Secrets from a Wedding Planner – How to Plan Your Dream Wedding

December 6, 2019

5 of My Biggest Planning Secrets – LCN Events

Written by Courtney N. Shale // 12.2.19

Have you ever wished you could get inside the head of a wedding planner and know their best kept secrets?

You know, the advice they give to their couples and what makes up the foundation of their secret sauce?

For the first time ever, I am sharing my best kept wedding planning secrets in fine print! That’s right, these words have only been spoken- never documented where all can see- and I am so excited to be sharing them with you.

After all, planning a wedding is about SO much more than pretty details and design. Planning a wedding is about all of the beautiful moments and memories that took place in order for you to be where you are right now- happily engaged and ready to bring your wedding dreams to life!

Ready to start your wedding planning experience off on the right foot?

Keep reading to learn my best-kept wedding planning secrets!

Wedding Planning Secret NO 1.

Give yourself more time than you think you’ll need.

The average couple spends upwards of 450+ hours planning their wedding. Isn’t that crazy?! 450 hours of planning in-between this thing called life, work, social life, family…

Now you’re probably thinking “lol, wut…”. But it’s ok, you’re in the right place!! I’m sharing my best kept secrets, remember. Deep breath!

I always recommend that my couples give themselves plenty of time to plan their wedding. Chances are, you have been waiting for this moment for a while! There is no need to rush.

The average engagement lasts a little over a year. In my personal experience as a wedding planner, a year is a great amount of time for planning without witnessing my couples feel stressed, pressured or overwhelmed around making decisions. Most of my couples work with me for ~15 months.

I have worked with couples that have shorter engagements, and while there is nothing wrong with a shorter engagement, they do ultimately give you a shorter amount of time to get things done!

My best advice, before you book anything, you will want to start by choosing a date that makes sense to the both of you.

Is early spring out of the picture for you both because that is your busiest season at work? Are the winter months a no go between holidays, birthdays and the unpredictable weather?

Whatever your case is, take time to think through choosing your date and go from there.

There is NO rush. YOU’RE GETTING MARRIED!!! Take time to soak in this moment because, in case you hadn’t thought about it, your girlfriend/boyfriend clock is officially timed out! Its fiancé time, and that will only last for so long too!

Enjoy this season! Celebrate, relax and give yourself more time than you think you’ll need.

Wedding Planning Secret NO 2.

Work with professionals who truly GET you and whom you VIBE with.

One of the most guaranteed ways you will have the wedding of your dreams is to work with people who you really connect with and whom take the time to get to know you and treat you as more than your wedding!

You want to work with people who value you as much as you value them.

If you ask any of my couples, they will tell you they knew right away if they felt the connection with the professionals they chose to hire (and ultimately the ones they didn’t hire).

Part of the magic of having a seamless experience and a relaxed wedding day is in your dream team itself.

You will spend a ton of time with your wedding planner, yes, but your planner will also help connect you to the right pros. Why? Because we obviously want what’s best for you AND you will spend a good amount of time alongside these pros too!

Remember when you knew your fiancé is the one? Well, finding and hiring your wedding professionals is pretty relatable to dating.

Do you feel comfortable around them?

Do you feel like they understand your wants and needs, that they see your vision?

Do you feel that they demonstrate qualities of trust, experience and expertise?

Do you feel like they treat you as a relationship in the making or as a transaction?

Notice how I used the word feel.

Weddings are emotional, and the planning process is too- you want the people beside you that make you feel the most supported, cared for and who will be there for you every step of the way as more than just part of your dream team; work with people who make you feel like a friend!

And remember, you hire your chosen pros for a reason- a lot of times, we know what you want before you know it for yourself!

Trust us, we are experts in our field and will wow you when you let us flex our creative muscle within our genius zone!

Wedding Planning Secret NO 3 + 4.

Do what feels good to the two of you – there are NO rules.

Secrets 3 and 4 go hand-in-hand and are super important. Ok, if you have made it this far you know I think they are all important, but really… read this one over and over until you nod your head and feel inspired y’all!

It’s YOUR day, which means you and your fiancé should make decisions and plans based on what feels good to the two of you. Why? Because, despite all the white noise and unwanted opinions out there, there are no rules when it comes to planning a wedding.

Sweet relief- I just gave you permission to do whatever your heart desires! Woot!

I know what you’re thinking though – it isn’t always that easy.

Before you read on, I recommend you check out my blog “Who Said You Can’t? Breaking the Rules of Wedding Planning” for that extra spark of confidence.

In that blog, I break down common misconceptions around wedding planning and these “rules”, aka unnecessary pressures and expectations, that get placed on weddings. I would like to touch on a few things here too.

Getting engaged and planning a wedding are HUGE milestones in your journey together; it is a time that is meant to be fun, heavily celebrated and enjoyable for all involved- NOT something that should be weighed down with “he said, she said” and sorting through unspoken rules of what people are saying you can and can’t do (or should and shouldn’t do).

When couples get engaged, many times there is a sense of feeling overwhelmed and pressured by friends, family, colleagues, the latest trends, Pinterest blogs, Insta-Famous celebs… all of which who have “been there done that” and often fall into the trap of thinking that there is only one way to do things (did I just read your mind or what??).

Remember, it’s YOUR day. You have full permission to do WHATEVER YOU WANT, friend! And I’m here to support you and be your advocate along the way.

Wedding Planning Secret NO 5.

Remember why you are getting married in the first place.

I know I said these are all pretty important, but I saved the best for last!!

It is so easy to lose sight of why you are getting married in the hustle of managing your personal life, your professional life, your social life and now throwing in the task of planning a wedding.

When I work with my couples, there are times where I need to bring them back to center and focus on why they are getting married and I would love to share that wisdom with you, too.

You likely thought you would never find “the one”; you saw this happening for everyone else and along the way you might have thought “when will it be my turn?”. You focused on school, life, your career… and one day, out of the blue, you found each other.

One day, when you were least expecting it, you found your person.

And over the days, weeks, months and years, you formed a relationship and friendship so deep, that you continued to choose each other over and over in good times and in bad.

Your love grew so strong that you both knew you didn’t want to imagine a life without each other, and in that moment, that is when it all came together, and you got engaged. You made the decision to continue to choose each other because what you have means so much more than anything else.

Now here you are, planning your big day; and the stresses, pressures and worries of making everyone else happy is sinking in and you’re tired, frustrated and wondering where all the excitement went- “why is this so hard?”.

Well, it doesn’t have to be. Remember WHY you’re getting married. Remember all of the memories and milestones that got you to this point in your life and hold onto that.

Yes, details and design and all of those things set the tone, but when it is all said and done, you will have said “I Do” to the love of your life and nothing else is going to matter!

The linen colors won’t matter. The seating chart won’t matter. The number of guests you had attend won’t matter. People’s opinions won’t matter…

Take the pressure off! It is YOUR day. YOU get to have the day you want when you say yes to your best friend.

Stop worrying about making everyone else happy- what about making yourself happy?

Remember why you are planning the wedding. Remember why you are getting married.

Have the day you’ve always dreamed of- it gets to be that easy!

Feeling reaffirmed and confident? I sure hope so! You got this!

Part of what I do as a wedding planner is being by my couple’s side to guide them every step of the way- through the fun and the difficult- because their wedding is so much more than just one day.

Planning and designing your dream day begins with remembering what is most important to the two of you and adding in those magic touches wherever you can.

Thinking you need some extra support?

Send me a message and tell me your story!


Courtney Noelle

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