Wedding planning is stressful enough, right? The venue, the food, the guest list, the colours; the list goes on. Let’s throw a global pandemic in the middle of it and really dial up the anxiety. The pandemic has forced change on all industries and the wedding and event industry is one that has had to pivot with every new announcement. Now, if you’re planning, how does that affect you? We can’t predict the future, but what we can do is prepare for it. We have gone through one wave of COVID-19 and are coming out of the second wave, so we have a good idea of what we can expect.
We have many couples who had to make the difficult decision to postpone their wedding by a full year. Is it tough? Yes. Is it stressful? Yes. Is it worth it to keep your friends and family safe? Also, yes. If your 2020 wedding was postponed, and you are set on getting married in 2021, you are going to need to create a reduced guest list. If moving to 2022 is not an option for you, be prepared to switch gears from a 150 person guest list, to a cozy 50 or maybe 30 depending on what restrictions allow. That can be read as ‘just another pandemic disappointment’, but it can be good news too. Are there people on the 150 person list you had to invite because someone told you you had to? If so, guess what; use the restrictions to your advantage! Make cuts! If cutting your guest list is not an option, we strongly recommend thinking about finding a later date in 2021 or moving to 2022, depending on your venue’s availability.
To some, weddings are the most important day of their life. Some want it perfect, and some just want a party; some people want both. Be prepared for the unexpected. I have planned, executed, and attended hundreds of weddings and events, and truthfully something unexpected always happens; no matter how prepared you are. Here are some tips to help navigate the ever-changing industry rules for 2021.
1. Be flexible and roll with the punches
Your caterers, venue, florists, and decorators are doing their best to bring your vision to life, and doing so in a safe manner. It might be swapping the shareable charcuterie board for cocktail hour into antipasto skewers so it’s an individual serving. It might have to be a zoom meeting instead of an in-person consultation because that’s safer. Talk to your vendors! They are the experts and can help with minor adjustments that will best suit your needs and do it in a safe manner.
Rules and public health regulations are ever-changing. We have to adapt. Your plan from day one may have to change three or four times. It sucks, and we get it. Work with your vendors – they are your backbone and will support you. A planned buffet may need to change to stations or a plated meal. Dancing may need to be spread out and be limited to social bubbles. Who knows what 2021 holds, but if you are adaptable, we can make it happen! If you’re not 100% comfortable with going forward with your initial date, reach out to your venue and your vendors to see if there is the opportunity to put a secondary date on hold. There’s no harm in asking and you may feel some relief by having that contingency in place.
2. Enjoy the process
Although it’s a lot of work, enjoy it! It’s your wedding. Work with your team of people, your significant other, your vendors, and make this fun! Whether it’s for 30 or 130 people, make it a memorable day for you!
3. Remember it’s your day
Engagements lead to weddings and weddings lead to input from friends and family about what you should or shouldn’t do. Remember, it’s your day. Take the opinions you want and run with ideas that work for you. If everyone is telling you to choose the lilac napkins because they match the best, but you hate purple; DON’T LISTEN! This day is for you and your partner. It’s to celebrate your love and your future with family and friends. It’s your day, not theirs.
4. Take time for yourself
Don’t feel pressured to do anything. It’s a hard time for everyone and you deserve a break. Go for a jog, read a book, hit a punching bag, or chat with a friend. Do what makes you feel good and that will help not only in the wedding planning portion of your life, but will help clear your mind so you can focus on what you truly want.
We’ve done this before. Many times. We are here for your questions, concerns, frustrations, and ideas. If you just need to rant, we’re in the alcohol business too!