Here’s a list of the so-called wedding rules it’s okay to ignore.
Myth #1: Hiring friends is the same as hiring wedding vendors.
Just because your friend is a fantastic fashion or photojournalist, doesn’t mean you’ll get the same results on your wedding day. For example, an experienced photographer knows how to shoot a mix of photojournalistic action shots (getting ready, your first dance, exchanging vows) while also capturing all the must-have family and bridal party photos. Same goes for the other categories like flowers and music. Look for local vendors in your area for leads, and if money is a concern, just be open and honest about your budget from the start. If you really can’t afford a vendor, ask them for recommendations of lower budget professionals with a similar style.
Myth #2: You have to wear a white dress.
If the idea of a big white dress and veil has never appealed to you, don’t feel pressured into wearing one. Hair clips with feathers or even just a fresh flower can replace a traditional veil, and there are plenty of bridal fashion designers who have created dressed in other colors — think blush pink, dusty blue, buttery yellow, and more. You can even add color (and personality!) to a simple dress with a bold sash, bolero, or a cardigan.
Myth #3: If you went to their wedding, you have to invite them to yours.
Don’t feel trapped into inviting someone just because they invited you to their wedding. It’s your day — invite the people you feel closest to. If someone assumes they’re invited, let them know up front (and sooner rather than later) that because of space or budget constraints, you had to limit the guest list.
Myth #4: A wedding planner is too expensive.
Here’s the deal: Not only can a wedding planner help keep you organized and suggest incredible never-been-done ideas, but a wedding planner can also end up saving you thousands and keeping you on track with your budget. Many planners work closely with florists, rental companies, and other vendors and often have access to industry discounts, which they can pass along to you! Not a bad deal, eh? Even if you can’t afford a full wedding planner, look into hiring a day-of planner (to take some of the wedding day stress off of you) or a wedding coordinator who can give you vendor recommendations before you start planning.
Myth #5: Going DIY will save you money.
Make no mistake — DIY isn’t always the cheapest route. Unless you have unlimited access to the supplies it takes to create your own stationery or flower arrangements, the cost of these items alone is really going to add up (not to mention the amount of time it takes to create invitations for 100!). Do your research before you start buying paper and flowers in bulk to make sure it wouldn’t be worth your while (and sanity) to simply hire someone else to do it.
Myth #6: You have to have the same number of bridesmaids and groomsmen.
So maybe he has a ton of friends, and you just have a few close girlfriends. Don’t feel like you have to hire extras to stand in for you to even out the sides. What’s important is that everyone you feel close to is a part of your day so divvy up the jobs. Make some of the guys ushers and others readers. One can even be your honorary toast-giver. If those positions are filled, that’s okay too — there’s no rule that says both sides should have the same number.
Myth #7: You have to take out a second mortgage to pay for a wedding.
Listen up — there are easy ways to save money, so don’t start your marriage together in a terrible amount of debt. It’s all about setting your priorities. Maybe you’ve always known you want a designer wedding dress, a venue with a view, or an amazing bouquet. Make a list of your splurge items, and then look for ways to save in the other categories.
Myth #8: A DJ will play too much cheesy music while a band will take too many breaks.
You’ve probably heard about it or been to a wedding where the DJ played outdated music with cringe-worthy results. Simply talking to your DJ about which songs you love and which you’d rather not hear (ever) can help guarantee a playlist that everyone will love. As for bands, you know the drill — the dance floor is packed, but as soon as they take a break, the floor clears and everyone gets bored. Instead, see whether they can go down to a 2-piece or a 3-piece set instead of popping in an iPod.
Myth #9: Wedding food always tastes bad.
Don’t assume that just because you’ve been to some weddings with less than tasty food that that’s the norm. Some of the hottest wedding catering trends involve comfort foods like sliders, French fries, and sundae bars. Plus, many catering companies are bringing farm-fresh items to the reception table with localized gourmet menus that will have you and your guests oohing and ahhing.
Myth #10: All wedding dresses are created equal.
Why do some dresses cost $500 and others $5,000? It’s all about the quality of fabric, the embellishments, the construction of the dress, and the amazing fit. In other words, those pricey dresses are made to make you look drop dead gorgeous. That’s not to say you have to go over budget to find a dress — a good bridal salon consultant can suggest dresses that fit and flatter in your price range, so rely on them to help you find the right dress.
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– The Knot