Have you ever wondered what really goes into the planning process and wanted to hear an account from someone whose been through it before? Well now you can! Today we have a Real Wedding Rehash from a good friend of mine, Catherine Soucie, who got married this past May. Let’s see what Catherine had to say about her experience planning a wedding.
How did you and your husband meet?
Nick and I met in college at Virginia Tech. We were friends for about a year before we started dating. This past November we hit our 5 year mark!
In the beginning, how were you feeling about starting the planning process?
Nick and I were both nervous and excited to kick off the wedding planning process. I worked in special events for two years, so I did have some background planning large-scale events, but it’s definitely much different when you’re planning your own wedding! We dove right into the planning process and locked down our venue just two weeks after our engagement.
Did you have any help with your wedding planning?
Our wedding planning was truly a family affair! My mom and I did all of the wedding planning—along with Nick’s input. My sister, Emily, helped with all of our signage and Nick actually built some of our décor pieces. My brother, Chris, handled the music selection, and my dad helped with communicating schedules and directions with our out of town family. If I didn’t have an event planning background, I definitely would have hired a wedding planner, but my mom and I were determined to do it ourselves! It was a big task to undertake and it was definitely stressful at times, but in the end everything at the wedding was hand-picked and designed by Nick and I, so we felt like we had put our blood, sweat and tears into the whole wedding day, which made it even more special.
What was the easiest and/or your favorite part about the planning process?
My favorite part of the process was deciding on all of the design elements for our wedding reception. We pulled lots of inspiration from Pintrest and wedding magazines, and would bring those photos and pages to our meetings with the florist, venue coordinator and invitation designer. On our wedding day, we got a sneak peak of the ballroom before the reception began and just seeing all of the design elements in the exact places we imagined them was such an amazing feeling! The room felt magical!
What was the most difficult part of the planning process? What trials and tribulations did you run into?
In the beginning, it was difficult to find out that certain elements we had hoped for all along couldn’t be done or were out of our budget constraints. For instance, we always imagined leaving our reception surrounded by our family and friends waving sparklers. It turned out that our venue didn’t allow sparklers so we had to change our plan. We ended up going with a confetti toss for our exit and it ending up looking awesome in our pictures! We definitely learned to start going with the flow when some of our ideas had to be changed or scrapped. The small things that we thought mattered turned out to be just as great even if it was Plan B!
What was one of your favorite moments on your wedding day?
Our wedding ceremony was really special to us. We decided to have a traditional Catholic Mass, and we spent a lot of time picking out the readings, songs and prayers. When we were up on the altar surrounded by our family and friends, it was such a moving and special moment for the two of us.
If you could go back in time and redo, or alter, one component or method of the planning process, what would it be?
Honestly, I don’t think I would have changed anything about our planning process. We stayed organized from the beginning which really helped us in the long run. We could not have been more pleased with how our wedding day turned out!
What planning advice would you give to the newly-engaged?
Start your planning early!! We had a 15 month engagement so you would think we had all the time in the world to plan, but there are so many decisions, appointments, showers, parties and fittings that come up! We were thankfully done with all of our planning and errand-running about a week in advance, so it was so nice to just enjoy the time with our family and friends and relax before the big day!