Wedding Planning

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Bridey, Don't Fake it to Feel It Whatever You Do... 5 Scenarios When Faking it Won't Help You Make it...

I totally stole "Don't Fake it to Feel it Whatever You Do" from the band, Powers, specifically the song "Beat Of My Drum". It's just so perfect, right? Don't fake it to feel it whatever you do... I mean, you can attribute this line to so many areas of your life. The wrong significant other, the wrong group of friends, the wrong vibrator (yes I did!). But, today I really want to focus on how faking it to feel it can fuck with your wedding planning, your relationship, friendships and more. Bridey, stop camouflaging how you feel for the sake of your wedding, and do something about it! I mean... Faking anything for long enough will dull how you really feel, and before you know it, you'll start to believe that the fake feeling is the real thing. And, then? You'll never "make" it.

5 Scenarios When Faking it Won't Help You Make it:

1. I think the first one is pretty obvious. You're faking how you feel about your sig other with the hopes that you will feel it someday. And while you care deeply for him (or her), the whole "marriage thing" feels more like a prison sentence than getting the chance to shack up with the love of your life for the next 75 years. I've seen it a million times, and it sucks. Trust me, it's pretty horrific to watch a bride struggle with how she feels, and then walk down the aisle. And, no matter who I am in your life (your wedding planner, your mother, your BFF, etc.) I can't say anything because it's not my place, it's yours. So, woman up, and don't fake yourself out!

2. You're faking how you feel about your engagement ring. Ouch! Sounds trivial, right? I mean, it's just a ring; it's material... It doesn't matter in the scheme of things. Wrong! Bridey, your engagement ring is a symbol of love, devotion, fidelity, etc. and, if you hate it, don't fake it. Speak up! I've had friends and clients change their rings, and it's really not that big of a deal provided you handle the situation correctly. Don't go telling your sig other that you fucking hate the most expensive gift they've ever bought. But, do tell them that you imagined the ring differently, and would they mind if you changed it. You can't fake this one, bridey, because it'll never change unless you change it. 

3. You're faking how you feel about wedding planning. Every time you're asked how the wedding plans are coming along, and you lie. You tell them that, "it's going great!" or "running smoothly", but in reality you want to blow your fucking head off! Shit costs a hell of a lot more than you thought, planning is annoying and time consuming, and if your mom wouldn't have your head, you'd totally elope; you'd dump the wedding industry... So don't fake it! Bridey, you have to ask for help! If you can afford a wedding planner, then hire somebody to help you who knows what they're doing. If you can't afford a wedding planner, then ask your friends (preferably the ones who were recently married) to help you. There is no need to fake how you feel about wedding planning because you'll never make it if you don't ask for help!

4. You're faking how you feel about your guest list. This is a BIG one. SO many brides I have worked with feel like the guest list is amongst the most stressful, argument-inducing, family-war-starting, part of wedding planning. The guest list is tough. The guest list is brutal. The guest list sucks. It affects everything you touch; specifically the budget. The more people attending the wedding, the more money you spend. PERIOD.

So, bridey, if you and your sig other are paying for the wedding by yourselves, then politely put your foot down when it comes to inviting peeps you don't want on the "A" list. If you're not paying for the wedding, and you are receiving help, then you have to be flexible with the list, and then get creative when it comes to the seating plans. But, speak your mind, let go of the "fake", and be transparent. Your wedding isn't worth losing precious family relationships. Seriously, if having Aunt Ida at your wedding is super important to your mom, and she's paying for the wedding, then let her send the invite.

5. You're faking how you feel about where your money is being allocated. Totally connected to #4. Speak your mind when it comes to the guest list. Allocate your wedding budget in the areas that are most important to you and your sig other. If you love food and booze, then make cuts elsewhere. If the look and feel (design) of your wedding is most important, then go nuts with flowers, linen, lighting, etc., and be frugal with the entertainment. But, figure out what is most important to you (both) in the beginning! Be honest with yourself and your sig other. 

