Picking Your Perfect Wedding Date
When considering what day you'd like to be your wedding day, it's more difficult than you'd think to pick the one perfect day out of the 365 days you have to choose from. Do you pick a holiday? What about the day you met? What about your friends' and families' schedules?
This is the one day that will be your anniversary date for the rest of your life. You'll want to make it special and memorable. I have a friend that got married on Halloween because she wanted to always remember the date, and another that got married on tax day for the same reason. They both wanted to turn something potentially negative into something very positive. It's worked out well for them both.
My husband and I got married in June, simply because he proposed in January and we didn't want to wait long to get married, but it definitely gives us something to celebrate at that time of the year. Whatever you choose, it will be great. It's not the date that really matters, but that you're getting married. However, you still have to pick one!
All of the above questions are very important to consider, and I'll sure you'll have plenty more. I'll make sure to address each and every one. For the time being, let's start with the two of you. This is going to take some more communication of the part of both of you!
One Special Day
Begin communicating about when you'd like to get married by considering any moments during your relationship that really hold special meaning to the two of you. What about the day you first met or the day you officially became a couple?
Maybe you had a exceptionally memorable time in your relationship that you want to make even more meaningful, or you want to duplicate the day he proposed and she said yes. Did you have a special birthday? Did you make a big cross-country move that signaled a new era in your lives?
This is definitely the most popular way to choose a wedding date simply due to the significance placed on that single date in time. A theme is then easy to develop and you can move on to other considerations for your perfect date. But you also need to consider all of the other areas of your wedding before setting something in stone.
Do you have a special location you wanted to use that's only available at a certain time of year? What about the flowers you want for the big day? When are they in season? Do your favorite colors signal a specific season or time of year? Let's get to answering some of these for you rather than giving you more to think about.
What's your perfect wedding season?
If you are still searching for just the right day, consider all of the made to order wedding dates already available to you. Who hasn't considered a Valentine's Day wedding or New Year's nuptials? These holidays already have a great theme and are perfect for romance. Think about red roses, chocolate cake, and pink bridesmaids' gowns for a gorgeous love themed event. Every Valentine's Day you would have a special reason to celebrate your relationship.
Fireworks, champagne, and lots of kissing adorn New Year's weddings. Think about saying your "I dos" at midnight with the whole world celebrating with you! But these two holidays aren't your only options. Many couples choose Thanksgiving and Christmas for their wedding dates because they know that friends and family will already be gathered to share this time together. You could save on your wedding catering as a feast will already be made to order, and your guests will greatly appreciate the savings on travel fees, as they would have been gathered anyway. This is a win on both sides!
Maybe you have another holiday in mind. A Halloween wedding may be right up your alley, or maybe the Fourth of July is ideal. You have so many holidays to choose from throughout the year. There's bound to be one perfect for you.
Finding that perfect day might be a little more challenging than you originally anticipated. No worries. With four uniquely extraordinary seasons at your disposal, if you can choose just one, maybe that elusive day will come out of hiding for you.
I know, throughout my life, autumn, with its gorgeous reds, browns, oranges, and yellows, has always been my favorite season. For years I've dreamed of a fall wedding decorated with fall leaves, acorns, pinecones, and tons of gorgeous candlelight.
Consider the attributes of each season, and the months included therein, to find your ideal fit. A winter wedding would be beautiful just about anywhere, and lends to colors such as silvers, blues, purples, and even reds and greens. Snowflakes, feathers, and fur wraps would be an incredible addition to any winter wedding.
Spring brings thoughts of growth, love, and new beginnings. You will likely see pastels in blues, greens, purples, yellows, and pinks. Tables could be adorned with signs of new life, like birds' nests filled with eggs, and beautiful spring flowers like tulips, daffodils, calla lilies, and gerbera daisies.
Summertime usually means beach weddings! These weddings are typically adorned with seashells, sand, and lighthouses, alongside beautiful fans, and a variety of gorgeous flowers. So many themes fit well in this season, but most couples lean towards blues and reds for their colors. This is also where we see so many unique, vibrantly dyed flowers come on stage.
And finally, for fall weddings, Halloween and Thanksgiving usually play a huge part in these celebrations. Reds, oranges, and browns are prominent as well as leaves and pumpkins. Beautiful flowers that are usually seen at this time of year include chrysanthemums, coreopsis, sunflowers, goldenrod and asters in all of the fall shades. Obviously, you can make any wedding your own regardless of the season, and by no means have any rules to follow.
Although, why not take advantage of the beauty that each season lends??
In order to stay on top of all of the important details of your wedding, keep up with your contracts and receipts, and always know exactly where you are at all times on your wedding budget and guest list, it's critical to keep everything organized in a wedding binder/planner from the very beginning.
