Singaporebrides | Weddings 101

November 2013

What Not To Do When Planning Your Wedding

Now that the wedding planning is in full swing, it may be helpful to know that there are certain things that you should not do as a bride-to-be. From going DIY-crazy to giving in to the old folks all the time, gives you the low-down on being a kick-ass bride.

It is only natural that all brides-to-be want to plan their weddings perfectly. But it takes months and months of hard work to bring a fabulous wedding to fruition. In the hectic lead-up to the big day, mistakes will definitely happen. But by following this list of “please don’ts”, it is possible to keep such slip-ups to the minimum.

Don’t be afraid to delegate!

Brides-to-be who are proud of their super organisational skills often think that they can handle every single task in the long list of wedding must-dos. If you think the same, think again. Sure, you can devote every waking moment to planning your wedding. From scheduling gown fittings to coordinating the bridesmaids to liaising with the bridal vendors to negotiating with the banquet manager, it is simply impossible for one woman to tackle all that has to be done to make a wedding happen. And if you brush aside all offers of help, you will end up so drained and defeated that you can forget about walking down the aisle in a glow of happiness. So, delegate! Ask friends and family members if each of them could spare some time to take on a small task or two, while you behave like a bride-to-be and concentrate on getting prettier for the big day.

“I didn’t want to bother any of my close friends and relatives, so I bravely took on most of the bridal tasks myself. It was a big mistake, as I spent months running around doing errands and even crafting for my wedding. I couldn’t get enough rest, as I also had to juggle a day job. Even when I was doing the bridal make-up in the morning, my bridesmaids were completely clueless about the gatecrash activities and actual day schedule. They had to keep checking with me because I was the one who planned everything. As expected, I ran the show – but the wedding photos showed no sign of a relaxed, beautiful bride. I deeply regretted my decision not to ask for help.” – Natalie Chan, 32

What not to do when planning your wedding

Don’t go overboard with the DIY!

These days, the DIY trend has been getting stronger. Brides-to-be are increasingly picking up a sewing kit or wielding a glue gun to add some truly personal touches to their weddings. There was the bride who self-designed and letterpress-printed her own invitations. Then, there was yet another who wrapped her very own bridal bouquet (and those of her bridesmaids as well). Plus, the talented baker who churned out a hundred or so fondant cupcakes to serve the wedding guests after the solemnisation. Going DIY is fine and well – if you have enough energy to spare. But being mere mortals as most of us are, it is more likely that you will need sufficient rest to become the glowing bride that you should be. So, don’t drive yourself mad with great DIY ambitions, lofty as they may be. If you must DIY, consider holding a craft party and gather the help of your kind and nimble bridesmaids!

“I love flower arranging, so I didn’t get a florist when I was planning my wedding. Instead, I went to Far East Flora on Thomson Road the day before my ROM to pick up fresh flowers for my bridal bouquet and solemnisation table set-up. While I have practised tying a bouquet weeks before, I felt nervous and spent too much time doing and re-doing the bouquet to perfection. On hindsight, I should have just left certain tasks to the professionals.” – Mandy Tan, 24

Don’t give in to your parents too much!

Sometimes, parents get so happy and excited for you that they forget that It’s your wedding, not theirs. Like the fact that they were too young and poor to afford a 50-table Chinese banquet in those days, and are insisting that you organise one to tell the world that you are getting married. That includes how they want to invite every single member of your extended family – from the grandaunt to the long-lost cousin – to the big bash. So, if your parents are similarly pushy, it is time to brush up on your negotiating skills and have a balanced discussion with them on how you want your wedding to be. If there is a problem with an ever-expanding guest list, then it may be helpful to decide on a banquet venue first – the fixed capacity will mean that your parents will have to trim their guest list to fit (or pay thousands extra to forgo the banquet package and seek a bigger venue). Remember: It’s your party, not theirs.

What not to do when planning your wedding

“When I was planning my wedding, my father-in-law got so involved that it started to feel like the wedding was his, and not ours. He was the one who shortlisted banquet venues, worked on the guest list and even chose the tailor that made both his suit and my fiance’s suit. I could have asked my then-fiance to tailor-make a suit at my bridal boutique instead. That way, I could save some money because it was all under one package. I gave in because I didn’t want to create any unhappiness within the family, especially since a wedding is such a joyous occasion. But I do feel that I could have stood up for my own bridal-related decisions a little more.” – Kimberly Choi, 26

Don’t boss your bridesmaids around!

When you put together a team of bridesmaids, they are traditionally supposed to be there for you through the emotional rollercoaster of your wedding planning. After all, there is nothing sweeter than gathering your closest gal pals and best cousins to prep you for that one walk down the aisle. But somewhere, somehow, there is more and more to do for a modern wedding. And they tend to get saddled with a multitude of bridal duties. Most bridesmaids are understanding and do not mind juggling duties with day jobs. But instead of being appreciative, there are brides-to-be who go overboard with ridiculous demands. Like how they expect the bridesmaids to fork out huge sums of money for outfits that are completely coordinated from head to toe. Or, planning a hen’s night in Bangkok or Bali without first checking if the bridesmaids could apply for leave. So, if you have the good fortune of enlisting the help of your bridesmaids, be kind and sensitive to their needs.

“I knew that I needed all the support and help that my bridesmaids can give as I had to plan a large wedding of about 500 guests. So I made an extra effort to keep checking with my bridesmaids whether they can handle the tasks that were given to them. I also put my Maid of Honour in charge of ensuring that no one is burnt out. At the end of the wedding, I gave each of them a customised bracelet with their names as a show of my appreciation.” – C.Y Lam, 29

Don’t neglect the love of your life!

What not to do when planning your wedding

Many brides-to-be lose track of what is really important – like a harmonious relationship with their grooms-to-be – in the hustle and bustle of planning the perfect wedding. So, if you have been agonising over photography styles, obsessing over colour palettes and freaking out over the fact that your wedding gown is missing a line of sequins, it may be possible that you have been neglecting the most important person in your life. To rectify the situation, schedule a certain time of the week when you and your groom-to-be take time out from the stress and busyness of planning the wedding and concentrate on building your relationship instead. Go watch a movie, visit an art museum or simply have a good meal together. When you devote time and attention to this, you will become a happier and more relaxed bride!

“I became so engrossed with the wedding planning that it didn’t even occur to me that I was talking about it non-stop to a long-suffering groom-to-be. Then my mum saw what was happening and reminded me that the most significant thing about my wedding was not the frills and flowers, but that I was marrying a good and generous man. That woke me up and I started spending extra time maintaining our relationship instead of obsessing over wedding details.” – Angelene Choi, 34