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Wedding planning tips. A post by Elena Popa Photography – Wedding Photographer in the South of England.

It’s the start of a new year and the perfect opportunity to write a blog post on wedding planning tips.

Despite the fact that the majority of my couples like to throw chilled out, informal parties where guests can let their hair down and just have a fab time, stress is something most people deal with at one point or another during the wedding planning stages.

Having thrown together a wedding party myself last summer, and looking back on everything, I’ve come up with a few wedding planning tips that can help relieve the stress and save you some time on your wedding day. Because maximising party time is what it’s all about!

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1. Forget about the details

Let go of getting the very last tiny details perfect. I know it’s all well and easy to just say it’s going to work out in the end – but it’s so true! When the wedding planning is done and the day arrives, you’ll be so pumped full of adrenaline and happy feels that all those little details you were fretting about getting just right, will feel like a thing from an alternate universe.

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2. Trustworthy wedding suppliers

Hire suppliers with stellar reputations. Simply knowing that you’ve got a team of reliable, professional people behind you who will make wedding planning a pleasure can massively help with stress.

Doesn’t Olga look amazing? It’s all about that natural light – read my tips on how to get amazing wedding photos here.

3. Make your own choices and wedding traditions

Don’t let yourself get pressured into dated traditions you don’t feel comfortable doing. Don’t want to cut the cake? Leave it out of the schedule. Don’t like the idea of being ‘given away’? Pull a Meghan, or walk down the aisle with your other half. Always take people’s suggestions politely of course, but in the end it is your day and your decision, and you should be able to feel happy about it years down the line.

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4. Cushion: money

It’s so easy for wedding costs to spiral out of control when there’s so much choice and we want it all! You should definitely set a budget for your wedding outgoings, but it’s always a good idea to plan for a little bit extra just in case an unexpected cost comes along. 

5. Cushion: time

A wedding planning tip some people overlook is to add a bit of extra time around events when putting together your wedding schedule. Things always run a bit late on a wedding day. If it normally takes 12 minutes to drive from your house to the venue, round it up to 20 in case there’s traffic. If you think portraits will take 20 minutes, write down 30 in your schedule. This extra time will allow you to savour every moment of your special day to the fullest.

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6. Have a Wedding FAQ page

Put all the details down on a website as well as the invitation pack for your guests. There will always be someone who’ll come to you with questions about accommodation or taxi pooling. Having an FAQ list on your website you can link them to every time a question arises can take a lot of the stress away and save you lots of time (include locations, dress code, colour scheme, present choices, taxi numbers, underage policy, your pet’s names, food allergies, and any other wedding planning tips you can come up with).

7. Minimize travel time and number of locations

This is probably my favourite of all wedding planning tips. If possible, it’s always a good idea to get ready as close as possible to the ceremony venue. This will reduce travel time and the likelihood of stressful situations to occur – like traffic jams. Plus, there’s almost always an Airbnb nearby! There are also lots of all inclusive venues, which provide accommodation, have a marriage licence and cater for party- so you don’t have to worry about booking lots of different venues and suppliers. Plus there’s no travel involved on the day!

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8. The group shots

To save time during group shots, have a bridesmaid or usher armed with the group shot list and ready to gather people (make sure the photographer has the list too). By the time you’re done with these shots your face muscles will start to cramp up from all the smiling. So you could also assign a drink and purse holder to make things run more smoothly.  Less time spent on group shots, more time to party!

9. Delegate and get cracking!

Probably the mother of all wedding planning tips! Divvy up tasks with your bestie and your other half and get those to do lists going! There’s really no reason why you should be doing this on your own. I absolutely love using Trello for lists, it’s such a great tool for getting organised. Bonus – it’s free!

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Want more wedding tips? Find out how to make the most of your wedding photography here.

Thinking about having an engagement photoshoot? Here’s all the reasons why I think you should go for it!

Elena Popa – Surrey wedding photographer – for the wild at heart, the free spirits, the hopelessly-in-love. I’m an alternative wedding photographer travelling all over the UK to shoot creative couples and their non-traditional weddings.

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