Celebrity wedding planner and Wedding Paper Divas style partner Mindy Weiss is back on the blog with some advice for real couples planning their big day. Mindy is the leading wedding planner to the stars with over 20 years of experience planning weddings and events for Hollywood personalities like Jessica Simpson and Eric Johnson, Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi, and more.
A few weeks ago, Wedding Paper Divas and I hosted a really fun Instagram sweepstakes where I was able to help real couples solve a wedding planning conundrum. It was so difficult to pick the winners since everyone had such great questions. Wedding planning can be tricky, after all!
Below are my video answers to the winners’ dilemmas plus a few extra tips for you. I know many of you are facing similar issues in your wedding planning process, so I hope some of this advice will keep things running smoothly.
Cassidy asked: “I’m a crafty lady and would love to make all of my wedding decorations! But is that very smart? Should I make some and not others or just buy everything?”
Incorporating DIY projects into your wedding is a great idea. Guests always love personal touches, but there are certainly some considerations involved. Going all DIY can be pretty stressful and is often not realistic, so I recommend DIY-ing some meaningful items but not all. Don’t overwhelm yourself! Any fresh flowers, for example, should be outsourced if possible since arrangements and bouquets can’t be prepared too far in advance. The last thing you want to worry about the night before your big day is arranging centerpieces! Food is also a perishable that should be left to the pros.
Things like favors, signage and accents for your tablescapes are all great DIY options and are a fun, budget-friendly way to add a little personality into your decor. Just be sure to start well in advance—timing is everything! Set aside small chunks of time every day or every week to work on these project rather than tackling everything at once. And don’t forget to ask your friends, family and wedding party to help. They’ll likely be more than happy to get their craft on!
Keeping Guests Engaged
Teresa asked: We are interested in having alternatives to dancing during our wedding reception. What are your favorite fun alternatives?
If dancing just isn’t your thing, there are lots of fun options for you! The important thing is to keep your guests engaged. Play a quirky video about how you met, relationship stories or even the planning process leading up to the big day. Have a few friends from your wedding party prepare a great, engaging speech. Invite some sort of entertainer or comedian to keep the energy up. You can also prepare other small activities to keep guests entertained and encourage mingling throughout the rest of the night. Think a cigar bar, themed photo booth, or a DIY dessert bar. Think you have some brave guests? Set up a karaoke station! And these are activities you can offer even if you are planning on dancing that will keep the party going for those guests that don’t particularly enjoy boogying down.
No matter what activity you choose, the goal of the event is to celebrate your love story. As long as you keep your guests involved and entertained, they’ll remember all the most important parts of the day.
Handling All Those Opinions
Meg asked: What is the best way to stay true to your wedding vision while receiving lots of opinions from family and friends?
The fact is, everyone has opinions. Your best friend thinks big, grand weddings are overwhelming while your mother is already planning on inviting the entire town. Listen to everyone’s thoughts, keep an open mind, appear receptive, but do what’s in your heart…and in your budget. Your friends and family are trying to help and are just as excited for your big day—but it’s still your wedding day! Only you and your fiancé know exactly what’s right for you and what is most realistic for your situation.
The most important thing is to stay true to your personalities and your vision so you can look back on everything with few regrets. But do keep listening to all those ideas! You just never know when something brilliant will pop up.
And my biggest tip of all for all of you in the throes of planning? Enjoy the process, despite some of those bumps in the road. This is an exciting time in your life that you’ll look back on for years to come. Have fun!
Click here for more fun posts from Mindy.