The best way to make sure you have no regrets after your wedding day? Listen to brides who can share what they would have done differently at their own vows. Here are seven of the most common.
Get help from a planner/coordinator.
Whether it’s a planner or a day-of coordinator, many brides wish they had the extra set of hands for their big day. “I didn’t need a wedding planner and the venue told us that the manager on duty would take care of the scheduling anyway so I figured I wouldn’t need to pay yet another person to do an unnecessary job - after all, all was planned and agreed upon with all the vendors, right? Wrong!” says Shirine Modad Neill of the UK.
Choose a professional photographer.
"When my husband and I got married we were just fresh out of college with no savings and loads of college debt. We skimped on the things we didn’t value at the time like photos, but now we wish we’d had a better photographer than the one we found on Craigslist for $150,” recalls Krystal Covington of Denver, CO. “I gave a digital camera to my friend and got better photos from her than the professional we hired."
Pose for photos.
"I didn't want to seem fussy and spend an hour posing for photos, so we didn't. Ultimately this means I got a lot of great party shots but very few memorable family photos," says Shannon O’Rourke-Migita of Miami Beach, Florida. "In particular, my Grandmother, who spent so much time and energy helping with the planning, barely appears in images."
Hire a videographer.
“I wish I hired a videographer to capture the evening. I was worried that a videographer would be too invasive, with huge distracting spotlights on the dance floor. I thought it would take guests away from truly ‘enjoying the moment,’” explains Ashley Kinder of Philadelphia, PA. “But, as they say, hindsight is 20/20. At the time I didn't know that as the bride and groom our wedding would fly by in a flash. I have wonderful photos and memories, but I wish I had a video to watch on our anniversary and share with our daughter once she's older.”
Having a first look.
“We ended up doing pictures during the cocktail party and therefore missed out on the cocktail hour food (which I'm told was amazing) and catching up with friends/family. Our bridal party was also getting impatient during photos because they wanted to go to the cocktail party, so it all just felt rushed,” remembers Miranda Eifler of NYC.
Not letting parents take control.
“My parents were paying for the majority of the wedding, so I felt it would be disrespectful to not let them have all of the things that were important to them--like inviting all of their friends and family members we haven’t seen in years,” says Samantha Conte of Los Angeles. “But the end result is we had the wedding my parents always dreamed of instead of the day my husband and I really wanted.”
Enjoy the day.
"I wish I had relaxed more! I didn't realize how fast the day went by in between all the places I had to stand and all the people that chatted with me,” says Natalie Nelson Edwards, founder of broomstick. “I was constantly thinking about what could go wrong or what needed to be fixed; I almost missed what matter. My advice to future brides is to relax. Otherwise, you'll miss out on the whole experience of getting married to your husband."