Real newlyweds give wedding planning tips based on their experience.
Victoria and John Kuchno’s wedding took place on Dec. 9, 2017, at St. Patrick Catholic Church.
If you could do anything about your wedding differently, what would you change and why?
I would have given further directions to our day-of planner and venue in regards to what to pack up/keep for us after the reception for us to pick up at a later point.
What are you happy you spent money on?
We are very grateful to have spent extra money on our photographer, cake, alcohol and wedding dress! The pictures will forever let us experience the day over and over again in the little details—including very happy guests, the perfect cake, centerpieces and dress.
What do you think you could have done without?
Our guests favors—candy bar station and coffee grinds—were on a table near the bar, and not many people realized that they were favors for them to take as they left the reception. Therefore we probably could have done without them, but I would have had them placed near the sparkler send-off so that more guests could enjoy the favors at home.
What was your biggest surprise when planning your wedding?
There are so many small details of planning a wedding! Many family members have an opinion about many aspects, and it's best to include them in the conversation before making a decision to implement something in the wedding.
What do you wish you'd known before you started planning?
We didn't need to feel rushed to make decisions about all of the details. It took us a little time to realize that wedding planning is a process and is what you make it. Make it special in the fact that you're getting married to your best friend, and this is the perfect opportunity to work together and grow closer with the rest of your family too! Take time to smell the flowers and taste more cake than necessary.
Did you experience any wedding-day snafus?
One of our bridal party pairs was practicing their entrance into the reception—shotgunning a beer down the entrance stairs together—in the bridal room, and an entire Bud Light was spilled on her dress. We were fanning and drying it, and miraculously the dress cleared up before their walk out.
Did you and your fiancé get into any silly arguments?
No, actually! We were a solid team in communicating and being transparent in what we wanted in the wedding, giving here and there in order to agree on what was best.
Any dress shopping advice?
Keep an open mind on your dress! Trying on different styles may leave you with something that you never thought you would wear at your wedding.
What about menswear?
Choose a store with exceptional communicators that will be prompt in fitting and adjusting tuxedoes up until you walk down the aisle.
Do you have any general advice for couples currently planning their weddings?
Try to nail as many details and arrangements as possible early in order to have the last week or two to relax in the final, personal preparation for your wedding week/weekend. This way, you can better enjoy your fiancé, family and friends coming into town!
Also, keep your relationship and quality time with your fiancé first—the wedding planning is second to your relationship and making sure your love is cared for properly.
Finally, one of the best parts of our wedding was the afterparty. It was smaller and not obligatory, so the result was just an intimate get together with our closest friends to spend more time together after the reception. I would definitely suggest something like this if you choose not to have the Sunday brunch.
Do you have any general marriage advice, as a newlywed?
Always seek the best for your spouse. Remember that love is an action, and sometimes you have to “exercise” it without so much “feeling” it.