Scenic City Weddings

5 Secrets of Highly Prepared Brides

Etiquette & Traditions >

DO build an inspiration board

Creating your board will help you formulate the look and mood you want for your big day, says Kimberly Schlegel Whitman, a Dallas-based party and lifestyle expert and author of “Wedding Inspiration: Ideas & Advice for Your Perfect Wedding” (Gibbs Smith, 2012). The final product also will help communicate your preferences to vendors and motivate commitment to important arrangements.

DO use proper etiquette with invitations

A wedding is a time-honored tradition, and addressing your guests with their correct titles and formal names adds to the decorum of the event, says Laurie Arons, a wedding planner and founder of San Francisco-based Laurie Arons Special Events. You’ll also want to make sure you’re properly imparting deadline and details like the dress code and plus-ones. Even if your wedding is more casual or unconventional, you want to “loosen the formality” in an appropriate way, Arons adds.

DO spring for professionals

Pro caterers and photographers likely are no-brainers, but your wedding day is a time to splurge, says Whitman. Hire expert hair and makeup artists and be sure to have practice runs so that you aren’t taking risks with new looks when it really matters.

DO plan ahead for pint-sized guests

Wee ones can bring a delightful element of spontaneity to the wedding day, says Arons, but it’s also key that they are safe and happy. She advises hiring baby sitters to keep a watchful eye, as well as providing a fun kids area or table with games and activities to keep children entertained during dinner.

DO be über-prepared

Ask your coordinator or a friend to bring an emergency kit filled with thread and needles, hosiery, clear nail polish, hairspray, powder and lipstick, safety pins, breath mints, deodorant, feminine products and headache medicine. Hopefully you won’t need most or any of these items, says Whitman, but you’ll be extremely thankful if there’s an unexpected blooper while getting ready.

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