it's a table of singles that she knows pretty well, then you're all set. If it's a table of couples (making her the odd one out) or if it's a table of singles where she won't know anyone, consider bending the rules. If asked why you're not allowing single friends to bring guests, size or budget constraints or your parents' never-ending guest list are always good reasons. 


What should wedding invitations say? Be sure to include the date you’re getting married, the location of the wedding and reception, the time of the wedding, and the names of the people being married. If it applies, you might also want to mention who is hosting the wedding and what the dress code will be. Don’t forget to include an RSVP card with a self-addressed, stamped envelope.
When planning your wedding, there are things that are nice to know, and there are things you need to know—advice so essential any bride who's lucky enough to hear it thinks, "I'm so glad someone told me that!" If you're wondering whether there's something you may have missed (or even if you've got everything under control), check out our indispensable planning secrets below. 
We understand that your Wedding Invitation is one of the most significant keepsakes of your lifetime. Our collection offers styles and DIY designs to give every couple an invitation to love forever. From classic to casual, traditional to modern, add your custom details in beautiful fonts and colors. For an extra personal touch, choose an invitation that includes your uploaded photos, featured or overlaid with text. Create your own wedding monogram and add it to your invitation design to make it extra special.
Your wedding cake may just be the most significant confection you ever buy, so it's key to know what you're getting into. A good place to start is by reading our top tips from wedding cake bakers from around the country. Next, the fun part (well, besides the tasting), is to start searching through wedding cake pictures to help figure out which wedding cake designs suit your style. From classic cakes to more ornate styles, we have something for every taste – literally! Then check out local wedding cake bakers to find a pro near you.
You can check your state's license requirements online, but confirm with a call to the county clerk's office to see when they're open. Even if it's open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., they may issue marriage licenses only during slower times like, say, Thursdays from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Give a copy of your marriage license to your mom or your maid of honor (just in case you lose yours during the final days before your wedding).
Shopping for a wedding dress can be overwhelming. While some brides launch the process with their dream dress in mind, finding 'the one' is still a challenge. We've compiled some of our best tips and tricks for narrowing down your bridal gown selections. Finding a bridal dress is about personal style and trends, season included, whether they are affordable or expensive, it’s your big day, so make sure to have fun and never settle.
"It's so easy during wedding planning to not take time to check in with each other and just get straight to wedding to-dos. During our one year of wedding planning, it felt like every time we saw each other, we had wedding decisions to make and appointments to go to. At the end of the day, the wedding is just one day in the lifetime of a marriage. It's important to have a good foundation going into it.
"It's so easy during wedding planning to not take time to check in with each other and just get straight to wedding to-dos. During our one year of wedding planning, it felt like every time we saw each other, we had wedding decisions to make and appointments to go to. At the end of the day, the wedding is just one day in the lifetime of a marriage. It's important to have a good foundation going into it.

Your wedding vendors should be your go-to, most-trusted experts during the planning process. When working with them, you should feel free to really explore what it is you want—maybe it's serving a late-night snack instead of a first course or doing a bridal portrait session rather than an engagement session. The bottom line is that you should feel like you can have an honest conversation with them about what it is you want. Their job will be to tell you what you can and can't make work given your wedding budget.


As soon as you've picked a date, start to look for hotels in a wide variety of price points. Many hotels allow you to reserve rooms for guests under a special wedding block and a reduced rate. You can then release any unbooked rooms a month prior to your wedding. If the hotels you contact insist upon contracts with cancellation penalties, just say no—you don't want to be responsible for rooms you can't fill.
From the internet to your best friend to your nearly-in-laws, wedding tips are superabundant. Craft a gracious but noncommittal response to suggestions, and offer it with a genuine smile. In an unpressured moment, choose the ideas that fit your vision and your budget, and be thankful so many people want your special day to be wonderful! For more ideas and tips, keep reading at our blog about wedding seasons ,  money saving tips on a wedding & wedding invitations design guide
A wedding invitation and the accompanying suite of products are a prelude to one of the most memorable days of your life. It’s something most brides and grooms would not leave up to chance. So, you want to touch and feel the paper products in your hands before you make a purchase. Minted understands this and we want to make sure that you are able to make the most informed decisions about paper, printing techniques, and colors for your big day. This is why we offer free sample kits so brides can see our rich colors and papers in real life. You can actually request up to ten samples for free, which is about double what most competitors offer.
Tipping is supposed to act as a reward, so you don't need to consider it a mandatory expense. Tips are meant to be given for excellent service or for vendors who go above and beyond their contracted duties. Before dishing out gratuity, check your contracts. Some vendors, especially venues and catering companies, will include it in their contract to help eliminate confusion.
"I thought I was planning a simple event, but in retrospect, there is still a lot I could have done without. Despite all of my preparations in advance, because I did so much myself, there was so much I had to think about that I didn't get to enjoy the time leading up to the wedding as much as I would have liked. If I could go back, I would have traded a thing or two for some added peace of mind.

Your (amazing!) invitations should arrive in mailboxes six to eight weeks before your wedding, again allowing extra if guests will need to arrange time off and air travel. Set your RSVP date three to four weeks prior to your wedding so you’ll have time to follow up on missing responses before you have to give final numbers to your vendors. A great tip is to use an invisible ink UV pen to mark your response cards with numbers corresponding to your guest list. It’s common to receive back several RSVP’s with no name, and the number system allows you to identify the responders. The UV part keeps it all discreet and the envelope pristine.
Make sure your guests can both see and hear from their seats. If people are seated farther than 15 rows back from your ceremony altar or podium, consider renting a mic and a riser. This could range anywhere from $50 to $100, depending on the equipment used. You'll need to coordinate the delivery and setup with your ceremony space, so put your wedding planner or best man in charge of this task.
One of the most fun things to focus on, are the details on your dress. These fabulous accents will usually depend on the theme. If it is a vintage theme, featuring delicate lace detailing and cap sleeves will be great. Unique elements like a colored sash is perfect for a modern theme. For bohemian theme, a dress with ruffle accents and a flowing skirt can give you a signature relaxed feel. A cocktail style is the perfect time to slip into a figure hugging gown with a deep V-neck.
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