Considering the seasons opens up so many more options for your amazing wedding. Our country has a wide variety of beautiful states, each known for its unique way of expressing the seasons. For an incredible winter wedding, Connecticut, Wyoming, and North Carolina offer some of the most breathtaking winter landscapes you could ever hope to see.
In the fall months you would be remiss not to see the unbelievable foliage the states of Virginia, Vermont, and Pennsylvania boast. Many travel great lengths to the East Coast just to experience the changing colors. In the summertime, our country's coastlines are definitely the perfect places for weddings. Some of the most extraordinary coastlines in America include California, Florida, and even the Jersey shores.
Of the most beautiful of the seasons, springtime has more options for amazing events and locations for your wedding nationwide. You could take advantage of Yosemite National Park in California, or the gorgeous mountains and hiking in Springdale, Utah. Washington D.C. features their National Cherry Blossom Festival in the Spring and Newport, Rhode Island couldn't be more incredible.
Of course, you'll also want to consider the logistics and availability of your ideal wedding location. The beach is great, but wouldn't be ideal in the winter unless you had a destination wedding. You'd want to make sure to avoid the rainy season for an outdoor wedding in Arizona, Texas, Washington and other unpredictably rainy locations.
Or maybe you have had your eye on the perfect church, restaurant, or other great place, but they only have limited times during the year when you can get married there, and/or they might book up fast. If the location is a deal breaker for you, this would be a good idea to look into first to help you get a better idea on your perfect wedding date.
I would be remiss if I didn't share with you that some locations charge more money at certain times of the year than others. Maybe they have a really busy season at that hotel, or they charge more on the weekends for that plantation. In that case, it might be best to figure out when the least expensive time of the year is for that location and pick a date that works in that timeframe.
Friend's and Family's Schedules
By no means am I insinuating that you schedule your wedding when it's convenient for others, but you do have some factors to consider if your guest list is really important to you.
This is a big one. If you have people that you most certainly have to have at your wedding, you may want to consider the travel nuances. If you are scheduling a destination wedding in another country, or on an island, you will need to schedule it at least a year out to give those able to make it plenty of time to schedule it and save up the money for the trip, unless you plan to pay for their travel yourself.
Consider other times like busy holidays when most people are out of town visiting family, the summertime when vacations typically take place, or the beginning of the school year, which might make it difficult to come to your wedding.
Other Big Events
Speaking of other events happening, this might work in your favor. Maybe everyone is coming to you during the holidays and that would be the best time for your big day. Or everyone you want to attend is up for scheduling a great vacation to come see you get married over the summer!
But also consider graduation ceremonies, other weddings that might be taking place, funerals, and other big happenings that might prevent people from attending.
Day of the Week
Weddings that take place during the week also make it more difficult for people to attend. Most people have a job they can't skip out on and would need to be coherent for early the next morning, and those with kids may not like their kids staying up late on a school night. Travelers may have a more difficult time during the week because of busy schedules. (However week day weddings are also cheaper for this same reason.)
If you are really counting on those on your guest list attending and having a big turnout, Saturdays are the most popular. Most people are off of work, kids are out of school, and this makes traveling easier with the extra buffer on both sides.
But honestly, you aren't going to be able to make everyone happy, or appease everyone's busy schedule. Just know that ahead of time.
When it really comes down to it, your wedding day is all about you and your fiance'. It doesn't matter where you schedule it, when you schedule it, or even who shows up. What really matters is that you two get to spend the rest of your lives together, creating a family and forging through life's difficulties together. Everything else is wash.
I know it doesn't feel like that now. I was there with you and know what it's like to be planning your wedding and want everything to be perfect. For our wedding, half of our guests were students and the other half were out of state. We knew that the only chance we had of getting anyone there was for us to schedule a summer wedding, so we scheduled it for the very first weekend after the school semester ended for everyone. Both out of state family and all of our student friends were then able to make it and we made a whole weekend out of it!
We originally wanted it in California off a cliff overlooking one of the beautiful beaches and had already scouted out tons of great locations. But due to some family drama right before our wedding, my husband decided that he and I didn't need to make it more difficult for ourselves and our friends and have it another state just to be closer to family. So we had our beautiful cliff-side wedding just down the street from our house overlooking the lake where he proposed to me.
I wouldn't change a thing. It was amazing. I just wish it had lasted longer. In the end, do what feels good and feels right to you. Don't plan your wedding for anyone else. You will be the ones celebrating this special day every year for the rest of your lives. Good luck in your decision! I'm sure it will be fantastic!
© 2013 Victoria Van Ness