You got a glimpse of the emotional play-by-play these three brides experienced on their wedding days in the "Real Brides Share: How I Felt Leading Up To My Wedding Ceremony" mini-blog series. Now we want to share some of the nitty-gritty, behind-the-scenes, real-life snafus and regrets they experienced. So you, too, can be prepared for what might happen. Better yet, learn from them, so mild feelings of "I wish I'd done it this way..." don't linger after your wedding day.
"My biggest regret is my tunnel-vision around wedding planning," said Channon from New Jersey. "I really didn't want my wedding to be a burden on my family and friends. So I focused on checking off my to-do list, being efficient, competent and getting things accomplished on my own. In retrospect, I see that I robbed myself, my family, and my friends, of many fun times together. I could have gotten my girlfriends together (with a lot of wine), and do the favors and gone out to lunch more with my Mom to chat about the wedding. In hindsight, I'd go back and change the solitary wedding planning mode I was in and include others."
Laura from Tennessee made this expensive mistake at her wedding — one you, too, can avoid by taking her advice: "We spent hundreds of dollars renting our ring bearers outfits — suits, vests, pocket squares — and buying flower girl dresses and expensive party shoes. Did they look adorable? Absolutely. Did they rip themselves out of the suits and expensive shoes as soon as photos were finished? Absolutely! By the end of the night, their clothes were trashed and splattered in wedding cake. My advice? Be realistic about what small children actually do to nice clothing — and don't waste money on kids clothes."
"We were about to be officially introduced as husband and wife," remembers Tina from New York. "When I saw a group of guests standing in a clump — not seated at round tables like every other guest — looking awkward, confused, and a bit lost. Turns out, they had nowhere to sit! When we cut-and-pasted the seating chart from the Excel spreadsheet, one table of 10 didn't make it into the new document. So when I should have been reveling in the joy of being introduced as husband and wife, I was embarrassed, worried and trying to figure out how the hell that mistake got made. For those few minutes, this oversight was spoiling my wedding. Luckily, the guests were family members and the wedding planner scrambled for a table, chairs, cutlery and glassware — all was well. But the biggest lesson I learned that day is one I really understand now: Your wedding guests experience your entire wedding through the lens of love, and they will happily go with the flow of whatever happens."
Allison Moir-Smith is a bridal counselor and author, and solves your family, emotional, and sticky wedding-planning situations at The Bride Whisperer.