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Planning a Wedding in a Time Crunch

Planning a Wedding in a Time Crunch

Engaged couple

You’ve heard you’re supposed to plan your wedding a year in advance, but you only have six months. Deep breaths, it is doable! With a little flexibility and resourcefulness on your end, we can help you make it happen. Planning a wedding on a time crunch does not need to be done in panic mode. Here is how you can calmly and successfully plan your wedding in a time crunch.

Be flexible with your vendor selection.

While your dream wedding photographer may be unavailable, do not panic! Wedding vendors are expert networkers! Ask your dream vendor for a referral who has a similar style and/or service. Wedding vendors understand the importance of your wedding day, they will only recommend someone they know will do an amazing job!

Consider a less conventional day of the week.

While the most common day of the week to get married is Saturday, Friday and Sunday weddings are great backup options! Friday and Sunday weddings tend to also be less expensive than Saturdays. Another added bonus to having a Friday or Sunday wedding is that your dream, ideal venue is more likely to have available openings.

Make a priorities list.

While planning a wedding you can quickly get caught up in endless details. To avoid wasting time and money, make a list of your wedding priorities. If you care less about dinner than you do about dessert, put more of your precious time and energy into planning a delicious wedding dessert bar. Trust the experts where you can, or give the job of selecting the dinner menu to your parents or spouse. When you’re in a time crunch it’s important to keep your focus on what is actually important to you.

Start planning your attire right away!

Wedding dresses and bridesmaid dresses can take quite some time to come in. Choose your wedding colors and dresses as quickly as possible to allow time for shipping and fittings. If you, the bride, are in a time crunch consider purchasing an off-the-rack dress.

Call bridal shops to ask if they have a sample sale or an off-the-rack selection. There are bridal shops that specialize in off-the-rack bridal sales. Alternatively, if you are looking for a conventional bridal shop, call them before you book your appointment to ensure they can get your wedding dress there in time for your fittings and wedding day.

For bridesmaids on a time crunch, it may be impossible to have a fun shopping day with all your bridesmaids in the same room. Because of this, consider allowing them to pick any style of dress in your chosen color. Then, you don’t have to worry about one style being flattering on every bridesmaid. They can choose what they feel good in and you’ll be happy they’re wearing your favorite color.

Groomsmen, oh, groomsmen!

We’ve all been to weddings where that one groomsman didn’t order his suit till the week of the wedding. With a wedding being planned in a time crunch, that is not an option, gents!  Get to a suit shop today. Get your measurements done so you can check it off your list and not show up to your best friend’s tripping down the aisle wearing pants that are too long for you.

We promise it is totally doable to plan a wedding on a time crunch. As long as you are strategic as you choose your vendors and attire you can still have the wedding of your dreams. Happy Planning! For more wedding planning tips and inspiration, check out more Chicago Wedding Blog posts below.

Wedding Ring Proposing

Wedding Rings

Wedding Rings

A newer trend we’re seeing is couples picking out their wedding rings together. An engagement ring and wedding band are some of the most important pieces of jewelry we will receive or buy. There’s no right way to go about it, but we’ve got some pros and cons to help you choose whether or not you want to pick out your wedding rings together.

Let’s start with the cons first of picking out your wedding rings with your partner.

Traditionally, it’s been the man who gets the engagement ring and surprises the bride with a proposal. A drawback to shopping for the ring together is the element of surprise is, of course, lost. But if you’re a bride who wants to be part of the decision and doesn’t like the surprise, then going shopping together is a great option. Some brides of the opinion that their partner should “know” them well enough to pick out the perfect ring. A con for going together is that you won’t know that since you’ll be the one picking it out essentially.

Now let’s look at some pros for shopping for rings together.

The first is of course, that you will be surprised when your partner does propose! It’s always fun to see what he or she picks out. You can even compromise by sending him pictures of rings you’d like but ultimately letting him decide which ring is “you”. This also is a great way to relieve stress on your partner. They’re surely feeling quite a bit of pressure to pick out the ring you want!

Another positive is that even if you do go window shopping for the ring with your partner it won’t spoil the actual proposal! A lot of brides are afraid of ruining this moment, but if you think about it, can anything ruin the magic of a proposal at the right time? You may have a little inkling about what ring you’re getting but for some people that’s totally fine!



So, have you decided how you will choose your wedding rings? Did you make it a surprise, or did you choose your rings together? We want to know! Tell us below! For more wedding planning tips and inspiration, check out the Chicago Wedding Blog posts below! Happy Planning!

Your Post-Wedding To-Do List

Now that you are engaged, most of your time and brainpower is probably going to planning the wedding. However, many brides forget about the things they should do after the wedding. Some of these tasks are enjoyable, while others just have to get done. To help you remember the things you have to do after the big day ends, here is your post-wedding to-do list.