Bridey, see how important it is to feel it instead of faking it whatever you do? Don't let your wedding plans fake you into feeling something you don't. Got it?

Image via The Unbounded Spirit

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ ***FLASHBACK*** Quit Your Bitchin, Bridey

I wrote this article for the Huffington Post in 2012, and I was inspired because of a particularly difficult bride I had the joy of working with, who literally drove me the brink of insanity. The reason I am sharing it with you today? Well, because in the last week I have heard several stories of brides behaving badly. Whining, complaining, and simply irritating the fuck out of everybody around them. I don't know if people tell me these stories because they know what I do, or what, but either way, I thought a simple reminder to QUIT BITCHIN' was in order... So, read up ladies!!

September, 2012:

After an amazing weekend filled with rehearsal dinners, beautiful weddings, “morning after” brunches, everything hurts; everything aches; everything cracks. I feel like an old lady hobbling around looking for my cane. But, the worst pain? My head. And my head hurts from too much thinking, and over thinking, and even MORE thinking, and not from drinking (like I’m used to). Seriously... The funny thing? My head doesn’t hurt because of the lovely bride and groom from the wedding this past Saturday... It hurts from the endless emails and texts I received from my UPCOMING clients that either ask or say the most ridiculous crap. Simply whining about everything because they feel “so taken advantage of”, and their “patience for this wedding stuff is running thin”. Really?

If you missed my post last week on Bitchless Bride, I mentioned that I had an addiction. That I couldn’t stop “using”, and that no matter how hard I tried, I was simply “addicted to yes“. And while I openly admitted to my horrendous compulsion, to enabling my brides, and to just “making it happen”, I must state for the record that I hate that I do it. I hate that it’s EXPECTED for me to continue to “use”. But, I do have my limits, and because it’s only the beginning of the fall wedding season, I have to pace myself. But, I need your help brideys.

Seriously, I need for you to quit whining... Quit whining about all of the aspects of planning your wedding that we have no control over. Certain prices are fixed. Certain aspects are truly non-negotiable. And emailing me every second of the day isn’t going to change that. Because even I can’t “yes” my way to changing the industry “norm”.

Like your wedding dress alterations? Yeah, they’re expensive, and oftentimes non-negotiable. You know why? Because you’re literally paying somebody to rip apart your very expensive wedding dress (yeah, the one that you only get to wear once), put it back together, and make it perfect for your perfect wedding day. Okay? This won’t be cheap. And I’m sorry, but if you want those unbelievable flowers on your wedding cake that “look so incredibly real”, then yes, you have to pay extra for them. And no, you are not being punished.... You’re simply paying for a service. You’re paying for a product. And you’re paying for time. So get over it or don’t get it. 

I mean, let’s get real people. I refuse to believe that you’d walk into Valentino or Burberry and ask WHY the amazing dress in the window is so expensive when you could just make it yourself. Or HOW COME the sunglasses don’t come with the dress. Really? Come on.... Please. So why are you constantly surprised when the wedding industry demands to be paid for quality and time? I’m tired of apologizing for what every other industry “gets away with”. 

Brideys, the minute you got engaged, you signed on an invisible dotted line, and although you might not have realized it, you signed up for all of the shenanigans that go with planning your wedding. But seriously, like you didn’t know your wedding was going to be expensive? I don’t care if your budget is $10,000 or $100,000. A wedding is not cheap. Seriously, look at the numbers... The wedding industry is a 55 BILLION dollar industry (in the US)… PER YEAR. It didn’t get to be that way because everybody is working for free. It got that way because you are buying an experience; you are buying talent; you are buying memories. And you know what? It’s fucking expensive. That’s it. PERIOD THE END. 

So quit whining about it! It is what it is. Just resign yourself to the fact that you’re part of it now. Resign yourself to the fact that you don’t have to like it; you just have to stop complaining about it.

Image via YouQueen

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Bridey, It's Time to STOP Apologizing! Except When You do These 10 Things...

