Let’s be honest – most of us have thought about our ideal future wedding at one point or another in our lives. Some might have thought about it only in passing whereas others might have planned every single detail in advance, even if they are currently single.
Of course, planning a wedding is only fun in theory. In reality, it can be quite stressful, especially if we want to do it all by ourselves. In general, it is a good idea to enlist someone else’s help which is why so many brides rely on their mothers and their best friends to give them advice on all things wedding. Those who don’t think that they can rely on family members and friends, on the other hand, end up hiring a professional wedding planner. After all, no one wants to be stressed and tired on their actual wedding day and we all know that grooms can’t be relied on!
But we seem to have gotten ahead of ourselves. Before a wedding is to be planned in reality, someone needs to propose. Usually, it is men who do the proposing and women who either accept them or not. A traditional proposal – a kneeling man with a gorgeous ring in his hands – is every girl’s dream.
Pick an engagement ring.
A marriage proposal is necessary before a wedding can take place, and indeed even before a wedding can be planned (at least planned in reality and not just in theory – there is nothing wrong with daydreaming about your wedding even if you are currently single). Sometimes couples decide to get married after a long discussion or on a whim whereas other times the girl might decide to propose to the man. But of course, nothing beats an old fashioned proposal where a man gets on one knee and extends a beautiful engagement ring.
Pick a season.
You’ve just said “yes” to the man of your dreams and so now it is time to get planning! One of the first few things that you need to decide is the season that you want to get married in for that will influence the rest of the planning process. Do you want to get married in summer or winter? Or perhaps you’d rather tie the knot in either spring or autumn? Depending on your preference and the season that you are currently in you might have to wait a couple of months – or even a year – before you can walk down the aisle.
Who will plan the wedding?
It is said that your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life. As such, it only makes sense that most of us want it to be as perfect, or as near perfect, as possible. Unfortunately, wedding planning is rather stressful which is why it is only too tempting to put it off until the last minute. This is why it is a good idea to have someone helping you with the planning, whether it’s your mom, your friend or a professional wedding planner. We all know not to depend on the groom!
What’s the budget?
Before you can truly start planning the wedding it is a good idea to set your budget. After all, your budget will influence just how simple or how lavish your wedding will be. It will also influence the venue, the entertainment and the catering that you opt for. The budget that you set will say a lot about you as a person. If your budget is rather big that means that your wedding day is incredibly important to you. If your budget is on the smaller side on the other hand that means that you’d probably prefer to invest your money in something else, like an exotic honeymoon or a down payment for a house.
Will there be a theme?
Planning a wedding is no easy feat. There are countless important decisions that need to be made. Overall, you want your wedding to go as smoothly as possible. But you also want it to be as beautiful and as aesthetically pleasing as possible too. A theme can seriously help to tie everything together. When it comes to themes you can opt for something as simple as “romantic” or “bohemian” or as complicated as “Harry Potter” or “Star Wars”. Of course, you don’t necessarily have to have a theme at all if you don’t want to, just be prepared to put in more time and effort into planning!
Pick the invites.
In general wedding invitations tend to reflect the upcoming wedding. Are you planning on holding a simple but elegant wedding? Then you will probably opt for minimalist yet stylish invitations. Have you always dreamed of a quirky wedding? Then your invites will probably be unique and one of a kind. Indeed, you’ll probably have to custom order them or else make them yourself. Not a fan of wasting paper? You can always send an evite instead. Some even skip invites altogether and trust that word of mouth will reach those they want attending their ceremony.
Pick a venue.
Sometimes couples end up booking two different venues for their wedding day – one venue for the actual wedding ceremony and another venue for the wedding reception. Still, picking two different venues is a lot of hassle which is why more and more couples - especially non-religious couples - are choosing to have both their ceremony and their reception in one venue. Choosing two venues is no laughing matter but choosing just one venue is even more stressful. Make sure you are truly happy with your choice before you move on to the next question!
