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Thursday, May 02, 2013

Wedding question: What would you do differently?

My friend Megan and I were chatting the other day about how we loved our weddings, but there are little things we'd change if we had a do-over. Just for fun: What would you do differently if you got married again (to the same person, of course)? Here are some things I might switch up...
Skip the awkward family portraits (no one frames those anyway, right?) and instead join our friends for the cocktail hour!
Plan my speech! Alex and I had decided not to give toasts, but halfway through dinner, I felt so giddy and excited that I lept up and grabbed the microphone. Thus ensued ten minutes of rambling and blubbering. Looking back, it would have been so much nicer if I had written a coherent toast ahead of time, and afterward I kept thinking of things I wished I had said. Alex, of course, somehow stood up and gave the most beautiful speech off the cuff! (Here's a fill-in-the-blank toast and nine couples' funny toasting moments).
Flowing locks are so romantic, like a loose braid or casual ponytail.
I loved my simple J.Crew dress, but I'd take another cue from their models and wear this amazing deep pink lipstick.
My shoes were uncomfortable and I ended up barefoot by the end of the night, so I'd switch it up with cool oxfords under a wedding dress, inspired by this pretty bride.
What a fun idea to serve a cheese wedding cake.
Of course, I'd keep a bunch of things the same, but it's fun to think about what we'd tweak in hindsight!

What about you? What would you do differently if you got married again? Anything you regret? Another friend told me, "I wouldn't get drunk for a start," ha!

P.S. Wedding ideas: Old-fashioned veils, colorful shoes and big kisses? And did you cry at your wedding?

252 comments:

1 – 200 of 252   Newer›   Newest»
Leah PS said...

not a dang thing! our wedding was perfectly, absolutely, without a doubt EXACTLY what we wanted. it was the very best day i wish i could go back and live it again and again. CHEERS!

tragicsandwich said...

I think, "I'd have a smaller wedding," but I can't think of who I would leave out. So I wouldn't have a smaller wedding, after all.

But I would hire a different DJ, because the one we had did not play the music we asked him to, and did a terrible job of introducing the first dance and my dance with my father.

Jaclyn said...

I would not have invited kids. Although I love my nieces and little sister so much, they really distracted me from my other, adult guests, many of whom traveled a long way to come. The little girls dominated the dance floor and were all over me, all night. I've felt the same way at other peoples weddings. Kids running around, going apeshit, circling the bride and the room all night, just kind of takes away from the whole experience.

tragicsandwich said...

Other than the DJ, though, I wouldn't change a thing. But even if I changed everything, all I really needed from the day was to marry Mr. Sandwich. And I did, so why change anything?

thejunkdrunk said...

I wish I would have been less restrictive with our guest list looking back. We missed a few friends who were in our circle but weren't especially close at the time, and now that we're closer I miss that they weren't there.

I also would switch out my DJ and insist that the company send someone over the age of 17 instead. :)

Amy said...

Love your wedding photos.

I would have moved up my ceremony time. I was so worried about guests having to fill time between church and the reception that it made ME feel rushed. We missed out on our cocktail hour and a lot of photo ops because of it. I also wouldn't have gone around to greet every table- had no time to dance! We always say it would have been great being a guest at our own wedding. Still, it was an awesome day!

quinncooper said...

I would have changed my flowers. I thought I didn't care until the day when I got my bouquet and I hate it. I would have used Amy Merrick, whose stuff is just draw droppingly beautiful.
Other than that I would not have changed a thing.
xo Quinn

Quinn Cooper Style

Jacquie said...

I let my sister do my hair, nails and make-up and I did not love how I looked on my big day! We didn't even plan a hairstyle before the wedding. We just woke up the morning of, and she did it in an up-do that was, in my opinion, not my best look ever. You would have thought that I would have learned my lesson from all the times she tried to do my hair while she was in cosmetology school, mixed with the fact, that she was not, and still is not a stylist!

Tracy Carson said...

I have an entire Pinterest board devoted to this! I have been married almost 11 years so I feel ancient when I say that I got married before all social media even existed! My top changes would be to our programs- they were done last minute and not excellent in execution; my jewelery- I did not wear ONE piece and I can't believe someone didn't step in and clue me in; and finally take more pictures before the ceremony so we could enjoy the reception. The absolute one thing I wouldn't change: my choice for a spouse. I love my husband more than I did then and I am so thankful that he is my forever.

Sara said...

I would have stolen away to the San Francisco Courthouse (a far jump from the Midwest, where I live) with only our nearest and dearest, and eloped :) a fantasy for sure!

holtkamp said...

i would do almost everything differently - dress, tuxes, cake, photographer, bridesmaids dresses, favors - but i still love my wedding! kinda wish pinterest was around then :)

shilpishilpi said...

as much as i loved my wedding -- I would have changed so much. Like you, i think what I said about my husband was ramble-y and didn't capture everything i felt, so I also would have spent more time thinking that through. (my husband's was also amazing -- people still mention it more than a year later!) Also: would have taken the preceding Thursday off in addition to Friday, would have used SK-II masks every day for the week before, would have spent more time with my friends throughout the weekend. actually, that's not such a bad list -- the rest was dreamy!

Sarah said...

While our wedding was wonderful the backlash that occurred afterward with some family and friends (they wanted the day about them, not us) has been painful. In hindsight, we wished we had just eloped when he proposed to me in Vegas. Wouldn't have avoided the pain with family and friends as that was going to happen no matter what but at least our wedding wouldn't be associated with that pain.

lauren said...

Ah! I just got married a few short weeks ago, and I am so happy that the only "things" I can think to change would be teeny small details like "oooh, that cute thing from pinterest that I never ended up making". We had tons of dancing, and everyone cheered even though I practically have two left feet. We tweeked little details to make the wedding more "us" and is was totally worth it!

E Mom said...

I wore sandals and should have had a pedicure. And I wish someone had done my husbands hair. Other than that our wedding was wonderful.

Justine said...

I am getting married in 3 weeks, so a big thank you for posting this today :) I will definitely be reading the comments and taking tips!!

Mary said...

Hmm... I would've chosen a color scheme and let my bridesmaids pick their own dresses. Definitely more comfortable shoes. And there were a few people we didn't invite in our efforts to keep it small, and I regret that now. It was a great, great day though, and I wish I could do it again! Maybe we'll renew our vows one day and plan a fun party.

Sheri said...

I would've had a first dance song - my husband and I aren't dancers and didn't intend to have a first dance, but folks insisted and the band chose a song for us. It was Tupelo Honey by Van Morrison - sweet song, but not one that I was even aware of before I was on the floor with my husband on our wedding day.

I also would've made it very clear to my husband that I wanted him to watch me walk down the aisle. I was "hiding" when he came by to go down the aisle (outdoor wedding, no room for me to sneak away to) and my dressmaker scared him half to death when she said "DON'T LOOK BACK!" (meaning at that moment, not for the whole processional). He had his eyes carefully trained on the minister until I came into his peripheral vision. Missed out on that moment of a lifetime, darn it!

Sarah said...

Only one thing - hire a videographer. Pictures are great, but I would love to be able to hear our vows again, my Dad's speech again, see the dance floor erupt when "call me maybe" was played two times in a row, etc...just wish the day could have been captured on film and not just my memory. *sigh*

Nikki said...

I wish we had a videographer! My cousin took some footage himself and made it into a DVD for us, and while I cherish it, it made me realize how nice it would have been to have a professional shoot the day.

Courteney Chronister said...

Our wedding was perfect. It was completely us and I loved every second of it! I only wish we had had someone video the ceremony (even a poor quality phone video) because I couldn't even tell you what the officiant said or the exact words we used. I was in such a giddy haze it is all a blur. I would love to be able to watch it.

Courteney

Christina Johnston said...

I would have eloped in Positano, Italy and came home to have a dinner party with our family and friends that couldn't make the trip. But at the time we couldn't imagine not having all the most important people with us on our wedding day to celebrate with. Maybe we could renew our vows there one day!

ellesees.com said...

