Top Wedding Tips from Just-Married Brides!

December 13, 2023

Stephanie Thomas

We hope the wedding planning journey is treating you well, filled with excitement, laughter, and maybe you’re experiencing just a hint of stress – because, let’s face it, planning the perfect day can be a rollercoaster ride! At The Bride’s List, we’re all about sharing the love and wisdom, and who better to guide future brides than those in our community who recently created their own happily ever after?

So, we decided to turn the spotlight on our fabulous community of brides-to-be, specifically our newly married brides!

We asked them: What’s the best advice you’d give to future brides?

Here are some of their responses:

Splurge on the things that mean the most to YOU. There are so many ways to save on cost but if something is important to you, make the splurge and save elsewhere. Not getting what you truly want can lead to regrets down the road.
— Carina

Don’t let wedding planning steal too much time from you and your partner’s relationship.
— Rebecca

Be careful how much you’re spending! The gifts are not the point of the wedding; but if guests do decide to give you money, you’ll want to use it for your futures or your goals & not to break even from the cost of your big day.
— Kelli

Don’t let anyone bully you into including anything that makes you uncomfortable (like a garter toss or dollar dance, for example). It really is YOUR day, and it doesn’t make you a bridezilla to put yourself first.
— Jaqi

Make a commitment to be by your partners side the entire time (after ceremony and the rest of the night). It’s so easy to be pulled into conversations and thanking people for coming but if you both have that commitment to return to each others side after a conversation is over your memories of the whole day will be with your partner. That includes using the restroom – if they go you go.
— Erin

I’m an older bride who had very involved parents on both sides. My husband and I paid for our whole wedding. With that being the case for so many people – I still had pressure to invite family and friends that weren’t close to us. So anyone going through that- I’d say- it’s your day. It should be full of people that make you and your partner happy. People who understand your vibe and Respect your wishes. We gave our parents parameters in the beginning and kept reiterating them through the process. We didn’t apologize for what made us happy. If someone was unhappy- it was a “them” problem. I considered what input I got, but I took what fit our vibe and dismissed what didn’t. We loved our wedding day and did it our way. No apologies. My family and friends loved the wedding as well.
— Lisa

Take some some after the wedding to just enjoy being married. Whether it be 6 months or 2 years, create a bucket list together, travel or go explore new places, etc. Regular date nights are still so important, and never stop dating your spouse😊
— Kaitlyn

Do your wedding YOUR WAY. The best way to do that is to keep your specific plans to yourself. If people want to help, let them help with small details that don’t necessarily matter as far as the aesthetic goes; let them help with the memory table, or help you put together your invites and writing them out; things like that. That way they’re still involved just not able to give you an opinion because there’s none to be had 🥰 best of luck!
— Dana

Don’t do anything you don’t want to, because other people want you to… don’t invite people you don’t want there. Because other people want you to invite them (aside from your husband, work that one out) stick to what YOU want YOUR day to entail. You won’t get a do over. Enjoy every single second, because it truly goes by so fast. I didn’t want the night to end. 
Biggest piece of advice, give yourself at least 20 min of alone time with your husband/wife to eat a full meal. Do it before your entrance, so you nobody knows where you are. They’ll assume your still taking pictures.
— Kristen

Put a note on your invitation and website “If giving a monetary gift in the form of a check please address the check to either [insert husbands first and last name] OR [insert brides CURRENT first and last name]”. A LOT of guests (especially older guests, don’t realize that banks have become much more strict over the years and the couple cannot cash or deposit checks into their accounts is 1. The bride/ groom isn’t on one another’s bank accounts or 2. The bride isn’t/ or has not yet changed her last name to grooms last name. I currently have 30 checks made out to my first name and future last name and I can’t deposit or cash them until I legally change my name and then change my name with the bank.

Another tip, make sure at least 2 people in your wedding party KNOW and HAVE PRACTICED bustling your dress if you have a bustle. I lost 45 minutes of photos because my mom didn’t watch the video she took at my final try on and nobody knew how to bustle my dress on my wedding day except my coordinator
— Jane

The wedding is about your and your fiancé. Don’t focus on trying to please everyone, because that will never happen. Make sure that you keep yours and your fiancés wishes in mind. Also, the wedding does not come before your mental health, so try to take time to care for yourself, physically and mentally, during the planning phase. Don’t forget, it’s all about your marriage, not your wedding! 🤍
— Maggie

YOUR BRIDESMAIDS ARE NOT SERVANTS. No need to treat them like crap when they have their own lives to live.
— Dino

#1 — Never feel bad about expecting the best out of people you hire. It’s you (or your family’s) hard earned money and you spent months of your life picking the best that you can afford. You will never get those memories or that time back with your loved ones. 
#2 — READ READ READ your contracts. Don’t feel weird about asking questions or holding your vendors to what’s in their contract. They will absolutely hold you to what’s required of you.
— Amanda

Choose your Bridal Party wisely. To give context to this :
We had a tent set up for our wedding in the event that it rains. The reception was inside the venue, but we wanted to be married outside. The day of the wedding, it downpoured. So much so, that our tent site flooded. My bridal party arrived before I did (as they were scheduled to) and saw that the tent was not usable. So they all took it upon themselves to pick up all decor, broke down and then re-set up the arbor, and brought all flowers inside the venue and quickly made decorated inside for the ceremony. When I arrived, they were just finishing up. I had no idea that they had done this. Some of them were soaked at their feet and dresses.
So in all, choose a bridal party that YOU KNOW would be willing to totally go above and beyond, no matter the cost!
— Nicole

Focus on the love, not the perfection. Your wedding day is about celebrating your commitment, not flawless details. Embrace the moments, and enjoy the journey together.
Prioritize what truly matters to you both, and let go of the rest. It’s your unique love story that makes the day special, not the pressure to meet everyone else’s expectations.
— Rae

Read the fine print to your venues contract, then read it again, then have your mom dad brother sister sisters husband sisters best friend… basically everyone, read it before you sign.
— Jacquelyn

Don’t get too tied up in the small stuff. Yes, it is one of the most special days of your life but it’s special because of the person you are marrying and the people who show up to share in the celebration. Spend the money on things that will add to the experience and preserve the key moments of the day (ex: videographer, photographer, a 360 photo booth, etc.)!
— Maddy

And there you have it, useful advice, anecdotes, and heartfelt tips from the brides who are the heart and soul of The Bride’s List community. From navigating the challenges of seating arrangements to dancing the night away with pure joy, these brides have seen it all. We hope their words have brought a smile to your face, reassurance to your heart, and maybe even a few “aha” moments as you plan your own dream day.

A massive thank you to all the wonderful brides who contributed their insights! Your words will undoubtedly serve as beacons of guidance for brides-to-be everywhere. If you’d like to be a part of our online wedding communities, you can find our list of groups on this page – join one or join them all! We can’t wait to support you during this exciting time.

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