Wedding season is almost here, which means, your fridge is probably littered like mine with Save the Dates, Bridal Showers and the big days themselves.
Let's just get this out there: Weddings are annoying.
To be clear, going to a wedding is generally awesome: It's a fun excuse to dress up, there's usually good food, an open bar, dancing, and aside from purchasing a wedding gift, you've hardly invested any time, energy or money into the wedding. You show up, leave and see pictures later.
As I told you last in my column, "Daughter of Honor," I'm my mom's maid of honor for her wedding next month, and it's honestly been one of the most stressful things I've had to do in recent history. Why? Weddings aren't for the bride and groom, they're for the guests and they're for the maid of honor to have a panic attack over.
So, with the wedding just weeks away — April 22 to be exact — I thought I'd share the top five tips I've learned along the way of being a self-proclaimed maid of honorzilla.
1). Count invitations before you send them out
Actually, count everything. Six times. I designed the bridal shower invitations myself (skills), and I ordered some extras because my mom is the type of person who needs extras for her memories — or, more precisely, to store in her attic for a few decades — so, I gave them to her with that knowledge. Well, blame it on miscommunication or whatever, but she sent them all out. Without counting. After I started getting dozens of phone calls confirming the event, I knew something was up. Now, we're at our absolute maximum for the bridal shower, and we're paying per person.
2). For God's sake, tell people it's OK to text you
When I was designing said invitations, I hesitated to put "text" next to my phone number for people to RSVP instead of "call" because I thought it was tacky and too Millennially of me. I was already picturing my aunt eye-rolling as she opened the invitation and the eventual admonishing at the bridal shower of, "What? You can't even take a phone call?"
If you like getting calls at all hours of the day and night — which, for me, I answer because I'm a journalist and also type A — then by all means, tell people to call you. I suggest you write text, email, Facebook message, Tweet, Instagram message, etc. The more millennial sounding, the less annoyed you'll be.
3). Go to a physical store when buying anything to wear
We found a really inexpensive online boutique in Thailand (I know, it even sounds like a bad idea) where we were going to purchase our bridal party dresses. The standards of beauty in varying cultures is really evident in buying fancy dresses online. Once the dresses finally came after six weeks of shipping, the dress was two times too long, the underarm area was cutting into my skin, and while I had ordered a size up in my normal dress size, it was still way too small. So, they had to be exchanged. They proceeded to get "lost" in the mail. It got sorted out, but trust me, the savings are not worth the hassle.
4). Shell out money for a party bus
One area of the wedding we decided to cut corners was on transportation. Now that I am in charge of ordering Ubers for the entire wedding party the day of the wedding, I can tell you, trim spending on flowers instead. Flowers can't get you to your wedding ceremony.
A party bus would not only get you from Point A to Point B after a few glasses of champagne, but it also gives the wedding party a place to store their belongings when they are on location taking photos, etc.
5). Designate, designate, designate
I have a type A personality (see item two and also see my entire life), so I have a tendency to do everything myself, but not because I'm controlling — maybe a little — but because I'm afraid to inconvenience people by asking them for help. This entire wedding planning process is proof to me that everything could have gone over better if we had scheduled meetings every six weeks or so with the bridal party to delegate tasks and check in on progress.