Top 10 Wedding Planning Myths

Not all wedding rules are written in stone. Here are a few you can feel free to ignore.
by Rachel Torgerson
  1. You have to wear a white dress.

    Tara LaTour blue wedding gown
    Corbin Gurkin

    If the idea of a big, white dress and veil has never appealed to you, don't feel pressured into wearing one. Hair clips with feathers or even just a fresh flower (floral crowns, anyone?) can replace a traditional veil, and there are plenty of bridal fashion designers who have created dresses in other colors – think: blush pink, dusty blue and even floral print. You can also add color (and personality!) to a simple dress with a bold sash, bolero or cardigan.

    > See wedding dresses with color.

  2. Hiring talented friends is the same as hiring professionals.

    Bride and groom at lush reception table
    Samuel Lippke Studios

    Just because your friend’s Flickr account is full of beautiful nature shots doesn’t mean your wedding pictures will yield the same results. An experienced wedding photographer knows how to shoot a mix of action shots (getting ready, first dance, exchanging vows) while also capturing all the must-have family and bridal party photos. The same goes for all other categories, like flowers and music. Look for local pros in your area, and if money is a concern, just be open and honest about your budget from the start. If you really can’t afford a pro, ask them for recommendations of lower budget professionals with similar styles.

    > Search local vendors near you.

  3. If you went to their wedding, you have to invite them to yours.

    Woodgrain escort cards
    Eric Asistin Photo

    Don’t feel trapped into inviting someone just because they invited you to their wedding. It’s your day – invite the people you feel closest to. If someone assumes they’re invited, let them know up front (sooner rather than later) that because of space or budget constraints, you had to limit the guest list.

    > Start your guest list now.

  4. A wedding planner is too expensive.

    Wedding ceremony aisle lined with flower petals
    Dear Wesleyann

    Here’s the deal: Not only can a wedding planner help you stay organized and suggest incredible never-been-done ideas, but she can also end up saving you thousands and keep you on track with your budget! Many planners work closely with florists, rental companies and other pros and often have access to industry discounts, which they can pass along to you. Not a bad deal, eh? Even if you can’t afford a full wedding planner, look into hiring a day-of one (to take some of the wedding day stress off of you) or a wedding coordinator who can give you recommendations before you start planning.

    > Research wedding planners near you.

  5. Going DIY will save you money.

    DIY head table decorations
    Hot Metal Studio

    Make no mistake – DIY isn’t always the cheapest route. Unless you have unlimited access to the supplies it takes to create your own stationery or flower arrangements, the cost of these items alone is really going to add up (not to mention the amount of time it takes to create invitations for 100!) Do some research before you start buying paper and flowers in bulk to make sure it wouldn’t be worth your while (or your sanity) to simply hire someone else to do it.

    > Get DIY advice from other brides.

  6. You have to have the same number of bridesmaids and groomsmen.

    Wedding party with uneven numbers of groomsmen and bridesmaids
    Mike Larson Photography

    So maybe he has a ton of friends, and you just have a few close girlfriends. Don’t feel like you have to hire extras to even out the sides. What’s important is that everyone you feel close to is a part of your day. Divvy up the jobs: Make some of the guys ushers and others readers. One can even be your honorary toast-giver. If those positions are filled, that’s okay too – there’s no rule that says both sides should have the same number.

    > Dish about wedding party drama here.

  7. You have to take out a second mortgage to pay for a wedding.

    Wedding planning inspiration board
    Tara Donne

    There are easy ways to save money, so don’t start your marriage together in terrible debt! Set your priorities straight – if you’ve always known you want a designer wedding dress, a venue with a view or an amazing bouquet, make those your splurge items. Then, look for ways to save in other areas that carry less weight.

    > Use our budgeter to stay on track.

  8. A DJ will play too much cheesy music while a band will take too many breaks.

    First dance at wedding reception with band
    Lauren Larsen Photography

    You’ve probably heard about a wedding where the DJ played outdated music with cringe-worthy results. Simply talking to your DJ about which songs you love and which you’d rather not hear (um, ever) can help guarantee a playlist that everyone will enjoy. As for bands, you know the drill – the dance floor is packed, but as soon as they take a break, the floor clears and everyone gets bored. Instead, see whether they can go down to a two- or three-piece set without popping in an iPod.

    > Find your wedding band or DJ now.

  9. Wedding food always tastes bad.

    Farm-to-table wedding catering ideas
    Watson Studios

    Just because you’ve been to weddings with less than tasty food doesn’t mean that’s the norm. Some of the hottest wedding catering trends involve comfort foods, like sliders, French fries and sundae bars. Plus, many catering companies are bringing farm-fresh items to the reception table with localized gourmet menus that will make everyone’s taste buds happy.

    > Find caterers in your area.

  10. All wedding dresses are created equal.

    Lace wedding dress
    Clark + Walker Studio

    Why do some dresses cost $500 and others $5,000? It’s about the quality of the fabric, the embellishments, the construction of the dress and, sometimes, the luxe brand name. In other words, those pricey gowns have some serious style. That’s not to say you have to go over budget to find a dress – a good bridal salon consultant can suggest stylish gowns that fit and flatter in your price range, so rely on them to help you find your perfect fit.

    > Find bridal salons near you.

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