I've stopped apologizing. Seriously. I'm done apologizing for stupid shit. Sure, if I make a mistake or if I owe somebody an apology, then I will apologize to them, but other than that? I'm all done. I'm done apologizing when it's unnecessary. And you know what, bridey? You should be too. Seriously, ever find yourself in somebody's way at the store and realize that your very first instinct is to say, "I'm sorry"? Have you ever stopped and wondered why? Because, are you really sorry for looking at the same t-shirt or cereal as somebody else at the same time? I'm not. But, we are wired to think that we are inconveniencing somebody somehow simply by standing where we're standing. And lately? If I'm not done looking at the t-shirt in question (or reading the cereal box), then I'm not moving, and I'm not sorry. Good for you BB, but... how is this relevant to wedding planning? Well, bridey, you do it all the time! You apologize unnecessarily, and then you don't apologize when it's necessary!

Look, I promise to tell you when you need to apologize, but apologizing because you don't understand terms of a vendor contract or because you can't wrap your head around a service you are paying for? That's just silly! It's important for you to understand everything you are paying for and receiving, and frankly it's important for you not to apologize in the process.

Bridey, I know that I have spent a lot of time busting your chops for your sometimes entitled bullshit behavior, but I've also made it a point to educate you and stand up for you while you plan your wedding. Because I understand that it's difficult to plan a wedding on top of the countless other responsibilities you are busy juggling. I understand that most of you haven't had the pleasure of wedding planning, and therefore you have a lot of questions. It's normal, and it's okay. So, rather than apologizing for it, own it! You're not supposed to have all of the answers. You're not supposed to know what makes "the industry" tick or how attrition works in regards to food and beverage or guest rooms, etc.. So, it's completely acceptable for you to ask questions and get answers. No apology necessary.

When should you say you're sorry? Here are the top 10 moments when an apology is necessary: 

1. Apologize when you're being an entitled bitch. We get it, you're getting married! It doesn't give you carte blanche to be mean.
2. Apologize for getting pissed off because a vendor had the audacity to work on Saturday and couldn't meet you when you wanted them to.
3. Apologize for not being flexible with your vendors (see #2).
4. Apologize for being rude to your mom, sig other, MOH, etc. in front of your wedding vendors.
5. Apologize for monopolizing all of my fucking time going over and over the flowers, décor, linens, etc., etc., etc., once we've already made a decision.
6. Apologize for not being able to make a decision. Promptly.
7. Apologize when you miss an appointment because you had to get to the gym. REALLY!?
8. Apologize for keeping me waiting (see #7).
9. Apologize when you say you need a "quick minute to chat", and an hour goes by.
10. Apologize for paying your deposits, final payments, etc. late.

Bridey, this list could be a hell of a lot longer, but what I'm hoping you'll take away from this article is knowing and understanding when you should apologize, and when you shouldn't. Got it? Good! Stay Bitchless! 

Image via The Odyssey Online

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ ***FLASHBACK*** Bridey, Five Ways Not to be a Nightmare Disguised as a Daydream

Yup, I totally just stole a line from Taylor Swift, but why come up with another awesome line when one already exists? Right? Anyway, the point is, right now, so many of you are recently engaged, and while I truly believe that you don't think you're a nightmare, inevitably, the majority of you? Yeah, you're going turn into a fucking nightmare, and totally think you're a dreamboat. The fix? Well, leave that to me. Here are five ways to avoid turning into your very own nightmare disguised as a daydream:

1. Bridey, remember that just because you are getting married doesn't mean that everyone else is. All of your friends and family? Well, they're probably in different phases of their lives, and therefore it shouldn't be surprising to you that after the allotted "honeymoon" phase of your engagement, you will lose their undivided attention. Because some friends? Well, some are jealous of what you have, some are having babies, some are getting divorced, and some just don't give a shit about your wedding! So, bridey, remember that this is yourphase, and not everyone is in it with you. 

