Not too many people envision a wedding without automatically having lace come to mind. Sometimes gobs of it. Whether it’s yards and yards of delicate, feminine lace is woven into a beautiful bridal gown and veil, or more subtle touches, such as wedding invitations embellished with lace, very few weddings are without this traditional touch in some capacity. Invitations are created with a lace design or photograph printed on them, an embossed lace design, or even real lace trim. Brides who choose to wear a vintage gown belonging to their mother or grandmother often choose this type of invitation design in keeping with the theme of the wedding. Even the most modern bride more often than not chooses to include a few touches of lace on her special day.
From the moment of the proposal, most brides-to-be will admit that their mind begins to drift to the details of her dream day. At this point it isn’t yet time for the insanity of all of those details to set in. No, this is the stage where everything is still a fairy tale. Visions of wedding gowns, flowers, bridesmaid’s dresses, possible locations, where to begin? Once a date is set and a venue chosen and secured, getting the invitations out is generally the next step. Most experts on the subject agree that 6-8 months in advance of the wedding is a good time to send them. Choosing the design of the invitations can be done by both the bride and groom of course, but gentlemen, this is a tricky one. We know most of you don’t really care about the design of the invitations. You would be very happy to let her pick them out on her own. And many brides will be perfectly fine with this. However, if your lady truly wants your input, the last thing you want to do is come off with an “It-really-doesn’t-matter-to-me” attitude. I promise, it WILL come back to haunt you. Possibly for many years to come. Here’s a little trick to help you come across as the perfect fiancee/wedding planning partner: Watch her face as you peruse catalogue after catalogue of wedding invitation samples. Her eyes will light up when she sees the perfect one, or at least one of the 30 or so she will like. By paying close attention to her reaction you will be able to respond accordingly when she asks you for your opinion. And be aware that she is not going to ask you if you like something that she DOESN’T like. Not gonna happen. So, take a cue from that and go from there. She will be so happy to discover how “in-sync” you are with all the wedding preparations. Bank those brownie points for later use (wink wink).
The guest list. Big, formal affair? Small, intimate backyard type shindig? There’s only one rule here, and that is this: It is YOUR wedding, it should be exactly what YOU want. That includes the people on the guest list. It’s very easy to get guilt-tripped into inviting people you barely know or relatives you haven’t seen since the Christmas after you got your braces off. Again, this is YOUR day. There are really no absolutes when it comes to a guest list. I have yet to know of ANY wedding jumping off without at least one or two folks ending up with hurt feelings because they weren’t invited. Understand from the beginning that it is impossible to please everyone and it is impossible not to forget some things. Rest assured that the people who matter most in your lives will be at the top of the list.
The same goes for the bridal party and the groomsmen. Again, an easy area to find yourself guilted into having your third cousin by a second marriage whom you met once 11 years ago as a bridesmaid because you are now somehow friends on Facebook and she’s dropping hints like mad. This one is simple enough: either ignore her hints outright or be very straightforward. Explain to her that due to your large number of immediate family members/friends since school days/fiancee’s family members, there is just no room left for any more attendants, but make sure to add that you are happy that she is able to attend.
Choosing your wedding gown should be one of the most wonderful experiences of your life. I always advise my brides to take at least one person with you to take several photographs of you in each gown you like from all angles so that you can see very clearly and from different persepctives how everything looks once you are out of the bridal shop and you have come back down to earth. You may not be so crazy about that strapless gown once you can clearly see the back straight on and you realize the indentations under your arms are NOT caused by shadows but are, in fact, indentations. Give yourself plenty of time to find THE perfect dress for you. And again, no one has to love that dress except YOU.
Ladies, I cannot give this advice enough. Please give careful thought to your bridesmaid’s dresses. There’s a reason this topic is a long-standing joke. While it is generally impossible to please everyone, it usually doesn’t take much to make everyone pretty unhappy. Yes, it os your wedding day and we have repeatedly stressed the importance of making it what you want it to be, but take just a moment and put yourself in the usually-dyed-to-match-so-think-about-that-too shoes of your friends and family members who will be required to wear whatever you choose. Always keep in mind that there is often opportunity for revenge somewhere down the road with at least one of these ladies. Require her to wear something atrocious for your wedding, and beware what she may have in store for you in a couple of years.
The invitations have been sent out, the church and reception venue secured, you found the dress you’ve always dreamed of and you look like a goddess in it, you decided to allow your bridesmaids to choose their own dresses from among 3 designs. You even remembered to book a caterer, choose and order the most perfect wedding cake ever, you hired a live band AND a deejay for the reception, and now it’s time to relax and await the big day.
Reality is, a wedding is a lot of work, small details, some aggravation, a good bit of stress, and rest assured at least one thing will go wrong at the last minute. But it is YOUR wedding day, it is the beginning of a wonderful new adventure, and all of those things are going to pretty much apply to everyday life. No biggie. You’ve got this. Your wedding is something you will remember forever. Smile a lot, laugh, dance, and love. Those are the most important parts of your special day.