Today is your big day—the day that you marry your best friend, the love of your life, and your partner for life. And, whether you still have a few last-minute things to take care of or everything is already going smoothly, your wedding day is still bound to be a little chaotic and exhausting.
No matter how well you plan things out, there are always going to be a few things you need to take care of right before you walk down the aisle and tie the knot. Some of them will technically need to be taken care of in advance. The following is a general list of the ten most important things you should do on your wedding day.
Image via Style Me Pretty
- Separately lay out everything you are going to wear and need on your big day.
You might sometimes do this the night before work in the morning, so why wouldn’t you do it on the evening before the day of your wedding? And, when we say everything, we literally mean every single piece. This includes every last bit of jewelry, your shoes, your undergarments, and your veil—and even your flower girl’s outfits. It is always best to be prepared; we even suggest making yourself some notes ahead of time if you think it is necessary.
One bride recalls: “I left my grandmother’s diamond earrings at the hotel and ended up walking down the aisle wearing a pair from Forever 21. Another good friend got halfway to the church before realizing that she had forgotten to put on her engagement ring. It’s easy to forget the essentials in the day of chaos.”
There will be a lot going on, so plan accordingly. Organizing everything the night before when you will be feeling more levelheaded than on the big day itself will allow you to enjoy your day even more!
- For your “getting ready” photo shoot, wear a robe that will look good in the pictures.
This may sound like a relatively silly thing to take care of, but you will thank yourself later when you are looking back through your wedding album. You can even ask your bridesmaids to wear similar clothing items in order to make for some fun group shots!
Purchase some printed silk floral robes for you and your bridesmaids—these are relatively inexpensive—or even customize a tank top for yourself with “Mrs.” printed on the back for lighten the atmosphere and make you feel even more special.
Make sure that the area you have designated for the photo shoot in question is appropriate and does not detract from you and your bridesmaids. If possible, ask a friend or family member to be in charge of making sure the room is ready prior to the photographer’s arrival. Make sure all leftovers, lunch wrappers, bags, dry cleaning, etc. are cleared out. You do not want any of those left in the background to mess up your otherwise gorgeous photographs.
- Make sure to eat.
This is much more important than you think. Even if you are used to skipping meals on regular days, THIS IS NOT THE DAY TO DO IT. Your stomach may be in knots in the days and hours leading up to your wedding, but you are going to need your strength. You would not go onstage for a performance on an empty stomach, and your wedding day is one where all eyes will be on you.
If you are having an afternoon or evening ceremony, make sure you have consumed at least two square meals in the hours leading up to the event. Even if for no other reason than to ensure your stomach does not growl loudly during the ceremony for the entire audience to hear. Get your metabolism rolling with some breakfast and lunch. You will feel physically better and less nauseous.
If you do not have the time to eat elsewhere, ask a friend to deliver meals to you in the dressing room; more likely than not, you will be busy prepping during peak meal hours. Depending on the time of your wedding, and if you feel like you can stomach it, allow yourself to indulge with a large, hearty but healthy breakfast that will keep you full throughout lunch.
And, while you should also stay hydrated, do stay away from salty foods. This will help your body avoid retaining water. Do make sure to drink plenty of water. Not having enough H2O in your system can greatly exacerbate your already existing nervousness.
Image via Roe e Dori
- Stick with your current beauty routine, and do not try anything new right before or on the big day.
You have probably already been making many changes to your lifestyle and diet over the past few weeks and months to prepare for your wedding day. However, the one thing that you should keep consistent (particularly on the day before and the day of your wedding) is your usual beauty and makeup routine.
When you wake up on the big day, simply go through your normal morning routine. Brush your teeth, wash your face, moisturize and tweeze, and whatever else you usually do. Whatever you do, do not try any new beauty products or procedures that you have not already tested out.
Even if you are confident in your skin’s breathability, you do not want to do anything that could even in a minor way increase the possibility of irritating or reddening your skin. Of course, you do not want to look anything less than flawless in front of your guests or in the wedding photographs. So, stick with what works on the day that it matters the most!
- Try not to drink too much alcohol, or, at the very least, pace yourself.
