As one of the oldest societal institutions, marriage has many traditions and old-fashioned elements to it.
Luckily you don’t need to be stuck in the past when planning your special day – otherwise you’d probably spend most of your time on the phone, combing through expensive bridal magazines and begging for advice from your friends and family who’ve already tied the knot.
There’s no doubt about it – the internet is the best place to gather ideas and plan for the big day. You could also throw your own bonafide online wedding, but we’ll be sticking to real life weddings in this article.
Just Google it
For many in my generation (Y and subsequent), this piece of advice really goes without saying – however it can often be underestimated just how useful it can be. If you are just starting out and have no idea where to begin, googling “where to start planning a wedding” yields quite a few good hits which should give a general idea where to start. There are entire sites and blogs dedicated to wedding planning that you can find and follow for more in-depth assistance.
Not to mention that, through the miracle of geo-targeted advertising, when you start searching for more specific services like venues, cakes and invitations, you’re bound to be presented with some local providers in your area. You might be prepared to go to great lengths for a big-ticket item like a wedding dress, but food and flowers just aren’t worth the hassle.
As you google more search terms, the probability of hitting the Pinterest website for any wedding-related paraphernalia rapidly approaches 1. The website is a content-packed utopia of arts, crafts, cooking, fashion and fancy decorations; and frankly it’s thrown around far too casually in this day and age. If you are not mentally and emotionally prepared to Pinterest, you could very easily find yourself still up at 3AM in your undies with 8000 things pinned to your wedding board, crying into your stone-cold cup of tea because there’s no way you could find the time or budget for individual mason jar floral arrangements or napkins custom-printed with photos from your grandparent’s wedding.
Seriously, avert your eyes until you have nailed down the following:
Keep it real
Once you’re on your way, you should be cross-referencing ideas with your budget and local availability each time you find something new. If it doesn’t fit, it’s got to go – sometimes you have to make the tough decisions to keep a clear head in the face of planning a big event. You may even find something fresh and fantastic when following this method; when you compare the price of a fairly ordinary-looking bouquet of red roses to a stunning arrangement of Australian wildflowers, you can get more bang for your buck if you break away from Eurocentric conventions.
Getting crowd support
If you are truly stuck, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Before you hire an expensive wedding planner, have a squiz at some discussion boards like /r/wedding or the EasyWeddings forums. They’re usually full of people in the same boat as you who are more than happy to share some advice and may even be able to point you in the right direction for a supplier if they live in your area.
Your friends and family can also offer a shoulder to cry on if you ever feel overwhelmed. Planning a wedding is a big job, so don’t beat yourself up if you ever need to take a break and do something completely unrelated for a while. If you come back refreshed and focused instead of wearing yourself out, you’ll end up with better results in the long run.
Have you got any tips for upcoming newlyweds? Let us know in the comments.