I know that some people want to see their almost-spouse for the first time walking down the aisle, which I totally understand, but I’m so happy with the way that we did it. Having a first look allowed us to really soak in what was happening – we had a chance to talk and see each other before the whirlwind that is the wedding. It was really nice to spent some time just Mike and me (with our photographer/videographer). Once it came time for the ceremony, it was still really special to see Mike at the altar, as I walked towards him.
I’ve talked to several brides who did not have a videographer and say that was their biggest regret from the day.
We provided some of the things that were used that day. My mom (with the help of my cousins) built our altar, which is amazing! I love that we will get to put that in our backyard someday. We provided some furniture from the lake house that has sentimental value, as well. One of the doors from the old house was used as the table assignments, our massive table was used as the bar, and my Grandpa’s old workbench served as another bar. My mom is a lantern hoarder (😉), so we used some of her lanterns and vases around the property. Everything else was brought in by the production crew.
Outside of making sure everyone will be where they’re supposed to be on the day of, our planner had a minute-to-minute schedule for the day and completely ran the show. I (and my mom!) was simply a guest at my own wedding, which was amazing.
It’s a lot about picking and choosing where you want to infuse the overall style into your day. If you’re going for a rustic chic feel and you’re getting married in a barn, I’d keep the rest of the rustic touches to a minimum. A barn will give such a rustic feel on its own, so you don’t need everything to be distressed and rustic looking. Keep some things clean and theme-neutral, like your linens, and then include the chic touches with your floral, centerpieces, and menu cards, for example.
It can be very easy to get caught up in making decisions and adding things in to your decor and overall look, but try to keep in perspective all the things you have already chosen. If you go to a floral sample, take photos! When you visit the venue, take photos! Put them all together so that you can get a really good idea of the look of the day. That will make it much easier when it comes time to make decisions about adding an element.