Wedding planning is so much fun, but in reality, it is also a lot of work and we are all busy people! A lot of couples like to organise everything themselves, right down to the last detail so their guests can all be surprised on arrival (if this is you, read our blog about how the internet is your new best friend!) But if you've ever been a guest at an elaborate wedding where the betrothed looked as cool as a cucumber, chances are they had enlisted their Wedding Gang to take on some of their tasks!
Of course, there are some elements that are really personal (nobody is going to ask their uncle to write their vows for them!) but if you want a stress free wedding, delegation is key!
Here are Lily Houston HQ's top 10 things to delegate out to your nearest and dearest:
In my personal experience (and not to stereotype) I don't know anybody who knows more about cars than the middle-aged men in my family. Dads, uncles, step-dads, grandparents; they are your go to for organising a vintage car or even an old London bus.
Tell them what you are looking for and they will either scour the internet to find the perfect match, or if you're really lucky they'll know somebody who has one!
Then it's up to you to either trust them implicitly, or have the final say before they confirm. Either way, you've saved an afternoon of checking availability and locations that could probably be better spent on other wedmin!
Who are your most creative friends and family? They are who you want onside for this one. Table centrepieces are really time consuming if you choose to hand make elaborate, Pinterest inspired ones. You may want to be there to supervise a production line on this one, or you might be happy to let your crafty friends loose with the scissors and a mood board. Either way, you will save so much time not trying to tackle this one alone!
Are you a flower expert? However much I learn about flowers I will never know as much as my nan did, or my mum for that matter! A really good tip to both save time and make sure you get exactly what you want is to speak to the best gardener you know about what you want. They should be able to advise about when things are in season and substitute flowers for those that aren't so that you can go into your florist with your expectations managed. This will make your meetings easier and quicker!
Some couples choose to delegate the booking of their honeymoon to their Maid of Honour or Best Man - after all, these are the people that know you the best! If you're not overly concerned about where you go, or you want a total surprise, it's a really nice idea. Equally, you can tell them exactly where you want to go, but leave the choices and faffing around booking flights and hotels to them! If your friends are better travelled than you, this works especially well. And of course, you can always insist on casting your eye over it all before they click confirm.
Both time and practicality come into play here. If you live in a block of flats with a shared vestibule, you don't want to miss any RSVP cards getting accidentally wrapped up in the junk mail or sat on someone else's kitchen counter for a week because they keep meaning to return it to you. If your parents/best friends/siblings have their own post box, it is safer to have the RSVP address at theirs, and also saves you time as you can ask them to log the replies on a shared spreadsheet in Google Drive! Definitely a win-win situation.
6. The Entertainment
Unless you happen across the perfect band/DJ/string quartet at a wedding fair (or you already know you want the ones you saw at your friend's wedding), chances are you will spend evening after evening scouring the internet for the perfect ones. Decide on a style, find your most musical loved ones and use them like the producers on X-Factor; they can essentially 'audition' bands and present you with the best three who are available on your date. Simple!
7. Addressing envelopes
The average wedding had around 80 guests in the UK at the ceremony alone. Even if every single one was there in a couple, that is still forty addresses to triple check, write in your best handwriting, check again that the right invite is in the right envelope, check the address one final time, seal, stamp, and post. Phew! If one of your nearest and dearest is a calligraphy pro (or just has really nice handwriting), now is the time to enrol them into your wedding gang!
One of the best ideas we have ever heard from a bride was when she let her friends have the log in to her Pinterest, and they spent an hour or so a week when she was first engaged finding pins they knew she would love as wedding inspiration, from dresses to ideas for photos. It made them super close and they were all so excited about every detail of the wedding planning!
9. Spray paint
Aside from centrepieces, no matter how much your venue provides, chances are you'll want to add some decorations of your own for a personal touch. A great way to get metallic frames for seating charts/table numbers/signs in general is to buy plain wooden ones and spray paint them for a high end finish. Spray paint is not at all complicated, but it is time consuming! Delegate this to anybody with a well ventilated garage or big garden and you will save a lot of time!
10. Heavy lifting
Whether it's well in advance, shifting furniture to decorate, or the night before setting up an exclusive use venue, there will be a certain amount of heavy lifting involved in your wedding day, and this is where the strongest of your gang come into play! From shifting chairs and tables into position to hanging vintage picture frames from trees to create photo booths, you're going to need all hands on deck!
The best thing about your wedding gang is that all of these people want to help you plan your perfect day! You can have so much fun together organising things for the wedding and it just makes the Big Day even more special when your loved ones see what they contributed to the process.
So, who's in your gang?
Love, Lily x