Thank you so much to all of you who have reached out to me after my post last week about the break-in at my house. It’s something that I am still healing from. I am grateful and humbled by my readers outpour of support. You guys continue to remind me that while at times I may feel down and out, I am touching many of you. Thank you!!
While on “hiatus” from IAMSUPERGORGE.com, on of my dearest friends, Keisha, got engaged. She and her now fiance, Jameel, share the same exact birthday (awwww) and he proposed during their 30th birthday brunch. It was a super sweet and thoughtful proposal and the ring is SUPERGORGE!!
Last week, Keisha and I, along with some of our other girlfriends who will be apart of the bridal party, went to visit the location where the wedding will be held and to meet with the wedding planner. I’m so excited to be apart of this wedding. These 2 are a great couple and the wedding will be amazing. While discussing some of Keisha’s plans for the wedding, it got me to thinking about the Do’s and Don’ts of wedding planning.
Most women (some men) envision (and some even plan) their dream wedding way before they get the ring. You want it to be beautiful and amazing, truly a day to remember. While it should be all of these things and more, here are a few tips I have for brides-to-be planning their big day!
1st, 2nd, 3rd and 7291934th, remember this is YOUR (and by your I mean you AND him) day, make sure it remains about you two. Throw out the notions of what “they say,” (ie your ring should cost 3 month’s pay, you should get married in your families church, your dress must be white, etc ). Who the f*ck are “they” anyway? There are no concrete rules into what YOU should for your wedding ,except for doing what you want. If you want to wear a yellow mini dress instead of a white gown, that’s your prerogative. When you look back at your wedding, I want you to say, “that was so us.” While you cherish their opinions and want them there to be an ear for the planning process, it’s not your mom’s, grandma’s or best friends wedding. Their opinion is just that, an opinion.
Choosing your wedding party (bridesmaids) can be tricky. Many of us have different friends, from different times in our lives, ie. childhood friends, friends from college, work buddies, etc. Make sure the people you have standing behind you as you take your vows, will be ones who will support you throughout the many highs and lows of marriage. If you only have 2 good girlfriends that you know you can always depend on, having only those 2 in your wedding is perfectly fine. If you have 20 girls you depend on for support frequently, then having a big wedding party is for you. Keep in mind when choosing your bridal party that being a bridesmaid comes with a hefty price tag (dresses, shoes, hair, makeup, travel, bridal shower and bachelorette parties) as well as time commitments, so make sure they know this upfront, so that later on down the line there isn’t conflict between your bridesmaids or you and them.
Don’t be a brideszilla!!! Easier said than done, I know. This is your day and your family and friends want to help this be as stress-free as possible for you, don’t give them a hard time. Things will go wrong, but more than likely they will work themselves out. Delegate certain roles for your planner, parents and bridal party. Understand that while this is the number 1 priority to you right now, others still have a thousand things going on in their lives. If they are consistently slacking on their duties, let them know that you will assign someone to that task and you also may need to re think their role in your wedding.
After the bridal party is all set, comes the guest list!!! This is where things can get tricky, narrowing down a list. Some people prefer a small intimate wedding of 20 people, while some choose opulence and have 400 hundred guest. Again, it’s your wedding and completely your choice. But remember food and beverage is 50% of your wedding budget. On average (could be lower or higher) you’ll end up spending about $150 per plate. I’d suggest not inviting anyone who you haven’t frequently communicated with during the duration of your relationship and no one you haven’t been in contact within the 6 months before you were engaged. Weddings are expensive, not a free for all to come eat up your food, take pics and be included on a hashtag. You don’t want to look back in 8 years at your wedding album saying, “I haven’t heard from Jane and Tim since the wedding.”
Which leads me to budgeting. We all want a beautiful wedding, but set a realistic budget for yourself ahead of time. If you know your max is $50,000, budget for $40,000 or if your max is $250,000, budget for $200,000, more than likely you will go over budget and this way you’ll have some wiggly room. The last thing you want to do is to go into a marriage with a rack of debt (try not to take out loans or max out several credit cards, if possible). We all have different incomes and amounts of bills, so what you can afford, I may not be able to and vice versa. Plan a wedding for you and your pockets. Think about after the wedding too. Are you planning on buying a house or starting a family soon, these will also come with a price tag .
My husband and I had a baby, brought a house and got married within a year’s span. My dream was to have this over the top wedding. While planning it, the amount kept increasing and the guestlist was getting way out of hand. We ended up nixing the idea of a wedding in our hometown and had a destination wedding. Much cheaper, but so much fun. One day, maybe in a few years for our 10 year anniversary, I’ll have my big dream wedding.
One last bit of advice that I want to leave you all with is, while it’s fun and exciting to plan a wedding, spend more time planning for a successful marriage!
Plan for a marriage and not just a wedding.