Pick a dress.
If you have thought about your wedding at all as you were growing up then you probably have a good idea as to what it is that you want to be wearing on your special day. Most girls can’t imagine walking down the aisle in anything but a princess-like white bridal gown. Of course, that is not to say that such a traditional outfit is for everyone. Some might rather opt for a mini white wedding dress (mini dresses are certainly easier to dance in than full gowns) whereas those who like to do things their own way might decide to go with a vintage dress or even a playsuit.
Heels or flats?
Whether you choose heels or flats will say a lot about you as a person. If you go with heels then you probably value appearance over comfort. You want to look the best you possibly can on the most important day of your life. If on the other hand you choose flats then you are probably confident in your own skin. You know that you will shine on your big day no matter the type of shoes that you wear.
Will your outfit require jewelry? If the dress – or the playsuit – that you choose to wear is somewhat simple then you might want to add a necklace or a bracelet to make the overall outfit more interesting to look at. If the dress is fancy on the other hand then you might want to let it speak for itself as opposed to obscure it with jewelry. Nonetheless, sometimes jewelry – if it is tasteful and elegant - can really pull the whole outfit together.
Pick something blue to wear.
If you’re a traditional bride you might opt to wear something blue on your special day. According to Vogue, the tradition of wearing something blue on one’s wedding day dates back to the late 19th century. Apparently, the color blue was meant to symbolize love, purity and fidelity. It is a lovely tradition and so it comes as no surprise that many brides choose to incorporate a blue token into their outfits to this day. You don’t even have to be that traditional to want to wear something blue as you walk down the aisle. You could simply love the color blue!
Pick the flowers for the bridal bouquet.
Bridal bouquets not only look nice and complete your overall outfit but also give you something to do with your hands! Otherwise most of us would probably be fidgeting, which is certainly not a good look for a bride! There are a few factors to consider when choosing a bridal bouquet. For example, most brides take not only their outfit but also the theme of their wedding (if there is a theme that is) into consideration. Some brides like their bouquets composed of their favorite flowers. Others think that there is nothing more elegant and graceful than opting for flowers that are currently in season.
Pick the hairdo.
You could be wearing the most beautiful bridal gown out there but if your hair is a mess then you simply won’t look that good. As such, most brides visit a hairdresser right before their big day. They often get a trim (those more adventurous and daring might go for a drastic change) a week or so before, but most importantly, they pick out the hairdo for their big day. Out of the four hairstyles above, which one is, in your opinion, ideal for a wedding?
Pick a hair accessory.
You’ve just picked out your hairdo and so now it is time to choose a hair accessory. Most brides, or at least most traditional brides, opt for a wedding veil. There are numerous styles of veils that you can choose from – long or short, adorned with lace or completely simple. Not a fan of wedding veils? Why not go for a decorative comb or a tiara instead? Once again, the hair accessory that you decide to go with will depend on your overall outfit. Sometimes it is best to skip hair accessories altogether.
Pick the makeup.
Makeup is pretty amazing in that it can transform the way that we look in minutes. As such, it comes as no surprise that most brides like to try a few different looks before they settle on one that they deem ideal for their big day. Some brides like to go for a classy makeup look whereas others like to go all out. The type of makeup look that you opt for will be influenced not only by your own personal taste but also by your bridal outfit.
What will the groom wear?
You’ve finally chosen not only your bridal outfit but also your hairdo and your makeup. Congrats! The hardest bit is over. Now it’s time to give your partner a hand. Most grooms don’t really care what it is that they wear on their big day, at least not to the same extent that brides do. Most grooms choose to wear a suit on the big day but then there are those who greatly dislike the formality of suits and as such choose to go with something a little more casual, such as suit pants and a shirt or even jeans and a shirt (albeit a somewhat fancy shirt).
Who will choose the bridesmaids dresses?
