I know I’ve talked about this on the blog before, but after a busy September filled with a lot of brides, I think it’s time to revisit it.
The week of a wedding is stressful, emotional, and busy. It can get overwhelming. Your vendors have last minute questions. A lot of payments are due. There are a million details to finalize. A lot of things to pack. Too many things to pack. Tack that on to the pressure you’re feeling – and putting on yourself to look flawless – and just regular life (did you set an Out or Office? Is your car due for an oil change?), you might feel close to a break down. And honestly, a few tears might actually help you feel better.
But, since I know there are a lot of fall brides out there, I’ve put together a few tips other than crying to help!
- Keep your routine. It’s hard, but if you run two miles every morning, you should do your best to stick to that the week or your wedding. Losing those endorphins would definitely throw you off. If you read every night before bed, try to carve our time from rearranging seating charts to get through a chapter. Missing your regular things will make you feel like you’re in unstable ground – and believe me, you want to feel grounded in the days before your wedding.
- Take a break. You’ve likely been planning for months. It’s okay to take a hot bath or watch a bad TV show for an hour. You can shut off your phone. Don’t get burnt out before the fun begins. Get a massage. Get your nails done alone. Meditate. Whatever makes you feel calm, make time for it.
- Rely on lists. Make a to do list. Make a packing list. Make a reminder list. If you’re in a meeting at work, jot down your wedding thought. If you wake up at 2am, write down your wedding worry and go back to sleep. And then check the lists! The point of having one is to go over it.
- Communicate! Your expectations, timelines, and details will certainly seem solidified in your mind, but it’s important to share this with your coordinator, family, wedding party, and future spouse. If you want your bridesmaids to wear their wedding day shoes to your rehearsal so you can check heights for the line up, ask them to. If you need your in-laws to arrive early for a photo, remind them of the time. If you need help dropping off decorations at a specific time, ask for volunteers. I always suggest sending a full calendar of events to everyone involved with the wedding, and ask your MOH to keep a list with her too.
- Have pictures. Not only to remember your special moments, but of how you want your center pieces to look, your dream floral arrangements, line ups with your bridal party. Share photos with relevant stakeholders – visual prompts will help be sure that your day lives up to how you want it to look.
- Label everything. You might have a lot of decor going to your reception site, and a lot of things heading to your ceremony location. Label your boxes. You’ll need all your wedding party gifts to end up at the rehearsal location and not at the reception venue. Clear packing and labeling will help get everything where you need it – and if you need to add something, you’ll know which box to toss it in to.
- Assign responsibilities. A lot of brides forget that the point of a wedding party isn’t to look pretty on Instagram – they’re there to help you on your big day. Someone can be the point of contact for the bus. Someone else can finalize a timeline with the makeup artist. Your fiancé can confirm the first dance song with the DJ. Have your in-laws pick up the late night snacks. You don’t have to do all of it on your own. And if it was in your budget, lean on your wedding coordinator.
- Build in cushion time. With any schedule, there’s the opportunity for things to go wrong. If you have every minute tightly planned, you’re setting yourself up for failure. If you think day-of getting ready will take 5 hours, build your schedule for 5 and a half or 6. If your ceremony starts at 4, and Groomsmen need to be there by 3:30pm, it’s okay to fib and say 3:15. If you don’t leave any cushion time in your day, you’ll feel rushed when things are 5 minutes behind.
- Recenter. As is my constant reminder, you’re marrying your person. If the florist is confused by which type of eucalyptus you want, it does not matter. You’re marrying your soulmate. Keep small detail stress in perspective by remembering the end game.
- Prosecco. Remember this is supposed to be exciting! Celebrate these moments. You’ll miss wedding planning when it’s over. Grab a class of prosecco or water if that’s more your energy, and reflect on how loved you are.