Indie Bride Journal - The Wedding Planning Experience
You'd think that planning your own wedding when you're a wedding planner wouldn't be easy, with so much to decide and ideas whirring away all the time. However, much like her beautiful wedding planning and styling business, Anemone, Martha, our Indie Bride ,is cool, calm and totally collected.
On today's Indie Bride Journal post, Martha tells us how the wedding planning is really going.
Enjoying the Wedding Planning Experience
One question I get asked a lot these days is: How’s the wedding planning going? And the honest answer is: Brilliantly! I am really enjoying the whole process and a little surprisingly so is Alistair. It’s not stressing us out and it’s not taking over our lives. We are the epitome of cool, calm and collected. (I’m aware I may regret this smugness later!)
I know I have a bit of an advantage being a wedding planner by profession but honestly, that’s just part of it. A lot of it’s down to mindset and a bit of self-discipline. Wedding professionals are not immune to the inner bride or groomzilla taking over, nor can we completely avoid the family dramas that can often go hand in hand with wedding planning. I am a firm believer that if you can, try to make the wedding planning process a positive and happy experience for yourself and your partner. Yes, there will be outside forces that throw up challenges but ultimately how you experience the lead up to your wedding can be controlled and managed by you.
My philosophy when it comes to planning our wedding is this:
Pace yourself. Be positive. Dedicate time. Be real.
Which is also what I recommend to any couples looking to work with me as a wedding planner and stylist.
When we got engaged in November 2017 we loosely discussed a winter wedding for sometime around the 1st year anniversary of our engagement. The idea was mainly driven by me, who after waiting for what felt like an age to be engaged (sorry Al!) was a bit impatient to get married. However, when we were honest with ourselves it was quite clear that we were both picturing a spring/summer celebration. I love the idea of a rich and cosy winter wedding but in reality, I spend the winter mostly hiding indoors in huge cardigans; the cold and dark days do not suit me.
One of the big benefits of holding out for late spring 2019 ( we are all confirmed for May 25th!) is that it gives us plenty of time to plan our perfect wedding. We aren’t having a huge wedding or a lavish affair but as I may have mentioned before we are detail oriented people. Any old furniture will not do for the reception and you can guarantee many hours will be spent researching sourcing or creating all the styling elements that go into our final look.
Currently, we try to research and confirm one major wedding element a month. In April we finalised our ceremony and reception venues; we’ll be married in our local Hackney Town Hall, a stunningly restored art deco building and our reception will take place at Core Clapton, an amazing light yoga and wellness space on the road we rented our first flat together. In May we settled on a photographer and signed the contract (look out for my next post on finding a wedding photographer). Then last week we met with a potential caterer for our wedding. It feels great to be ticking off our to-do list without it taking over our lives.
Although, I will admit that we make it easier on ourselves to make decisions because we try to be realistic about the options. There is the wedding we would have if money was no object, and then there is the wedding we are having because that is what we can afford. It’s not that we have had to compromise an awful lot, it’s more that we have had to be creative in order to have the wedding we want within the budget we have. This involves a lot more research, more DIY elements, looking for collaborative opportunities and putting more budget into our priority areas and less into others.
I know you may have a vision of what your dream wedding would be but if it’s not within your real budget then you need to accept it’s not going to happen exactly how you imagined. As soon as you set realistic expectations and goals for your wedding, the more fun and enjoyable the wedding planning becomes. If you obsess over something you simply can’t have you are only going to give yourself heartache. The budget friendly version of your dream wedding doesn’t have to be any less special, you just have to be more innovative and promote a positive mindset so you can appreciate the great options you do have.
With wedding season getting into full swing I am busier than ever and simply won’t have much time to dedicate to planning our own wedding, as my client’s weddings take priority. So we find it helps to set aside ‘wedmin’ and planning time where we dedicate a few hours just to our wedding planning. This might be on a Saturday afternoon or a Monday evening but the aim is we just focus on this. We’ll have a glass of wine, discuss our ideas, get excited about our plans and do the less fun but very important stuff like updating the budget. I love these little planning sessions, not only does it fuel my love for ticking off the checklist ( I can’t help the planner in me) it also reminds us why we are getting married, how much we love each other and how crazy excited we are about it all!