I would micromanage my fiance more? (KIDDING! Kind of - he used to tease me for following up/confirming with vendors too often, but the three things that did not go according to plan were the things he was responsible for...ha).

We just celebrated *6 months* and I still remember my wedding as one of the most perfect days yet. I actually would have MORE photos taken. We didn't get the iconic formal me + him portrait, and I'm still kicking myself for not realizing it at the time.

Courteney Chronister said...

I so feel your pain! It makes me sick that we can't go back and listen to the vows and what the officiant said. I tell everyone getting married that even if you think you don't want a video, at least have someone shoot a home video of the ceremony. You are in such a fog and will be so glad to have a video to look back on.

fancyalterego said...

Paid for a professional photographer.

My husband was given the task to hire one, and because he's an awful combination of cheap and picky, ended up letting his brother and a friend of ours take photos instead. Most of the photos from our ceremony had the background in focus, and not us, and the friend who was supposed to talk "getting ready" photos of me forgot and showed up 2 hours late. While the ceremony and reception were great, I'm still a little bit sad that we don't have many decent photos from it. :-/

So a lesson to all of you about to plan your wedding: if you want good pictures, PAY for it. You'll be glad you spent the money on it.

Maiz Connolly said...

That was my first thought, too! Totally perfect.

Gennéa @ Towers Holdings said...

To keep it small, hubs and I invited just our mutual friends (and family) to the wedding. I wish we would have invited our individual friends from pre-marriage.

Now years later hubs has never met some of my friends from pre-marriage because we have always lived out of state. When I go home alone over non-holidays I see them but he still has never meet them because when he is with me it is always a holiday requiring family time. I also think some of them have pulled away because they didn't get invited to the wedding and because it is hard keeping up out-of-state friendships.

kharini said...

Oh Gosh! I would probably pick a different dress, it looks huge now looking back, and those gloves I wore!!! What was I thinking??? LOL. A few little details here and there as well... but the great thing is that I had everyone I love around me.

Gennéa @ Towers Holdings said...

Also, I would have hired a "day of" wedding planner. Doing it all yourself on your wedding day is so stupid. It is awkward to stop mid-dancing at your wedding to pay xyz vendor.

Corrin said...

I wouldn't get married. Is that not an option? :-)

Stella Dobry said...

I would have had dancing. There were some people I didn't invite who I wish I had invited. I would have paid someone to do the flowers and not asked my mom since she ended up spending a gazillion dollars on the flowers anyway. (That was the *one* thing I didn't pay someone else to do & I definitely should have! I am not a DIYer, but my mom has a lot of experience arranging flowers. However, she was flying in from out of town and it ended up being a bigger hassle than either of us anticipated.)

PeaceLvhppnss said...

I wish my last name was Sandwich.

Tracey Seraydarian said...

I'd skip the speech too. It's the one piece of advice i give everybody before they get married. either sketch it out, or skip it. ;)

Gennéa @ Towers Holdings said...

Ditto! So sad those people were't there...

Caitlin said...

I would make sure I made it to that last table to say hello to the guests and would have tried to spend a little more time with my new husband. I barely saw him after dinner!

Katie said...

Ugh. I would have NOT hired a wedding planner. Ours "took charge", as was her job, but directed things in ways that I never would have - causing more stress than relief. Most of the things I would change fall into a category of things I let the planner take care of, rather than handling myself.
I also would have just splurged for the dress I really loved. I wavered and was frugal through the whole process. I like the dress I wore but didn't love it. 3 years later I still wonder about "the dress that got away". Not worth the, maybe $1000 I saved...
If I could have changed the weather, I would! Rain on our outdoor ceremony, boo hoo. Maybe someday we'll renew vows outdoors.
Luckily, the marriage is amazing and I wouldn't change that for anything!

Jenny Nemlekar said...

I wish a hired a photographer for the reception, though we had one for our ceremony. We figured since we had a small wedding and it would be in our home, we didn't need to take professional photos. But looking back, we had so many family members fly halfway around the world to attend our wedding and it would have been nice to have more pictures of all of us dancing and almost caving the floor in. And to photograph all the decor I did for our reception (because I am a photographer, I thought I would have time to photograph my decor, but no one cued me in on the fact I would be crazy busy and stressed preparing for our own reception on our wedding day).

Christina said...

i would have a different dress, shoes, done my hair differently, and have it video recorded. :)

Kate F. said...

I'd get my wedding dress fitted properly! Actually, I'd get a different dress altogether. Sigh.

And I think we'd do a receiving line to make sure we saw everyone who was there.

Finally, I really wish we'd had a real videographer. My father-in-law died suddenly while we were on our honeymoon, and my husband's grandmother died a couple months later. The wedding was the last time everyone was together and we only have about 5 minutes of hand-held video shot by a friend. We are so grateful for that but I wish we had a little more footage of everybody.

primjillie said...

I would pick a different groom! Loved the wedding, hated the marriage.........

Blossy said...

I would have had a DJ or fantastic covers band rather than cheaped out and played playlists from my iPod! It's really hard to get timings and mood of music right when you're doing it in advance.

LKF said...

I would pick different bridesmaid dresses. The MOH picked it out and it only looked good on her! Not great for the 6 other ladies...

Yvonne said...

I wish we hired a professional photographer for our rehearsal dinner party. The setting was beautiful, but it was at night and outdoors so everyone's photos are kind of dark and blurry.

Also, more comfortable shoes.

LKF said...

OH and I wish we had a sweet heart table to eat or ate just the two of us during the cocktail hour.

Virginia said...

Not get too tan (I'm never normally tan), not curl my hair (my hair is normally straight), make my dress a little less low-cut, lose slightly more weight ahead of time (I was stress-eating!), arrange for a few more toasts from family members (awkward moment where no one stood up to make a toast after the best man and maid of honor were done), have a designated person to deal with vendors (not fun as a bride on the wedding day!), videotape the ceremony, and find a couple of moments throughout the day to be on my own and take a breath. After a day being around people, I was overwhelmed. The drinks helped, though! Doing it again, I might have a champagne toast with the girls before my ceremony to calm those nerves!

Kayleigh King said...

Love the pictures of Alex & You! They capture each of your exuberant expressions magnificently!

Kayleigh King said...

Love the pictures of Alex & You! They capture each of your exuberant expressions magnificently!

Lisa Fyfe said...

I would have spent the extra money and hired a wedding planner to help me with the details that day and could have helped me add some more details that go left out because I got overwhelmed with the planning.

Megan F said...

Mostly little things:

1. I would have asked our wedding coordinator to show us a fully set table before the big day. We lived on the east coast but got married in the midwest so we couldn't do that with everything, but I remember saying "ugh" when I saw the place settings at the reception. Too cluttered.

2. Worn different jewelry. I never found earrings that felt like me, so I wore a pair of pave studs and skipped the bracelet I'd intended to wear. In retrospect, drop earrings would have looked so much better.

3. Changed florists. They did great with my bouquet, but the bridesmaids bouquets were browning by the time we got them. Also hated the spreads they did for the church and reception.

In general, I can't believe how well everything went and how much fun we had. Best day ever.

emmy d said...

There are some things I wish had gone differently that I had no control over - I wish my grandmother was able to attend, that I didn't have a blitzing headache the entire reception...

I do wish we had some video - my cousin took a few with her phone and I am so grateful she did because there are many moments I would like to relive! I would have found the correct bra earlier, because after 3 purchases the final actually fit right but you could see the whole top any time I leaned down. Fortunately I didnt' care at all!

I also would have liked to have a primer on how to pose in the formal photos - we didn't do many, but I was grinning like an idiot in all of them and some demure ones would have been nice.

Also would have liked to eat more because all the food was amazing!

Kimber said...

