Some brides or grooms may start the wedding planning process with a strong idea of what they want to do for a wedding venue. After all, if you’ve been thinking about your wedding day for your whole life, you may picture it happening in front of your ideal backdrop. Others may struggle to even nail down where they would generally like a venue to be located in terms of what country they’d like to choose as their destination wedding host or what general climate they would enjoy seeing in their wedding photos for years to come.
If you don’t know where you’d like to host your wedding, you may have a lot of other question marks littering your wedding planning binder–if you even have one of those at this point! Brides need to worry about more than the wedding venue, after all. You also need to think about the big picture like what the landscaping job looks like at a venue for the wedding and reception or little details like what color your nails will be on the big day. All of these choices add up to overwhelm many brides and bring out the least flattering sides of themselves at least once.
Pay Attention to Landscaping
As someone who’s planning a wedding from scratch, you probably have all kinds of companies on your roster to contact. From catering companies to bridal dress shops to hair salons, you might even have these numbers memorized at this point. One unexpected type of company that you should have in your back pocket for successful wedding planning is a tree company.
When you’re wedding venue shopping, you may find that you get what you pay for with some venues. If a venue is a barren land to which you can do anything within reason, you may want to consider planting some trees there or having some hedges planted. Of course, it’ll take time for these things to grow to the point where they can give you privacy or shade, so you should only do this if your venue allows it and you know you’ll have enough time for them to reach their full potential as plants.
Don’t Forget the Outdoor Details
Unless you’re having an indoor wedding, you need to think about all the little things that can make you and your guests have a comfortable reception or wedding outside. If you’re renting an outdoor venue, make sure that they include some sort of shade where your guests can have respite from the beating rays of the sun if it’s going to be hot at your wedding location. You can request your venue to provide patio umbrellas or buy and rent your shade options to save some money if you find a cheaper alternative to whatever the venue offers.
Before you can go wedding venue shopping, you’ll need to decide whether you intend to have an outdoor wedding or an indoor wedding. Some folks book two venues if they have the means to do it so that they can go with the outdoor venue if the weather looks nice closer to the date of the wedding or go with an indoor venue if it looks like it’s going to be rainy or unbearably hot on the day of your wedding. Since this can cost a lot of money, it’s wise to think about booking an outdoor venue in a location that has pretty stable weather patterns so you won’t end up getting rained out on your wedding day like that one Alanis Morissette song.
Destination Wedding? Remember Travel Details
Although it can be fun to daydream about having a wedding in another destination that you desire during the initial planning stages of wedding venue shopping, it’s a whole other beast to nail down the details of your travel plans for your wedding. If you think it’s stressful to plan a weekend trip to another city or country, you’ll get even more stressed out when you try to plan a destination wedding. If you’re not great at figuring out how to book flights on airplanes and arrange travel plans, you may want to hire a travel agent or wedding planner who specializes in working with couples to plan destination weddings.
When you don’t have to pull your hair out over flights that are canceled at the last minute or have a meltdown about choosing connecting flights, you can focus on all the fun details of wedding planning and leave the rest to a travel wedding planner. Some wedding planners may not be familiar with the processes and regulations for booking a destination wedding, so you should interview your potential wedding planner by asking questions about what experience they have in planning destination weddings before you choose them to help you with this process. Once you’ve decided where you want to have your wedding and you’ve booked the flights, keep all information and tickets for the flights in a safe place, so you don’t lose them on the days leading up to the big day.
Make Sure Your Venue is Secure
For many brides who are planning weddings, the safety and security of the venue are top priorities. You can either choose a venue that already has safety features or you can ask a venue if they would be comfortable partnering with local fence companies to construct a fence around the area where you’ll host your reception and wedding if they don’t already have one. If the venue doesn’t feel comfortable agreeing to build a fence before your wedding, you may want to consider renting large screens or other structures that can provide temporary privacy until it’s time to clean up the venue and tear everything down.
As you’re wedding venue shopping, you should pick a venue that feels safe to you in an area where you feel comfortable. Although everyone’s idea of safety and comfort is different, the main one that matters on your wedding day is your own opinion on what feels secure to you. To increase security measures, you can always hire security event staff if you have a large wedding or other safety concerns.
