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Angie: Venues, Vendors and Your Vision

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By Angie Sarhan

Any bride will tell you that planning a wedding is exciting. And if they are being completely honest, they will admit that at times it can be overwhelming and exhausting.

But I am here on the other side of the planning (newly married and honeymoon refreshed!), to offer you one last piece of wedding wisdom.

Whether you are a bride who has pictured her wedding day from an early age, or a bride who’s just starting to figure out what you want your wedding day to look like, I discovered there’s something every bride needs to know.

You need to know your vision.

In order to understand what I mean, try this: Close your eyes and pretend it’s your wedding day. Where are you when you wake up? Who’s by your side helping you get ready? What do your hair and makeup look like? What kind of dress are you wearing?

That’s just to start.

Then you will want to imagine what time of year it is, where you are getting married, who is walking you down the aisle, who is standing by your side, who is marrying you.

And we haven’t even gotten started on the reception.

There’s the venue you need to choose, the vendors you need to interview. There’s the menu to create, the food to taste. There’s the invitations to pick out, proof and mail. There is cake to try, and cocktails to consider. There are flowers, favors and photo-booths. There’s the band or the D.J, the photographer and videographer. There’s the guest book, candy bar or dessert table.

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It’s a wonderful, majestic, happy day to plan. It’s also overwhelmingly stressful at times. And in those times you may want to throw your arms up, throw a hissy fit or throw a bouquet (or whatever happens to be in arm’s length.)

This is all normal. Do not panic.

There’s a lot of pressure to plan this “perfect” day.

But I’ve discovered the way to make this manageable, and even enjoyable, is to know your vision and to trust it with such a certainty that you will never look back, question or reconsider any of your choices (unless you really want to).

I realized this at one of the very first wedding-related appointment David and I had. We went to meet with a caterer and as soon as we sat down she asked, “What’s the theme for your wedding?”

I’m sure to her this seemed like an innocent and perfectly normal question. But for me, only engaged for a couple of weeks, it made all the nerves in my body tingle.

Theme? I didn’t have a theme!

Not wanting to sound like an uninspired or unexcited bride, I rambled off some sort of thing that vaguely resembled a vision.

After that, I smartened up. I pored over bridal magazines and perused Pinterest as if it were a part-time job. I cut out pictures of dresses, hairstyles, cake designs, flowers, shoes, table settings, lighting techniques, favors and gifts ideas. I started a wedding scrap-book placing all these bridal odds and ends together. I was determined to sort out what I liked, what I didn’t.

And slowly, something funny happened. I didn’t have a theme, but I certainly had a feeling of what I wanted the day to be for us.

A vision was born.

I shared my thoughts and ideas with David. We talked more and more about what the day could be for us. It was exciting to picture it with him.

And as we started to have more appointments and as I went to weddings shows and met more and more vendors, I realized just how important a vision is to have.

It helps you sort out what will work and what won’t. It will help you choose the right people to be a part of your day and the ones who simply won’t do.

Here’s what I want to tell you. It’s going to be hard at times. And really easy and natural at others. It’s going to be time-consuming and feel like nothing is coming together, until suddenly it is. You are going to laugh, have fun and create wonderful memories on your way to the altar and you are probably going to cry and get frustrated too. But I promise you, it will all come together just the way it’s meant to.

And here’s the thing I want you to do. I want you to hold onto the vision the way you would your engagement ring—with a fierce grip that no one can shake off you. And when someone just isn’t getting it—the way you want your hair to look (oh, it happened), or the way you want you flowers to look (oh, that happened too)—let them go and move on. Because I promise you, the sooner you do, the sooner the person who gets it can get on board for your big day.

Trust your vision. Trust your gut. And when you choose the people who understand what this day means for you and what you want it to be, trust them too.

Trust that all the vendors and the venues will come through for you. Trust that every single person who is coming together to make your day work, will do their best.

And then, on the day of your wedding, the day of your marriage, the day of a new beginning on your journey…

Let go of your vision and watch it come to life, maybe not in the exact way you are picturing, but in the exact way it’s supposed to be.

And that? That will be perfect.

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