Real newlyweds give wedding planning tips based on their experience.
Bailey and Ron Thorpe’s wedding took place on Sept. 2, 2017, at Strongwater Food & Spirits.
If you could do anything about your wedding differently, what would you change and why?
I would have made a list of specific pictures that I wanted with family members. Our families are so large that when we were taking family pictures during cocktail hour, we missed some people. I really wish we would have made an effort to make sure that we got them all. We didn’t notice until after the wedding that we missed a few.
What are you happy you spent money on?
A high-quality photographer, photo booth and florist.
What do you think you could have done without?
We ordered bottles of wine to be served as a part of the open bar and ended up having a few extra bottles. Luckily we didn’t overdo anything else; it was a great amount of everything!
What was your biggest surprise when planning your wedding?
How much planning is required for one day! It took us a year and a half to plan, and it went by quicker than we ever imagined.
What do you wish you'd known before you started planning?
To not spend time stressing over making everyone happy and focusing more on what the two of us wanted.
Did you experience any wedding-day snafus?
Yes—the groomsmen had quite a few issues. The best man was able to get it all under control, but they had a shirt that didn’t fit, a button that fell off, no iron and a few other issues. It was hectic for them, but luckily it all was resolved, and the bridesmaids had no issues.
Did you and your fiancé get into any silly arguments?
Of course! Mostly about little details that in the end didn’t matter anyway, and also how much money to spend on certain vendors versus others. We discussed both sides and made compromises to make it work.
Any dress shopping advice?
The less people that you bring with you, the better. At the end of the day, you need to get the one you love and not worry about getting everyone’s input. It will make it a lot less stressful for the bride.
Also, when you do alterations, listen to the bridal shop for their recommendations of who to go to. I should have started with their recommendation, but I went to a different person and my dress was altered incorrectly. I had to get the dress redone by a different person and ended up paying double for the mistake.
What about menswear?
We highly recommend working with a suit store and getting a group discount for buying suits. It is the same price, if not less, to buy a suit than to rent one, and then the groomsmen get more use out of it. We had a great experience with Men’s Wearhouse at Tuttle Crossing.
Do you have any general advice for couples currently planning their weddings?
Book the venue and photographer before anything else. Also, make sure you meet all of your vendors in person and ask a lot of questions.
Make sure that you do what the two of you want! It is your day. Everyone will tell you that, but they will also give you their opinions and expect you to do certain things that they want. As long as the two of you are in agreement, nothing else matters!
It is the fastest and best day of your life; don’t worry about the little things that happen that day—just enjoy it as much as you can!
Do you have any general marriage advice, as a newlywed?
Our advice is to plan a getaway or something new to do every few months. It will give you both something to look forward to, especially if you are both busy with work or other activities. It’s important to get that time away together.