Stress-free Wedding Day Recipe
aka practical tips to ensure a relaxed and smooth experience on your wedding day!
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Your bridesmaids, groomsmen and your family are there to support you. On the wedding day things may run slightly crazy. You should not be the person to worry that day, organise taxis, deal with emergencies, direct guests to their hotel/parking/venue etc. You may think people will jump to help on the day, but it may get overwhelming with lots of helpers but without clear roles assigned. Nominate a trusted person to direct any queries to, hand over the phone, to lessen last minute panic and to take any pressure away from you.
Make a plan and a list of things to take care of. Delegate tasks to your wedding party members. One person can look after your bouquet (it can get left behind in a rush!), another to be assigned to look after your dress and veil when you walk and arrange it as needed when you arrive at the altar etc. Ask someone to carry your purse with essentials like make up to touch up (do not forget to buy a sample or make up of the same shade as your pro make up that day), tissues, hygienic products, deodorant, mini-hairspray etc.
Find someone to coordinate and usher guests during the day and for group photos. Best man and groomsmen are not there only to make fun of you during speeches – assign clear roles to each of them. Make sure they know how and where to step in and what would you like them to help out with e.g. if it rains, hand out or protect you with umbrellas, be point of information where toilets, exits, taxi numbers are,
Hire on a day wedding coordinator/helper if you have lots of dry hire suppliers – they are invaluable and will free you from any headaches and constant supervision! If you cannot, make sure to ask somebody from your closest family/wedding party to be their point of contact.
Share the timeline with key people and ask for help to make the schedule run smoothly.
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Have your dress and hang and out of any packaging the night before. Prepare your accessories, shoes, underwear, make up, small purse for essentials on the day, tissues, small sewing kit, plasters, favourite perfume to be ready to use the next day. Do not forget to carefully remove any labels including the soles of your shoes.
Do you need any help getting the dress on? If you have complicated dress with a corsage – does your helper know how to tie it the way it should be? Ask bridal shop in case of any worries and practice before.
Do you know who goes first for make up and hair? Make a list so there is no confusion and you are not the last one! If you need to have rollers in, put yourself first and then get the make up done while your hair is drying.
Prepare an easy to remove top like a dress shirt, or a robe for bridal prep.
Is your suit and shirt pressed or needs touch ups? Do you have an iron in your room and if you feel you do not want to risk it doing it yourself will there be anybody to help on the day? It is worth having a spare shirt and my advice is to avoid close shave/razor shave close to putting it on. Why? Those hands might be less stable. Small cuts might open during tie assembling session (see below) and stained collar is the last thing you need to worry about. It happened.
Do you know how to tie a tie, bow-tie (spare one is worth having as those straps are delicate) or cravat if you wear one? If not, find tutorials on you tube and practice before hand.
I find this is the most stressful point for many men – what might look easy, without a bit of practice may actually turn into a task!
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3. GET A GOOD NIGHT SLEEP
Comfy bed and early bedtime will help to get a good night of sleep ahead of your big day. Anxious? Worried? Try Lavender oil, meditation/relaxation music, and ear plugs! Treat yourself to a long bath.
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4. DO NOT FORGET TO EAT
It is common to feel no hunger but make sure to have a good and filling breakfast. There is a long time before you will sit down for a meal and lots will happen meantime. You will need the energy! Porridge, bananas and protein snacks are great source of fuel.
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5. YOUR SQUAD
Are you an introvert or a social animal? Think how many people and who will be present with you during the preparations. Surround yourself with people that you need and will be helpful there. Remember you will have additional few people (Make Up Artist, Hair stylist, Photographer, Videographer) and the room may fill up pretty quickly. If you do have ANY errands, supervision or last minute decoration duties make sure you know what you are doing when and by when you have to finish to get ready on time.
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6. PLAY MUSIC AND HAVE FUN
Prepare a playlist of your favourite pick me up or calming songs. Make sure to have fun with your friends and family. It will help to calm any tension or anxiety you may have and get you in a mood for the best party of your life. Do not forget to bring portable speakers with you too and a bottle of bubbly if you fancy a toast with your squad!
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7. TIMELINE AND EXTRA TIME
Aim to finish preparations 15min before you must leave for the ceremony. This will give us a few minutes with you to take some pre-wedding portraits. It is also a buffer for when things run late. Your family and bridesmaids/groomsmen should be ready ahead of you. If you are planning to hand any gifts over, do a first look, have a reveal to your father/mother, or have some family photos then, ADD more time and tell us ahead.
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Check travel conditions ahead of the day and plan accordingly assuming traffic conditions for that time of the day – Saturday traffic is always heavier than weekdays. Pre-book taxis (in Central London black cabs are great as they speed through bus lanes) and if you plan to catch one on the day, see point 1 above and delegate this job to someone else.
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Take (or see point 1- delegate) your flowers out of water at least 30 min before the departure time and wrap stalks in paper towels to dry. You do not want any wet patches on yours or bridesmaids’ dresses. If you intend to carry your bouquet in front of you for the entrance, keep your hands at belly button level and your elbows slightly away from your body. When we feel stressed we have a tendency to ‘hide’ behind the flowers so this will help to remember. Who will have and pin boutonnieres in the morning? Ask the florist how to do it. I usually get to help with it as it is not as easy as it might seem!
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Break in your shoes ahead of the wedding and practice walking if you do not normally wear this type of shoes. Worth having some emergency plasters on you anyway or spare shoes for later!
In case of bad weather bring wellies/spare shoes with you so this will not spoil an opportunity for wedding photos (giant umbrellas too!). Heel protectors are also great idea if your venue offers garden use, there is gravel or muddy grounds. Note there are different sizes for different type of heels.
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RELAX and ENJOY – you are getting married!
Not everything may go according to your plans, and that is ok! Do not fret about small things and remember, your guests will not notice anything anyway. They come to witness your declaration of love and celebrate with you so put a smile on your face and enjoy being with your family and friends.
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