So many of the couples who get married in Central Park with us who bring just a small group of their nearest and dearest say that they do so at least partly to avoid stress. In some cases, the couples have considered the traditional wedding close to home but found the whole thing too stressful, so started to look at other options.
Organising a trip overseas with a small group can still be quite stressful, and it’s my job to help reduce that. Here are a few things I’ve learned along the way while planning over three hundred weddings in Central Park.
- Discuss things as a couple. This is good practice for when you are married! Don’t be alone in taking responsibility for making all the decisions when planning your wedding. I hate to generalise but I see this so much with brides. Talk to your partner about what you both want from your day, and make the decisions together, and sometimes you will have to compromise – that’s what a marriage is all about after all.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff. Think about the whole day, indeed the whole trip, and the bigger picture of what you want from your wedding. Don’t get caught up in worrying about the small details – nobody will notice all of those tiny touches anyway. Your guests will just want to enjoy the trip, see a few sights, have a big party with their family (and to get to know their new in-laws better) and celebrate your love.
- Accept help. If your nearest and dearest offer to help – either to help find a great venue or the perfect hotel for you all, to offer vendor recommendations, or to make suggestions of awesome New York sightseeing trips while you’re away, or just to come with you while you try on dresses – then be gracious and let them do it.
- Delegate. Think about the elements of your wedding planning that are causing you the most stress, or the parts that are just not making you feel too enthusiastic, and just don’t do them! If you’re not being offered help, just ask for it. Your people may want to help but not feel comfortable enough to ask, especially your in-laws who may not know you as well as your own family. Have your partner choose the music, let your mother help you to find a reception location, ask your partner’s mother order the flowers.
- Know what to spend on and what to save on. If you are keeping to a budget, think about the major features that will make your wedding yours – will it be your dress or the venue, or some special unique touches? I can say with absolute certainty that your guests will always be blown away by New York and by the beauty of Central Park. That’s what they will remember in years to come. So, think about the features of the day that will be less important to you, perhaps you can save by making your bouquet yourself or having a guest video the ceremony? Save money on the less important features, I promise nobody will notice!
- Remember that this is your day. You have to give some thought to the guests’ comfort and happiness. We all want our guests to have a great time on our wedding day, but don’t worry about doing things your way if it clashes with their wishes. They either had their turn or will get it in the future – this is your wedding, so if there’s something you want to do, then go for it!
- Get some perspective. So many people think their wedding day is the most important day of their lives. Your wedding day is the first day of your marriage, so it’s worth keeping that in mind. This is an important step in your relationship, but it’s just one step down a very long road. Your marriage and your partner will be very important to you, not whether the flowers in your bouquet *exactly* match your shoes and ribbons!
- Take time out. You don’t want to be rushing in to your wedding day in a flurry of panic and worry. You will only do this once (hopefully!) so slow down and truly experience this planning period. Maybe take a break to do something else for a little while, perhaps with your bridesmaids or your other half. If you do all your wedding planning in a panic then you won’t remember anything about it in ten years’ time!
If you would like me to help you with planning your own Central Park wedding or elopement, which I can guarantee will reduce your stress levels, visit our website. Keep updated with our news and see lots of beautiful photos, “like” us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and follow us on Pinterest.