I’ve seen wedding “must-have” lists that are so long I can feel my anxiety rising just reading them & I’m already married.

In my twenties I organised a holiday with my then boyfriend. During the planning, my sister & her friend somehow wrangled their way onto our holiday & before I knew it, I was organising a 3 week train trekking tour through Europe & beyond. My sister & her friend then cancelled. So now it was just back to the two of us, my boyfriend & I going on holiday. We literally raced (he was on a tight schedule & had to get back home a week sooner than me) by train all the way through Europe & we finally made it to Dubrovnik, where we wondered how had we ended up in this place, when all we’d wanted was a short flight to a week in the sun.

All that racing around made it a pretty miserable holiday but it taught me a good lesson; don’t lose sight of your goal.

I still occasionally get sidetracked by others but I’m good at checking back to make sure I’m still on the track I started on. People mean well but often their ‘advice’ is describing how they’d like to do something & in the case of weddings, it’s about how they’d plan their day.  But just like you don’t always share the same taste in clothes, partners, holidays & where you’d like to live, you probably don’t have the same wedding day prioritie!

What are your priorities?

Ask yourselves & write it down.  Decide what yours are, not what you feel is expected or what your friends did or what a stranger on a forum recommended. Unless you have an unlimited budget you probably can’t include everything. But the good news is that when you stop & think about it, you’ll discover that you’re not really all that concerned about a number of items. There’s no right or wrong & each couple will have their own “must have” list.

I like looking at other peoples lists, so here’s our wedding spend breakdown:

  • 25% Venue
  • 20% Photographer
  • 17% Flights & accommodation on honeymoon. €k’s spending money not included.
  • 7% Bride & groom wedding rings/bands
  • 6% Priest donation & church fees
  • 5% Flower girl, pageboy, shoes, bridal accessories
  • 3% Bride’s dress
  • 3% Groom’s purchased suit
  • 3% DJ
    If it’s not on the list either we didn’t have it or it was under 3% of total spend. (For instance, did my own makeup, didn’t have a car or cake etc)

Disclaimer: we married on an Irish island, so the cost of transporting products & services (people) made us really consider what was really a necessity to us.

If you make a list of things you do & don’t want it may be easier to stay focused & not get distracted by others & their plans for your day.

Best of luck for your wedding day & I hope you enjoy it!

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