Most couples know that there are items from their wedding that they'd like to save, but are unsure of what to do next. If you are a lover of traditions and looking forward to passing your wedding heirlooms on through the generations on your family, it will take a bit of advance planning. From your shoes, to your garter, to your wedding day signage, there are so many great wedding memories that you can preserve. Wedding keepsakes take time to gather and advance planning to save, so while it doesn't seem necessary now, it's important to think about in advance. Here is a list of possible items to save and some advice for planning ahead to preserve those wedding day moments most precious to you.
Before your wedding, spend a few minutes thinking about the things that you'd like to save. Many (but not all) wedding heirlooms require a bit of planning. Do some research in advance and think the wedding heirlooms that you'd like to hold onto.
Make It Special
What you save from your wedding must be special to you. Only you know what those special, savable items are. When thinking about your wedding keepsakes, think about items that are easy to store and that you will want to pass down to future generations.
Let It Be Known
Let the important people in your wedding know the things that you'd like to save from your wedding. How will your friends know that you want to save a cocktail napkin, if they don't set one aside for you? Often the little wedding day paper goods — like ceremony programs, signs, and extra wedding favors — get tossed into the trash in the rush to stick to the wedding timeline. Make sure the important people know what is on your to-save list.
Better Yet, Tell Your Planner
On the day of your wedding, you can designate a friend or family member to be in charge of saving those special keepsakes from your wedding. (Be sure to alert them in advance of their task!) Better than a friend is your wedding planner. If he or she knows about the things that you'd like to save from your wedding, they can help you plan ahead and ensure that your keepsake box is fully stocked after your wedding.
There are several specific wedding items that require a bit of advance planning if you know you'd like to save them. For example, it is possible to have your bridal bouquet preserved after your wedding, but it is much easier for your florist to make this possible if he or she knows in advance that you'd like to save your bouquet.
Clean It Now
Be sure to properly clean wearable items like your garter, dress and veil before packing it away to prevent fabric aging. When your wedding dress drags on the ground and gets dirty, it is easier to clean now than 30 years from now.
Saving items from your wedding doesn't always mean you stuff them in the box and never look at them again. There are many items that are usable after your wedding and are considered wedding keepsakes. Your bridal shoes are a great example of something that is perfectly useable after your wedding, if you choose the right pair of shoes that you love. Additionally, there are many guest book options, such as furniture, or live paintings and signs that can be used day-to-day in your married life.
Julianne Smith is The Garter Girl, a stylish wedding garter company hand making modern heirlooms for today's brides. She is on a mission to modernize the oldest wedding tradition and provide women something sophisticated to wear on their big day. She is a reformed political junkie with a love of tradition, an eye for style, and a passion for beautiful things. You can find more at www.thegartergirl.com, on social @gartergirl, or at the park in our nation's capital with her three little kids.