Another unforeseen expense? Feeding your wedding day crew. Before you sign the contracts, make sure you're not required to serve the same meal to your vendors that guests will receive. Otherwise, you could be paying for 20 additional lobster tails. Choose a less expensive (but equally hearty) meal for them instead. You will have to let your wedding caterer know a couple of days before the wedding exactly how many vendors you need to feed (don't forget photography assistants and band roadies) and what you want them to serve.
Get any nonstandard changes to your agreements in writing or send the vendor a confirmation email saying, "Hello, just confirming that you'll keep the venue open until 2 a.m. versus midnight." Don't just assume everything's all set—sometimes, by the time the actual day rolls around, your contact for a certain may no longer be working there to vouch for you.
"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.
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.
"What I mean by this is there will undoubtedly be times of stress, fighting (a lot of fighting), angst, and anxiousness before and during the wedding. What kept us sane was knowing that at the end of the day, it's just not that big of a deal. After the wedding, you will be husband and wife for the rest of your life—the wedding is just a big ol' party." —Lu and Joon
You've been dreaming about the day for years. You waited for the right man or woman, and when the two of you came together, you both knew your love was the real thing. Now, with the question popped and the "yes" given, it's time to plan that glorious day when you and your loved one become partners for life. All of us at FTD congratulate you on your engagement, and we want to do whatever we can to help you plan that magnificent day. We know it can be as daunting as it is exciting to bring your dream wedding into reality, and that's why we've worked hard to make FTD something of a one-stop shop when it comes to flowers for weddings. We can offer expert guidance on the wedding flowers you'll need, from the wedding boutonnieres to the bridesmaid bouquets and any other wedding flower arrangements you desire. We only use flowers of the highest quality, and only those loveliest to behold. It is your wedding day after all; only the best wedding bouquets will do! These flowers will simply take your breath away, notto mention your wedding bouquet will be something you will feel proud to throw into the hands of a future bride-to-be. And when it comes to our wedding flower centerpieces, our staff will work with you and your chosen colors to produce stunning centerpieces that will be the talk of every table. Speaking of color, whether it's wreaths, centerpieces, or bouquets, and whether you want elegant whites to match your wedding dress or the deep red of long stemmed roses to signify your love (or any color in between), we at FTD work tirelessly to make the vision for your wedding become a reality. Find delicate lilies, exotic orchids or beautiful tulips to complete your vision of walking down the aisle. That's ultimately what FTD is all about: helping you make the wedding of your dreams the wedding you actually receive. Whether you’re looking for lily flower arrangements or centerpieces for the rehearsal dinner, trust FTD to make your day extra special. You can even order your wedding flowers online! But if you prefer to see our mixed bouquets in person, our attentive staff will offer you our years of knowledge and experience in producing the best wedding flower arrangements for your special day. With FTD by your side, your wedding flowers will be something you never forget. Have top rated flower delivery year-round to make each event all the more special.
"All the stress you had before the big day...just let it go. It is what it is, and stressing will only damper your big day. If it's out of your control, let it be out of your control and just roll with it. Cherish every moment because it goes by so fast. And kiss your husband as many times as you can that day. It's all about the two of you, don't lose sight of that." —Megan and Steve
"Before my wedding, I remember my coworker telling me that her wedding day was the BEST day of her life, and she was so excited that I would soon be able to experience mine. When I was in the midst of planning my wedding, the long, daily to-do lists and the stress made me feel as if that day would never come. However, it eventually did! When it came, I tried my best to savor every moment of the wedding day—from the moment I got out of bed to the moment I walked out of my wedding venue as a married woman— and I'd advise brides and grooms out there to do the same." —Jamie and Daniel
Ready to start planning? The Knot All-In-One Wedding Planner app will take you through the entire process—from finding your style and fixing your budget, all the way to your day-of timeline—so you can actually enjoy every step of the way. You can even add a reminder to tip your pros on your day-of wedding timeline so you don't forget. Click here to download the app and get started. After that, create a free, personalized wedding website to keep your guests informed (and excited!) about your plans, and a time-saving Guest List Manager to organize your attendees. Even better? You can sync your Guest List Manager and wedding website to update everything at once.
Guest blogger: Allison Silber, founder and creative director for engagedandinspired.com. Engaged & Inspired is a wedding publication for crafty brides who strive to fill their wedding day with loads of personality. The team of real brides post about the highs and lows of wedding planning and what it takes to pull off their big day. Aside from running Engaged & Inspired, Allison also offers planning and design services to the Carmel Valley area.
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.