2. Be a good listener. Those phases I just mentioned? Well, your friends and family will probably want/need some air time once you've finished talking about what's on your mind. Yes, bridey, you're newly engaged and dying to talk and obsess about every painstaking detail of your wedding day, but your friends have shit happening in their lives too. So, listen! And care! Give them the floor once in a while. Breathe. It's not about you all of the time...

3. Uh-oh... The P word! Um, I'm talking about perspective!! Yup! You're wedding is one day out of your entire life, bridey. One.fucking.day. And there's a ton of shit you'll probably have to overcome with your partner after that one day. Personally? I dealt with nearly losing my hus to pulmonary embolisms (less than a year after we were married). And then there was the whole IVF journey. What a shitshow... (Yeah, you spend all of your 20s trying NOT to get pregnant, and when you're finally ready, you can't! WTF?) And then several ups and downs thereafter... So, while I look back at my wedding day fondly, I usually find myself reflecting on the marriage, and our concrete foundation, not the day.

4. You don't know shit. You are new to this whole wedding planning bit, so quit pretending like you know everything. Do your research. And, no that doesn't mean "pin" your research, I mean really do your research, bridey. Research your wedding as if you're going to spend the equivalent of a down payment for a home on one day... Oh wait... You are! So, own it bridey! Own the shit out of your wedding! Know what you're getting yourself into. Make a point of understanding what things cost in the industry. Hire professionals to help you do so. Either way, educate yourself, and do it honestly! Act as though there was a price tag on every pin. 

5. Be fucking nice... to everyone. Because, bridey, in my world? You are a nightmare first, and then, if you're lucky, you become my daydream. And, if you're nice and genuine? Then people (inside of the industry and out) will genuinely want to help you plan your wedding. They will care about the details, they will care how you feel about the linen or food or wedding cake, and most of all, they will care about you! But, if you treat everyone like crap, then you will get crap in return. 

Got it?

Image via magic4walls

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ A Bride Without a Ring, and a Wedding Without a Date

Bridey, have you heard the phrase, "No ring, no bring."? Usually this is in reference to whether or not one of your guests can bring a date to your wedding, but today, I am applying a new meaning to the phrase... How about, "No ring, no bring... YOUR ass in for an appointment. Because there is nothing I hate more than a "bride" without a ring. And, you know what? I'm not alone. Because all of us (your wedding vendors), have wasted a ton of time describing and selling our services, showcasing venue space, and bending over backwards for a "bride" without a ring. And guess what happens next? The "bride" doesn't get engaged, or the engagement is much further down the road than she thought, or the sig other wasn't "the one", blah blah blah...

Look, I know it's exciting just thinking about getting engaged, but it really doesn't count unless one of you has done the asking and one of you has done the accepting. Right? So, making appointments (or... eeeek, just walking into a venue without an appointment) is actually rude. I mean, it's like test driving a car knowing that you have another year on your lease or house hunting without establishing your budget. Honestly? It's a fucking waste of time, and just like you, wedding vendors are busy. So, if you're a future bride-to-be, it's totally cool that you're starting to explore weddingy things, and weddingy blogs, and all things weddingy, etc. because you're exploring on your own time, but when it begins to spill over onto my watch? Well, that's when you've gone too far.

Look, bridey-to-be, I'm not judging you, I swear! I get that you are excited about the next step in your life, and that you want to be prepared. It's a thrilling phase! And, planning a wedding is a huge undertaking, so why not get a head start? Right? And, depending on where you live, securing a venue and popular vendors can be brutal. But, as much as I am not judging you right now, I will start judging you the second you make start making arrangements for your wedding without a date, as a bride without a ring. For now? Stick to Pinterest!

