I know I start writing this post every month with ‘OMG WHERE HAS THE TIME GONE’ but here we go again… If you’re planning a 2020 or even 2021 wedding at this point and you’re feeling blue about how long you’re going to be waiting - seriously, don’t worry about it, it will be here before you know it! This time last year, we’d had the venue booked for a few weeks and I’d found what I knew would end up being The Dress, we had our engagement party pencilled in and were looking forward to the wedding of our best friends. Our own wedding seemed like a lifetime away, so it’s just very weird to know it’s actually really not that far away anymore. Twenty weeks at the time of writing, if you want to get specific…
It feels like we’re in a good place at the moment with everything. It’s a weird balance of ‘shit’s getting real’ and ‘we’ve still got four and a half months, we can chill’, but I quite like it. It’s really nice to be making big decisions that are really meaningful now, like things that are planned for our ceremony, but also still be able to pencil in a trip to IKEA just because we want to buy a shedload of candles.
Reading that back makes me sound like I’m feeling super laidback - I’m obviously not. I am a living, breathing, one-woman wedding-planning army at the moment, and even on the days where the to-do list seems to be bottomless and I find myself wildly overthinking the minutiae of the whole process, I am loving it all. I mean, every day brings a new thing to worry about, and I look at our ever-busier calendar and wonder how we’re possibly going to get everything done in time, but it’s all just so exciting and so lovely that I can’t stay too stressed for long. I’m determined to enjoy these last few months of being a fiancee, before a whole new chapter of life begins - so even on the days where I am just one depthless pit of worry, I’m trying to remind myself that actually, all that matters is that we get married, it’s all a big adventure and whatever the case, we’re going to have a brilliant day.
May is already looking like a very, very busy month, and I’m basically making plans to cancel my social life any day now - or I would be, except now feels like a really nice time to catch up with people before the wedding, so we just keep inviting people over for dinner. It’s cheaper than a night out, and the bar trolley is taking a bashing at this point... I’m also making one very special exception to my wedding-planning weekends, for my lovely bestie and bridesmaid Kirsty, who got engaged at the end of March. She has asked me to be a bridesmaid for her big day next year, which is just the most gorgeous thing, her wedding is going to be so lovely and so special, I am really excited about it - roll on next April! We’re having a little meet up for her bridesmaids in the middle of the month which I’m really looking forward to (and it assuages my guilt a little at basically being the least available - and therefore probably least useful - bridesmaid until we get back to real life in November) - but hey, I have to be a bride first!
Even if I did have a completely blank calendar, I’m not sure I’d be much help to her at this point anyway; last weekend I got into a total tizzy about (drum roll) which side up to place our invitations in the envelopes, and then freaked out that the pens weren’t the exact same shade of rose gold. So, Kirsty, if you’re reading this, this is the kind of fun you can expect to be having around Christmas time…
Speaking of which, the invitations! The first set of day invitations are now trickling out to our guests, and we’ve also started getting RSVPs which is just so incredibly exciting. The first one, from one of our groomsmen, was obviously fairly expected, but it was so surreal seeing it ping into our inbox - we have guests! And it showed that the wedding website that I’ve spent months fine-tuning works too, which was a relief all round, and the feedback we’ve had on it has been really gorgeous to hear.
On a note about wedding websites, if you’re considering one in lieu of an invitation suite, I really recommend With Joy, which is what we’ve used. I’m so happy with how ours looks, and it has so much more info and personality than a pocketfold could ever hope to carry! We’ve made lovely paper invitations with basic info on them, which was sent to guests along with the link and password for the site, and come August, we can just ping the spreadsheet of RSVPs over to our caterer with the bare minimum of effort. Sounds good to me!
Back to the bridesmaids - and we’re talking about mine again. I’m not sure if I’ve spoken about them too much on here previously, but I had three bridesmaids: Alison (Lewis’s younger sister), Aby (one of my oldest friends) and Kirsty (another longtime pal, who I actually met through Lewis). But by the time you’re reading this, I’ll have appointed a fourth member of Team Bride, Alanna. A very close friend of both mine and Lewis’s (she and Lew went to nursery together, so they really do go all the way back!), I wanted to ask Alanna to be a bridesmaid right at the beginning - but for a few reasons (including her living at the other end of the country and being a bridesmaid for another wedding right before ours), I decided it was too much to ask of her, and I bottled it.
But over the last year I haven’t been able to shift the feeling that she should be a part of my girl gang; she’s a huge part of our lives and I just didn’t feel comfortable about not having her be a bigger part of the day, so at the start of the month we went for tea and I asked her to be my bridesmaid, which was just such a special moment - even her mum was overjoyed! I’m over the moon that she’s officially on the team, and so are the girls - it really is the dream team now. I just feel so settled with it and so confident that I have the perfect girls behind me on such a big day. They are all the kindest, strongest and most supportive women I know and I am so lucky to have them in my life, I love that they’ll be standing beside us both on our wedding day.
It did mean a slightly stressful change of plan for the bridesmaids’ dresses, as my original choice had since sold out and been discontinued (the double whammy, truly a painful experience - many hours spent on eBay to no avail), but that’s the penance I have to take for not just asking Alanna in the first place. It’s actually worked out better - we now have mix-and-match dresses instead of everyone in the same one, which was initially my plan, and everyone’s happy with the new setup. I think I must just like to make life difficult for myself!
The girls are all coming over later in May for a day of fittings and fizz, which I’m really looking forward to. I haven’t asked them to do too much or do lots of meet-ups, just because everyone is so busy and Alison lives in Aberdeen at the moment, so it’s a long way to travel. We haven’t all been together since last August, and we probably won’t all be together again until my hen in July after this, so I’m going to make the most of it. I know they’ve been working really hard at planning the hen and I can’t wait to see what they’ve done! I am really looking forward to us all being together and me being able to get them up to speed on our plans so they know lots more details about the day. They’re all going to look beautiful and be such a huge help to me, I know that without their love and support this whole business would have been a lot trickier.
And the boys are all set too - Lewis took his two best men and three groomsmen over to Glasgow at the end of April for a day of fittings and a boys’ lunch, so they’re all measured up and booked in, and looking pretty suave by the looks of things! No such drama for him, the boys all knew years ago that they’d all be in each others’ wedding parties, he’s got an easy life. From what Lewis told me, they’re all so excited for the wedding too, which just makes my heart sing - of course I couldn’t expect everyone to be excited about it all for the full 21 months that we’ll have been engaged, so now we’re ramping up, it’s actually so fabulous to hear that people are really looking forward to it.
The next thing we need to do is think about how else we are getting people involved in the day. We need to decide on witnesses for the ceremony and then ask them, and we need to decide on both readings and readers for the ceremony too. And it’s looking likely that we won’t be having a traditional speech setup, so we need to think about that too, and consider who we’d like to say a few words on the day. I’m thinking that we need to get some more equality on the stand - who says that the boys should say everything?!
Planning a wedding really makes you think about who has a big impact on your life and why you love them so much - it’s just so special. I mean, it does make you think about things you’ve never really thought about before, and it sends you a little bit doolally at the same time, but overall it’s just a really magical experience. I am really excited about what the next few months will bring us, but in the meantime, I’m just trying to live in the moment, make the most of every little bit of planning - and keep ticking things off that to-do list, of course!