The one wedding tradition that I was totally on board with.
In my post about the wedding, I shared some of my favorite pics from the wedding. We literally received over 1,000 of photos from our photographer and I loved so many of them. I think I posted 300 or so on Facebook. I didn’t just love them because they were pictures of such a glorious and special day, but also because the pictures were amazing. Our photographer seriously did a great job. Everyone said to make sure you were picky about the photographer for your wedding and now I totally get it. Here's why having a great wedding photographer is really important.
1. You'll want the best moments captured beautifully
I will be honest here, you are going to miss a ton at your wedding. That sounds sadder than it really is. You’re nervous and excited. People are asking you a million things. You’re worrying about the caterer, the bar, and every little detail that you want to control. And everything happens so fast. I believe I walked down the aisle and said vows to Mr. T, but honestly I don't remember everything 100%. So you’ll want a good photographer to capture those moments in a beautiful way so you’ll be reminded of how you felt at that very moment.
2. You don’t want to feel like you’re on display
I’ve been to weddings where the photographer is all up in your business. It's hard to have a good time when you're constantly aware that someone is snapping pics. It's also hard to get those really cute candid shots. I seriously didn't notice our photographer at all. There were times I wondered where he was and he was standing right next to me.
3. You want someone who knows what he or she is doing
Our photographer knew how to take pictures of a wedding. He knew where to go on the grounds for shots and how to direct us (and our wedding party and families) on what to do to make great shots. I loved that because we didn’t have to spend 20 minutes getting organized and another 30 actually taking the shots. With so many things already crammed into such a short time and so many things you’ll want pictures of, you want to be able to maximize your time. You also don’t want to have to give your photographer a whole bunch of direction. There’s just not enough time for all of that.
4. You want someone who notices the little details
The people at your wedding are obviously important, but so are all the little details that make your day. The flowers, decorations, cake, food, alcohol, getting ready, the venue. You put so much work into everything. Those are all things that will help you remember everything about the day. And you’ll want to see everything and everyone all together. Our wedding was all about DIY and so much of it was done in pieces so seeing it all together was so amazing. Our photographer also captured so many little details and so many unique moments. I cannot even begin to describe how special it all is (and I don’t really use the word special all that often).
Now, keep in mind that I am saying you good photographer. I am not saying you need an expensive one. Do not (and I repeat do not) automatically eliminate someone because of their price. Be sure to look at their work and set up a meeting so you can see their work in its entirety. Then choose based on what’s the most impressive to you.
Also choose based on who can capture what’s important to you. One thing that was important To Mr. T and me was that we have pictures that weren’t boring and monotonous. We chose our photographer for the way he captured things. His pictures are playful and unique and that was important to us.
All of our pictures are by Kevin Lush. And I hope that these all really capture all of the beautiful photos we have. It was really hard to choose a few. I wish I could share them all.
So Mr. T and I are officially married. I'm not going to lie, it's still all sinking in and I can't believe it's over. We planned our wedding for over a year and now it's done. Just like that. And things are slowly getting back to normal around here. The day was pretty darn amazing though. And I know everyone says that, but it truly was. The weather was beautiful though a bit hot. I felt so incredibly loved and not just because it was our wedding day, but because I truly felt we were surrounded by so much incredible love and support from our friends and family. We are truly blessed in life.
I am actually really glad that we had a wedding. I didn't really want one at first (I've mentioned that before). But, honestly, I'm so happy we had one. I truly am. Weddings are actually kind of awesome. I loved having that day with him and sharing it with everyone we care about. And I am glad that we will have so many amazing memories from the whole weekend for the rest of our lives.
And, of course, I learned a whole lot of stuff about planning and being a bride. So here are few wedding tips for brides to help you while you're planning (and enjoying) the big day.
Order extra envelopes.
Seriously, you'll need them. Even if you think you won't, you will. And you can always use extra envelopes in life.
Make sure your wedding fits who you are as a couple.
Mr. T and I aren't a very stuffy couple. We used funny wording on our RSVP cards and had pulled pork for our dinner. We also added personal touches with our signage and programs to add a little fun and humor. Do whatever you can to make sure people can tell it's your wedding.
Be crafty and be willing to improvise.
We bought all this card stock and then found out it wouldn't work because the ink smeared. Instead of spending $994 on boring ass card stock, I got crafty and used paper we had purchased for other things. It actually turned out way better than the original plan.
Don't get too caught up in having a unique wedding.
There will be at least one person at your wedding that's seen the things you've done. There will also be people who have never seen the things you've done. But, at the end of the day, none of that really matters as long as it's what you want and people are having a good time.
Save money on places that don't matter as much so you can splurge on those that do.
We cut costs on things like signs, programs, etc. so we could splurge on other things. And, honestly, I loved having the opportunity to use my creativity to create so many amazing things for our wedding (I had help from lots of people too). Now that I look back on it, I think there were other places we could have saved.
Be kind and grateful.
Weddings are definitely stressful, but try not to take it out on everyone around you. I'm not sure how good I was at this because there were times that I wanted to pull my hair out. But, really, try to keep it in check as much as you can.
Double, triple, quadruple check your counts and details.
We almost had a minor fiasco when we realized we had given the wrong count to the caterer. We were only off by one so it worked out fine, but could have been worse. And speaking of counts, be sure to include yourself and your groom in the count.
There will be hiccups, but you'll probably be the only one who notices (and the only one who thinks it matters).
No matter how much you plan things will go wrong. We were short napkins. One of our linens was the wrong color. Some of the food was wrong. The sound system had issues. I wasn't even sure if one of my bridesmaids would even make it to the ceremony (she was caught in all the craziness at the Chicago airport). But, at the end of the day, everything turned out just fine and I don't think anyone even noticed.
Take as much of it in as you can.
It's so cliché, but time goes FAST. One moment I was nervous about our first look, then suddenly it was the reception and we were cutting the cake. I actually had a moment where I forgot about our first dance because everything was happening so fast. I had to seriously stop and remind myself to take in all of the moments so I wouldn't forget or miss a thing.
Seriously. Have. Fun. Don't get too caught up in all the perfection of everything that you don't enjoy yourself. Just focus on how you feel and enjoy yourself. In the beginning I was worried about the bar, the music, the food, my lipstick, and probably a few other things. But Mr. T (and others) reminded me that people were having fun so all was good. Everyone was totally right. I let loose and had a blast. At the end of the night I didn't even remember all those things because I was too busy having a blast.
I really wish I could give you all a play by play of the whole day. But, instead, I will give you a few shots that I love and that really capture how amazing and beautiful the day was. Obviously I can't include everything in this post so be on the lookout for more posts on decor, photography, and so on in the coming weeks. The wedding is totally taking over the blog! All photos by Kevin Lush.
Picking bridesmaids isn't that easy for everyone in the world. Sometimes you have 23 close friends. Sometimes you have 3 sisters and another 7 gals that are like sisters since you've known them since 2nd grade. Or your hubby has a list of ladies he'd like you to have in your wedding party. It can get downright difficult and even a little dramatic in some cases.
When you're planning a wedding, it's normal to want something unique. Something unlike everyone else's. But letting yourself get all caught up in that is a recipe for disaster.