5 important tips you should consider before planning a wedding

Today is my five year wedding anniversary so I have decided to write this special post on tips for planning your big day.  These are tips I wish I would have known before planning my own wedding and if I could go back and do it all over again, I would have considered them.  Please check them out and comment if you have any tips or advice too!

1.  Choose a venue before you choose your dress

There's nothing like wearing a ball gown to the beach, or wearing a garden dress in a fancy ballroom.  It just doesn't make sense.  So choose your venue at the ballroom, garden, vineyard, beach or courthouse, then look for the appropriate dress.  I did choose the appropriate dress, however I have seen other people's wedding pictures and was confused why they chose the wrong dress with a particular venue.  Just sayin'...

2.  Make sure your dress is ready at least 1 - 1 1/2 month prior to wedding date

I made this mistake and literally ended up buying a last minute wedding dress a few days before the wedding.  I was lucky that the dress fit, that I was happy with the style and it was a fun little dress for our location.  However, I wouldn't advise that you count on this type of luck for yourself. Your dress should fit perfectly at least a month before the wedding.  So make sure you are the size you want to be before the final fitting.

3.  Don't be cheap

Hey, don't shoot the messenger, but cutting corners for the big stuff may not work to your advantage.  In fact, with my experience, I ended up spending more money in the long run because I was trying to be frugal. So buy the dress you want, pick the location you want, and the band you want within reason.  The average wedding in the United States costs almost $27,000, so plan spending that amount.  If you want to do it for less, you might not be happy with your dress, or your photographer, etc.  You can cut corners around smaller things like party favors.  And if you have the time to bake 150 cookies as your party favors, do it, but if you don't have the time, don't even bother with the headache.  Fair enough?

4.  Have your family members in your wedding

I've talked to countless people who have said that they were no longer friends with their maid of honor or their groomsmen.  It's such a sad situation to look at pictures of people in your wedding who are no longer a part of your life.  Which is why I suggest having your siblings and cousins as your brides maids or groomsmen.  Think about it, if you bicker and fight with them, more than likely you're still going to be eating and laughing with them  during the holidays.  Your relationships with them may go through peaks and valleys, but they'll probably always be a part of your life.  Hopefully.

5.  Go on your honeymoon shortly after your wedding

My husband and I waited a year after our wedding to go on our honeymoon, because I started a new job.  I didn't want to take a major vacation at the start of working for a new company, so we waited.  This is something I regret, because after you get married you're on such a high. You have a new love for each other afterwards, and you really only want to be around one another. My suggestion would be to definitely go on your honeymoon within the week, but not the day of or after because it's such a whirlwind.  Find that place you both want to go, book it for a few days after your wedding, and I promise you'll be so happy. 

Alright everyone, good luck if you are in the midst of planning a wedding.  Please, I would love to see your comments.

XO, Shelbi