What are the wedding mistakes to avoid so yours goes off without a hitch? We’re sharing the most common mistakes couples make when planning their wedding so you can make sure yours is as seamless as possible. And remember, mistakes at weddings happen all the time, but knowing how to deal with it is part of the battle. Learn to roll with it and realize that, if, at the end of the day, you’re married to your person, it was a total success. :)
Let’s get started!
Wedding Mistakes to Avoid
1. Planning a wedding without a budget.
Before you plan your wedding, start bringing it down to earth with a real, practical, keep-to-it budget. Use a timeline and a spreadsheet to keep yourself on track. These spreadsheets can help.
2. Forgetting to keep a list of vendors.
As wedding planners, we aim to keep an organized list of vendors. We keep all contact information, even if we decide not to go with a particular vendor. It helps to keep notes on what the pricing is, what the contract says, telephone numbers to contact, names, what time they are to arrive at the wedding, and more. Keep a solid list of vendors, stat!
3. Telling everyone about your wedding too early.
Ah, this is one of the biggest wedding mistakes couples make without realizing it: telling the world about the wedding before you’ve made definite plans. Err on the side of caution and stay mum about any specific wedding details until you know — for certain — your wedding guest list. If you end up completely changing your plans, no one will even know! And you won’t feel like you “uninvited” a bunch of people if you wind up making your wedding list very small.
4. Oversharing every wedding detail on social media.
You’re excited about your wedding, but everyone you know doesn’t need to know every little detail. Just an FYI!
5. Forgetting to tell vendors when you’ve changed your mind.
If you ask a wedding vendor about pricing, inquire about dates available, etc., but you decide on going with a different vendor, be sure to let the original one know. It is the polite thing to do. Otherwise, they may be keeping the date tentatively open for you when he or she could open the date up to another couple instead. If it feels difficult to tell someone you’re not interested, don’t be: it’s business, and he or she would rather know one way or the other.
6. Not having a plan for poor weather.
Wedding day weather really won’t wreck your day if you have an indoor ceremony and indoor reception. So, it rains a bit? Don’t worry — it’s said to be a little extra luck. ;)
But if your wedding is outdoors, and you have no alternate plan for an indoor tent or location in case of rain, wind, or storms, you’ll wish you did.
7. Missing golden hour.
There’s a magical time of day when photographs are at their peak: golden hour. Ask your photographer about it and don’t you dare miss out on this moment to capture some of the most magical photographs on your wedding day!
8. Not having vows written.
It’s not the easiest thing for many couples to do, but writing your wedding vows is very important. If you follow these tips, you’ll be well on your way to writing perfect vows in the proper amount of time. And also, don’t forget to write vows in actual books so you don’t forget what you want to say.
9. Not wearing proper undergarments.
Wearing the best undergarments for your gown is crucial in eliminating any lines, bulges, and see-through on sheer fabrics. Make sure you have the best wedding shapewear for you.
10. Wearing shoes that are uncomfortable.
You wouldn’t believe how many couples are out there rockin’ the wedding aisle with painful feet! It’s one of the easiest wedding mistakes to avoid. Read: 17 Most Comfortable Wedding Boots for the Bride to make sure yours are perfect.
11. Skimping on good food.
No. Just… no. :)
12. Not offering enough beverages for guests.
Another no! Make sure you have plenty of delicious beverages for your guests.
13. Missing out on mingling with everyone.
Take a moment to walk around the wedding tables and greet each guest. If you decide to do a receiving line, that is another way to speak with each guest. They’ve made it a point to attend your wedding so be sure to greet, speak with, and celebrate with every guest on the list.
14. Forgetting to supply ample bathrooms.
Ahhh, one big mistake couples make at weddings, particularly outdoor or backyard weddings is to supply enough bathroom facilities. Here’s what happens when you don’t have enough bathrooms: guests get uncomfortable, have to wait in long lines, and it becomes a major bummer. Make sure you have enough bathrooms, sinks, and more.
15. Asking too many bridesmaids to be in your wedding.
Keep it as small as possible! A fun wedding party is fun, but will increase your budget tenfold. With each bridesmaid or groomsman, you need to include extra funds for gifts, rehearsal dinner meals, transportation to and from the wedding, and more. It’s totally okay to have a large wedding party, but you can’t go back once you ask people to be in your wedding, so make sure it’s final before you ask bridesmaids to be in your wedding.
16. Not making a wedding website.
Having a wedding website is probably the easiest thing you can do for your own sanity — and the sanity of your guests. It will offer a unique, organized way of outlining your wedding “things”: accommodations for hotels, shuttle, places to visit, what time wedding events begin, directions to wedding events, and so much more. Get one here for free. P.S. I highly encourage getting a wedding website with RSVP capabilities to save money on RSVP cards, envelopes, postage, and time.
17. Not being able to hear the ceremony.
Wind and rain get in the way of good sound at an outdoor venue. Another issue? Speaker issues, no microphone, or tech issues. Make sure your guests are able to hear you clearly, loudly, and without error, so they can focus on your beautiful ceremony.
18. Taking too long during your wedding photos.
Plan out your wedding timeline in a way that allows you to take those awesome wedding photos, but without making your guests wait too long for dinner to begin.
19. Not having a DJ or band.
If you don’t like to dance, don’t assume your guests won’t want to! At the very least, make sure you hire someone to play music live at your reception, rather than relying on someone’s phone to play tunes from a playlist. I promise this is one of the wedding mistakes that happens more than you think, and it never has a great outcome.
