There are so many things to organise and plan, so I am giving you the lowdown on the A-Z of wedding planning to keep you calm. Relax, I have you covered!
A - is for Alterations
Many brides forget there may be an extra cost if their wedding dress needs to be altered. Include a little bit extra to budget for this and ask if the alterations are included in the cost.
B - is for Budget
Making a budget should be one of the first things you do when planning for your wedding. Include any contributions from family and then try and stick to that number.
C - is for Centrepieces
Decorations that go in the centre of your tables at your reception. More often than not, these are made up of an array of flowers which can be placed in various sized vases. Other ideas include candles, balloons, vintage books, sweet jars, bottles or candelabras. You could also have something more personalised to you as a couple.
D - is for Design
Think about what overall look you want for your wedding. Get a mood board together and design something that fits in with your personality. Are you going to have a theme? Certain colours? Textures? Putting a design together can be so much fun and seeing it come to life on the day is a great feeling.
E - is for Emergency Kit
This is something your wedding planner will have. Alternatively you can make your own. Essential things to include are:- tissues, sewing kit, super glue, basic first aid kit, double sided tape, deodorant and mints.
F - is for Favours
Thank you gifts for your guests as a token of appreciation for their presence. Traditionally, favours used to be sugared almonds. These days, couples are a bit more creative with their favours. There are hundreds of ideas you can use. A few ideas are bubbles, miniature bottles of alcohol, preserves, plants or even scratch cards!
G - is for guest book
Most couples still opt for the traditional guest book for their guests to write a message in, whilst others are choosing different ways.
Check out my 'alternative guest book ideas' for inspiration.
H - is for Honeymoon
Book your honeymoon nice and early when you can get a good deal. Having a well deserved break after your wedding day will be greatly needed.
I - is for Information sheet
Include these in with your invitations. They should contain all the information your guests will need to know for your wedding day, such as a list of nearby hotels and taxi firms as well as directions to the ceremony and reception.
J - is for Jewellery
Any jewellery you wear on your wedding day should be plain and compliment the dress. Your wedding ring is the most important piece of jewellery so this needs to stand out over your other items.
K - is for Kids Table
The little ones will love it. A table just for them. Provide a goodie bag for each of them at their place setting. This could include a colouring book and pencils, stickers or treats. As well as keeping them happy it also entertains them for a while.
L - is for Lingerie
Wearing the right lingerie is a must. Many brides want sexy underwear, but remember, you will have to wear it all day under your wedding dress, so going with support and comfort may be the better option.
M - is for Music
This is usually a big one where wedding planning is concerned. The norm used to be either a DJ or a band. These days, couples are opting for both. Music usually makes the reception, so make sure you do your research before you book and your guests will thank you for it.
N - is for Nails
Everyone will be wanting to see that gorgeous ring of yours, so go ahead and show it off by treating your nails to a manicure.
O - is for Organisation
One thing I am big on. If you haven't got this one sorted then you may as well give up now. Planning something as big and special as your wedding day takes a lot of careful organisation so get plenty of help and support around you because you are going to need it.
This brings me swiftly on to...
P - is for Planner
More and more couples are choosing to hire a wedding planner for their big day. They can take away the stress, save you time and money, and they don't take over, so it's no wonder they are becoming highly popular.
Click here for 'more reasons to hire a wedding planner'
Q - is for Quiet
Ssssshhhhh. Take some time out throughout the day as newlyweds. It will be hard to grab that precious time together when guests are pulling you in all directions to get your attention.
R - is for Reception
Where the fun begins! You and your guests can start to relax a bit more. When booking a reception, choose somewhere that suits not only your budget but your personality. Ensure you receive a written document of everything that is included from your chosen venue.
S - is for Speeches
Traditionally it is the men's duty to do the speeches but a lot of brides choose to do their own too. Plan your speech in advance and make sure it is short and to the point. The recommended time per speaker is five minutes each. Anymore than that and your guests eyes start to glaze over.
T - is for Transport
Get written quotes from a few different wedding transport companies so you can compare. Remember, cheapest isn't always best! You don't want to be late for your own wedding.
U - is for Ushers
The Groom's 'squad'. They are responsible for ensuring that all the guests and family members are escorted to their seats as they arrive for the ceremony.
V - is for Vows
Often couples go with the standard vows that are set but writing your own vows can bring a really personal touch to your ceremony. A celebrant can help you with this.
W - is for Website
Couples can now set up their own wedding websites for free. There are plenty to choose from so pick one which is suited to you. Some are free and some ask for a small fee. It can be used to help keep your guests up to date with all the details of the wedding day.
X - is for Kisses
Lip balm at the ready! You will both be getting plenty of kisses throughout the day.
Y - is for Your Day
Remember is it all about you and your day so make the most of it and have what you want, not what someone else wants you to have.
Z - is for Zzzzzz's
Getting a decent night sleep before your wedding day is really important and after all the planning is done and you have had your dream day, you will need plenty of sleep then too. Phew!
According to a recent report, a third of couples fall straight to sleep on their wedding night.