When my cousin got married last summer, he specifically invited our children and their cousins -- and then hired a lovely woman who kept them all wrangled and entertained for the evening. They had their own table, an appealing and healthy kids' menu, and an impressive arsenal of diversions to keep them happy and engaged. It was so unbelievably thoughtful, for all of us! We traveled to participate in the weekend's festivities, and our daughter was the flower girl, so leaving them home wasn't really an option, and finding a sitter in an unfamiliar town would have been difficult. I am so grateful for the thought and expense that helped us all enjoy their special day with such carefree happiness!

Denise Thomas said...

Great question:
I loved our traditional wedding 12 years ago. However, if you ask the question what would I change....

1. I would have had our ceremony at 8pm. Being married in a Catholic church I had 3 choices. 11am 2pm and 8pm. By the time I was planning my wedding all the 2pm times were taken for the entire summer. I wanted 8pm candle light service with a cocktail party after with heavy appetizers. My mother vetoed me. I should have held my ground. 11am was too early for a wedding.

2. A videographer. I would love to have a video of our day...we don't!

3. A colorful pair of kick-ass heels.

4. A larger bouquet. You only hold it for a short time, so it is worth going big on your own flowers!

5. A shorter veil for the reception. [I wore an amazing cathedral length veil, so I had to take it off after the ceremony. I wish I had worn a shorter version later in the day.]

Things I loved: my dress, my veil, the church, and the party that followed! I could feel the love in church and at our reception. Nothing else really matters!

Meredith said...

As a recently engaged girl, I'm reading each of these with care! A videographer seems to be a theme... I hope to make room in our budget for one :)
love your wedding photos, Jo!

Corrie Anne said...

better photographer :/

Emma Palmer said...

Jo,

You give such sweet, insightful advice on so many things. :) I'm about to be the maid of honor for my best friend in the world this coming fall and I am shaking in my boots when I think about giving my toast at the rehearsal dinner. Do you have any toast writing advice?

Thanks,

Emma

Catherine Masi said...

Gosh, it was such a lovely day... so not much to switch out. Would have loved to have chosen my own dress (my brother + sister surprised me with a dress- which I of course wore knowing they thought of me lovingly) and I wish I could have included the friends we met after we got married- such wonderful new friendships. But all else was dreamy.

Amy at Ms. Toody Goo Shoes said...

After just celebrating 19 years of marriage, I would have changed most everything, in hindsight! I would have had more people (we only had 50); spent more for a better photographer, hired a videographer, had a DJ instead of just a piano player, worn a sexier dress. The only things I got right were the venue…and the guy! Oh, and I wouldn't have registered for china and crystal -- does anyone do that anymore?

Sarah Harm said...

I would do these things differently: dress, venue, photographer, shoes, cake, menu, dances, flowers (except mine), people, atmosphere and price. Id probably spend thousands less too.

I would not do these things differently: groom and family.

Kit said...

I would have been WAY more on top of my wedding dress. It sat in a closet a state over for a year and then I didn't try it on until 2 days before the wedding. Surprise! It barely zipped up (had gained 5-10 lbs) and it needed a massive emergency hem that a friend did for free (thank goodness!). Failbot.

I can't precisely pin-point what was eating at me, but I ended up being massively stressed out by wedding planning (I ended up letting my mum do almost everything) and was seriously embarrassed that after our weekend a BUNCH of people told me I had been acting like a crazed, depressed b$@#! for ages before the wedding and they had been super concerned.

I was SO MUCH happier after the wedding when we could just get on with being married. So, I would do away with whatever was causing me to Hulk out and cry a lot. On the up side, our actual ceremony was the best and I wouldn't trade it for anything.

Jess the Mess said...

I would've been stricter on not letting the DJ take requests that weren't on our pre-approved playlists, people pick tacky things at times. Also, I would've had less people around during the day to enjoy my bridesmaids more, although it was still great.

I also would've figured out a way to invite more people, certain friends/family didn't get to come and I still regret that. Somehow I would've breathed more, so I could remember everything, soooo nervous.

More photos should've been taken of my husband and I after the ceremony, but it was AMAZING in a 100 year old mansion, just like a fancy looking, but super fun house party all night!

Jordy said...

We looked carefully for a celebrant, and found a lady that seemed lovely and lots of amazing creative ideas. We chatted for hours and I thought we'd made the best choice for us. On the day, she talked CONSTANTLY about sex (questioned my husband's virility, suggested that the best man's job was to watch us consumate the wedding..it went on and on), I was mortified to the point of being almost hysterical with laughter and I now have the memory of my mother's face (imagine the look you'd have witnessing a car crash). So.. if I had a time machine I'd probably go for the more straight laced cookie cutter guy... instead we have the funny memory :)

Completely agree with cutting out those ridiculous family portraits... candid shots of the cocktail hour would be so much better and far more natural.

Kelly Rae said...

I really loved our wedding. We did not hire a photographer at all :( If I could go back I would hire a photographer to do only candid shots.

Kate F. said...

Keep it short, sweet, and a little funny. Think of one funny anecdote and then follow it with some heartfelt thoughts about why you love her so much. Wrap with a bit about the two of them together and your wishes for their future. Don't forget to actually say something like "Let's raise a glass to Jack and Jill, may you blah blah blah." (So many people forget to close with the TOAST part!)

And try to get it down so you can speak from the heart, without it seeming memorized, instead of reading off cards that are shaking like a leaf in your nervous hands! You'll do great.

dot said...

I wouldn't have waited to see my husband as I walked down the aisle! We were both so anxious we cried. Also, I think I would have worn my hair down (my up-do crashed and burned right after the ceremony). One thing I'd keep, though, would be the cake buffet!

ellesees.com said...

One unconventional thing we did that worked out really well was instead of having a receiving line, we did a (for lack of a better term) "departing" line. We wanted to be able to take photos and still make it to part of our cocktail hour, and didn't want to keep 200+ people standing in a line, so we fled the church right after the ceremony.

Instead, we left our reception during the last song and stood at the door and said goodbye to everyone as they walked out. It was nice to be able to thank everyone for coming, and we could really focus on our guests since we weren't thinking about where we had to be next. It also helped extend the reception a little longer. Just wanted to pass it along!

Lauren said...

Thank you for this great post! I just got engaged a month ago and am planning a wedding for this fall. Such great info in all the comments!

Thank you!!

kathleen said...

oh lord... first and foremost, I wouldn't get the flu (UGH). I could barely taste the delicious mac & cheese bar that we wanted so badly!!

also, I wouldn't have bought the first dress that fit. I would have really looked to find something that suited my personality.

last, I would have made sure that there were lights in our outdoor tent so that our family photos turned out better.

but in general, although I tried very hard, I would have to say that I would adjust my attitude during the whole thing. it's very hard to not get wrapped up in it all - I would have tried to savor every little moment and been even more grateful for all the love!

lisaathome said...

As a woman in her mid-twenties in that stage of "should i or shouldn't i" in regard to all decisions marriage and wedding, the comments on this post are so helpful!

kraken said...

We did almost everything ourselves and I still wouldn't have hired a wedding planner. But I would have hired a day of coordinator. There were too many little things with the few vendors that we did have that I wasn't around to fix because I was getting dressed and we were having our pictures taken. Ex. the waiters didn't pass out napkins with the passed appetizers during cocktail hour even though I bought a ton from ikea, the bartender set up in the wrong place. I think if we had a day of coordinator I could have relaxed and enjoyed the experience more.

kat_e_taylor said...

As someone who is planning their wedding now, this is such a useful post to read (and the comments!). I am hoping to compile an absolutely-must-do-list and pass it off to my planner (I think my first smart move) to hold me accountable.

And left to my own devices, I am sure I will probably ramble on at my own wedding, so writing it all down is going to be necessary (though nerves-inducing) for me!

mfelenyuk said...

We didn't invite any kids just for that reason! one of the things we did right...

I would hurry up with dinner and have more of walking around talking/dancing/mingling time!

Mary D said...

Smaller wedding and def. no bridal party!

J.Mill said...

