A CT Wedding: All Those Pesky Details

Flickr: user marcus_jb1973

You may or may not have noticed that I’ve been seriously sucking out on adding anything to The CuT lately. Maybe you’ve missed me terribly…maybe you’ve been really thankful. Either way, the reason is simple: I have a wedding to plan. And it’s happening in less than two months. Two months that also promise to  be insane ones at work. Two months in which The Betrothed has a business trip to China too. Needless to say, I’m a little busy. So back off!

We’ve already gone over venues, vendors and the nightmare of dresses. We’ve also recognized that a wedding it not your own. There are some things that you just do to please your families and friends. I know the Anti-Couric will chide me and say it’s my own damn fault for not marrying an orphan or being one myself, but it is what it is. Now let me share with you the wonder of all the other details and the things I’ve learned. Some of this I knew from a few years of event planning experience. Some of this were whole new lessons that I’m not sure I even want to have learned.

Guest Lists: Oh. My. God. I had always thought that a wedding of say, 80 people, would be great. However, when you’re crafting the guest list,  it’s easy to forget that parents, step-parents, and your neighbor down the street all have ideas of people they want you to invite — whether because they are close friends, it’s an obligation or whatever. The guest list is not your own. Once you embrace it, you start having less panic attacks. However, if you’re on a tight budget, there are some very frank conversations to be had. Such as…make sure you are provided correct and complete guest lists (who actually gets a “plus one” and who doesn’t. Your parents’ ideas of etiquette and the norm may be very different than yours). Because, you don’t know what you don’t know. For example, I got in trouble with my stepmother for not including someone she didn’t provide on her guest list. Go figure.

Favors: No, seriously. We had to choose something that people would like — I didn’t want to choose some cheap piece of crap that was going to be left behind. We also had to choose something that would be good for lots of traveling guests. This left it to a charitable donation or something edible. I was vetoed on charitable donation. But, what we chose wasn’t very visually appealing, so I decided I needed to dress it up. Thank goodness for a love of arts and crafts and Evergreen Bag Company in Manchester.

The Ceremony: Oh yeah, that thing. The thing that the whole shin dig is about. We have an awesome JP who knows me and my personality fairly well, since I used to work for his wife. He gave us a great ceremony with some creative bits that was short, sweet, and to the point. It’s the readings that have been killing me. We didn’t want anything religious, or super-long. Nothing too cheesy or too modern. It’s been very easy to find what we don’t like, or even sort of like. It’s been harder to find things that we love. Then, there’s the music. I’m lucky to work with and be friends with two professional musicians who helped me out with all of it. There was no way I was going to be stuck with Pachelbel Canon in D — nice as it is, I played it too many times myself.

Programs, Menus & Other Decor: Really, programs and menus are a “nice touch”. They are an opportunity to add atmosphere and personality in a mostly functional sort of way. Being a bit of a cheapskate, I’ve made our own rather than ordering or having custom ones done. Honestly, if you have a printer and a glue stick you’re in business. I found awesome paper at Paper and More for reasonable prices and shipping. Cause it’s the shipping that’ll kill you! I’ve added personal touches from my other arts and crafts loves like jewelry making, as well. Stamps have also been really useful. In a fun way–not a crazy scrapbooker kind of way. We were somehow convinced to do pics of us growing up…it was a “maybe” thing and suddenly a “definite” thing. Insert groan here. I didn’t want a scrapbook, or a big ol’ collage on posterboard. I wanted something a little more fun and decorative. So, bring in that handy fancy paper, some cheap branches and vases from Michael’s (where my baby bro works and gets a discount!) and we were in business. Now we have three giant, decorative “trees” filled with old pictures. Where we’re going to keep them until October is still a question. Oh, and traveling guest welcome bags? Holy crap. I finally found cheap bags through a friend’s suggestion, and designed our own graphics to iron on. We could have screened them on, but that would have been expensive and…yawn, I’m exhausted.

Music and Pictures and Flowers, oh my!: Sure, we picked out the vendors for this a long time ago. But, apparently they need direction or something? I work for a professional music organization — I’m not about to leave all the music just up to the DJ! Researching and sucking off all the talent in my office has been both fun and confusing. Oh, and a list of “must-have shots”? That has to be done too…and a final meeting with the florist to discuss details…and my hair trial…and three dress fittings…and breaking in my high heels…and doing the seating chart…and doing the escort cards…and…

Someone find me a bottle of whiskey please, I’m about to have a breakdown that can only be cured by a downward spiral into alcoholism.