Indian wedding planning comes with hundreds of tasks, so you can’t just “figure it out.” We’re talking multiple events to plan, with a guest list of 150 to sometimes 500 people.
Even if you’re planning a fusion wedding, it’s still a huge undertaking – so here’s your guide to staying composed and planning it out the right way.
Consider this – in business, there’s a project plan to help execute a project. With Indian wedding planning, it’s the same thing. If you create a project plan, you’ll have fewer hurdles than if you figure it out along the way. On top of that, you’ll have a lot less stress and tears!
If you create a game plan, you’ll see the difference in the final deliverable – the wedding!
Follow these three steps to lay out the path for the rest of your Indian wedding planning.
Step 1) Making Your Wedding Memorable and Unique
Make the Wedding “YOU”
Couples can get so focused on getting things done, that it can be easy to forget how to make their wedding stand out.
How do you make your wedding “You” and different?
A few ideas:
- Blend family traditions
- Consider nostalgic touches (ex: setting up a candy bar with your favorite childhood candy like Pixie Sticks)
- Include modern touches (ex: appetizer served in shot glass)
- Add something from your hometown
- DIY elements
- Use special colors
- You and your fiancée light a candle together at the ceremony
- Ask your moms to give wedding speeches instead of (or with) the dads
- Include some time at the reception dedicated to salsa dancing or line dancing.
My rule is simple: If it takes more than 5 steps to execute your idea, then it’s too complicated. My approach isn’t scientific, but it’s my rule of thumb.
The ideas are endless!
Start with a theme or a color palette
If you want to use a theme, think about incorporating seasonal trends, what you love, or your hobbies.
Weddings usually fall into a color palette. It’s like decorating a room in your house. Think about your color palette even if you choose a theme.
Head over to your local paint store (Home Depot, Lowes, etc.) and grab some paint sample strips. Look at the colors in front of you (and not on the computer). It’ll help you visualize your color palette.
TIP: Take extra sample paint strips for your vendors. Providing paint sample strips to your vendors ensures they know the difference between coral and peach.
I head over to the pillow and decor sections of my favorite stores, Pier 1 imports and World Market, to get ideas for an Indian Wedding. The products have amazing color combinations in modern, global and colorful designs and patterns. Even if you’re not planning an Indian wedding, the stores offer inspiration all around.
Use Pinterest to your Advantage
Go Pinterest Crazy! Just kidding – don’t. Pinterest is one of the best resources to find ideas, but it can get overwhelming – fast. To avoid overwhelming yourself, make a list of your idea categories. We all know Pinterest (like Facebook) is a never-ending tunnel, it just sucks you in! So, set aside time to find your pins within each category, but limit the time to avoid getting overwhelmed. For example, try 30 minutes for each category (flowers, dresses, etc.) – and don’t go a minute over!
TIP: Print out your Pinterest Pin images or put the images onto a word doc (right click, ‘save image as’, insert into a word doc, and print. Another option is to take a screenshot of your images and compile into a word doc, then print). Click here to learn how to screenshot.
Give a copy to your vendors. Whether you’re providing examples to your photographer or your baker, make extras!
Trust me – your vendors will thank you for compiling your ideas onto paper. It’ll help your vendors help you, and your ideas will be in one place.
One word of caution! Pinterest will put you in a fantasyland as you plan your wedding. Pinterest offers amazing ideas (some that you’ll be dying to use). But unless you have an unlimited budget and unlimited time, you can’t use every amazing idea you find.
Plus, you don’t want to force the ideas together – it won’t work out well.
Which elements of your wedding mean the most to you. Food? Decor? Photography? Which elements are you most willing to compromise on? [Hint: it has to be something]
If you don’t care to videotape your wedding, but your mother-in-law wants to document the day, find a videographer to tape it well. You’ll be on you mother-in-law’s good side and you’ll save a ton of time otherwise spent finding the best videographer in town. You have other priorities!
Step 2) Get Organized and Map Out your Plan of Attack
One of the most important things to do before meeting with vendors is to get organized. That means more than just getting a notebook to take notes.
TIP: Set up a Google sheets doc via Google drive that serves as a master document for all your information. Share the master document with anyone who will play an integral role in day-of-wedding coordination.
Once you’ve organized your ideas and initial thoughts, start prepping for your vendor meetings.
Bring your Pinterest [or other] ideas with you on paper. Don’t forget a copy for your vendor. At the meeting, write everything down on paper. Just like a Project Manager sends out a summary (with action items) after a meeting, send your vendors a summary email.
In the email, include what you discussed, ask questions, and add action items.
Send your vendor a word doc of your notes. Then, keep adding to the doc after each meeting with that vendor.
These “cheat sheets” will help your vendors get organized and they’ll save you hours of time and reduce stress levels.
3) Pick your main elements and be confident in your choices!
After choosing your color palette and initial ideas, you’re off to an awesome start!
With so many ideas to pick from, it’s easy to second-guess your planning decisions.
To cut the back and forth with your vendors, make a decision (about whatever it is you’re deciding) and stick with it!
It seems super easy but it’s not. Be confident in your decision-making and get on the same page with your fiancée before making any decisions.
Are there any doubts about your decision? If yes, what are the doubts? Address these doubts before communicating any decisions to your vendor. The back and forth with vendors is not only challenging for the vendors but also will be time-consuming for you.
So, stay grounded, be confident and make a plan. If you follow these 3 steps instead of “figuring it out” you’ll stay on course with your Indian wedding planning journey!
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