As a wedding photographer, we are privelaged to be alongside the couple for most of their special day and, as such, have seen first hand how "little things" can make the day just that much smoother or, in turn, cause unnecessary stress. As it is most likely your first time planning a wedding, I hope that the points below of "obvious after the fact" handy hints may help you avoid a few flustered moments on your wedding day:
Drink water. It seems like a simple thing, but it will keep you calm and relaxed throughout the morning’s preparations. Make sure you have a water bottle with you.
Aim to have all hair and make-up complete 1 1/2 to 2 hrs before the ceremony. Re-iterate this with your HAMU artist/stylist. Running over in this area can impact on the amount of time you have to get into your dress, final touch ups, some pics with your Mum etc and can cause you to feel flustered and rushed.
Remove all tags and labels from your clothing and jewellery before the Big Day. It can take up time on the day, looking for scissors etc. and add to the feeling of stress.
Have some wet wipes handy in case of accidental make up marks on dresses, Dad's suit lapel etc.
Bridesmaids can put on their jewellery as soon as their hair and make-up is complete. Little things like this free up time in those final moments. If your bridesmaids have dresses that can be worn in various ways, for e.g.: infinity dresses, suggest to them to decide before the day how they are going to wear them.
Allocate a place for all bags and extra bits and pieces to be kept that is not in the space where you will be getting ready. Clutter can visually make you feel anxious so it is best to have a spare room/space for all the bits and pieces. Some brides choose to do hair and make up in one space and allocate a specific room for final dress, thus eliminating the clutter. Choosing a "getting ready" room with an air con is also a good idea.
Try to reduce the number of people arriving to see you before the ceremony. Although it is lovely to see these people, there will be plenty of time after the ceremony for catch up. Also too many opinions on how to wear your “flower crown” etc can get a bit overwhelming.
Think about putting together an "emergency box" of the following: plasters, double sided tape, Panado, scissors, thread and a needle, wet wipes, tissues, Rescue drops, bobby pins. You may not need them but it is always handy to have a backup.
Give your timing schedule to all your bridal party. If they know the timings on the day they will be less inclined to rely on you for prompting, which will reduce your stress. Your bridal party is there to support you so delegate. Similarly, try not to give your fiancé too many errands to run before the ceremony. He/she will also be feeling nervous and this can add to their stress.
If you are wearing heals for your wedding, consider having some flat shoes handy for your couple's creative shoot so you are comfortable and are able to move with ease. Have a bridesmaid tuck them away near the ceremony area before the ceremony.
Having said all of the above, there will always be unavoidable things that just happen on a wedding day. When these things happen, try to think of it as part of the memories and remember that no-one will be looking at your wedding with the same exacting eye as you do. As my little girl, Olive, with all of her years of Netflix wisdom says to me when I'm flapping over something "just breathe and believe, Mummy" At the end of the day you are marrying your soulmate so keep your eyes firmly fixed on that.