I would have straight up eloped. The wedding thing wasn't for me and it shows in all of our pictures. I was mad at my MIL to-be the whole time and so frustrated with the frivolity of it all. I'd been to a dozen weddings and I didn't want to be so traditional. I think I did it for my husband and, sadly, I resent him for pushing it.

J.Mill said...

I hear ya on the attitude!

Brittany said...

I loved my wedding, but I would have worn a necklace (I wanted to keep it simple, but in my photos it looks like I forgot my jewelry), and been more specific about what the children who were in my bridal party wore. I told their mother it didn't matter (trying to be flexible and avoid a bridezilla moment), and she dressed them in cargo shorts and sneakers! Hrmmm...

Brittany said...

Oh, and I would have at least made an audio recording of our ceremony. We liked the idea of it being a one-time had-to-be-there thing, but now I would give anything to hear the beautiful harmonies on the hymns and our super talented friends accompanying on brass, violin, flute, and organ.

I think the big moral for me is not to get too caught up in the "we're not going to have one of THOSE weddings" attitude and then not do things that you actually want just because they're things that happen at "conventional" weddings. :)

Anna said...

This is so helpful - like lisaathome said, i'm at this stage and it's so helpful to see. So far I'm glad all my instincts have been proven right, and I feel like if someone tries to fight me on it I can just point to this post. I've been a bridesmaid 8 (or is it 9?!) times and I think bridesmaids can often be more hassle than they're worth - nearly all of my brides felt like a bridesmaid or two were massively stressful/disappointing!

Michele said...

To be honest, I think I probably would have been happier not having a wedding at all -- I loved our wedding, but I found all the whoopdeedoo to be very stressful. Am I the only one who feels this way? If I could do it again, I think I would probably elope or go to City Hall. That said, I will never regret our wedding, only because it made our families and friends so happy, and I'm glad I could give them a nice time. It was worth it to share it all with them, and have our wedding be not just about us, but about our community. But all the attention and fanfare was a lot for me, and although I felt very loved that day, I didn't feel all that connected to my husband because I was so overwhelmed. I think I would have felt more connected to him if we were alone. Well, either way, I got to marry my husband, so I can't complain.

Anna said...

Yes! Having been a bridesmaid so often, I can see how much a bridal party seems to add rather than take away stress!

Karen Reid-Mogford said...

We are wedding photographers and the thing I would recommend is SO ditching the boring family shots! Eugh! We try so hard to make them quick and fun but invariably they drag on with every combination known to man. Don't do it brides! Don't do it :)
For my own wedding do-over, I would have ensured we didn't have to go shoot a wedding the day after!!!

Nicole said...

Justine, please, get a back-up boutonniere! My husband's broke when it was pinned on him and they tried to sort of mush it back on. I get to the altar and the first thing I say to him is, "my, what a dead rose that is." NICE, right?

J.Mill said...

Ditto!

Jessica said...

Ditto. I would have hired a real "day of" wedding planner. I just had my mom's friends do it and there were a lot of things I had to deal with the day of.

annaofgreengable said...

I would have made my dress less poufier! I debated whether or not to remove a layer of crinoline on my dress, and now I know, I should have done that! Also, I used terrariums as centrepieces, but they all fogged over outside during the cereomony. Should have gotten a rebate on that! oh well, a few other monor glitches, but overall I loved it, and the man I married!

xo green gable

Elizabeth said...

Our wedding was wonderful, we were both so happy with it! Wouldn't change a thing!!! :)

Bayley said...

I would change my dress. I planned my wedding in 6 weeks and got married right before J.Crew offered wedding dresses (so sad!), plus I wanted something non-traditional, so I wore a champagne colored bridesmaid dress. I felt uncomfortable wearing anything bright white or too frou frou because we had a small outdoor wedding (20 people), but now I wish that I could have found a real wedding gown. There are other little details I would have changed but the dress is the only one I really think about.

Bayley said...

I also agree with the comment about family portraits. They look so awkward and I hated every one of them, but of course they're framed in each grandmother's home. Plus, my husband was in a bad mood after taking pictures for an hour- totally takes away from the day . . .

Jennifer Anderson said...

Love this idea - and though they created a few fun stories I would definitely do some things different:
Bring double-sided tape...!!
EAT our cake! We only got a teeny tiny bite!
Not forget the marriage license at my house (and have the pastor sign it right after the ceremony...) Our pastor's daughter went into labor so he left the reception before we arrive, so once the marriage license was finally found we were missing the pastor!!
PLAN for who would get my suitcase for the honeymoon into the get-away car...hung out for a good 20 minutes after our "farewell" trying to find it!

Bayley said...

totally agree! brides today are so lucky with pinterest!

Jennifer Anderson said...

Celebrating 2 years of marriage this summer... we didn't register for china or crystal because both my husband and I have inherited 2 sets which means I have 4 sets of really beautiful china and I have no idea what to do with it all! That may be one reason it isn't as popular as it is passed down now.

Christy Kane said...

Make sure the announcement was made that guests could explore the (closed to the public) galleries at the art museum where our wedding was held. That was a big part of why we chose the venue and probably the price! Some guests made their way in on their own. Other than that, I wouldn't change a thing.

... said...

i have no intentions of getting married for a while, but "call me maybe" two times in a row is going to happen.

by BUN said...

as an engaged gal in her 20's...reading these comments were incredibly helpful!! thanks everyone! xoxo.

Sage Crown Parker said...

i've never been married so i can't contribute in this way but i am a wedding photographer and go to over 100 weddings a year, so.... i think the number one thing is to enjoy yourself! if you just spent an entire year planning and things aren't going the way you thought they would try to embrace your wedding the way it is :) i also get people that do vow renewals after 5 years or 10 years, or more and I love these cause people are doing exactly the way they want and its so romantic!

elizabeth said...

Me too.

Brigette Olmos-Arreola said...

Love these tips! As a hopeful bride to be I love getting advice from my married friends about their weddings.

Eden said...

Oh my goodness. I don't even want to think about planning a wedding again! I had just moved away from my family and out of state. I didn't have any girlfriends nearby. It was so stressful! Beautiful day, but I never want a do over (unless it were an elopement). I would rather just go to someone else's wedding, relax and enjoy it. :)

Sheila @ tasteduds said...

This is a great post! First, I would've changed my dress and my hair. The dress was too poofy and my hair too formal and it didn't feel completely me. Second, I would've hired a day-of coordinator. It's hard to be the bride and the director of the day, too. You just want to relax and have fun instead of making sure everyone and everything is where they're supposed to be.

Eden said...

Oh my goodness. I don't even want to think about planning a wedding again! I had just moved away from my family and out of state. I didn't have any girlfriends nearby. It was so stressful! Beautiful day, but I never want a do over (unless it were an elopement). I would rather just go to someone else's wedding, relax and enjoy it. :)

margaux said...

i would have thrown caution to the wind a little bit and spent a bit more on my dress and accessories and encouraged my husband to do the same. we put ourselves on such a tight budget (we didn't put a dime on a credit card; everything was paid off the day after the wedding), but in hindsight, i know we could've afforded to splurge a bit more on a dress and suit that made our hearts sing. i just tell myself that i'll make up for it for the rest of my life with a plethora of pretty dresses instead of just one!

i too, would've planned a speech! i babbled and ultimately didn't say anything very meaningful. oh well, everyone was a bit blitzed by then anyway, so i doubt they noticed! ( :

E.M. said...

1. More comfortable shoes-- absolutely!
2. Gone with my gut on our photographer... our pictures are a nightmare.
3. Nixed the train on the dress! Too fussy.
4. Done something a little more low-key... (however at the time, I was new in town and didn't have friends close to help prepare so I decided to spend money to have someone else do the work and save myself the stress). Now that I have more friends, I'd do something like a backyard affair.

angharad said...

Not the only one at all! Weddings are stressful, and if you're not a 'look at me' kind of gal they can be sooo uncomfortable too! Our wedding was small, informal, great, but we had a big party after and I'd change just about everything about it if I could. Actually I'd just edit it out altogether.

