Wedding season is upon us and I’m sure that you, just like me, have been completely bombarded by an endless stream of utterly fabulous photos of your friends getting married in your social media feeds. And we’re all very happy for them! But not all of us realize how much effort it takes to organize a great wedding and then to live a happy married life. Unexpected things can and do happen and it’s up to us to navigate the surprises and failures with grace, style, and a stunning and stylish dress.
Fortunately for us, the internet is an inexhaustible fountain of advice. And r/LifeProTips is one of the best places around if you’re looking for clear, concise, and accurate life advice. We’ve collected some of the community members’ best wedding hacks and decided to share them with you. Upvote the ones that you found the most useful as you scroll down and if you’ve got any awesome ones to share with us, let us know in the comments.
I spoke about one of the most important parts of the wedding for many people—the bride’s dress—with Anna and Sarah from The Wedding Society. They explained to Bored Panda how to deal with the pressure of wanting to look ‘perfect’ and that, at the end of the day, what truly matters is the marriage, not the party. You’ll find our interview with them below, dear Pandas.
Before you propose, you and your partner should already have agreed to get engaged. That way the proposal can be a fun surprise, without fear of rejection.
If you are ready to get married to your partner, speak frankly and honestly with them about it BEFORE you start planning a proposal. Have a real discussion about your future together, the big items that affect a marriage(finances, family, kids, careers, etc) and decide if you are BOTH ready to get married to each other.
It’s a huge decision, and nobody should be put in the stressful position of having to decide in a single moment, or say No and hurt someone that they care about.
Once you know that they’re on board 100%, you can plan the most elaborate or intimate or special proposal surprise that you know your partner would want. You can purchase the ring and know it won’t be wasted. You can build up the tension for as long as you want until the big proposal day arrives and you both can enjoy it without anxiety or doubt.
The engagement should be planned so the proposal can be a surprise!
Image credits: LegendaryOutlaw
After your wedding, ask the florist for a list of the flower in your spouse’s bouquet.
I did it and have been able to buy my wife flower arrangements with the same types of flowers that were in her wedding bouquet on special wedding anniversaries (e.g., 1st, 5th, 10th, the year we became parents, etc.). I also keep a photo of the bouquet to show the florist. She was so surprised the first time I did it. It went over really well. She immediately recognized that all of the flowers had been in her bouquet
Image credits: moxzil
The most important thing is the person standing at the other end of the aisle.
No one will remember what stationary you used, or the floral arraignments but they will remember the genuine moments that you and your SO shared with the special people in your lives.
Too many people get caught up in making the perfect Pinterest wedding that they forget the only thing that matters at the end of the day is you are getting to marry someone you love.
Image credits: uhunteru
Anna and Sarah went into detail with Bored Panda about the idea of the ‘perfect wedding dress.’ According to them, while the dress is an important part of the event, it’s still not at the core of what the wedding and marriage are all about.
“The concept of a ‘perfect wedding dress’ really only matters deeply to those who are probably focusing on the wrong thing,” Anna and Sarah said that if you find yourself obsessing about finding the perfect dress, you need to take a step back and reevaluate the hierarchy of things that are important to you, including why you’re getting married in the first place.
Before you get married, have in-depth, planning discussions around: kids, money, housing, vacations, current debt, retirement, day to day expectations, pets, in-laws, transportation, and careers…don’t assume anything. Ask the questions, ensure you are on the same page
Image credits: tidblgr10
Many problems in marriage are really just problems with being a bad roommate. Learn how to be a good roommate, and it will solve many of the main issues that plague marriages. This includes communicating about something bothering you before you get too angry to communicate properly.
Image credits: RepairmanJacked
Tell the DJ at your wedding NOT to give the mic to anyone…
…under any circumstances unless they have received verbal permission from you or your wife/husband. This is any easy way to avoid people proposing, announcing pregnancy or preventing people from speaking when you don’t want them to
Image credits: UseDaSchwartz
“There are literally thousands of incredible dresses directly available to you—it’s almost a physical impossibility for only one to be right for you and, if that’s how you’re feeling, it’s probably worth stepping back, taking a deep breath, and re-shifting your priorities,” the wedding experts suggested taking a calmer approach instead of stressing out over something that is unattainable. Perfection isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be and it’s best to avoid stress before your big day.
If you’re getting married and hire a DJ/band, tell them to record their set.
After being married for a few years, I really wish I could go back and listen to a few hours of our DJ spinning records to the night that felt like flew by in minutes. Not to mention having it for years and years to come.
Image credits: DruLuv
Before you start doing any wedding planning, make a wedding-only email account.
