bride illustration

When it comes to your wedding,everyone has advice to give. To help you plan your perfect day, you could surf the web until your eyes cross or fill a bookshelf with “how-to” guides. But when it comes to credibility, don’t settle for professional advice when you can get it straight from the real experts—brides who learned, sometimes the hard way, what makes for a successful wedding. They don’t just talk the talk; they’ve walked the walk—right down the aisle. Here’s what they wished they’d known when it was their turn.

Plan Ahead
“Check with www.timeanddate.com to see what time sunset is on your wedding day. You’ll get great pictures.” Kristin Murray,
married at the Larchmont Shore Club, 10/29/05

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“Create a wedding-day schedule for your attendants, parents, and vendors. Keeping your team informed makes for a smoother event and a day filled with good memories.”
Shannon Koy,
married at The Hammond Museum, 9/24/05

“If you’re having an outdoor ceremony, always have a contingency plan. We experienced the tail end of a hurricane on our wedding day and had to switch our ceremony from the beach at Silver Lake to the pavilion at Senasqua Park.”
Margarett Newton,
married at her parents’ home in Croton, 9/18/04

“My photographer gave me a great tip: make sure you leave enough time between the church and the reception. Allow thirty seconds per person on the reception line. Even if you have just sixty people, that’s thirty minutes!” Kristin Murray,
married at the New Rochelle Shore Club, 10/29/05

Prioritize & Save

“It is always cheaper to choose flowers that are in season. If flowers don’t constitute a big part of your budget, you can visit the flower district in lower Manhattan or stores like BJ’s or Costco to get the wholesale price. Then have a floral-arranging party with your bridesmaids the day before the wedding.” Syndia Coicou-Amazan,
married 9/4/04,
reception at a private residence in Somers

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“Decide early what things you can compromise on and what things are absolutely necessary. I decided to go without menus and programs so I could spend more on beautiful, custom-made escort cards and table numbers.” Alyssa Carrera Messina,
married at Wainwright House, 9/24/05

Delegate, Delegate, Delegate

“Assign a friend or relative to each vendor for the day of the wedding so you can be free to enjoy yourself.” Meera Marti,
married at her parents’ home in Croton, 5/27/06

“If you can afford it, hire a wedding coordinator for the day of the wedding. I wish we had. It’s great to let someone else worry about the last-minute details and the little surprises that come up.”
Kate Shanley Talbott,
married at Lasdon Park, 7/3/05

“Designate one trustworthy person to hold all the vendor checks in separately labeled envelopes to be distributed before the guests arrive.”
Gabriella Vovsi,
married at The Hammond Museum, 7/30/05

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Kick Up Your Heels

“If you lack the confidence or experience in ballroom dancing, getting dance lessons several weeks before the wedding is definitely worth doing.”
Melissa Lundquist,
married at The Hammond Museum, 6/11/05

“Wear cushion pads in your shoes. They make a world of difference. I couldn’t have danced the night away without them.”
Gabriella Vovsi,
married at The Hammond Museum, 7/30/05

Dare to Be Different

“If you’re having a smaller wedding, try open seating. Let people make their own choices and be treated like adults. It makes for some interesting combinations.”
Kerry Flynn Barrett,
married at Crabtree Kittle House, 8/20/05

“By choosing a wedding date outside the prime months of June and July, you can
get a really nice venue and still stay within your budget.”
Cindy Keegan-Rosen,
married at Le Château, 3/5/06

Live the Moment

“So many people say they wish they remembered their wedding. So, stop, look around and notice the colors, the flowers, and the people dancing. Imprint it on your mind for a lasting memory.”
Jennifer Roitman Seamans, married at
Doral Arrowwood, 11/5/05

Expect the Unexpected

“Don’t let the little things upset you. Something can and will go wrong, but focus on the big picture. It’s the imperfections that make the day ‘your day.’”
Jessica Packer Gordon,
married at Lyndhurst, 7/23/05

Lois Podoshen thanks the brides for sharing their experiences and tips and wishes them all the best in the future.

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