Moonlight said...

The family portraits are nice for the later years I think! My parents married with a couple of friends only and don't have any of those, but I love the family portraits my grandma had from the times when people got pictures only in a photographer's studio!
I also love loose hairstyles you are not worrying about messing up while dancing your heart out, but I think your up-do was more like you-or at least the "you" we see here! You looked nice, and I'm sure you enjoyed it a lot no matter how your hair was! :)

Kerry said...

Great post! It makes me feel better about having a few small regrets about my own wedding. I would have gotten hair/make up professionally done (or at least planned it better as someone else said), a different dress (I got it from Etsy and even though I had it professionally altered once I got it, the original design still looked a bit off) and possibly nixed the wedding party (mine definitely added more stress to the whole thing - they're not very pro active). Having said that, I had really wanted to elope but I'm glad we didn't because overall it was absolutely amazing to have all our friends and family together for the first time, outdoors and enjoying food and drink under twinkly lights :)

HungryMomma said...

I would of given my mother copius amounts of Xanax. Let's just say she did not hide her crazy well.

Casey Elizabeth said...

My husband and I had tossed around the idea of having a small family wedding in my parents' very large backyard and doing a pitch in dinner together. We ended up in a church with 200 friends and family which was lovely but at the end of the day, we both thought that a smaller wedding with less fuss would have been nice.

Also, my dress was all beautiful lace and silk... and I would have liked more princess tulle. ;)

Emily said...

Make sure you keep it appropriate too! I sometimes have found best men and maids of honors at weddings forget that the toast is made to the entire wedding party, including kids, grandma, mom and dad...

houstonmegs said...

My thought as well - would not change a single thing!

kristen said...

I would have left my hairstylist and gone to somebody else; we had three or four trial meetings in the weeks leading up to the wedding, and I was never ever happy with what she did! Kind of a "duh" thing, but I had a hard time being assertive.

angela said...

I am planning a wedding right now, these pointers are so helpful!!

Kate Harvey said...

So agree with this--wouldn't change a thing! Love that this was the first comment :)

Carmen said...

I would wear different shoes and would not hold a formal dinner but would have extended the cocktail. But the same place (Palma de Majorca, my hometown) and the same people (including hubby;)

Gina said...

My husband and I met salsa dancing, so we thought that it would be fun to play salsa music (and even hired my old dance teacher to give the guests a lesson), but it would have been better to choose something that the guests felt comfortable dancing to, too. Also, more food.

thosedamamericans.com said...

Great question and it's something my husband and I revealed to each other recently!

We would skip the formal portraits too. We had so many. It would have been way more fun to get candids with people at the cocktail hour!

Also, I wouldn't let the little kids (whom I'm not close to) take all my time on the dance floor. I wish someone had (nicely) pulled us apart so I could go mingle with other guests or like, my new husband or something.

Finally, I WISH I had gotten drunk! I didn't finish a single drink the entire night because I was so busy gabbing.

xo

sarah nadine said...

with you on the speech ... usually i can gather words together better than i did when my emotions were at a soaring height! i also would have paid to keep our photographer longer, right to the end of the night. some of the moves on the dance floor and conversation clusters would have been fun to look back on.

otherwise ... everything else was perfect, especially my groom!


xo

Amy said...

Sarah, not sure if you'll see this, but I know what you mean. I have gotten such crap about people wishing it was more about them, not us, or not realizing that what they wanted as guests would cost $10k more and would have pushed back the wedding 6 months. It annoys the crap out of me that the huge cost financially and personally, to them, would be worth it to make them happy for just a few hours. It's made me lose two friendships so far, but in a weird way, it has clarified my relationships. I just wished it hadn't had to be that way. Anyway, all of this is to say I understand.

Bugsy said...

We got married at City Hall in Manhattan which I wouldn't change! But I do wish we had had a party for friends and family afterward, some sort of get together.

Gray Skies said...

Same here! My main regret is that I felt forced to plan a wedding even though I've never been interested in weddings, and I hated the whole planning experience, and wish we had eloped!

Stephanie said...

There's only one thing I'd change: For all the planning I did, I didn't come up with a contingency plan for pictures if it rained. The reception hall had a gorgeous garden and gazebo, but since it rained ALL DAY, we couldn't do photos there. Instead, the wedding party photos were just against a wall in the reception hall, and they really weren't very interesting or special. But the candid photos from the ceremony and reception are always the best ones anyway, so I guess it wasn't THAT huge a loss. ;-)

Katie Ann said...

The biggest change we would want to do is to thank our guests. The day flew by so quickly, and we didn't realize until later that we had never spoke into the mic (aside from our vows)! I also would like to go back and change the kiss... haha. I was so worried my husband was going to do a big kiss, and as he went in slowly (going for a small kiss), I pretty much wrapped my arm around his neck and ate his face. Embarrassing. Mega embarrassing.

Katie

kristn.owens said...

Yes! Love that the cheese tower/cake is getting some love. We had one at our wedding and it was beautiful and delicious, even though it really confused some aunts and uncles. They didn't seem to mind the macarons and nutter-butter cookies instead of cake, though. :)

Sabrina said...

Although the wedding day was very nice, and it went off beautifully. The weather was awful for an outdoor wedding! Record heat wave and high humidity. I felt like I was melting and not very pretty. Everyone was so hot and someone even passed out! Sometimes I secretly wish we would have gotten married the night before at our rehearsal dinner. We held it in our lovely backyard and every single person who was special to us was there, even our officiant! We ate yummy food, laughed, chilled, and watched an outdoor movie on the back of our house. And the weather was PERFECT. Oh well.

nickandnoragettingmarried said...

I like speeches that don't just mention the bride or the groom. Even if you don't know the groom that well, make sure to mention him too and how great they are together/how they've brought out the best in each other/etc.

leahruth said...

we got married in the back yard/driveway of our home. i love that our first home holds this beautiful memory for us, but if i were to do it again i would hire a catering company, even for the small party we had... and i would have all three of my sisters be bridesmaids (we each had one attendant - maid of honor and best man.. sweet but i would have loved to include more of our family members). we didn't have dancing, which i liked, but i wish we had thought to have board games or some type of little fun activity to do with our guests.

Anonymous said...

I'd get a better photographer! My brother-in-law took our photographs and he's good (but in hindsight, not that good - and not a wedding photographer!). Also, I'd change the DJ - one terrible song he played has stuck in my head ever since! Apart from those 2 things, I LOVED everything about our day.

Anne [A Squared] said...

I was just at a wedding this weekend and felt inspired to write a post like this too! I wish I would have had a photo booth. And also I wish that the guys would have worn more classic tuxes than the cheesier looking rentals they wore.

shine little light* said...

I loved my wedding - but I would make myself be more relaxed in the photos - I hate having my photo taken and the photos reflect that a bit. I would also have got someone to do my hair and makeup - I have no idea how to do these things - so i did nothing - oh well! It was very me though :)

sarah anne said...

unfortunately it is what it is because i was 20 when i was engaged and 21 when married. 11years later I'd do absolutely every thing different...except my husband...It's crazy to think I married him with as little knowledge about him as i had. he's friggin' awesome and he keeps getting better. That's my consolation when thinking back to my wedding. And I suppose I'd rather have an awesome life than just an awesome day.

Unknown said...

I agree with you Joanna! I really wish I would have planned a toast. I blabbered too! As did my husband, so instead of him saving the day like Alex, it was a blabbering mess. :) Although I have to say my biggest one is not hiring a videographer. I wish more than anything that we had more video footage of our wedding. My husband on the other hand, likes that we have those memories stored the old fashioned way. At the time I felt like it was too big of an extra cost, when in the grand scheme of things weddings are so expensive anyway, might as well have added to the debt to have a video to look back at. Other than those two things I loved loved loved that day more than anything, and am grateful to have only happy memories!

