“This is for us. It’s part of what makes it so special, that it’s just ours. But we’re happy. Personally, I love a great love story.”
Meghan Markle said this about her and Prince Harry’s relationship in an interview with Vogue shortly before their wedding in May 2018. This couple was dating privately for months and continued to keep to themselves after they announced their relationship to the public.
Then they had one of the biggest and most extravagant weddings of the century, dazzling spectators around the globe.
Now we can be honest with ourselves about the fact that we will not be having a grand royal wedding, but we can take inspiration from how they managed to wow everyone by using the element of surprise and giving the audience a genuine love story to ooh and aah over.
The trick is to not overshare before the wedding. This can be hard to do with social media these days, but just restrain yourself from posting every minute detail of your wedding planning. Merely announce your engagement and leave everyone in anticipation when they will get a save the date.
Sending out the invitations is a massive step in the process. By now you have a guest list, a venue and a date picked out, and most of those involved in the wedding will already know this information. You may think invitations are just a formality, but they’re far more than that. The invitation is your guests’ first taste of the big day. You’re going to need a heartfelt, gorgeous wedding invitation that matches the tone and style of your wedding to get your guests curious and excited about what’s next.
If it’s a destination wedding, give them a feel of what’s to come with customized, pre-designed wedding invitations. Will you be saying ‘I Do’ on a sandy beach? Why not get the nautical theme started with sophisticated designs of seashells and starfish? If your wedding is set to take place somewhere more exotic, such as an African jungle or a vineyard in Bordeaux, channel these exciting destinations too. Tangled grape vines, fashion animal prints, bold and bright tribal geometrics; the possibilities for totally unique designs are endless!
Now to back-track a little, let’s talk about the venue, flowers, and layout. The tricky thing with this part is that you don’t want everything to be too extravagant that it distracts the guests during the ceremony and reception. Sure, you can break the bank with a castle wedding, but the day is about you, not a place. You want them to be in awe when they first walk in, but once you and your partner are inside you want the focus on your love and the people who celebrate it.
So you may have figured out the when and where and decorations, but you still have to decide on what you’ll be wearing. You may get caught up in the traditional white dress style for weddings, but if you really want to wow everyone then just be yourself. Whether that is sticking to wedding traditions or not. If you wear what you truly want to wear, then your audience will see you up there confident and inspiring. You will give off an energy that they will be able to feel from their seats. Your beauty, however you choose to portray it that day, will radiate.
Though some traditions are outdated, the mystery around the wedding dress is a golden one. There should be only a few people who know what you’re wearing and that list does not include your partner. There will be no better feeling than seeing your future spouse for the first time in their dress or tuxedo at the altar. Plus the audience gets to see your emotional reaction and will mostly likely gush at the love they see.
The Actual Day:
The actual day of your wedding will be one of the best and probably most tiring days of your life. One tiny detail to remember is that if you or your partner are getting your hair and makeup done, make sure not to wear any clothes that go over your head. Stick to zip up or button up shirts only. It could be a small, but potentially disastrous mistake.
On this day you want everyone to be in the moment, so it is essential to have clear rules about photography and video. Technology has changed how weddings work so fast that we have not quite yet developed societal rules on what is acceptable.
There are multiple ways you can approach this, and you have the right to decide on any of these. You could say no photography or video outside of the professionals, you could welcome all forms of photography and videos or make any rules in between this. It might be best to have a general rule of no flash or no photography at all during the ceremony, but welcome it at the reception.
You also need to establish clear rules about social media posts during and after the wedding. Some couples ask guests not to post pictures until the professional ones are ready and shared by the couple themselves first. Others ask guests to use a hashtag, such as #(insert last name) wedding when posting pictures. It is up to you how to handle this, but with the relevance of social media and cell phones, it is an important thing to address and give your guest rules about.
Now as we can see from the many celebrity weddings in the last year or so, strategic social media posts are a sure-fire way to wow everyone. Maybe posting one vague photo of you and your partner in what looks like wedding clothes won’t have the same reaction as it did for Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth, but there is an element of magic in what you post and when.
The best first post would probably be a candid, intimate moment the photographer caught of you and your partner. Ask the photographer for a sneak peek of the photos they’re working on so you can post one pretty soon after the wedding rather than waiting for all them.
In the end, a lot of celebrities in the last year, from Meghan and Harry to Nick and Priyanka to Miley and Liam, have shown us that the element of surprise is the best way to dazzle everyone. It’s also essential that you and your partner stay true to yourselves and your style.
The most important part of any wedding will always be celebrating your love and letting your personalities shine through. Don’t get too caught up in flower types or painted wooden signs. Just remember this day is to commit to the person you love for the rest of your lives. A promise like that is sure to wow anyone. After all, everybody loves a good love story.
At Ananya, we have a lot of experience designing stationery that has the wow factor. Get in touch and we’ll show you how.