The worst part of this equation is that these bride-to-be wannabes are usually quite lovely, and are simply letting their anxiousness about getting engaged get the best of them. I know because I have met with these almost brides, and sadly, when I follow up with them, they're either still in a holding pattern or they've broken up. And as badly as I feel (particularly when it's the latter scenario), I'd be lying if I said there wasn't a little piece of me that would be pissed off upon hearing the news. Totally an involuntarily feeling, but often, the first thought to cross my mind following the conversation. Because, no matter the situation, nobody wants to feel as though their time has been wasted, especially when there are engaged brides out there willing to make a commitment.

So, wannabe-bridey, thinking that your engagement is around the corner? Congratulations! But, hold the champagne, and the planning, until you've got a ring on it... Got it?

Image via Genesis Diamonds

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ ***FLASHBACK*** Don't be a Bitch on Your Wedding Day! 6 Tips to Get Rid of the Bridey Bitch!

I've written quite a bit about how to not be a bitch while planning your wedding, but it dawned on me that I haven't really touched on why it's so important not to be a bitch on your wedding day. Bridey, I think it's safe to say that your wedding day is filled with a tangled web of emotions; happiness, elation, excitement, fear, anxiety, etc.... All perfectly normal... And, sometimes when we're filled with that kind of emotion, it's easy to go one of two ways... Euphoria or bridaldemia, and it's up to you to choose the better of the two.

The reason I'm mentioning this? Well, after an extremely busy weekend filled with two weddings, and everything you can think of in between, I realized that my very lovely brides each took on one of the two aforementioned emotions. And, frankly, I was shocked. Both were super detailed oriented, although easy to work with during the wedding planning (they must be avid readers of BB), and both had relatively supportive families. So, what made one bride go batshit crazy on her wedding day and one continue to be her fabulous self? THAT is a good fucking question!

And while I don't have the answer, I can tell you who had a better wedding day experience. If you guessed bridey B, then you guessed right. Bridey B was relaxed and happy. She took in each and every moment of the day, totally let go of "wedding planning mode", and slipped into something much more comfortable, her wedding day. While Bridey A was argumentative with anybody who dared crossed her path. Honestly? It was strange; something I didn't see coming based on our planning experience.

So, bridey, I got to thinking about what can we do to alleviate Bridey A from presenting herself on your wedding day, and here's what I came up with: 

1. Alcohol. Just kidding!! Well, sort of... I hate to admit that it was the first thing that came to mind! However, if you are careful not to get piss drunk, then there is nothing wrong with a cocktail as you are getting ready to walk down the aisle. Just be sure to nourish yourself with delicious food and plenty of water, and surround yourself with your favorite ladies!

2. Timing is everything. As a planner, I build a TON of extra time into the getting ready piece of the wedding day. I do this because inevitably there is always something (or someone) who will throw you off track, and there is nothing more stress inducing than being late. So, give yourself a lot of extra time.

3. Breathe. Seriously. What's done is done, bridey, so freaking out about the details on the day of your wedding will get you nowhere. Simply relax and breathe. Remember, that at the end of the day (quite literally), you will have gotten married to the man (or woman) you are going to spend the rest of your life with, right? How awesome is that? YAHOO! So, don't allow your anxiety and nerves to win. It will show through in your photographs, and for what? Shit that won't matter...

4. Let it go. Oh dear God. UGH! I just started singing that fucking song... But, perhaps Idina Menzel had a point. Bridey, you've got to let it go, and let yourself off of the hook. The wedding planning was the tough part, but it's over, and you made it! So, enjoy it! Be present because you deserve it! Take in each and every moment, because even though it took you a good year to plan this day, it will be over in a flash!

5. Liaise. Huh? Pick your most dependable friend or family member, and have her be your liaison. Have her field the inevitable plethora of questions that arise (mostly stupid shit, but enough to cause some stress) on your wedding day. She can tell Aunt Stupid where she's supposed to be and when for photographs, not you. She can give her cell to the limo driver to call when he's ten minutes away... Etc., etc.... You get my point!

6. Make it happen, bridey. Make yourself chill the fuck out. If you feel like you're spinning out of control, then slow your roll, grab the reins, and get your shit together. We've all had days where we refused to give into our panicked psyche, and pulled ourselves out of a rut. Right? So, do it, or forever hold your peace.

