I’m the type of person who thrives on being super busy both at work and in my personal life, ahh except if being busy includes socialising, cos then I’m bit rubbish and actually kinda suck at that, hello introvert. But generally I like to keep a few balls juggling all at once.
What goes hand in hand for a busy organised person? Planning events, woop woop! Literally it was my dream job when I finished school. That’s what I wanted to do, I wanted to live in London and organise events.
Turns our dreams do come true ~ thank you universe!
Somewhere along the way my job has moved away from 100% of my time spent running events, which is quite sad, and a whole other blogging topic. So in order for me to feel fulfilled and to keep me up to date with all those skills, I convinced D to let me organise 4 weddings and a honeymoon in 6 months spanning 4 weeks!
Yep we are crazy. I’ve never been one to shy away from a challenge, and D is well up for parties with all his favourite people.
Side story, I actually did want to become a wedding planner at one point, I don’t even know why, I’m not even that into the whole “lovey” stuff. I think it was mostly around planning this massive fun day that everyone could be excited for and have the best day of their life.
I have a few key tips that can turn any average Jan into an organised event manager, hah, almost!
The best tip I can offer is making sure you and your partner are clear on how your day should be. Sit down and explain to each other how you see your day working out. Start at the evening before and explain in detail all the activities you envisage. Are you staying at the same place the night before? Are you having a breakfast with your bridesmaids on the wedding day? Are you arranging special transport? Are you getting married in a church? Are there flowers? What food do you want? Is there a first dance?
You get the point. Think about everything you want from the day and discuss it together. If everything is laid out on the table at the start there will be no surprises later on.
We did this and I was surprised at what was important to D, like he wanted the biggest cake on the planet, he didn’t even mind if a few layers were fake, he just wanted a tall cake, hah.
Doing this exercise will quickly identify what you value and don’t value in your big day.
I couldn’t be the organised person I am without the help of technology. As mentioned in this post, I rely on online software to keep me up to date and on track. Trello was a huge help to keep each of the 4 events in line. I created boards for each event and monitored them as separate activities, but there are hundreds of ways you create these boards, you just need to find a way that keeps you accountable and on track.
We also decided to save the planet a bit and used a wedding website to send and receive information from our guests. I created 4 different websites and we sent links to our guests via our usual communication channels. This meant they could rsvp directly from the way they absorb the information, genius, right?!
We also used an online gift registry for the same reason. We were able to share it to all 4 events via the website. So darn easy!
I can’t tell you how many Pinterest boards I made (actually you can see here, except for the hidden ones and boy are there a lot of those, hah) for the wedding, I had one for hairstyles, makeup, DIY, you name it I had a board, even engagement rings.
You spend so many hours thinking about colours, dresses, flowers, literally hundreds of things that make up your day. So by saving them in one location is a huge time saver, and best yet you can add contributors. So I had one with my mum, we each added bits and pieces that we liked, so we could replicate it at a later stage.
I recently did a cull of my Pinterest, it was getting out of control, so now it has only the best ideas, mostly for our house. We’re after paintings and prints to make it more of a home, but I’m getting side tracked.
Pinterest, mate you need it!
Ask for help
Now this is one thing I’m not good at. I’m a control enthusiast (definitely not freak, hah) so handing over tasks to someone else is not in my DNA, I need to actively work on this. So the wedding was challenging in that regard. Being an event organiser by trade and it being my own wedding, I was keen to hold onto everything.
There were times I felt stressed and overwhelmed. In these moments it’s important to sit down and write the list of jobs you want to do, that you want to take ownership of, anything towards the bottom can definitely be handed off.
In my case D was in charge of arranging transportation, he was also in charge of arranging the international payments.
My mum was in charge of creating chair covers, arranging the cake in Australia, and coming up with ideas for DIY bouquets.
This is also a great way to involve your parents, your in laws and bridal party, if you have one. Not everyone is crazy like me and wants to have hold over every single part of the events, so do let go of what is not on your high priority list.
As regular readers will know, D is not keen on budgets, he doesn’t like rules and certainly doesn’t take kindly to being told what to do. So in the interest of saving fights, I didn’t enforce any budget on him, but secretly we had a budget for sure. And so anything that was organised by me (hello priorities for me were budgets, see tip above) was heavily curated based on cost.
I kept track on one spreadsheet everything we spent, our flights, our honeymoon, our accommodation, catering, clothing, really anything that we needed to pay for. This way I could work out how long it would take us to save for the whole adventure and where we needed to cut costs.
I did spend more on my dress than I wanted to, but I did get to wear it 3 times, which is a lot more than most brides, so I definitely got my monies worth. By keeping track of payments and costs all in one place, it was so much easier to manage.
You do need to talk to whoever is chipping in money for the wedding, and be open and honest about who is paying for what, and how those decisions will be handled. Talking about money can be awkward, but it really doesn’t need to, as long as you’re open and create an honest space to discuss it.
With any long project, it’s a journey, and it can be long. Given ours wasn’t as long as most, it did get overwhelming in places. So if it does, take a break. Step back and tell your partner, you mother or anyone else involved that this week there is to be no wedding talk.
If you have mapped out when things are due, you may even be able to programme breaks into your planning.
You can’t forget what is important in this process, and that is that you and your partner are declaring your love in front of your family and friends. There is no point planning a wedding if one of you feels stressed for the whole lead up. That’s no fun for anyone.
Looking out for each other, and spending time together should always be the goal. Planning the big day should be secondary. So don’t forget that.
D was really good with this, he would make sure I had a clear week when I needed them. And would keep our parents on track for no wedding talk during those weeks. I did get stressed and overwhelmed and I think over the course of the 6 months I had around 6 or 7 breaks. And you know what?! Nothing got forgotten, and our days were perfect. And if you do forget something it probably isn’t that important to your big day.
Now that we have no weddings and house buying to look forward to, I’m trying to figure out what to put my focus to. I’ve been working on my blog and Instagram a lot more. I have so many additional hours now that used to be focused somewhere else, so I need to harness that into something fulfilling.
So send me your ideas 😉
Peace out for now