Do what I wish I did: Make a new email to give only to wedding vendors. That way, all of your wedding info will be together, and when the wedding is over, boom. No unnecessary wedding emails.
Image credits: to__blave
Before Proposing To A Girl, Go Find An Excuse For Her To Get Her Nails Done Beforehand.
When she wants to send photos of the ring to friends and family or post it to social media, she’ll be thankful that her nails look the best possible that they can before sharing such an up-close photo of her hand.
Image credits: nurturingtrapdoor
Anna and Sarah highlighted the fact that, unfortunately, far too many people are “caught up in the party and the image” of the wedding itself. They want to be in the spotlight, leave a lasting impression on their guests, and impress their closest family members, friends, and broader social circle.
Whenever taking photos you plan on photoshopping. i.e. wedding photos. before you move everyone into the photo take a photo of just the background.
It can make editing the photo a lot easier in the later. like removing that annoying friend of the friend.
Image credits: fatandsad1
If you are buying anything for your wedding, do not tell the vendors it’s for a wedding. Just say a party. Most companies charge 3-4x for weddings even if it’s the same stuff.
This includes cakes. You can just say it’s for a party before the wedding. Same cake. Hundreds of dollars cheaper…
If a vendor is attending the wedding, don’t try to bamboozle them. This is for stuff that you pick up (Tents, chairs, cake, lights, etc.)
Any vendors coming to the wedding should be prepared that it’s a wedding (band, photographer, caterer etc).
Image credits: Clyant
If you don’t mind second-hand items, check out local Facebook groups or Craigslist. A lot of people buy everything new for their wedding, then they have absolutely zero use for it. Most of the time you can get things significantly cheaper without compromising on the quality.
Image credits: [deleted]
However, when the desire to impress others becomes your number one priority, your focus during the actual wedding becomes split and moves away from celebrating the love that two people share toward social pressure. And that’s something that can leave you feeling miserable and unfulfilled if anything goes wrong during the event itself.
I was married in a small village. Like I’m talking about 50 residents in total. I approached the local PTA about food. We had a small ceremony and I figured why not see if the PTA could do it. All it cost (apart from the food cost and buffet set up) was a donation to the schools PTA. 40 people were fed a 3 course meal with their choice of 3 meats for under $400. We got what we wanted and we helped a struggling school. Win-win
Image credits: Becky Jane
Eat. Eat something before your ceremony (or a couple hours before) for energy and so that you’re not sick to your stomach at your own wedding. Plus, there may not be time for dinner if you are making rounds to your guests.
Image credits: sharkbaitooaha
When you marry someone, you also marry their family. Make your peace with that before saying “I do”.
I read this in a book once and feel it holds very true. When you start thinking about long term plans like marriage, unless your partner intends to cut off contact with them, you will have to deal with their family at some point. If you have constant friction with your in-laws and can’t ever see yourself getting along with them, have an honest reflection on how you see the rest of your relationship pan out with their family in the picture. If you think you and your partner can manage it as a team, by all means go ahead, but definitely have a dialogue about it before committing.
Image credits: vet_girl86
“Trust us—you’re only going to truly enjoy the day if you’re focusing on what matters—the marriage. Everything else is just details,” Anna and Sarah from The Wedding Society gave Bored Panda and everyone else planning their weddings some spot-on advice straight from the heart.
Get a wedding dress that you can definitely dance in.
I’ve seen too many brides not be able to do much other than sway the entire reception.
Image credits: cheekychick04
Don’t ever go to a big name for your rings. You will have problems a lot of times. Go to a local hometown jeweler if you can that has been in business awhile. There is a reason they are still around.
Image credits: Amanda Cooper
Amazon! I bought a belt for my dress for $30 and my veil for $35. I found a veil similar to one I liked at David’s Bridal that was $150 in store. I also bought a slip/hoop skirt on there for like $20. You can find lots of stuff. Just read reviews, I also chose items with free returns in case it didn’t work out
Image credits: Sheek014
Designate a bridesmaid to hold bobby pins
Check bustle ahead of time
Let family members who are going to have designated seats at the ceremony know ahead of time
Make sure to take pics in the ceremony space WAY ahead of time
Tell photographer what you want
Have officiant step to the side during the kiss so you don’t have awkward head in picture
Ask maid of honor to straighten out train during ceremony
Eat lunch before doing hair and makeup
Include a thanks to certain people in the pastor’s speech
DIY Photobooth: tripod, big poster cut like a polaroid
Use Fade function in Spotify to reduce awkward silence between songs (we aren’t doing a DJ/band)
Image credits: Goofygooberg
Getting married and looking for a great groomsmen gift? Give something useful.