Got it? Good! Stay Bitchless!!

Image via Your Wedding Guide

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Whose Wedding is it Anyway?

The other day, I received an email from a really cool, recently engaged bride. And as excited as she is about being engaged, she's totally lost and a bit discombobulated as she begins her wedding planning journey. Her main obstacles? Well, just like most newly engaged brides, she needs to find her bearings; she feels lost as to where to begin with the wedding plans. And, on top of that giant obstacle, she's missing her amazing mom (she passed away sometime ago) who, "... was a great visionary artistically and would have been so helpful and well, it is what it is. Not complaining, just a little anxious I guess." (OMG. Sniff. Sniff.) Finally, my girl is literally all over the map when it comes to a location for her wedding as she finds herself worrying about her guests making the trip. WOW. I can totally see why she's feeling overwhelmed. Did I mention that she wants a fall wedding. OF 2016?!! Oh dear God!

Okay... So, let's take a deep breath and start at the beginning, shall we? You're engaged! YAY! It's so exciting, and overwhelming at the same time. In-between looking down at your ring every five minutes, and all of the congratulatory FaceBook notifications, it's awesome (but, in the frightening way). Seriously, with every admiration of that FAB engagement ring, inevitably the next question is, "When are you getting married?". Right? RIGHT. And, it feels like it should be so easy to plan a wedding because there is a shitload of advice and "how to's" out there about where to begin, right? Right. So, what's the problem? Well, not all of the advice out there is good advice, and considering that the majority of you are new to to wedding planning, it's tough to decipher what's good, and what's crap.

It's funny to me, because you know what's missing from all of that "expert" wedding planning advice out there? The one BIG, yet extremely simple question whose answer will act as your wedding planning guide? Hold on... Allow me to step onto my soapbox... Ready? Ahem... "What is important to you (and your sig other), bridey?" PERIOD. Easy, right? I mean, whose wedding is it anyway? It's YOURS! So, own it like you would anything else in your life. Take a step back and ask yourself what's most important. We pretty much ask this question while tackling any other obstacle we take on in our lives, yes? So, start simply. Ask yourself what's most important, and you'd be amazed at how quickly the rest will fall into place. 

Getting back to my overwhelmed, missing her mom, on the never ending road trip to finding the best wedding venue, bride? Obviously, I asked her what is most important to her (and her sig other), but I also suggested that she let go of the bullshit. Stop trying to please everybody because it never works. She and her man have been to several weddings, across the country (and world for that matter), so to get sidetracked on location because you are being considerate of your guests (is nice, but...) is a roadblock. So, get rid of it. You've traveled the world for your friends and family, and they will either do the same for you, or they won't. Of course, you hope that everybody on your list will attend your wedding (even in Timbuktu), or most everybody, but even if you had it in your backyard, bridey, there are no guarantees, so let yourself off of the hook.

No matter how long your mom has been gone, planning a wedding without her still hurts. And, while there is nothing I can say to take that pain away, what I can do, is suggest is to subtly include her memory into your planning, and into your wedding day. Bridey, how you choose to do this is personal and will be different for each of you. Just be careful not to get overly indulgent, and remember that your mom would have wanted you to be happy while you plan and also on your wedding day.

Bottom line? Planning a wedding is exciting and overwhelming. So, when in doubt, just ask yourself, "Whose wedding is it anyway?"

Image via Little Vegas Wedding

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ How Your Psyche Can Fuck with Your Wedding Plans

I've been busting some serious ass lately. Like, no bullshit, pushing myself HARD in every facet of my life. I've been killing myself at the gym (consistently), prospecting new clients at work, focusing on truly being present around my kids (as in, not having my head down in my phone) and basically tucking in my "Badass" cape at the end of the day, before starting it all over again tomorrow. And, you know why I'm choosing (because, it really is a choice) to bust ass, bridey? Because I have a lot of shit I want to accomplish, and if I don't feel good about myself then I won't push myself to make shit happen, and you know what? I am a make shit happen kind of girl. So, I have to feel good about myself.