-caroline @thecopperavocado

HMS said...

my dress! so so unfortunately :( I had to go to my final fitting alone and the seamstress did something to the top and it was boobtastic! I couldn't really tell from my angle I mean looking straight down of course I can see down my dress but when I put it on for the wedding my mom's FIRST words were, "you can't wear that!" ....thanks a lot mom lol. Truly I was a really relaxed bride all caught up in the love and bliss of it all, but the ONE thing I didn't want was tons of cleavage (really don't like that at weddings) and you have no idea how many people made comments at the reception. tacky and so uncomfortable (me and them I guess haha) ah well it's over and our photographer did an incredible job avoiding extremely booby shots.

Kate Uhry said...

I absolutely love this post. AS a wedding photographer, it is fascinating to read all these comments, and your own. I think a lot of brides to be could learn from reading all the comments! Also, one thing to keep in mind, is that all the things you mention are sort of of-the-moment trends, hairstyles, change, as well as other wedding trends. But I am happy after being in the business for a long, time, that people are starting to see the restrictions of super posed pictures that take hours of time.
www.kateuhryphoto.com

Scout and Rice said...

Pretty much everything! I would have chosen a dress I felt comfortable to sit down in. I'd have tried to lose weight (looking back on the pictures now I was amazed at how big I was). I'd have skipped the awkward posed photos that I told my photographer I didn't want but wasn't brave enough to remind him on the day.
Mostly I was just disappointed that so much of our time was taken up in ridiculous photos I didn't want, instead of being able to socialise with our friends and family and thank them for being there.

Meredith said...

I would change the song I chose to dance to with my dad. The song ("Superman" by the Crash Test Dummies) always reminds me of him because the lyrics just seem describe him, but I was self-conscious and thought everyone would find it weird. So we picked a song that meant absolutely nothing to us, and it just didn't feel special.

anecdotalgoat.com said...

Our wedding was perfect for us at the time, but if I had to do it all over again now, everything would be different! Our guest list would be different, the location would be different, even my dress would be different! We've both grown and changed so much, but in the end it would still be all about celebrating with our friends and family.

Jade Sheldon said...

My husband and I got married nearly a year ago ( our first anniversary is May 26th! ) and if we had everything to do over again, we would elope! We paid for the wedding ourselves and didn't get to take a honeymoon because of it. If I could do it over, I would definitely go on a romantic getaway with my love to get married...

the gardener's cottage said...

well it was 33 years ago and i still wouldn't change a thing. when i see what brides have to go through today i feel kinda sorry for them. it's all too much.

we hopped in my father in laws porsche and drove to vegas. we both wore cowboy boots and my father in law was our only witness. not a single picture was taken and yet i remember it like it was yesterday.

Anna Alter said...

If I could do it again, I would worry less about how the wedding was going to look during the planning process, and relax more. Our wedding was so wonderful for so many reasons, none of the decorations or table settings mattered at all and worrying about them was such a distraction.

Kristian said...

Such a helpful post! I'm planning a wedding right now (coming up in a month and half- eep!) so I'm taking note.

jenbe.me said...

i think i'd worry less about keeping everyone happy and just go with what i like !

tragicsandwich said...

We can all be named Sandwich, as far as I'm confirmed. The more Sandwiches, the merrier!

tragicsandwich said...

We can all be named Sandwich. I have no problem with that.

Katie said...

Tested my dress for danceability (if that's even a word!)or maybe a different dress all together?! Planned a little better with the photographer. Also made times for toasts/speeches. We didn't plan a time for it and in the end it didn't happen. Afterwards people told they wanted to say something but didn't get the chance! I also would have liked to thank everyone publicly, I felt so loved on that day! Oh and invite those few people that didn't make the cut!

Planning was so stressful, since I live in Brazil and all my family is in California, but I'm so glad I did it!

We really wanted a great party with all our friends and family and that was a complete success! People still tell us it was the best wedding they have ever been too! Just could have had more bottled water on hand for the hangovers! Oops!

Sounds like a lot, but I have the best husband ever and I feel that if you get that right the rest is just a bonus!

322472ec-b39e-11e2-989b-000bcdcb471e said...


I have a story I'm almost afraid to tell. We got married this past September. Our minister was old as the hills and he assured me repeatedly he had done HUNDREDS of wedding and everything was going to go fine. Well, when we were up there at the alter, he forgot to administer the vows. HE FORGOT TO ADMINISTER THE VOWS!! He just blew past all of that. We said our "I Do's" but when we exchanged rings there was no "with this ring I thee wed". We just did the rings silently and I was confused as to what was going on. But then he started to wrap up and we hadn't gotten to the "I Laura take you David...till death do us part" part, he was just ending it. So I stopped him and the whole ceremony and said we hadn't said our vows. But I seriously think he forgot that he forgot (did I mention he was old as the hills?) because he was confused about what I was saying so he had me repeat some random intention to my husband, but didn't have my husband repeat it back and before I could stop him AGAIN it was done. We were walking up the aisle and I said to my husband that I didn't think we were actually married. I freaked out. But we were launched onto the rest of the celebration. I don't know that that many people noticed, I think they just assumed that was how it was supposed to go. But after the reception we all went to the Monkey Bar in mid town and my sister made my new husband say his real vows there and then. And on our one year anniversary we are going to have a little mini-ceremony and do it the right way, for real! So crazy! We laugh about it now, but wow, in the moment I about lost my mind. :-)

Joe Hampton said...

http://freesteamgifts.com/index.php?id=233031

life, in small chunks said...

Wow! Great post! I am reading these comments because I am helping my daughter plan her wedding for next year. I was married 30 something ideas and I feel for young women getting married today. 30 odd years ago we, along with our immediate family, got married in a local judge's chambers followed by a wonderful dinner with family and a few close friends. The next day we left for our 10 day honeymoon (which we could afford since the actual wedding cost almost nothing). When we got back we had a big ol' party for everyone - our families and all of our friends. Very low key but so much fun that our friends still talk about it! I guess my point is that it all comes down to at the end of the day are you married to the person you love?

life, in small chunks said...

oops - 30 something *years ago*

Kate said...

I was so afraid of weddings and wanted it suppper low key and non-stress. It ended up being really pretty and I loved it, but wished I would have decorated more for the reception! Ha. So silly. But the BIGGEST thing I regret... the Registry. Sounds horrible, but I didn't know you could ask for cool stuff. For real. Doing the registry stressed me out and I didn't know about all those cool lists you could make online and have it be super personal. I'm thankful for all the gifts I received, but wish I could have gone back and made it AMAZING.

Chloe Moon said...

I have never been more intrigued by all these comments! When I get married for the first time I think I'm going to be so prepared!! =) I hope!

Ergo-Blog

tidy post said...

I would not let other people's ideas of perfection or hang-ups become my focus.
Our engagement was only 3 months, but people came out of the woodwork with what they thought was best and necessary for us to do. I tried to keep my wedding within budget and low-key, but still ended up losing my personality in the cacophony of people-pleasing.
In the end, I wish we had just brought a photographer with us to City Hall and met a small group of friends and family for a wonderful dinner.

I would stay true to what is important to us.

Anna Culp said...

I'm definitely having a renew vows party one day! I wish I'd have waited a few more months and had the wedding I pictured since I was a little girl. (Celibacy before marriage definitely motivated a short engagement.) I'd change the season, location, guest list, my dress...I still think a reception on a summer night under a sheer tent with a dance floor, with only close family and friends, and some musicians would've been perfect... But I lucked out in many ways, and look back on my wedding with joy and gratitude. :)

Vale Cervarich said...

LOL

Lisette said...

I would not have not grown my hair out, only to put it up. I would have kept it short and worn a big flower/feather in my hair.

Maiz Connolly said...

Use your china! When we were trying to decide if we wanted to get china or skip it, some older friends invited us for tea and served us on their wedding china. Their china was beautifully worn, and our friends told us that they loved using it all the time. It was so sweet that we decided to register for china, and we hope that ours is similarly worn out after fifty years of a happy marriage.