I’ve been married over 25 years, and attended/ been in many weddings over the years.
The best gift I ever received was about 20 years ago from my college roommate who’s wedding I was in as a groomsman. It was a hammer, and a very nice hammer at that. I imagine it was in the $30-40 range. Great balance and weight.
At the time I thought “oh a hammer…. what the h*ll am I going to do with this?”
But then I moved out of my apartment, got a house and had a few kids. With every home improvement, swingset, outdoor project the hammer got used.
Once in a while I take a picture of the current project with the hammer in the shot and text it too him so that he knows I still use it.
I don’t remember or still have any of the shot glasses or cheap beer steins, they were lost years ago. But not the hammer.
So think of something that will be practical beyond the next bachelor party and give a great groomsmen gift.
Image credits: NotQuiteGoodEnougher
Not really a hack, but always use the “pay yourself first” method. Get a paycheck? Put away what you’ve budgeted for bills, any debt you’re paying down, and what you can afford to put away for your wedding. Stick to a number, put it in a separate account, and DON’T TOUCH IT
Image credits: TwoPesetas
Take your time with planning, try not to get stressed. Take advice from everyone, but only do what you want to. Don’t let people influence your final decisions. Spend only what you can afford. Figure out your maximum budget, minus 20%, that is your new budget. When you see something you really want but didn’t plan for (eg. cupcakes) or something comes in a lot more expensive than planned (eg. The band) you’ll have the budget excess.
Image credits: Comfytibble
When getting engaged or married go to Pawn Shops for your Jewelry.
It will save you literally hundreds if not thousands of dollars on simple wedding bands and elaborate diamond rings. Resizing a ring is also relatively cheap. Anywhere from $10-$30 from a local jewelry store or Mom and Pop store. Stores like Zales and Jared want you to think that you are buying brand new “untainted” diamonds and gold. In reality you are buying recycled gold and diamond that actually came from Pawn Shops and other used jewelry. The jewelry that is sold in Pawn Shops has a shelf life that varies but once it has been rotating for a set time and can’t sell the Pawn Shops sell it for the gold weight. The diamonds are taken out and sold in bulk while the gold is melted down into ingots then Jewelry manufactures bid on these materials that are then used to create brand new rings and settings from these recycled materials.
Image credits: catringo13
When writing a check for a wedding gift, make it out to one spouse or the other with old names. ‘Mr and Mrs X’ checks can’t be cashed until the name change is final weeks later.
Just because someone gets married, doesn’t mean the name changes right away (if at all obviously). So if you write a check to someone with their new name, it won’t be able to be cashed until that is finalized weeks or months later.
The other way to get around this is to write OR instead of AND. So if you write Joe AND Nancy Smith, then they both must sign it and be on the account as Joe and Nancy Smith. But if you write Joe Smith OR Nancy Smith, then either one could cash it independently.
Edit: Apparently it is different by bank or by area. So seems this isn’t universal. However probably still a good thing to follow just in case
Image credits: masterofthefire
Ask for documentation of your SO’s finances before you get married or move in together. Then discuss financial expectations in depth. This could prevent surprises in the future.
What your SO tells you and what is true may not be the same thing. This doesn’t mean that they’re lying, but their perspective of their financial situation may be different from yours. And your assumptions about marital finances may not be the same.
My personal experience is that my own SO told me that they had school debt, but they also were a successful businesses owner. I did not know until after the fact that they had bills in collections, including very small bills that should have been easy to pay, and the business was not paying the bills. They were relying on parents and romantic partners to foot the expenses. They also had not filed taxes in years. I’m very lucky I didn’t end up responsible for their personal debts. I paid tens of thousands of dollars of community debt because I knew they wouldn’t and didn’t want it to affect my credit score.
Finances aren’t romantic, but it cannot be stressed enough that a lack of financial transparency can kill an otherwise good relationship. Love is difficult when your brain is occupied by consuming debt and whether you can make the next payment on the credit card because you know your spouse can’t or won’t. The loneliest I have ever been was while being married to someone who, among other things, was financially irresponsible.
Better yet, I would strongly recommend that every marriage starts with a prenuptial agreement that outlines what you expect from your partnership, both financially and otherwise. We often think of prenups as being for the rich and famous. But they provide legal protections and fairness that most state laws don’t provide. You can also craft fair resolutions that otherwise wouldn’t be possible in many contentious divorces.
A prenup is the means to a (sometimes) cheaper divorce if things go awry.
Image credits: MeguhMillion