Pick Out Matching Flowers and Bouquets
Some brides may find it fun to pick their flowers and bouquets instead of relying on florists to provide their flowers. If you don’t have a green thumb or knowledge of how things like top soil work, you can always fake it till you make it and pick flowers in an area where gardeners are nearby to instruct you about the best way to pick flowers safely. You can also take classes on floral arrangements if you want to create floral bouquets for your big day that still look professional enough to stand out in your wedding photos.
When you’re wedding venue shopping, you should see if your venue partners with any florists or offers discounts if you purchase flowers through them. While it’s possible that your venue won’t offer those kinds of services, it’s still worth it to ask them about what they can do for you. The worst they can say is “no” and the best they can do is save you hundreds of dollars or hours of your precious time by providing something that would take you a while to find on your own at a comparable cost.
Put in Finishing Venue Touches
After you’ve finished going wedding venue shopping and have the perfect place selected for your special day, it’s time to make sure the place is up to the standards that you set, so you have an unforgettable experience. Setting the mood in the venue is one of the first steps you should take to liven up the atmosphere or keep it mellow as the party goes on well into the night.
If your location has large glass doors or windows on the ground level that may make the room a bit too bright as the sun sets, consider putting up window blinds that can darken the room a bit and block out any unwanted exterior lighting. Contact some local custom window blinds companies and ask them to install some brand-new blinds that can keep the guests from being blinded.
Decorate and Personalize the Room!
Whether you like it or not, every one of the guests is going to be studying the decorations in the reception hall the second they walk in. After you go wedding venue shopping, go all out and show just how much effort you’ve put into your day by making it look beautiful.
If your wedding has a particular theme or color palette, search for things that match your selection like tablecloths and napkins or flowers that are the same color as the bridesmaids’ dresses. Or have fun little special effects to give the event some flair. Streamers and balloons fall from the ceiling before everyone goes to the dancefloor or sparkling lights hang down the walls and support beams.
You can also personalize your space with a custom marquee sign letter that stretches from one end of the room to the other. It will look great in the pictures with you and your new spouse standing in front of a huge “Just Married” sign, after all. And while you’re at it, hang up some smaller interior signs with fun little messages for the guests or pictures of you and your beloved that you’ve taken throughout your relationship. Fun little decorations can liven up the venue!
Pamper Yourself Prior
Your wedding is supposed to be the happiest day of your life. All your friends and family are coming together to watch you marry the love of your life. For most people, this is the only time this will ever happen to you. If there was ever a time to break the bank and have some fun making yourself look as amazing as you can, it’s now!
Once you’re done with wedding venue shopping, it’s time to take care of yourself and schedule some self-care. You can either do this on your own or book an appointment at your favorite nail salon for some extra TLC. In the transition to your wedding day, reach out to Invisalign if you have some concerns about your smile so you look your very best before all those wedding photos. Hit the spa with your friends. Do whatever you can to make yourself feel beautiful before your extra special day.
If you haven’t decided on how you want to spend your last hours as an unmarried person, you can also take this opportunity to invite your bridal party to a bachelorette pampering day. You can book a bachelorette party at a spa for an evening or go on a retreat that lasts a few days if you want to savor this time with your girlfriends before you have to attend to your marital responsibilities. You can also use this time to get matching manicures or pedicures with your bridal party, so you can show them off on the wedding day. When you want to have these manicures or pedicures on your wedding day, you should get them done close to the day.
As you plan your wedding, you won’t want to forget about how important it is to prioritize wedding venue shopping. Where you hold your wedding will impact how many guests you can invite, what you’ll be able to wear, and even how much money you’ll have left over in your wedding budget to spend on catering, favors, invitations, and other supplies associated with your nuptial celebration.
When you’re wedding planning, you should think about more than all of the things you have to do, schedule, finance, and plan during the journey from unmarried to happily wedded. You should think about how you feel from a mental health perspective and a physical perspective. During wedding venue shopping, don’t forget to take breaks to do things you used to love before starry-eyed visions of your big day took over your thoughts and wedding industry contacts took over your phone. Consider how you can provide the best sleep, diet, exercise, and other aspects of health to yourself even in this season that may be the busiest season of your life.