Confessions of a recent bride…or….the top ten things to make your wedding day go smoother.

photos by Johnny Alvarado

I got married a few days ago.

In the 30 years I've been in the wedding business, I've literally done over a 1000 weddings.  You would think I would have it down by now.

Nope.

There is something about being a bride.....

I've long known that brides leave their brains at home when they get married.  It is part of their charm.  I've learned to take care of them, and I enjoy that part of the job.

I didn't think I would leave my brain at home on my wedding day, but I did.  So, to help you on your own wedding day, I've compiled a list of things to help make your day go smoother.

  1. Make a list of things to do, at least a week ahead of time.  Make sure you put on that list things like "don't forget the wedding license!"
  2. Print that list out, and copy it into the notes feature on your phone.
  3. Pack or lay out what you are going to wear to the wedding at least a day in advance.  Also make sure everything in ironed.
  4. Get help.  This is what maids of honor are for.  In my case, my maid of honor was a horse.  She wasn't much help.  But, my hairdresser is a long time friend who is also in the wedding business.  She pretty much served as maid of honor as well as doing my hair and makeup.  She's the one who reminded me of everything I needed to do.  Your helper need not be your maid of honor, but it should be someone who can keep calm on the wedding day, and remember everything that needs to be done.
  5. Don't skimp on hair and makeup.  I've been doing weddings, like I said, for 30 years.  I'm also a photographer, and  have been trained in how to do makeup so it is camera ready.  Hair and makeup is not something you should do yourself on the wedding day.  Give yourself the gift of being pampered.
  6. Eat properly and get plenty of rest for at least a few days leading up to the wedding.
  7. Do not skimp on professional photography.  It costs more than you think, be prepared for sticker shock.  But those images are important.  I used someone whose work I know, because he has worked for me for several years.  I'm already enjoying his work, and some of those images will hang on my wall in our home.  Many have been posted on social media.  I'm using the photos of our friends and family who attended as gifts for them.
  8. Get a massage.  Yep....two or three days before the wedding, get a massage.
  9. Allow twice as much time as you think you will need on the wedding day.  The only thing  that happened in a timely fashion was my hair and makeup.  I showed up on time, she sat me down in her chair and was done with me almost to the minute when she said she would be done.  Everything else took more time than I thought, because....well....HELLO!  I left my brain at  home.
  10. Last but  not least:  don't micro manage.  This is what pros are for, let them do their jobs.  I let Johnny do his job, I let Annette do  hers, I let my minister do hers.  I was just along for the ride, to have fun and enjoy my day, and I did!

I'm a specialist in thinking, and doing, outside the box.  That's why I enjoy this job so much, because I can encourage my brides and grooms, and let them know it is ok to have their dream wedding, no matter what that looks like.  In my case, my dream wedding entailed incorporating my horse and other horses into the mix.  I wanted to get married where I ride.  I wanted lots of the dogs there, including my own.  I wanted only the people I love, and who I know love me and support me, there.  And I didn't want to wear a white wedding dress.  Been there, done that, got the t-shirt.  Plus we were getting married outdoors in December.  I didn't want to freeze.  So, here are a few photos of our day.

My minister told me I not  only went outside the box with this wedding, I tore up the box.  You can too.  Just remember that your brain will likely be home on your wedding day, and allow people to help you.

Hair and Makeup by Annette McCario

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