You’ve barely announced your engagement and you’re already knee deep in advice regarding how to handle your wedding—where and when you should hold the event, what you should wear and more. If this is your first time getting married, the whole ordeal can be so overwhelming, you forget to appreciate the magic that goes along with the planning process.
Some of the more offensive wedding “don’ts” to watch out for:
Don’t Wait for Dresses to Go On Sale
Or suits for that matter. We all love a great deal, but you’ll want to get your clothing picks together well before that big day rolls around, offering plenty of padding for alterations, returns or any other surprises. Rather than waiting for the dress of your dreams to go on sale, check sites like preownedweddingdresses.com, which cut down costs in a major way by offering gently used dresses, rather than the heavily marketed up “brand new cars” of the wedding industry.
Don’t Cut Costs by Skimping on Food and Ditching the Open Bar
Look, food and alcohol are expensive. While you should definitely be on the hunt for the best bang for your buck, leaving guests hungry or asking them to BYOB may put a damper on an otherwise celebratory event.
Save cash by opting for less expensive arrangements and going all in on food. This is one detail guests will actually remember — not whether the venue was all decked out in roses or that you gave out expensive favors.
As for the bar, an open bar is generally your best bet, but in the interest of saving a few bucks, you can always offer the open bar for a limited amount of time or have drink tickets, then switch to a cash bar later in the evening.
Don’t Take Out a Loan
Yes, weddings are a big deal, and should be celebrated accordingly, but you don’t want to kick off your marriage in the red. Save for a wedding that is meaningful to you and fits within your budget — maybe you’ll have to save for a few extra months, but keep in mind, a slightly longer engagement is no big deal. Should you need a little extra to cover the costs, a credit card may be your best bet.
Don’t Expect Guests to Choose Their Own Seating
For the ceremony, guests should be able to figure things out, but if you’re offering dinner at the receptions, do everyone a favor and spend some time on seating arrangements. Your coworkers probably aren’t going to be thrilled when they end up next to that inappropriate uncle, or your fiancé’s grandparents. The Knot has some tips on how to tackle seating for the big day.
Don’t Invite Extra People
There’s old wisdom that you should invite more people than you actually want at your wedding, in some cases in the hopes of getting more gifts, or to avoid hurt feelings. While there will inevitably be a few people you “have” to invite, only invite people you want to come. This way there won’t be any surprise guests that put the venue over capacity.
Do Have a Good Time
The planning process is rife with etiquette bombs that may feel a bit antiquated, and everyone certainly has an opinion on every single tradition. Some will have great advice, as well as some stuff that just seems plain weird. Do what feels right for you—that’s wisdom that you’ll carry throughout your marriage.
Liam Pearson shares his knowledge of how to pull off the perfect wedding in his articles. He works as a wedding planner, a role he loves!