Wedding Day Regrets
I read a lot of blogs by newlyweds. You’ve got to find that tribe am I right? And I’ve noticed one common theme running through the vast majority of them.
Almost everyone’s got a post about their wedding day regrets.
Part of me finds that a little odd, and part of me can relate.
I loved my wedding day. Like literally loved every single minute. I was devastated when it ended. I literally did not want to leave the ballroom, did not want to take off the dress, did not want the guests to leave, did not want to leave behind the half eaten slice of lemon cake, trust me. And I did not want to stop feeling like a magical princess in a princess dress with perfectly done hair. I mean lets be real, who wants that to stop?
So I can’t say in honesty that I have regrets about my day. I am not really a person prone to regret anyway. I don’t see the point of it. It is a largely useless emotion that isn’t going to help anyone or change anything. And I certainly don’t feel like regretting things about one of the hallmark days of your life makes much sense. Why not just take the good with the bad and what not?
That said, I can think of some things, if I really push myself to be honest, that I may have done differently, had I had the chance.
So in the hopes that you won’t be left with any regrets, here are the things I don’t regret, per say, but that I may have done differently with that oh so powerful gift of hindsight.
Taken a Moment on the Wedding Day Morning
I was a really organized bride.
And I’m super happy about that, because it helped me ease my stress on the day so very much, and it meant that when it came to show time, I was calm, happy, excited, rather than a crazed bucket of nerves who forgot to put her lashes on.
I was up at 7am (early to bed too, not risking those under eye bags), and in my own makeup chair being my own makeup artist by 7.45. I had the morning planned out in 15 minute intervals, so that that I didn’t miss a beat and I was ready exactly when and where I was planning to be.
But the one thing I feel like I got wrong was not leaving any space for organic moments in the morning, not leaving any space to just stop with a cup of tea and have a morning chat with someone in my family. There isn’t much free time when you’re working to a wedding morning schedule to be fair, but I know I could have fit in a few more random memorable moments, or at least left space for them.
I don’t recall much of my getting ready process because it was exactly what I had planned to be and didn’t exactly sear itself in my memory, but I do remember the few snatched moments that I hadn’t planned for, and if I got a chance to do it over again I would have left more empty space, space for really taking in the morning and enjoying it for what it was, not where it was taking me.
Tweaked My Shot List
Like every good photographer should, we were asked by ours to submit a rough shot list, go through a questionnaire detailing what kind of shots we valued, and and exact instructions of who to include in portraits, as well as a mood board of the style we favored.
All of that was fine, our photos are absolutely gorgeous and the portraits are literally perfection, at least in my opinion.
I wish however that when it came to the candid caught in the moment journalistic style shots which make up the vast majority of our shots on the day, and usually make up the vast majority of most wedding albums, I had been more prepared about who I wanted the photographers to focus on.
Obviously all photographer are human and can’t be expected to learn 30 odd faces in the moment but most will be able to get to know your core family if you point it out as important and request that they keep a keen eye on photographing certain family members more than guests, or certain tables more than others. I wasn’t specific enough about this to either my photographers or videographers and while I am absolutely in love with their work, I feel like I would have been even happier if I had been a little more careful about this.
Stuck to My Dream Cake
A wedding cake seems like one of the easiest parts of the day to organize, doesn’t it? After all, you’re not the one baking or assembling sugar flowers, you’re the one carefully balancing the flavors in a buttercream frosting, you’re the one doing the eyeballing and the eating. I can do both like a pro.
However, I do have to say that the cake was the one area I had the most regrets in. I will say this: don’t lose sight of your original vision. Most brides will already know vaguely what kind of a cake they want. And I knew what kind of a cake I wanted.
I wanted a traditional super feminine tiered cake, probably white but maybe a pale cream or blush, with tons and tons of flowers, sugared or natural. That isn’t the cake I got in the end at all. I can track exactly what happened as it happened of course, because cake buying is actually really hard, really expensive, and finding someone who can make a cake that everyone likes is really tough.
What did happen in a nutshell at the end of the day was that I bowed out to what everyone wanted flavor wise and what was most practical (namely, a tiered cake made of small, multi flavored mousse cakes). But that was a mistake on my part. The cake didn’t look like what I had imagined at all and whilst it was delicious, I do regret not taking the chance to have that dream caked I had envisioned like forever.
No one particularly remembers what the cake tastes like and everyone will happily eat a slice of cake, whatever the flavour, so don’t worry too much about the guests or the flavor, go for what you want to look back at and smile in the photos- its actually worth it.
I didn’t shy away from dancing on my wedding day at all, and frankly I’m sure I could have made less of a fool of myself!
That said, I didn’t spend all that much time on the dance floor. The time I did spend is well documented in photos and videos because the moment the bride and the groom hit the dance floor, the photographers and videographers zero in on you, so be prepared for that if you’re on the shy side!
