What makes your wedding different from all the others? You. So shouldn’t your wedding day be an honest reflection of your style, tastes, and values, instead of just another cookie cutter?
As a wedding photographer, I’ve seen a lot of different themes and styles, from minimalist elopements to decked-out wedding extravaganzas, and have learned a little bit about how to make sure your wedding feels personal, no matter the size.
Build Relationships With Your Vendors
As a photographer, I definitely have an easier time creating honest and authentic portraits if I feel like I have a sense of who that person is on the other side of the lens. It’s tricky to find the truth about a perfect stranger.
I have to imagine that the same thing is true to an extent with any other creative wedding vendor – if you have a sense of what a person is about, it’s easier to understand and execute their vision for something.
On the flip side of that coin, while you’re going through the process of selecting your vendors, take the time to learn a little bit about them and what makes them tick.
There are countless wedding vendors out there in the world, and you shouldn’t feel cornered into working with a vendor who makes you uncomfortable or whose world view is at odds with yours just because they’re the first talented florist (for example) you found within your budget.
Step Off The Beaten Path
This is probably my favorite piece of wedding planning advice because it applies to nearly everything. No matter what aspect of the day you’re currently planning, if you’re running into walls or struggling to find the right fit, try taking a step back and a deep breath and looking for creative alternatives.
As I’ve talked about elsewhere, there can definitely be a certain allure to sticking with wedding traditions, but it’s just not the right move for every couple. If the thought of having a sit-down dinner reception in a banquet hall makes your skin crawl, maybe consider having a finger-food brunch reception in a field, or an urban block party with food trucks, instead!
Don’t Be Afraid To Say “No”
I suppose this piggybacks a bit on my last tip. Humans have been having weddings for I don’t even know how many centuries, and that comes with a lot of traditions and expectations. Some of them are more problematic than others (I’m looking at you, garter toss).
Don’t be afraid to say “No” to things that don’t feel right or authentic for you and your wedding day. If the only reason you’re spending hours tasting cake samples when you don’t even like cake is because you’re “supposed to”, then that’s a good time to play the “No” card.
Roll Up Your Sleeves
What’s more personal than something you made with your own hands? You don’t have to make yourself crazy trying to DIY your entire wedding, but if you’re looking for a surefire way to add a personal touch try handwriting your place cards, or making some of your own decor.
My current favorite wedding DIY is leaf confetti. All you need is a hole puncher and some leaves or flower petals, and you’ve got your own super personal, biodegradable confetti.
There are so many cool tutorials online right now that it’s hard to pick a favorite, but a quick Google search will turn up lots of fun inspiration.
Keep It Simple
Planning a wedding is exciting! It’s easy to get wrapped up in it all and end up taking on too much! If you’re looking to make your celebration personal and authentic, consider trying to whittle it down to a few key details or toning some things down in order for those details that are important and personal to be able to shine through.
I hope y’all find those tips useful as you’re embarking on your wedding planning journey! What are some of your favorite tips? Let me know in the comments!