This is one of the most difficult rules to follow for a multitude of reasons. After all, if you are feeling a little nervous, you may want a glass of wine to calm yourself before you begin walking down the aisle.
Alternatively, you may want to share the same glass of wine or even host a quick champagne toast with your bridesmaids before you marry your spouse. A champagne toast with your girlfriends celebrating your upcoming nuptials is a lovely tradition, but do not let the celebration get out of hand.
Drinking more than one glass of any alcoholic beverage can be an especially hazardous possibility, particularly for those brides who want to medicate their nerves, and who drink even more than usual before they head off down the aisle. Trust us on this one; you do not want to be tipsy for your own wedding, particularly during the ceremony.
If you must drink more than one glass, be sure to pace yourself and know your own body, and consume plenty of water in the meantime to balance out your alcohol intake. And, of course, you want to look fantastic in front of your guests!
- Write an in-the-moment wedding note or marriage letter to your spouse.
Take a moment out of the hustle and bustle of your hectic day to write a short note to the person you are about to marry. Think of this as the opposite of your vows, which you have likely had planned for weeks or months and will be saying out loud in front of dozens or even hundreds of people. This note, on the other hand, should be spontaneously loving and intimate, and intended only for your groom.
It is an excellent way to record how you are feeling at that very moment, and it will likely allay at least a little bit of the anxiety and stress that you feel. Try to write down two or three special reasons you are looking forward to marrying your spouse, to make them feel special and loved.
Furthermore, this note will be fun to unearth at a later date, and may even help you to rediscover the sparkling excitement of your last few moments before you got married and remind you why you fell in love.
- Do not try to be the go-to person for your guests.
It can be extremely tempting to want to greet family members and friends as they arrive, as well as to help point them out in the right direction if they have questions. This should not be your job. You need to remain as relaxed as possible. This is your special day, after all.
Ask your maid of honor, bridesmaids, and other friends and family members to assist guests and help answer their questions. Ask someone responsible to have some cash available to tip bartenders and other vendors. You should be the very last person involved with the handling of any emergency. As the guest of honor, you should not be aware of any emergency!
Before you jump into the wedding day, make certain to provide your vendors with at least two or three emergency contact phone numbers other than yours. While you should anticipate nothing would go wrong, they will need a contact number in case something does, such as if a caterer is running late.
Finally, make sure every one of your designated people knows their role and whom to ask for help if they need it. It should not be you they search for when they have questions.
Image via Wedding Party
- Spend a little time thanking your parents.
You definitely want to thank your parents for helping you get where you are today. They will greatly appreciate your taking the time out of your busy schedule to make time for them, and a little can go a long way, here. Especially for your parents, keep in mind that this day is just as big—if not bigger—for them. Their little girl is growing up and taking yet another step out into adulthood, and placing her trust in someone else to help build her home with.
- Put your essential items into a tiny, fashionable clutch or purse.
Just because you are getting married, it does not mean you will magically stop needing your usual purse essentials for a day. You still need a place to keep some important items, such as your cell phone, lip gloss, Kleenex, and more, in one convenient location.
Definitely sneak a tiny makeup bag in there, or at least a few touch-up items for after the ceremony and during the reception. If you hired a makeup artist, ask them ahead of time for samples of the products they will be using on you so you can stash them in your wedding day purse.
You do not necessarily even have to carry the bag yourself; designate the responsibility of carrying it for most of the day to a friend or family member whom you trust—someone who will be spending a lot of time near or with you on your big day. Your maid of honor or mother is a good option.
- Ultimately, enjoy your big day.
Take lots of pictures and soak in every last possible detail you can. Enjoy everything, from the girly photo shoot with your bridesmaids, the pampering of your make-up artist, the ceremony, toasts, and first dance, to your guests, but, most of all, enjoy your new spouse. Today is your special day, and you want to spend it celebrating your union to the person you have pledged to spend the rest of your life with.
Image via Disney Weddings
Your wedding day is bound to be one of the most special days of your life. Sure, you have celebrated many milestones—all manner of graduations, achievements at work, birthdays, and more. But today is the day that you celebrate not just yourself, but your union and growth with someone you love, and you are celebrating that person, too. Keep the above ten steps in mind to help ensure your wedding day goes perfectly.