Before becoming a wedding videographer I’d only been to a few weddings so didn’t know much about the events of the day.
Since getting engaged myself I’ve realised how much I’ve learned since Veiled Productions began. It got me thinking how helpful advice from all wedding suppliers would be for couples planning their weddings. These dos and don’ts for your wedding day have been suggested by experienced, friendly, local suppliers I’ve met through Engage Weddings across Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire.
Of course these are only suggestions, you’ll know what’s right for you once you start planning but hopefully some of these will help make your wedding day the best day ever.
Do stay hydrated (with water, not just Prosecco!)
It’s amazing how you’ll forget to stay hydrated with all the excitement and nervous energy on the day. We suggest making sure you have a bottle of water during your preparations and asking your wedding party to put another bottle on / under a table or chair during the ceremony.
Do allocate tasks for your wedding party
Kelly Hawes Celebrant suggests asking your wedding party to help with certain things throughout the day. We agree (see point above!). Bri from GnBri Photography suggests creating a list of formal photos and asking your wedding party to organise people for those photos during your reception.
Do have a schedule for the day
Kerry from Elegant Events Boutique recommends having a schedule for the day. It is likely your venue can assist with a schedule. Your photographer and videographer can also advise. We’ve written a blog about best timings for your wedding day if spending as much time with your guests as possible is really important to you.
Do have a confetti photo
Becky Harley Photography says definitely have a confetti photo and make sure you have lots of confetti available. I love a confetti photo because it’s great capturing it on film! The natural laughter, the cheers of your guests and the reactions of the two of you makes it one of the most fun photos of the wedding day!
Allow more time than you think for the formal photos
Vikki from Your Wedding Friend says formal photos can take longer than you might think. We recommend definitely talking to your photographer before the day and sharing a list with them. They can definitely advise when is best to take certain photos.
Do ask your photographer and videographer to capture the details before your guests sit down for the wedding breakfast
Katy from Olive and Millicent suggests asking your photographer and videographer to capture all the details of your reception before your guests sit down. We always do this and we also love to film our couples seeing the room decorated for the first time together. It’s the emotional and natural excitement when it’s all come together.
Do prioritise your bouquets and button holes
Emma from Urban Flower Farmer recommends prioritising your bouquets and button holes because they will be visible all day. An idea I’ve seen previously is having empty jars on the top table for the bouquets to sit in during the wedding breakfast. This way they are being used for decoration and they will stay fresher for longer. Pete and I are also conscious of being eco-friendly so plan to use potted plants for the tables too and then give them as gifts.
Do take some time in the evening just the two of you for some natural photographs / footage
We love this advice because you’ll be surprised how little time you spend just the two of you on the day! Becky Harley Photography suggests getting some photos of the two of you in the evening and having a moment together. Susan Dobinson Celebrant and Helen from HN Photography also agrees how precious this time is. It’s worth making the effort to have 15 minutes together.
Do send your DJ or band a playlist of songs you like
Dan from JN Sounds recommends telling your DJ or band what songs you like. He also suggests mentioning songs you don’t like. I love this idea! Keep your guests in mind when writing this list as well.
Do use suppliers you like and trust
Dom Plays Sax gives the best advice! It might sound obvious but it’s surprising how often this isn’t always the case. We suggest ALWAYS meeting with potential suppliers so you can get to know them properly. If something doesn’t feel quite right then it probably isn’t. Be sure to check if the supplier has a website, check reviews and see if they are listed with any wedding directories. Any professional company will have all of these plus be on social media with reviews enabled. For me, if they don’t have reviews enabled they are hiding something!
Photo thanks to Monty Steedman Photography
Don’t decorate or dress the venue yourself on the morning of the wedding
Lots of wise suppliers have said this! Thank you Kerry, Sara and Zoe for this recommendation. It may seem like you’ve got lots of time on the morning of the wedding but we promise it will fly by. Leave decorating the venue to professionals or if you really want to do it yourself look for a venue you can hire the day before the wedding as well.
Don’t worry if you have trouble fitting the rings during the ceremony
This advice made us smile because it does happen so often! Bri from GnBri Photography advises placing it on as far as it will go during the exchange and then sorting it out once you’ve turned away from your guests. We quite enjoy the reactions when it won’t go on properly though. Natalia’s face during their ceremony when she couldn’t quite get Mark’s ring on is brilliant! Embrace the funny side for your wedding videographer!
Don’t worry about your outfit even if the weather is bad
I love this advice from Sara from Venue Styling by Sara. It is likely you are only going to wear your outfit on your wedding day so embrace the weather / grass / gravel! There are some incredible photos in the rain or snow so if the weather is bad we promise it’s worth it! Professional cleaning services are available after the day too.
Don’t leave the photo of everyone until the end of the reception
We love this photo. One you can look back on in 20 years and see everyone who enjoyed your special day. We advise having it taken immediately after your ceremony so that everyone is there. No-one has nipped to the toilet or gone to the bar. We suggest having the everyone photo taken from a first floor window or a balcony too.
Don’t have a receiving line
We were surprised how many suppliers suggested not having a receiving line. Kevin Lines Photography, Helen from HN Photography and Becky Harley Photography all advised using the time that your guests are finding their seats to have 10 minutes for yourselves. We like this suggestion because it is likely your photographer and videographer will be preparing for your entrance so it will be a few minutes for you to reflect on the day or nip to the loo when you realise you haven’t been all day 😉
Don’t make assumptions
Zoe – The Wedding Venue Expert says be careful not to make any assumptions. Tell the wedding coordinator or wedding planner everything. No detail is too small to go on the function sheet- staff can’t make things happen if they don’t know about them! We love this advice and can see how during the planning things could get missed or assumed. Most wedding coordinators and planners we’ve met so far really want to make your wedding day the best day for you. They will want to know your thoughts on everything!
Don’t hand out the presents during the speeches
Ok, we know this is a bit controversial. By all means thank everyone but actually handing the gifts out to everyone during the speeches is SO time consuming and pretty boring for all your other guests. We love it when presents are handed out during preparations when we can capture everyone’s reactions and gratitude. The time you save during the speeches you can spend talking to everyone too!
Don’t forget to have a dance
We love this advice from Dan from JN Sounds. We keep saying it but it’s true – the day will fly by! Before you know it, it will be 11pm so remember to have a boogie before the night is out. Your guests will follow you onto the dance floor which makes for great photos and videos too.
Do enjoy the day!
This sounds obvious but sometimes nervous energy can take over. Enjoy every moment because it will be over before you know it! Once it’s over you’ll have your photographs and films to bring back all the happy memories and emotions you felt on the day.