When it comes to bridal dresses most brides fall into two different camps – those who like to give their bridesmaids free rein (i.e. allow them to wear whatever it is that they want to wear) and those who either give their bridesmaids the dresses that they are to wear on the big day or at the very least tell them the color scheme that they need to adhere to. We all know which bride the bridesmaids prefer. Still, it’s your big day so you get to make all of the decisions, regardless of what anyone thinks!
What will the groomsmen wear?
It is usually the bride who tells the bridesmaids what to wear on the big day. As such, in theory, it is the groom who should be informing the groomsmen of the dress code. Of course, the average groom doesn’t care about the wedding ceremony nearly as much as the bride hence why it is the bride and not the groom who makes a call on the groomsmen outfits. In general, groomsmen are told to wear formal suits unless of course the groom himself is wearing something much more casual.
How many guests will be invited?
The number of guests that you and your partner will invite to your wedding will depend on the type of wedding that you are hoping to have as well as on your own personality (and that of your partner’s!) If you and your partner are very private people then you will probably want a small wedding with only the nearest and dearest in attendance. If on the other hand you are outgoing and have a lot of acquaintances you will probably want to share your special day with as many people as possible.
Will furry guests be invited?
You’ve made up your mind on who you want attending your wedding. Perhaps it’s just family members and the closest of friends or maybe it’s absolutely everyone that you know. Now it’s time to decide whether you want any furry animals attending your wedding too. Involving one’s pets in a wedding ceremony has become rather trendy as of late. However, be wary that pets will complicate matters even further so only “invite” them if you are certain that you can handle the stress that they will inevitably cause.
Who will officiate the wedding?
Those who are religious usually get a pastor to officiate their wedding. Those who are not religious on the other hand often choose to be married by a government official such as a mayor, judge or justice of peace. It is also quite common to see couples being married by their friends (who have of course been ordained). As such, your choice in this matter will depend entirely on your personality and your religious beliefs. Of course, don’t forget to discuss this matter with your partner beforehand!
Pick the first dance song.
Like most wedding traditions, the couple’s first dance is full of symbolism. Indeed, according to Ouine’s Events Management, a couple’s first dance signifies the couple’s union. It also apparently serves as a joyous and gentle introduction between the husband and the wife. It is a lovely tradition and one that most brides and grooms look forward to the most. Of course, this tradition requires some preparation. For example, you might want to perfect your dance moves beforehand and of course, you will want to pick out a suitable song!
Pick the wedding rings.
You probably had no say in your engagement ring (at least if you were lucky and if your partner proposed in a traditional manner) but you do have a say in your wedding ring. The type of wedding ring that you and your partner opt for will say a lot about you as individuals. If you opt for simple, elegant bands then you probably have great taste. If you go for something flashy (maybe large gold bands studded with diamonds) then you probably want everyone to know that you are married. If you opt for something unique (such as vintage rings or Claddagh rings) you probably think outside the box. And if you choose ring tattoos then you are probably a hundred percent sure that your partner is your soulmate.
Pick the appetizers.
What is it about tiny food that is so irresistible? Whatever it is, we can all probably agree that small food, or food that comes in small portions, tastes amazing. This is why guests always look forward to appetizers, sometimes even more so than they look forward to the main meal! The appetizers that you go for will depend on your own personal taste and your budget. You could go for something as simple as glazed honey and mustard cocktail sausages or for something as elaborate as bacon wrapped dried apricots with sage.
Pick the main meal.
Every special occasion requires plenty of delicious food, and a wedding is no exception. Your guests will expect to be treated to a scrumptious meal. After all, they took time out of their lives to attend your special day and they went out of their way to purchase the gifts that they thought you would enjoy. The least you can do is feed them. The main meal that you opt to serve your guests will depend on your budget, your creativity and your personal preference (but it might be a good idea to ask your guests for their opinion too).
Pick the wedding cake.
