And, check! With the last to-do on your checklist complete, you're finally done with wedding planning. You've got the dress, the venue, and the reception has been planned to the last detail. So now you just sit back and relax until the big day, right? Maybe not exactly.
While you should definitely take a little break if that's what you need, and congratulate yourself for having everything organized and under control, it seems there are always a few things that pop up and demand attention when you least expect it. To prevent those panic moments leading up to -- or worse, on -- your big day, we've compiled a list of 10 things easily overlooked along the way to wedded bliss. For our complete list including these items in a printable PDF format, check out the Happily blog.
List it out
Having organized lists on the big day can save many a headache for all involved. We recommend creating several in one central packet you can distribute to the wedding party, important family members and your coordinator and vendors. Include:
• A list of EVERYTHING you will need to bring with you the day of the wedding such as your marriage license, items required for your ceremony, shoes, undergarments, men's socks, etc.
• A vendor contact list so you have everyone's numbers at your finger tips. Give one to the groom, your MOH and Best Man, as well as both sets of parents. Vendors should also have the contact info of each other, the venue, any point people on your side other than you, and your coordinator.
• Your timeline for the day for the wedding party and vendors, including their arrival times, time for speeches, first dances, and how you'd like the day to unfold. Make sure that you introduce your vendors to one another too just in case they need to chat beforehand.
• A list of items that you want to be sure to collect from the ceremony and the reception at the end of the night such as pictures, candle holders, centerpiece items, etc. Make sure to label them and provide the list to the person who is responsible for clean up or holding them safely for you until you return from your honeymoon. Don't forget to make sure you know who is responsible for clean-up at the end of the night to ensure you don't encounter any unexpected charges from the ceremony site or reception venue.
Pull it together
Organize items you will need to bring with you the day of the wedding, and have them packaged together and labeled for ease of use. For example:
• Pack a box of getting-ready necessities like safety pins, tissues, makeup remover, Q-tips, hair pins etc. for the bridal party to use the day-of.
• Set aside items that you want to have placed out by your wedding coordinator or your venue contact such as pictures, toasting flutes, cutting knives, etc. Drop off the evening of your rehearsal if they will allow it.
• Buy (or have a bridesmaid/groomsman/family member buy) champagne, water, and food for getting ready/after-party.
• Decide how much you want to tip vendors and fill labeled envelopes with cash. Bring extra envelopes and cash with you on the big day for tips that you may have forgotten about. Give these to someone you trust in your wedding party or your wedding coordinator to distribute at the end of the evening or after services have been rendered.
• Pull together hotel welcome bags for your guests if people are traveling a long way. This can include a personalized note, some snacks, maybe some adult beverages as well as things to do around the area.
• Purchase items for the bathroom baskets at the reception venue so your guests will have everything they need to be comfortable and they will feel taken care of. Items for baskets include:
Women's Bathroom: Bobby pins, hairspray, lint roller, gum/mints, spray deodorant, clear nail polish for pant hose runs, stain remover towelettes or pens, double-sided tape to help dresses stay in place or fix a fallen hem, mini sewing kit, bandaids, mini first-aid kit, Neosporin, anti-cling spray, antacids, Ibuprofen, tampons/sanitary napkins, tissues, face blotting tissues to remove oil on people's faces, q-tips, hand lotion, eye drops, super glue (for broken heels), safety pins, nude and black panty hose, candle for the bathroom (pick a light and fresh scent), earring backs
Men's Bathroom: hairspray, gel, lint rollers, gum/mints, men's spray (not too overpowering), stain remover towelettes or pens, sewing kit, mini first-aid kit, antacids, Ibuprofen, tissues, eye drops, safety pins, candle for the bathroom
With some simple pre-planning you can ensure a smooth and seamless wedding, free of unwelcome surprises (the ones you can control, anyway. We can't help you plan to avoid the rain!)