As I write this, there’s less than one year to go until our wedding (50 weeks, if we’re getting specific), and I am so excited! I mean, I’ve been excited for the past nine months solid, but it feels a little more appropriate now. It’s also so, so nice to be able to say ‘we’re getting married in September’, rather than ‘our wedding? Oh, it’s not until next September”. It’s the little things…
We celebrated our one-year countdown a couple of weeks back, with a gorgeous dinner, a night out in Edinburgh and a bottle of champagne we’d be given by one of Lewis’s groomsmen back in December when we first got engaged, which we’d set aside for the occasion. I was itching to pop that bottle open, it’s been calling to me from the bar cart these past few months!
It just feels like a really celebratory time, almost like we’re on the home stretch, even though we’ve still got a long (long) time to go. As I’ve probably mentioned before, we didn’t particularly want a long engagement but we didn’t really have any other option. After buying our flat last year, our savings were at rock-bottom and we’re mostly funding the wedding and honeymoon ourselves, so we needed a good long time to save up to have the kind of day we wanted. I won’t pretend that the temptation we had to just elope hasn’t crept back in now and again (it would have been so much cheaper and we’d have been married by now!), but we’re confident that sharing this special time with our friends and family is the right decision for us, even if it means having to wait another eleven months for it.
But eleven months in the grand scheme of things is no time at all - all that matters is that this time next year, we’ll be Mr and Mrs, coming up to our ten-year anniversary with the same last name, a little family of our own.
Back to the wedding plans - now that we’ve booked our suppliers, it’s time to start thinking about the details of the day. We’ve been working with the amazing team at Bespoke to pull together a menu that makes me hungry just thinking about it, and we’re booked in for our menu tasting in November. We’ve started working on playlists for different sections of the day (which I’ve had to stop listening to in public, after sobbing on the bus during my morning commute, midway through the ‘ceremony’ section...). We’ve bought our first decorations, and I’m drafting a shopping list for all the bits and pieces that will bring the space to life and help it really feel like ‘us’. We’ve grappled with the guestlist (definitely not the most fun I’ve ever had) and sent out the save-the-dates. It’s really happening!
As things have been becoming a bit more real, I’m trying to keep my feet on the ground and not wrap myself in knots about all the what-ifs that come with planning a wedding. I am definitely prone to catastrophising a little bit; combined with being a little bit of a control freak and planning for everything that might possibly go wrong - but I know that really, that’s impossible. No day is entirely perfect, things do go awry and the reality is that I probably either won’t know about it (fingers crossed that the bridal party manage any looming disasters!) or that I just won’t care.
I’ve had a lot of advice from other brides I know, who’ve been there and done it, and they know how it all works - their hindsight is helping me to keep things in perspective! My cousin told me that she had a hissy fit because the ribbon on the cake didn’t exactly match her dress, and my sister-in-law nearly had an argument with the venue coordinator two minutes before we went down the aisle, because the giant light-up letters weren’t in the location she’d specified. Tiny, tiny things that seem really funny and overdramatic from the outside, but I get it - you’ve spent hundreds of hours thinking about all these little details and already I can see that it would be so, so easy to turn these miniscule little mishaps into a bigger issue.
Personally, I’m going to try and channel a friend of mine who got married earlier this year, and who sailed through the day carefree, relaxed and intent on having the best time. I’m sure she won’t mind me saying that a few things didn’t exactly go to plan on the day, but nobody knew or even noticed. I certainly didn’t until she told me weeks later!
It was the most gorgeous day, and she smiled and laughed the entire time. Nobody would ever have guessed that the florist had delivered an off-brief bouquet that morning (it was stunning anyway), that her dress had broken in the car on the way to the ceremony, or even that one of the guests broke their ankle on the dancefloor (the perils of having too good a time!). She’s the best example I’ve seen of someone dedicated to what the day is really all about: having a wonderful time, creating the most special memories and marrying your best friend. I’m definitely going to be seeking her advice over the next few months about staying calm and focusing on the bigger picture!
So with that in mind, I’m going to try and keep calm and stay on top of the to-do list, keeping perspective along the way. Next up in the planning is finding a cake, and then thinking about what Lewis is going to wear, along with the groomsmen and the bridesmaids. Next month, I’ve got a meeting booked in with a makeup artist to talk through some ideas, and I’m heading home to London to try on my dress in another boutique that stocks it, to show my mum and my nan. Neither of them could make it up to Edinburgh to come to Olive Jones with me, but luckily I’ve tracked down the same dress in a boutique ten minutes from my mum that stocks it, so I’ve booked an appointment so that I can show them it in person. Fingers crossed they like it, but if they don’t - I’m wearing it anyway!
Things are starting to come together a little bit more now and I’m just enjoying this phase so much, it feels so nice to really have a vision and start making plans for it all to come to life. Eleven months and counting!
Read more of Laura’s antics on her blog The Style Stories…