Mikah Neff said...

I would have had the groomsmen and my husband all buy black suits instead of renting tuxes. It ends up being wasted money and still looks great. Besides that, I wouldn't change too much. The best decision we made was to have breakfast that morning together. It was really the only time we really got to talk all day, and it really centered the day around our relationship instead of the distractions of the wedding .

annbenjamin said...

Who says you can only have one? Hubs and I are celebrating 10 years in Vegas this year and doing things completely different! We've made so many friends along the way, the upcoming party demands a totally different style. :)

Emily said...

Obviously, my wedding day was totally AMAZING, but there a a couple of things I would change with hindsight....I wish I had gotten someone to film our ceremony as it was such a significant moment in our lives and yet it was a total blur. I also wish I had taken a moment with my dad before walking down the aisle, but I was just in such a rush to get down there and marry the love of my life. Oh, and I wish someone had looked out for my mother-in-law and not let her get so drunk....

Emily said...

Obviously, my wedding day was totally AMAZING, but there a a couple of things I would change with hindsight....I wish I had gotten someone to film our ceremony as it was such a significant moment in our lives and yet it was a total blur. I also wish I had taken a moment with my dad before walking down the aisle, but I was just in such a rush to get down there and marry the love of my life. Oh, and I wish someone had looked out for my mother-in-law and not let her get so drunk....

phoebessenioritis.blogspot.com said...

Haven't had a wedding yet. But I think I'd want to have it by the garden outside of a hotel. I'd want it small and private with close friends and family. Simple and beautiful. I'm guessing this is what everyone wanted when they were planning their wedding. Probably easier said than done!

Meg said...

I loved our wedding, I don't think I will ever attend another that tops it for me! That said, given the opportunity I could think of some changes... I wouldn't bother with a photographer, though she was wonderful and took some fabulous pictures, I'm sure our friends could have taken just as many good shots that I would have been just as happy with and it wouldn't have cost $3000 and I'd be able to brag even more about how cheap our wedding was!

Rachael King said...

I invited my two young cousins to our ceremony (it was at the zoo, hard to say no to kids). All of our guests were able to wander around the zoo while we did our photos, so they got to run around the zoo (after it was closed to the public) and then I organised for a sitter to take them home. It was nice because the sitter was a daughter of a family friend who I wouldn't have invited otherwise, she got to come to the ceremony too. It meant no kids at the reception which was lovely but the cousins are still in the family photos (and my aunt couldn't use the no kids thing as an excuse not to come and then be bitter about it for years after like with my other cousins wedding).

Rachael King said...

I had an amazing day, it was hard for the control freak in me to just let go. I decided there were a couple of things I cared about (my dress, getting nice photos) and the rest didn't really matter. I do wish I could have calmed my mum down abit and talked her out of the need for her to be at the venue early as I don't think she achieved anything and just ran around being panicked, we could easily have delegated whatever it was she wanted to do to someone else. It would have been really lovely to drive to the venue with both of my parents, not just my dad.

cienpajarosvolando said...

I wouldn't change a think but, at the same, I love weddings so much that I can't help dreaming about different ceremonies, places, dresses...

It's something I usually write about, if you want to have a look:

http://cienpajarosvolando.wordpress.com/2013/04/04/they-do/

http://cienpajarosvolando.wordpress.com/2012/11/30/si-me-casara-manana/

http://cienpajarosvolando.wordpress.com/2013/01/30/again-and-again/

Melissa T. said...

I wouldn't have had so many or any attendents. One day I looked at my wedding pictures and realized that I really only keep in touch with my sister and sister-in-law. I went to a wedding with no attendents and thought it was so sweet and simple. The bride's sister simply did a reading. My wedding party felt a bit like a parade in comparison!

michiphotobooth.com said...

We got married less than 2 months ago...I guess it is too early to regret anything. We had two ceremonies one very intimate in Milan, my hometown, and one big celebration the day after in a castle nearby Milan. Here our pictures....

http://www.gianlucaadovasio.it/gallery/milano-wedding-photographer-michela-trevor.php

http://www.gianlucaadovasio.it/gallery/wedding-photographer-michela-travor.php

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

We just celebrated our 15th wedding anniversary. We choose very classic elements from the flowers, to the cake, dress and tux. Even today looking at the photos they still feel very fresh.

lafemmebohemeblog said...

I love this question because I was just recently discussing with a friend how different our wedding planning experiences would have been if Pinterest had been around! If I were to get married now I would be WAY more into the style of it all. More importantly, my one regret was not getting a videographer. Luckily a good friend of my husbands got some decent footage of our ceremony and moments throughout the reception, but we have yet to edit it (2 years later) I would love to have a charming little video that captures the day, thats one lesson I always share with my engaged friends. ALSO, we had a family friend cater (who was amazing) and sort of threw the whole thing together ourselves, and we never thought to have anyone get us food! There was a buffet line that we never wanted to wait in and by the time anyone thought of it we had already run out of some things! I would also do the photos differently, though we didn't have to miss out on anything to take them (I do like the way we timed everything out, we had the cocktail hour, then the ceremony in the midst of everything, then the reception, it flowed smoothly and felt natural and celebratory, the energy was amazing as we exchanged our vows!) but I didn't prepare enough with the photographer (a friend) and wish some of that had worked out better. Another planning experience regret is stressing about the guest list, all those debates with my parents about inviting their relatives I hardly knew were just not worth it, it made no difference that day having those couple extra tables of people, it seems to be a common stressor among my fellow bride friends and its another piece of wisdom I always like to pass on!

staci said...

I would change almost everything. If people hear my husband and I talk about the wedding seperately, they would never think it was the same wedding. If I could chose one thing only; I WOULD hire a photographer. I thought there would be enough good snapshots from guests; I was wrong, so wrong. There isn't a single good shot.

okorolev said...

Just saw my wedding video - almost 2 years after the fact - and i wish that i exercised. After that initial shock, maybe switch from a sunday brunch to a saturday night party. Also, i wish that i cared more about the details etc then than i do now. I am really thinking of having a vow renewal in the future and have a grand party then. :)

Ivy F. said...

I would have invited more people. We kept the list to about 30 but then, some of my husband's family crashed the party anyway. I felt bad that we agonized over the guest list and ended up having people we didn't invite there (and had to send them thank you notes for their half-hearted target gift cards) instead of those we would have loved to have there.

Amber Marlow said...

This wedding photographer is hyperventilating. No family photos? Yikes. Think of the posterity!

Cindy Wagner said...

I would have married a different man. My ex ended up being a horrible person that changed almost immediately after the wedding. Took me 6 years to gather courage to end it and then another 1.5 years to finalize the divorce.
And, I would have had a very private ceremony on the beach of a tropical island with the sun setting behind us and a gentle breeze blowing around us. It's all about the moment, not the money.

Leslie @ And Then The Doorbell Rang said...

Our day was perfect. I absolutely love my BHLDN dress. We had a garden fete and an indoor reception, and I wouldn't change a thing about what we planned. However, I wish that in addition to the list of formal portraits I wanted, that I had given our photographer a list of people to snap at the reception. I don't have any pictures of me with my Maid of Honor except for the formal one, and that makes me sad a year later.

Shannon J said...

It was a nice day, but I would have done a ton different. Wouldn't mind a re-do....with the same man of course. :) I got married in a Mormon temple, which means only qualifying"temple worthy" members could observe. My catholic dad was left outside to wait for us to surface. I'm his only daughter and he didn't get to walk me down the isle. :( We are no longer Mormon, and fill we missed out on the traditional wedding: ALL loved ones present, dancing, and boose!!

Shannon J said...

P.S. fill=feel Yikes!

Liz M C said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Liz M C said...

