Photo: Lyell Photography
Have you always dreamed of a fall wedding? The weather cools down, the leaves change color, and you have an amazing palette to choose from for your décor and your wedding party, right?
The only problem with fall weddings is the simple fact that they're in the fall — a time of year when a lot of your friends and family have some pretty big commitments they've got to work around in order to be there with you to celebrate. You have to get those invitations in the mail early.
Here are three examples of legitimate fall wedding roadblocks you need to consider before locking in your wedding date:
Your guests with kids may have sports commitments. Forget their children attending (if they're invited) if they're athletes, they've got games. And if the parents are very involved, you'll be lucky if one of them skips a big game for your wedding. Little guys with football and soccer games shouldn't cause you problems unless, of course, the guests have to travel to be with you on your special day. All colleges have "Parents' Weekend" at some point in the first couple months of school to reassure moms and dads that their kids are in fact learning something and getting fed, despite what they may believe from the infrequent phone calls home and "unusual" social media posts. This is also the time of year when many schools have festivals and fundraisers that parents have committed helping with months in advance.
Despite your feeling that Labor Day weekend gives your friends an "extra day" for your wedding weekend, that's only true if they don't already have plans or have children. The kids will have just started school — or be starting school the day after Labor Day (depends on the state). Thanksgiving is another "no no." Unless your guest list is made up entirely of family, it's selfish to think that your guests don't have their own families they've made plans with for the big holidays. And if the guests are newly married, they already have to figure out which set of family they're celebrating with for each holiday. While some might appreciate your wedding as an out on that, many will have negotiated who gets Christmas and who gets Thanksgiving long before you mailed your invitations.
Not even lying when I tell you that I have had to disconnect the satellite TV at a wedding venue upon the request of the bride in the past. Very few couples want their friends (or fathers and uncles) screaming at a television somewhere within their wedding venue instead of actually dancing and participating at their wedding. I've done a couple of weddings for couples who chose that specific fall weekend ONLY because that weekend was a "bye" for their home team and they knew it was the only time they could lure their friends away from a television set. This goes for college and pro games.
Sandy Malone is the owner of Sandy Malone Weddings & Events, a full-service traditional and destination wedding planning company and Do-It-Yourself wedding planning consulting service for DIY brides and grooms based in the Washington, DC area. Sandy is the star of TLC's reality show "Wedding Island," about her destination wedding planning company, Weddings in Vieques. Sandy's book "How to Plan Your Own Destination Wedding: Do-It-Yourself Tips from an Experienced Professional," will be released on March 1st, but is available online for pre-orders now where books are sold.