How Not to Steal a Wedding and Start a Bride War

Chances are a few of your mates may be planning their wedding at the same time as you. And with all the wedding talk it’s only natural you may start to question your own choices and be swayed by what others are doing. Everyone wants their wedding to be the absolute best and a bit of rivalry can rear its head if you and a pal’s weddings are close in date. Brides Wars may be a movie but it can also become a planning problem in itself!!

Maybe it’s you who’s been secretly coveting a friend’s awesome upcoming wedding? You feel her wedding is better than yours and her ideas have started to rub off on you… and they’re just two weeks apart! Or it could be one week, one month, as long as it’s close enough that the guests invited to both will experience deja vu. What’s a girl to do? Here are some creative yet practical ways to come out on the other side with dignity intact. In other words – how not to steal a wedding.

What’s the guest list overlap?

Are we talking pretty much all of the same people (maybe she’s a close relation?), or just two or three? The smaller the overlap, the smaller the problem. With a big overlap, there’s a higher risk of someone saying ‘I feel like I’ve just been to the same wedding twice’ which is what you don’t want. Whereas if there’s just a few people in common, it’s not as big a deal. But keep in mind, your wedding should reflect you and your partner so it might be worth taking a step back and asking yourself, have you got swept away with other peoples ideas or is this truly us?

Can you ask a pro for advice?

Get this off your chest by going straight to the professionals who won’t judge you one bit. Just say ‘for her wedding, my friend has these flowers/cake/centrepieces/signs (delete as appropriate) I absolutely adore, can you suggest something in a similar style?’ The pro will have 10 ideas ready for you in 6 minutes flat. She’ll do everything to make your wedding unique, so don’t be scared to ask for her advice. You can find wedding planners you can hire here!

Can you find bigger, brighter, better?

Ok, let’s take this example: you fell in love with the bridesmaid’s dresses from this other wedding. You simply can’t imagine your girls wearing anything else, the colour and the style are absolute perfection! There’s just that niggling thought ‘I’m copying her ideas’.

Don’t steal a wedding. Instead, think about it realistically. Bridesmaids dresses aren’t exactly rare items. There are thousands upon thousands of them in stores and online… and you can even have them custom made by a seamstress. Would it be as simple as devoting a little extra time to the search to find something different? Rope in your mam, sister and fashionista friends too. Just tell them the colour and the length and let them send you suggestions. You’ll start seeing things you like sooner than you expect. In a vast sea of designs for bridesmaids, there are enough dresses for your friend and for you.

Photo from Sabrina & Ian’s real wedding by Aidan Beatty Photography

Using the same suppliers – yes or no?

A large chunk of the wedding industry revolves around situations like these. Actually, it’s quite common for a smashing good band to be asked to play at a future wedding literally while they’re performing. Or to take a photographer’s card. Or enquire who the florist was because, my goodness, those were the most beautiful arrangements ever! It happens a lot. Maybe try not to book every single supplier she had, especially if she’s going to be invited to your wedding too. To see just how much choice is out there, look in our suppliers directory.

Is a trend to blame?

Just like all other parts of culture, weddings go through trends in literally every aspect. Do you remember when The Great Gatsby movie was released? For at least a year before, and at least two years after, the vintage trend was going strong. Are you and your friend planning similar weddings because you’re doing what’s en vogue at the moment? If that’s the case then keep the theme the same, by all means, but make it your own. Sometimes, all it takes is a small change to give it a completely new vibe. You should never feel bad about following trends.

Do you have time to take a break from planning?

It’s normal to devote many hours to planning (some even call it a second full time job). Is your wedding far away enough to simply forget about it for a little bit? What you need is some distance, basically. Stop planning, looking at pictures, and especially talking to your friend about her wedding. If anyone asks, just say it was already starting to drive you crazy so you decided to take some time out. Then come back and look at your own wedding with fresh eyes. Anyone who ever faced a dilemma and took a breather will tell you it works.

Photo from Blathnat & Alan’s real wedding by Ebony & Pearl Photography

Make it Personal

Ok. Admit to yourself – copying a friend’s wedding in nearly every detail (or indeed, EVERY detail) isn’t really the best thing to do. There’s no YOU in there. So, get your thinking cap on and personalise as much as possible. Remove all things that are pretty but mean nothing to you both. Involve your other half in this too, they may surprise you with some great ideas. Love cheese? Have a cheese wedding cake. Create signature cocktails based on your favourite drink! Hang photos of you guys throughout your relationship! Name your tables after things that mean something to you whether it’s milestones during your relationship, places you’ve travelled together or songs that played a big part in your journey. It’s these little things that will make it truly about you as a couple.

Be True to Yourself

We all have our own individual style – just think of your wardrobe and the pieces you pick up for your home. Yes, it can overlap particularly if you and a friend have similar taste but ultimately when it comes to planning your wedding, think about your unique style and stick to that. Sequinned gowns for your girls may seem like a fab idea (and the dresses your mate picked up are divine) but if you’re more of an understated kind of person, maybe it’s just not for you. Stay true to yourself and you can’t go wrong, even if it is similar to something a pal has at her wedding.

And if you need any more convincing that making your wedding your own is the right way, just google ‘my friend stole my wedding’. It’s a real eye opener!

Main photo from Niamh & Jason’s real wedding by Emma Russell Photography

The post How Not to Steal a Wedding and Start a Bride War appeared first on weddingsonline.

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