For the bride and bridesmaids
My first piece of advice is to go to bed at a decent time the night before. It’s really tempting to sit up late talking but you have an extremely long busy day ahead of you. You may not sleep well either so the earlier you go to bed the better. Plan a breakfast that is high in protein and carbohydrates. You should eat and this sort of food as it will take longer to break down in your body and keep you going better. Remember that you won’t get a chance to eat until your wedding breakfast which could be mid-afternoon.
In the morning wear a button-up top, a very loose fitting top or one that you don’t mind cutting off! If you don’t you risk spoiling your hair and make-up. Think about whether you want to wear your bra too. Depending on your dress you don’t want unsightly marks. Remind your bridesmaids to do these things too. A great tip, if your dress goes over your head is to put a pillow case carefully over your head first (to protect against make-up smudges) before you put your dress on. Have at least two helpers who could stand carefully on chairs to get good height to lift the dress on. Make sure that at least two people have come with you to your dress fitting(s) who will be around in the morning. Your Mum and bridesmaids would be perfect. Make sure they take notes, save photographs and practice so that on the day you can get your dress done up well and in good time! Don’t forget the all-important hooking up of the dress for the first dance too. The bride should always get dressed first, so if your preparations start to run short of time it’s not you that has to rush!
Don’t forget to take the labels off your shoes and anyone else’s too. Do this in advance and if necessary use some meths to get rid of the sticky patch. Also think about wearing them in a little. Far too many brides leave it to the wedding day to wear their shoes for the first time and end up with very sore feet. Don’t forget to pack some flat shoes to wear in the evening, in case you need them!
Take your gown and veil and your bridesmaids’ dresses out of their bags at least 24 hours before. Hang them up in order for those little creases to drop out. Check if anything needs ironing and do it the day before. There will be far too much happening on the day of the wedding to be trying to deal with a scrunched up veil.
You should allow plenty of time in the morning to get ready. Ask your photographer what time they need you to be ready for photographs at the house before you leave. Too often brides and/or their families miss out on these as they are simply not ready in time.
Food is an important thing to think about for the bride, groom in fact all of the bridal party. As mentioned before plan your and make sure you have organised something for everyone to eat during the morning, something that you are going to ‘fancy’ eating. It will be a long day. Remember you won’t get another chance to eat until your wedding breakfast which in some cases could be mid-afternoon.
Make yourself a little wedding day emergency kit. Containing such things as safety pins, needle and thread, tissues, phone numbers for all your suppliers and key people, superglue, first aid kit (including plasters) and a stain-removing pen.
When you walk down the aisle don’t walk too fast, take your time. People want to see you and your photographer wants to get good pictures for you. Make sure you leave enough space between you and your bridesmaids so that people can see you clearly and your photographer can get clear shots of everyone.
For the groom and groomsmen.
You might think that you have hardly anything to think about but….
Remember to remove the labels from your shoes if they’re new and if they’re an existing pair then remember to polish them! Keeping on the theme of your feet if you are staying away from home then remember to pack your socks! It happens more often than you’d think and your shoes will be very uncomfortable without them.
If you are planning to have your hair cut or your head shaved then do it at least a week before. It will give it time to settle down a bit and you’ll still look smart without that ‘just had a haircut’ look.
Your button holes are worn on the left lapel, slightly below the actual button-hole looks better. Try and get one person to put them all on so they can make the position/height the same.
Advice for both of you.
Relax and be friendly. Greet everyone with a smile, even if you’re not happy to see them and you’ve had a disagreement in the past. Don’t spoil the day by being angry bride or groom. No one likes one of those and looking back you’ll regret it. Stay poised during the speeches too, don’t make a big reaction if something inappropriate is said. People will probably have missed it or not realise it’s an issue unless you react badly.
This is your wedding day, one of the most important days of your life. Surely you want to remember the day and evening clearly and in its entirety. So make sure that you don’t drink too much, drinking a full glass of water in between each glass of alcohol will help keep it under control.
During the day you should both take time to stop and take everything in. Your guests, the look of your venue, the atmosphere and so on. The day will fly by so do take time to make those memories and take it all in. Take some time to share some moments with your new spouse too on your wedding, the start of a fantastic journey together.