Big-day mistakes... and how best to avoid them

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1. Inviting too many friends to the hen and stag parties

Of course you will want to include everyone in your pre-wedding celebrations, but be realistic.

Organising activities and accommodation for a large group is a difficult and time consuming task, particularly when attendees could be travelling from all over the country (and possibly the world).

Either limit the number of people on your guest list, or consider arranging more than one hen or stag night in various locations to avoid bickering and make it easy for friends to come along.

2. Expecting all of your bridesmaids to look good in the same dress

These days it’s a celebrated fact of life that women come in all shapes and sizes, so why do some brides still insist on forcing their sisters, cousins and best friends into the same bridesmaid dress? If matching colours are important to you, try to choose different styles that suit the individual characteristics of your bridesmaids.

3. Choosing beautiful but painful bridal shoes

Every bride (and groom) deserves to look and feel a million dollars on their wedding day, but there aren’t many pairs of high-heeled shoes out there that don’t make the wearer suffer for their beauty. If your gown is floor length, you might consider opting for smaller heels, or even ballet flats that will be hidden from view as a practical alternative. At the very least, arm yourself with plenty of plasters and allow yourself to kick off your shoes and relax at the reception.

4. Obsessing over seating plans

Keeping feuding family members apart during your wedding meal shouldn’t be too high on your list of priorities in the planning stages. At the end of the day, guests should be attending to celebrate you and your spouse, not argue with each other.

The inevitable truth is that when it comes to seating plans, you can’t please everyone and seats will be swapped regardless of your wishes.

5. Gaining or losing weight due to stress

This typically happens after the final dress fitting, and usually can’t be avoided. The best plan of attack here is to nip stress in the bud as much as possible.

Enlist the help of willing friends and family to share the wedding planning burden, and try not to be too much of a control freak.

If it will make your life easier, consider hiring a professional wedding planner who gets paid to stress out!