20. Ordering wedding stationery too late.
Order early. You may not need to send invitations until this date, but that doesn’t mean you can’t order them early to have in hand. Stationery and other paper goods are taking longer than usual this year due to demand, and you don’t want to be late on sending yours out — so order early! Here are the stationery items you need to have.
21. Going too cheap on wedding favors.
Wedding favors do not need to be expensive. However, you don’t want to go so cheap on wedding favors that they are rendered useless junk. Read: 25 Cheap Wedding Favors That Are Not Junk.
22. Spending too much money on save the dates.
Don’t kick off wedding planning by making one of the biggest wedding mistakes: spending way too much of your budget on save the dates. Instead, buy cheap save the dates because it doesn’t have as big of an impact on your overall wedding.
23. Not having an exit ceremony.
It’s a great way to conclude the festivities! Some couples like an exit for the ceremony and others like a sparkler send off for the reception.
24. Not asking for help.
Your partner should plan your wedding with you: as a team, you’ll have the best success in creating a perfect wedding day tailored to you both. Here are some tips to help.
25. Ordering boring gifts for bridesmaids and groomsmen.
Oh, many of the traditional wedding party gifts have been done over and over again. Think outside the box! Read: 100 Most Unique Groomsmen Gifts for 2022 + 50 Best Bridesmaid Gift Ideas for 2022 for suggestions.
26. Waiting too long to find a dress.
Shop early! It’s never too early to find the wedding dress. If you have extra time, you’ll be able to wait until you find the right one… and you’ll have plenty of time to plan ahead for proper dress alterations.
27. Ordering bridesmaid dresses late.
You’ll be sweating up a storm waiting for those bridesmaid dresses to arrive if you order too late. Make sure you order them at least 6 months ahead of the wedding day.
28. Worrying about too many trends.
Don’t try to keep up with all the trends. Pick a few you like and scrap the rest! You don’t want to look like a cliche Pinterest wedding, but one that is tailored to your unique tastes and filled with all of YOUR favorite things.
29. Not doing a wedding hair and makeup trial.
Once you decide on a hairstylist and makeup artist, try a trial before the wedding day. This way, you can envision your wedding day look and make sure it looks the way you are dreaming it will. If not, you’ll have time to find another one and go a different route.
30. Drinking too much before the wedding.
Getting ready with your bridesmaids can be fun, but bottomless mimosas or champagne toasts won’t help you as the day goes on. Limit your alcohol intake before the ceremony, and drink lots and lots of water to stay hydrated. Your bridesmaids should do the same.
The same applies to drinking too much at the wedding. Have fun, but don’t overdo it!
31. Missing out on the dance floor.
One of the worst wedding mistakes couples make is NOT dancing at the wedding. Don’t get too busy chatting that you forget to dance! And if you’re not a good dancer, let’s be honest: who is, really?!
32. Skipping niceties for your guests.
Is the weather chilly? Offer blankets for guests. Long beach wedding? Get these flip flops in bulk so guests can ease their feet. Buggy? Offer insect repellent for outdoor weddings. These little niceties will keep the party going!
33. Wedding planning all day, every day.
Ah, this one is a classic mistake: planning your wedding too much. You can get overloaded! Don’t become a 24/7 bride… make sure you take time off from wedding planning, particularly for the sanity of your partner. ;) And make sure you keep going on fun cheap dates together!
34. Leaving the honeymoon planning until the last minute.
Plan your honeymoon ahead of time or you may end up not taking one at all. And if you have no plan of taking one, that’s OK. I’m talking about couples who want to plan a honeymoon, but wait too long, and then they say they’ll get to it, but they never do… It doesn’t have to be expensive or elaborate, but go somewhere together! You won’t regret it.
OH! And don’t forget to pack for your honeymoon early. :)
35. Not having a rehearsal.
A rehearsal the day before the wedding or a few days prior is essential. This is not a drill! A rehearsal will make sure you eliminate any questions anyone has on the wedding day, like where to stand, who walks in first, how does the ring bearer hand the ring to the Best Man, who holds the bouquet, where do the programs get passed out, where are the ushers going to be, who sits where… you get the idea. A rehearsal is not optional.
36. Forgetting to spend one-on-one time together.
At your wedding, take a few minutes after the ceremony to spend with your partner. You’re MARRIED! Savor the moment together, alone, before the festivities. You’ll remember this.
37. Not cutting down the guest list.
Your budget is your budget; the guest list is the biggest way to either dramatically increase the cost or lower it. Many couples regret not cutting the guest list because they feel bad or guilty about it, but this is one of the facts of weddings. You must get the guest list down to a number that is realistic. Try these tips if you’re having trouble with yours.
38. Freaking out over every little thing.
Relax! The fact that you’re taking the time to plan your wedding shows you’re doing your best to prevent as many wedding mistakes as possible. If something off of the list arises, just let it roll off your shoulders and brush it off. No sweat! It’s your wedding day, nothing is going to get in the way of it being awesome.
39. Letting someone else’s opinion get in the way of your own.
There are some wonderful wedding ideas out there, but not everything is something YOU want. And that’s OK! That’s beautiful, really — weddings shouldn’t completely mirror one another. Instead, embrace the customs you love, ditch the things you don’t, and find ways to make your wedding day truly authentic. You’ll be happier as a result.
What wedding mistakes would YOU add to our list? What are some mistakes you’re worried will happen at your wedding? Tell us in the comment box below!