1)      Write and Send Thank You Cards — Different people have different theories on how much time you have to send thank you cards. Basically, the sooner you get them out, the sooner you can stop worrying them. (And the sooner grandma will stop asking you about them.) Since this task can be time consuming, enlist your husband’s help.

2)      Take Care of Any Left Over Wedding Business — Once the wedding is over, pay any remaining balances and return all borrowed items. Your vendors will appreciate not having to hunt you down, and the people who lent you items won’t have to worry about you losing, breaking, or forgetting about the borrowed pieces.

3)      Play With All Those Pictures — One of the most fun post-wedding tasks is creating your wedding album and any photo gifts you plan to make for family and friends. Let your husband help you sort through all the great shots and decide how you want to display them.

4)      Preserve Those Keepsakes — There will be plenty of items from your wedding that you want to hold on to, so be prepared to preserve them after the wedding. Some options include preserving your gown or bouquet or creating a shadow box of mementos.

5)      Open All Those Gifts — This is possibly the best post-wedding task. You’ll love reading all the heartfelt messages in the wedding cards and opening and using all the great gifts people bought. Plus, you can usually expect to find some cash in those envelopes.

6)      Begin the Name Change Process — You’ve been looking forward to the day you’d become a Mrs., but if you decide to change your name, there is a long-list of to-dos. Once you visit the social security office and motor vehicle department, be sure to change your name on all important documents such as credit cards, bank information, insurance companies, etc.

7)      Consider Your Finances — Now that you are married, you may want to open a joint account with your husband. While it isn’t necessary to combine all of your money, a joint account will help you pay the bills you both will share. You may also want to create joint accounts for your insurance or phone bills. Often times, married couples can receive a discount by being on the same plan.

How to Take Great Save the Date Photos on a Budget

Some of our favorite save the date ideas include a photo of the happy couple, but who wants to spend money on an extra photo shoot? If you love save the dates with photos but can’t afford a fancy photographer, check out these ideas.

Ask a Friend

With all the great digital cameras and editing software available today, you probably have a friend who is photo savvy. (Just look on Facebook to see who is always taking awesome photos.) Instead of paying for an expensive photographer, ask a friend to snap the pictures and repay her with dinner,  a few drinks, or  a small gift.

Look in Your Photo Album

Who says you have to use a photo after your engagement on the save the dates? Instead, get creative with the pictures you already have, and they don’t have to be professional photos. Consider using your favorite picture of the two of you or pick a shot from when you first started dating.

Keep it Simple

If you try to have a friend take pictures with extravagant props and fancy techniques, you might not be happy with the results. Instead, stick to simple props, outdoor settings, and sincere poses. Also, don’t go crazy with the outfits and make-up.  If the pictures look natural, no one will know they weren’t taken by a professional.

 

Getting Started

Congratulations! You’re engaged! Now, what are you are supposed to do? The wedding planning has officially begun, but deciding where to start can be overwhelming. Here are 7 big things to consider in order to get the wedding plans started…

Choosing Your Wedding Date: How long of an engagement period do you want? What time of year do you want to say “I do?” Are there any major family events, vacations, or milestones already on the calendar that you’ll need to avoid? Ask yourself these questions as you begin considering what day you’d like to have your wedding. Setting a date is probably the most important decision you’ll make as it will determine what venues are available and how the season will influence your style, color, and flower choices.

Dress: It’s never too early to begin shopping for a wedding dress! Choosing the right gown takes a lot of time and patience so get started early to ensure you have ample time to have a dress ordered, shipped, and tailored. Custom wedding gowns take even longer than purchasing a dress off the rack, so begin scheduling appointments with designers and boutiques to guarantee you’ll have the perfect dress.

Style: Do you want a cozy, rustic affair or something elegant and glamorous? Start collecting ideas from bridal magazines and websites to determine your wedding style. Deciding what you want early on will save you the stress and cost that comes from changing your mind along the way.

Size: It’s never too early to begin working on a wedding guest list. Put together a preliminary idea of invitees to gauge just how large or small your wedding will be. The number of guests affects everything from the venue size to the catering costs, so be sure to get a ballpark figure before you start making any major decisions.

Attendants: How large do you want your bridal party to be? Do you want an intimate gathering of immediate family or a large parade of cousins, coworkers, and friends? Talk to your fiancé about the ideal size of the wedding party before you begin asking friends to be bridesmaids. Once you settle on a number, go ahead and ask your guys and gals to make sure they can save the date.

Budget: There’s nothing less fun than setting a wedding budget, but it’s a crucial responsibility that should be attended to as soon as possible. Figuring out how much money you have to work with will help direct your wedding plans and determine how elaborate or simplistic the day’s festivities will be.

Photos: Celebrate your engagement with a photo shoot! Wedding photographers often offer packages that include an engagement session, providing you with great prints to capture this exciting season of life. As an added bonus, engagement photos can be used for save-the-date cards, wedding announcements, or invitations.