Wedding planning can be the best fun but it can come with its fair share of heartache as well – from trying to please people and staying on top of a budget to tackling quite possibly the longest to-do list you’ll ever encounter. But you’re not alone – lots of wedding couples have come up against the same hurdles and challenges and have come out on the other side with amazing tales, incredible videos and photos and of course shiny new rings to show for it! So today we’ve got some brilliant wedding planning advice from the couples who’ve been there themselves… our real wedding couples share tips and advice with us week in, week out, so we’ve rounded up their words of wisdom. Check out some great tips and advice below…
The couple: Amy & Ger Hughes
Our piece of advice for other couples… We had a small budget as we weren’t intending to get a loan, so everything was done with a budget in mind. I think if you plan early and shop around you can create a beautiful wedding that doesn’t cost a bomb. It’s the small things/touches you pick up that don’t cost a fortune that can make a wedding. I made our favours, they were Xmas baubles in gold gift bags with our names handwritten on each bauble. A cheap alternative but very thoughtful, our guests loved them. Don’t let planning a wedding stress you out, it’s to be enjoyed. I didn’t let anything stress me out, I embraced it. It’s one day and it’s your day, so do it your way, and enjoy it.
The couple: Jana Alexander & Benjamin Land
Our advice to other couples… Pick comfortable shoes! I had to change mine halfway through the day (Jana)!
The couple: Lisa Callan & John O’Sullivan
Our piece of advice for other couples… Don’t stress, things will go wrong but you won’t give them a second thought. All of your family and friends have made the effort to see you and your perfect partner get married, they won’t know about a small detail that has been missed out. Take it all in, don’t allow it to go too fast.
The couple: Helen Malone & Noel Nagle
Our piece of advice for other couples… Ignore all the hype that can come with the lead up to weddings about the “must haves” and what “to do” and “not to do” and just remember it’s about you and your groom and you can have whatever kind of wedding suits you both.
The couple: Helen Murphy & Philip Kinsella
Our piece of advice for other couples… is get up an hour before you had planned on getting up! The day goes so fast and even if you think you have plenty of time to get ready, the morning flies and it’s so much fun you lose track of time. Enjoy every moment of it because it really is the fastest day of your life!
The couple: Roseanne Dunne & Emmet McQuillan
Our piece of advice for other couples… Make the day about the both of you. We found it was extra special because both Emmet and I planned everything together. Include each other and listen to each other’s ideas. There were some things that Emmet suggested and I wasn’t sure at first, but now I would really have regretted not doing them. Brides can sometimes get caught up in how they imagined the day would be and forget that it’s equally important for the groom.
The couple: Genevieve Conroy & Ronan Power
Our piece of advice for other couples… don’t sweat the little things. It seems that we can become so consumed with every little detail of our wedding day. It is easy to forget the reasons why we are there in the first place! Love every minute of your special day together. Cherish those who wish to share your moment with you. Truly take it all in. There is no better feeling in the world!
The couple: Rachel Heffernan & Thomas Brereton
Our piece of advice for other couples… find a really good hotel with a good wedding coordinator. That is half the battle, trust me! Get that dress you fell in love with, the make-up artist and hair stylist is going to be expensive when you mention the word wedding but trust me, twill be worth it especially if they are amazing. PS – Have a fab day, don’t stress over little things remember, it’s yer day, enjoy it, yer paying enough for it.
The couple: Aisling & John Byrne
Our piece of advice for other couples… Don’t get hung up over the small details, I fussed and fussed over flowers and my florist grew some of my flowers in her own back garden as I couldn’t get the ones I wanted anywhere. I loved them but I honestly don’t think anyone really noticed them. I stressed over trying to make my own menus/seating plan/favour cards and I think most of which went unnoticed. And as hard as it can be, try to relax, the day goes so fast and if you’re not thinking clearly, it goes by in a blur. Try and enjoy every second of it and don’t fret over time… it’s your day, people wait for you. Also, get a videographer. We only decided a month or two beforehand to get one and I am so glad I did. You’re spending a lot of money on your day, what’s an extra few hundred to be able to watch it again? You will want to see it and I have heard so many people say not getting one is their biggest regret.
