It’s that time of year again. After the flurry of Christmas and New Year proposals, we’re all starting to receive those carefully crafted invitations again, and if you’re anything like me, you’ll have at least a couple of dates in your diary for the summer months, when you’ll help your loved ones to celebrate their special days.
As a single parent, you’d be forgiven for thinking that I might be a little bitter when it comes to marriage. The truth though is that I’m really not. Though my own marriage didn’t work out, I still very much believe in it as an institution – and who knows, maybe one day I’ll find myself walking down the aisle again!
If I did though, I know that I’d do things very differently. There’s so much pressure on couples these days to really push the boat out and spend a small fortune, and it’s entirely unnecessary.
Here are some of the wedding mistakes that I made (and how I’d do things differently if I meet the right man in the future…)
Not sticking to a budget
It’s no secret that weddings can be extremely expensive business. Most couples will have an initial discussion about how much they’re willing to spend, but in reality, these plans often end up slipping away. You get carried away with the excitement, and all too often, that results in starting married life with debt hanging over you.
My best advice here is to make a budget that you’re comfortable with, and do everything you can to stick to it. One of the biggest expenses is likely to be your wedding venue, so think outside the box about how you can get more for your money. For more inspiration, click here to find out about your wedding venue options.
Inviting people who I haven’t even seen since
It’s so easy to let your guest list spiral out of control! Before you know it, you’re inviting distant relatives who you probably wouldn’t even recognise if you walked past them in the supermarket, and friends from school who you haven’t spoken to in years. I made this mistake, and it ended up costing us a small fortune.
If I did it again, I’d definitely commit to having a much smaller and more intimate affair. I’d be ruthless with the numbers, and I’d make sure that my invitations only stretched to the people who truly are my nearest and dearest.
Focusing on everyone else instead of what we wanted as a couple
Everyone has an opinion on what makes a great wedding, and it’s easy to fall into the trap of doing things a certain way purely because you feel pressured by other people. Though I wasn’t too bothered about an elaborate wedding cake, we ended up spending a ridiculous amount of money on one purely because the in-laws insisted that it was an absolute must!
At the end of the day, this should be about the two of you celebrating your love and the start of your married life together. You may have to have some difficult conversations along the way, but don’t be swayed by what other people think you should have!
Have you been married before? What mistakes would you encourage other couples to avoid?