If you’re anything like other brides you could well find that the moment you announce your engagement you are met with a barrage of questions.
“When are you going to get married?”
“Where’s the wedding?”
“Can I be a bridesmaid?”
“Can I help you choose a wedding cake?”
And so on, and so on.
Now of course, it’s lovely to be given help – and in the run up to your wedding day you’re going to be extremely busy with the planning of everything, so think carefully before you refuse.
However there are some people who offer to help whom you’d probably rather weren’t particularly involved with aspects of your big day.
1. “Can I be your bridesmaid?“ This is probably one of the first questions you’re going to be asked. The important thing is not to answer straightaway (unless you’ve given it a great deal of thought and you’re certain it’s a yes.) Hedge for time a bit. Say something like “I’m not sure I’m having bridesmaids yet.” Then think about who you really want to ask. You may have a great girlfriend whom you’ve known ever since you were a little girl and she’s sure she’s got the job already. But is she up to it? Being the chief bridesmaid means doing a lot of work and a lot of planning. They need to organise your hen party, help you get dressed on your big day and remain unflustered throughout. Now if that sounds like your best girlfriend is up to it, then do ask her. But if she’s loveably ditzy, forgetful, has a young family that preoccupies her, lives abroad or really won’t be able to be there with you 101% then she might not be the best person to ask. If that’s the case, then take a deep breath and have a chat. Explain exactly what is involved in the wedding planning, what you expect, that you might be a bit stressed – and see if she still wants to take on the role. If she insists, then make sure you have another bridesmaid who’s super organised to pick up the slack (and who has been briefed).
2. “I’ve just done a flower-arranging course and I could do your flowers for you?“ Or “I’ve just qualified as a photographer, can I take your wedding pictures?” The thing about employing your friends rather than professionals is that they are friends – not professionals. On your wedding day your friends will want to go off and mingle – not take photographs from a list or spray flowers wilting in the heat. In our view, it’s generally best to outsource these things to professionals whom you can just brief and leave to get on with the job. After all, what if they do the job and you hate the result? What you can do is give your wanna-be florist friend or photographer a list of things they can do. Maybe some table centrepieces, pew ends or informal photographs amongst the guests.
3. Mothers-in-law. Tread carefully here. If your mother in law only has sons, she will never have had a wedding to get involved with. Try and be kind and understanding and think of some jobs she can do for you. She may have fantastic handwriting so can handwrite invitations and place settings for you. Perhaps she could do some phoning around to source venues, transportation. You don’t need to let her take over – if you think that is ikely to happen beat her to it by giving her a list of jobs you’ve already thought about and then you can say (before she mentions it) “I’d love you to help with our wedding. I think you’d be fabulous at (insert job) and I’d really like you to consider it. She can’t then accuse you of shutting her out and you’re graciously letting her get involved with the big day. Of course, the same may apply to your own mother. You want your big day to be done your way not hers (although if your parent are footing the bill then they’re entitled to a say in many things).
4. “Can my band play?” “Can I DJ for you?” See note 2 above. We’d always advise you to get a professional DJ rather than sorting the music yourself via your iPad. They’ll have all the equipment to hand and should be able to judge the sort of music that will get your guests out on the dance floor. As for bands – beware. You need to be very confident of what they’re going to play – unless they’re offering you a classical string quartet or they happen to be in a band called ColdPlay!
One final note – if you have a chat to one of our stylists about the look you’re after, you can avoid any potentially embarassing conversations with friends who have ideas on how you should decorate your venue. You’ll then be able to say completely honestly that you’ve taken some professional advice on venue decor which you’re following – and then the issue won’t come up. You’ll find a venue stylist local to you here.
Featured image via Swindon Advertiser