The couple: Ashley St. Claire & Michael Funchion
Our piece of advice for other couples… Don’t worry what others may think on the day and if they are going to judge anything. For us we wanted ‘fun, food and drinks’ to be the main elements of the day. I really wanted to make it have a personal touch by personalising as much as I could but knowing I won’t make everyone happy, we just tried to relax and enjoy it all, which we did. It really is the best day of your life so enjoy it – that time you have in the car between the wedding photos/church and the reception venue is such a great time to catch up with your new husband, have a drink, relax and enjoy each other as it just speeds up the moment you arrive at the reception.
The couple: Kelly & Gavin Kenneally
Our piece of advice for other couples… Stop to take in as many moments as you can – the day will fly by! And if things get stressful during the planning process, just remember that as long as you have each other, nothing else matters. Don’t get caught up in trying to make everything perfect – it will be, no matter what.
The couple: Ciarán Malone and Fionnuala Malone
My piece of advice for other brides… Do little bit as you go along because there is a lot to do in last few days. Get a videographer, we loved our videographer Rob Clifford and we treasure the video of our day. My attitude to the wedding was that it was just a big party for family and friends and any decisions we made were made on the basis, ‘is this going to add to the party or is this just going to stress us out?’ If it adds to the party, it’s in, if it’s just a stress, it’s out. Make a conscious decision when you wake up in the morning just to enjoy every minute.
The couple: Robert Murphy & Miriam McDonnell
Our piece of advice for other couples… Give yourself plenty of time the morning of the wedding to sit back and enjoy yourself! You can have a giggle with your bridesmaids, have a glass of bubbly and some food and enjoy having your hair and makeup done the best it will ever be!
The couple: Louise & Joe Henderson
Our piece of advice for other couples… My advice to all brides out there would be to not be too fussy about every little detail. I was, and half of the things I stressed out about went unnoticed. Be fussy about the main things i.e. venue, photographer, dress, hair and make-up etc… Also to try live in the moment, the day goes so fast, you want to try and remember as much as possible.
The couple: Clair Barry & Will Twinn
Our piece of advice for other couples… Getting stressed out will ruin your day, do as much as you can as far in advance as you can so there isn’t anything left to the last minute. Once you book your suppliers, i.e. Photographer, Video, Venue, trust them as they want to do a good job as much as you want everything to be perfect. I would have been lost without the help and advice from the suppliers I used and literally everything went to plan.
The couple: Sharon & Tadhg Cronin
Our piece of advice for other couples… my favourite motto for the time planning the wedding was “I don’t HAVE to do anything!” Lots of people give you advice which is great but then you hear a lot of “you have to do this” or “you have to do that” and I disagree, it’s you and your partner’s wedding, do what you like. If you are not into cakes then don’t get a cake, if you don’t want to wear a wedding dress then don’t wear a wedding dress! It is too important a day to have regrets so don’t have any!
Then when it comes to the day itself, don’t panic or stress. Try to sit back and enjoy the ride, there is nothing more you can do at this stage. The professionals will do their jobs so just let them at it! If anything does go wrong then it will just be that funny story that you tell after the wedding. As long as you and your loved one are there and get married, that’s all that matters.
The Couple: Philippa White & Conor O’Dowd
Our piece of advice for other couples… Try not to do ‘everything’ yourself – Delegate! And enjoy every moment of the day, it’s too late to change anything.
Our piece of advice for other couples… enjoy the day! Don’t waste your wedding day pleasing everyone else. Do what makes you both happy and if that’s dancing the night away on your own, then so be it. It’s not up to you to make sure other people enjoy themselves, that’s up to themselves. Also it’s only one day! Don’t sweat the small stuff; I forgot loads on the day and it didn’t matter. We still finished the day as husband and wife and that’s the main goal of the day.
The couple: Laura & Stuart Fay
Our piece of advice for other couples… I was quite organised which meant I had very little
to do in the week of the wedding. Take help and work on mass booklets etc. in plenty of time to avoid last minute stresses. Myself and my lovely bridesmaids really enjoyed all the pampering and prosecco in the few days running up to the wedding. It really is the best time of your life and it is important to enjoy every aspect of it.