No wedding would be complete without a gorgeous wedding cake. Most wedding cakes are pretty impressive but even so, guests have no idea just how long the wedding couple spent choosing the shape, size and of course, the flavor of the cake. Choosing a wedding cake seems fun in theory but like anything else it can be quite stressful especially if the bride is a real perfectionist. The only good thing about choosing a wedding cake is all the wedding cake tastings that one gets to go to.
Any other desserts?
You’ve chosen your wedding cake but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you are done planning the type of food that will be served on the big day. While it is hard to imagine a wedding reception without a wedding cake when it comes to sweet treats some couples like to give their guests other options too. After all, you can never have too many desserts, right? Plus, one’s wedding is a fabulous opportunity to give the more luxurious sweet treats a try. Most of us can’t justify indulging in macarons on a day to day basis!
Pick the signature drink.
You’ve chosen your appetizers, your main meal, your wedding cake and perhaps even other desserts. It is finally time to choose the signature drink. Of course, you’ll probably offer a number of drinks during the wedding reception but it is the signature drink that people will remember. Ideally, you want the signature drink that you choose to offer your guests to represent the wedding ceremony. Spend a little time on choosing the signature drink – you want it to be unusual and fun, but also tasty.
A professional photographer or a photo booth?
If it is true that your wedding day is the most important day of your life then you will probably want to remember it forever. Since memories fade it is a good idea to take plenty of pictures on the big day. Some couples like to hire a professional photographer and leave the picture taking completely in his or her hands. Others on the other hand think professional photographers boring. Instead, they prefer to hire a photo booth for the day.
Pick the entertainment.
A wedding reception with no entertainment would probably be eerily quiet. Sure, people would talk and laugh but if we are perfectly honest, entertainment is a must. Luckily, there are countless of entertainment options that the bride and the groom can choose from. When choosing the entertainment it is a good idea to ensure that it matches your overall theme (if you have one) and budget. Have a look at the different entertainment options out there (and above) and choose the one that is nearest to your heart.
Cash or gift registry?
Let’s be honest – weddings are pretty pricey. One needs quite a lot of cash if one wants to hire a venue, catering and entertainment. As such, it only makes sense that guests come bearing gifts. Sometimes guests gift the wedding couple cash. Indeed, cash is probably the best gift out there for one can spend it on whatever one wants, including one’s honeymoon. Still, asking for cash is not always socially acceptable which is why most couples make a gift registry.
Pick the transport.
When the wedding reception is over the bride and the groom usually take leave of their family and their friends in hired transport. Of course, the couple could always use their own transport which they use on a daily basis, but where is the fun in that? It is much more exciting to start your new life as a married couple by taking off in a gorgeous vintage car or a limousine. If you really want to turn heads you could also hire a horse drawn carriage. And if you don’t like to do what everyone else does you could always depart on motorbikes!
Pick the wedding favors.
We’re almost at the end of this quiz and so it is probably about time we picked some wedding favors. Wedding favors are small gifts that the bride and the groom give to their guests. It is a lovely way to let your guests know that you appreciate them and that you are thankful that they took the time out of their lives to be there for you on your very special day. Wedding favors can be either purchased in store or online or they can be handmade by the bride herself.
Pick the honeymoon destination.
No matter how fun and exciting the wedding ceremony and the wedding reception are, most brides and grooms are only too happy when their big day is over. It’s not that they didn’t enjoy it – they don’t call it the best day of your life for nothing. It’s just that weddings are pretty stressful so it is only when a wedding is over that the bride and the groom can reflect on it and finally relax. And of course, there is no better way to do the latter than by leaving your ordinary life behind and going away, if only for a little while.
Leave for honeymoon the next day or sometime in the future?
After the wedding reception is over it is common for newly married couples to take off. Some of them go straight to the airport whereas others go home to pack. The next day they usually leave for a romantic getaway or an exotic adventure. Of course, not all couples go on a honeymoon straight away. Some of them have no money left over from their wedding whereas others are too busy with work. As such, some couples end up postponing their honeymoon.