Oh, I wish! I would DEFINITELY change my maid-of-(dis)honor who, at the time, was my best friend of 20+ years. She was married (emphasis on *WAS*) at the time and tried hooking up with on of the groomsmen... in front of eeeeeveeeeeryone at the bachelor/bachelorette party AND the wedding reception even though her now ex-husband and 2 year old son were there. People still ask me to this day "what the hell was up with ____ at your wedding? She was all over that guy!" We haven't been friends since that day since she refused to admit that she had even done anything wrong. I felt like the day I got married to my husband was the same day I 'divorced' my best friend. It was definitely not a good memory to associate with our wedding day.

I also would've probably picked a different date. It was cold season in New Orleans. The priest AND the singer were both sick and their voices kept breaking throughout the entire ceremony. It was beyond awkward. And both my husband and I got sick from sharing the chalice with the sick priest. So we were miserable for a straight week after the wedding

Maud Lowell said...

Seeing a post from you about weddings reminds me to ask you something that I've always wondered about wedding announcements in the NYT, like yours. And, since your husband works for them, you are the perfect person to ask! In your annoucement it says "the bridegroom's previous marriage ended in divorce". Obviously, it means that Alex was married to another woman, prior to you. I was married to another man, prior to my current husband. If I were my husband and our announcement was in the NYT and it said that my marriage had previously ended in divorce (a fact), I would not be thrilled. I would remind myself that it should not for one second take away from our commitment and excitment, etc., but, I would not like it! Why, why do they do that??

Erin said...

Haha, oh there would be so much. Pinterest didn't exist when I was married! I would have done a lot more DIY's. I would have a different sillouette dress and I would have had a better photographer. Oh well, it was still an awesome wedding!

Griggs said...

I would have done my hair differently. I went with a traditional french twist that I think wound up looking a little matronly. I've seen so many great hairstyles since, but since I couldn't make up my mind before I went with basic and it was boring. I also would have taken off my veil at the reception. I got a headache about an hour after it started and thought it was just from being tired. At the end of the night back at the hotel I took off the veil and my headache went away!

sumslay said...

I can't believe you didn't invite your pre-marriage friends! It's sad enough that I feel like we, as women, tend to ditch our friends as soon as a man comes along, but then not to even be invited... ouch.

The Slow Pace said...

Well, I would hire a photographer. We didn't have that much money and we let out friends take the pictures and spent more on the food. They took really nice funny pictures, but I think we missed some details...
I would be more conscious about my make up. I just forgot it and my mascara was all over my face for quite a long time. Of course nobody thought it was something to tell me so I look quite trashy in some of the pics!
Oh, and I will have a cheese cake! best idea ever!!! ;)
xo,
E.
www.theslowpace.com

Caitlyn said...

I am currently planning my wedding and WOW this is really helpful. I think the biggest take-away is that the person you marry is the most important thing. It really makes me happy to read so many people who say that while there are things they would have changed, they wouldn't change the person they married and that's the most important thing. It makes me feel SO much better about letting go of all the other stuff. Also, I really don't want a bridal party and we have gotten so much resistance that I almost caved, but these comments have me determined to hold out.

Liz M C said...

I COMPLETELY understand too! I mentioned above that I felt like the day that I married my husband, I also "divorced" my best friend of 20+ years. She was my MOH and couldn't handle not being in the spotlight. She was married at the time but ended up fooling around with one of the groomsmen at the combined bachelor/bachelorette party AND at the wedding reception. It's been 3 years and she still won't admit that she did anything wrong. Sad.

easyspiesy said...

YES to skipping the formal portraits. I found I skipped right over those when looking at our proofs for the first time. Cocktails with our guests would have been much better (and I would have gotten to taste our delicious appetizers!). We somehow also ended up not really having a piece of our cake beyond the quick taste we had after we cut it, which is a shame, because it was great cake! Otherwise, pitch perfect, and of course any wedding that ends up with you married to your love is a great one.

easyspiesy said...

YES to skipping the formal portraits. I found I skipped right over those when looking at our proofs for the first time. Cocktails with our guests would have been much better (and I would have gotten to taste our delicious appetizers!). We somehow also ended up not really having a piece of our cake beyond the quick taste we had after we cut it, which is a shame, because it was great cake! Otherwise, pitch perfect, and of course any wedding that ends up with you married to your love is a great one.

Abby said...

Exactly! My husband wanted a HUGE wedding in his childhood church. I wanted no ceremony at all. We compromised with 50 people in the chapel in his hometown. I HATE being the center of attention, so I don't have many fond memories of the day. Luckily, I was much more excited about the marriage than the wedding!

Justine said...

Haha, Nicole! My fiance decided against boutonnieres after seeing one too many smushed flowers at weddings last year. He's doing pocket square instead!

cheryl denise said...

i'm getting married in 2 weeks and love reading over all of these!

a peek of chic

Kathy said...

haha! I would change A LOT!!

the biggest one would be that I would have either eloped or done a chic courthouse wedding with just us & our immediate family and saved all that flipping money

Annabelle said...

Damn girl! Palma de Majorca is a stunner! Your wedding must have been GORGEOUS!

Jillian said...

Make the "thank you" speech list ahead of time! I left out some vitally important people and still feel terrible about it. There are a few things I'd do differently, however, in the end people kept saying how much they enjoyed it and I myself had an amazing time which is really all that matters: I got to marry the best dude around and people remember it!

Annabelle said...

Pardon my French but holy shit your pictures are unbelievable!

Joanna Goddard said...

these comments are so fascinating. interesting to see what people loved and learned during the process. weddings are so intense! it's kind of a bummer you only do it once, haha:)

Joanna Goddard said...

@emma, how fun that you're maid of honor. the new york times had a handy guide to writing a speech:
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/17/fashion/the-art-of-the-wedding-toast.html?pagewanted=all

one basic structure could be: how you met the bride, one funny anecdote or memory, what you love about her, and why you think she and the groom are good together. you'll be great! :) have a glass of wine first, haha.

Maria said...

I abselutely loved my wedding and would do it all the same again. Off course being such a perfectionest, I would probably have a longer reception and my hair. I didin't have the best hair day, but I was so relaxed and happy that day that it didn't matter. Looking at pictures now, wish that I had picked up my hair. Everything else was just majical and perfect.

Abby said...

You have to tell us the song now!

Sylvie said...

This is a fascinating question, and one I have been thinking about! If I could do it all over again I would..

* requested no gifts (I hated, dreaded, writing thank you notes)
* Worn a different dress (I wore a white bridesmaid dress, but didn't like it very much. Looking back I should have bought the dress I wanted even if it were a little more tan colored, to be even less formal OR even to wear a very wedding-ish dress)
* I would have picked a different caterer and gotten our agreements down on paper. At the end of the wedding they would not agree to clean up, which was supposed to be a part of their package. Luckily, friends and family happily helped out to clean up the space
* I would have chosen a professional photographer, instead of a friend who does great nature shots and wanted to break into wedding and engagement photography for cheap. 1.5 years later no one has seen our photos because I'm too embarassed to share them.
* I would have done my hair differently and done a practice run, instead of deciding the day of

Karen Reid-Mogford said...

love this story so much!

Karen Reid-Mogford said...

as a wedding photographer, that comment kills me...because it is so not true. Friends generally wouldn't and couldn't take a fabulous picture. I've had relatives of my couples do a 'let's better the wedding photographer with our DSLR and big bad lens we don't really know how to use' and they ALWAYS email me afterwards saying 'can we order that picture please'.....You'd have been disappointed and in actuality, photographs are your only reminder of that one day. So money well spent. Surely?

HeatherP said...

I would have spent the money on a professional photographer rather than use my brother. He'd never done a wedding before so the pictures didin't turn out too well. Fortunately, a few years later we became acquainted with a very talented photographer who did a beautiful session for us in our wedding clothes.
I would also have had the groomsmen get nicer clothes. We just had them get some dress pants, a shirt and a tie. Unfortunately, the style we suggested didn't fit some of the guys too well and they didn't say anything because they didn't want to cause a fuss. The result was kind of "fat-guy-in-a-little coat." The groomsmen pictures were super awkward.
Otherwise, our wedding was wonderful and I loved every part of it.

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