But we had wonderful music acts at our wedding, which was amazing, and we didn’t get to fully enjoy them because we spent about three minutes dancing before having to break and speak to someone, go outside to shoot some photos, or just generally work the room so to speak. Really, people are having fun on their own and you can have fun too. Spend more time on the dance floor and you’ll have greater memories for it. I missed out on a lot of amazing looking little dance groups forming on the floor, and I can see how much fun they were having by looking at the little videos people took themselves, and I wish I had taken more time to join in.
Listened to the Brooklyn Duo
I was an incredibly, incredibly lucky bride: I had the Brooklyn Duo playing at our wedding drinks reception. Yes, you’ve read that right. I still have to pinch myself over it because I absolutely love the Brooklyn Duo. When we were working through the entertainment side of the wedding, I literally suggested them on a crazy this never going to happen whim.
But happen it did.
The Brooklyn Duo were honestly so, so lovely in real life. They were so gracious, everyone loved them, couldn’t stop praising their amazing live performance, and we got some special treats from them to keep! It’s a memory I will literally treasure forever.
Except. I didn’t hear them play. Like not even for a minute. It boggles my mind right now when I realize that but on the day we were so panicked rushing around trying to get all our family portraits done in the courtyard whilst the drinks reception carried on that we didn’t get even a minute to go in and experience it for ourselves. This will probably always be my biggest, biggest regret of the day.
Enjoyed My Meal More
I know there are so many brides and grooms who literally can’t remember a single thing they ate on the day, if they ate anything at all. I was luckier than that, we had a sit down dinner and I had no choice but to sit down and work my way through the menu we had carefully selected, and which was honestly, delicious.
But I can’t remember much of it. I ate, but I spent the entire time thinking about what we had to do next, popping out of my seat to visit each table in turn between courses, and I didn’t really get to sit and experience the meal with the people at the head table.
And I don’t think that’s the way a bride and groom should spend their wedding meal. It’s a chance to sit together, take your time, rest, recharge, and actually talk to the most important people of the day. And I should have paid more attention to that.
Taken My Own Photos!
Now I know this a controversial one. Loads of people have a blanket ban on picking up their phones on the their wedding day and I totally, totally get the merits of that. I gave my own phone to one of my best friends, with firm instructions not to go on and tweet random things on my behalf (she’s done it before!), and what I would like her to capture if she had a chance. But I got that phone back by the time dinner rolled around, and then largely, left it by the wayside.
I have a few random selfies and short videos I captured towards the end of the night, but whilst I know my photos are never going to match those caught by my photographer, the truth is those really private little moments I would have caught myself would actually be quite cool to look back on now, almost like seeing the day through my eyes.
It’s a careful balance, you don’t want to spend your day behind a lens. But a few stolen personal moments caught here and there would not have taken away from the day, but also have been really special memories. It’s not often you get to take a selfie in a wedding dress after all!
Stolen a Moment in the Ladies
Here’s something to prepare yourself for on your wedding day: you will not spend one single second alone with your thoughts. It can most definitely without a doubt be overwhelming. It can also be really exciting.
But what it doesn’t leave any space for at all, is self reflection. A moment to gather and center yourself and really take in all you’ve felt and experienced that day. By the time you get that moment you’re up in your bridal suite, absolutely exhausted. And chances are next morning you’re having a family brunch like we did or racing off to your honeymoon, like we also did. It’s almost like the day happens without you having a single moment to stand still and really and truly deeply take it all in.
Sometimes the only thing you can do is escape to the ladies room to get that exact moment. I’m not saying I regret not going to the ladies on my own, because honestly, what kind of a regret would that be- but I wish I had found a quiet space or moment to really reflect, a moment I could look back on.
Gone for Party Favors
We opted against party favors and there a million good reasons to do so. They’re costly, most people forget them at wedding or toss them at the back of their closet somewhere, and they are wasteful, to an extent.
But nevertheless, I feel like there is something missing from a wedding that doesn’t have a cute keepsake all of its own.
I think I would have been happy if I had spent some more time really trawling Pinterest from something unique and special, all of our own, that people could have kept, used, and remember the day by. It’s not a necessary touch but its a nice one nonetheless.
Had a Mini Family Afterparty (Tea in Our Suite)
I definitely don’t mean a crazy afterparty in any way whatsoever, nor a long one. Our wedging was crazy and long enough.
But I think it would have been nice to spend a little time, even just an hour, decompressing with the most important people that were there. It would have helped take the edge off going from the biggest day of your life to quiet in a room you’re unfamiliar with, and a great way to wrap up the day and share memories.
And that’s about all!
Those are my wedding day regrets, using the word regrets very loosely, because the truth is, even with the little things here and there I would have done differently, I couldn’t be happier with how the day went. No day is perfect and our day wasn’t perfect, but it was perfect to us and that’s all that matters.