What's my point? Well, I was thinking about how great I've feeling due to the ass I've been kicking, and when you feel like shit about yourself, the shit follows you around like a dark cloud. And, oftentimes that cloud equates to raining on your success and dreams. Sounds super dramatic and completely psycho-babbly, but when your outlook is negative everything else becomes negative too... Including your wedding plans. So, if you want to have a successful, non-stressful wedding planning experience, then strap on your "Badass" cape, and get shit done! Take care of yourself (first and foremost) and the things that are important to you. Because once you start, you'll be amazed at how easy your wedding planning will become, and pretty much everything else in your life too.

Sounds awesome, right? Sounds almost unachievable, right? So, how? Where do I find the "Badass" cape? How do I begin? Look, bridey, I could offer you a ton of motivational one-liners right now, but I won't. Because all you have to do is search Pinterest, and get you'll be swamped with motivation. You'll be inundated with quotes, and piles and piles of pins that will inspire you for days, even months. But, the motivation you need to make positive change while planning your wedding, and in your life, has to come from you or else it won't stick. But, it's worth tapping into because this "cape" will change your life... If you let it.

But, the cape of badassery comes with a price. You see, the cape forces you to look inward, and some of you peeps won't like what you see. I didn't. Well, I didn't like most of what I saw. But, what I did see was an opportunity to make change, and to change my perspective (where's my soapbox?). Bridey, you don't need a crystal ball. You just need to be honest with yourself. And, while honesty is the best policy, sometimes that shit is brutal!

I know it's not easy. But, once you get started, it all seems to fall into place. You'll get into a groove, and you'll be amazed at how easy some of the more difficult wedding planning tasks and delicate family situations become to handle. You'll be amazed at how easy getting what you want becomes simply because you are no longer negative (and bitchy). You'll be amazed how people will respond to you with positivity and want to help you. You'll be amazed at how rosy life seems to be even without the glasses. You get the point. All you have to do? Get your hands on that cape!

Image via Etsy

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ 10 Life Experiences More Stressful Than Planning a Wedding

Bridey, I know that planning a wedding is stressful, and oftentimes, painstakingly brutal. So, today I thought I would open your eyes to ten life experiences more stressful than planning a wedding. Well, perhaps not more stressful, but definitely just as stressful for sure! And the crazy thing? Most of you have probably experienced at least 5 things on this list. It all comes down to perspective. I mean... Although it's difficult to imagine while you're in the midst of planning your wedding, there are life changes in which the stress trumps the angst you're feeling right now as you make your wedding plans.

So, bridey, I challenge you to take yourself back to the coping mechanisms you used to get through these tough times... Because, it's time to stop the bullshit excuses, and quit feeding into the bridezilla behavior. Your 100% better than that! Let's make the word "bride" synonymous with "awesome" instead of "bridezilla". Okay? Hopefully, looking at this list of stressful life experiences will help you put your wedding planning into perspective, and help you get through the wedding craziness (family dynamics, budget, etc.) Here are my thoughts (and not in any particular order):

1. Buying a House: Which inevitably means that you have to move, and both can be pretty brutal! I remember the day my hus and I closed on our house, and as exciting as it was, it was SUPER stressful! Providing all of the bank statements, W2s, etc. felt like a colossal task. And thennnnnn.... The move! Oye vey! Packing shit up, moving shit in, unpacking the shit. Yikes! 

2. College: I did well in school, but there wasn't enough Xanax in the world to calm my nerves before finals. I remember telling myself that, "By this time next week, it will all be over." Seriously, I would have traded planning a million weddings over taking an accounting final! But, I survived, and looking back, I wish I could have told myself to chill the fuck out, and quit getting in my own way.

3. Getting Fired: Sooooooo..... Forever ago, I was a hostess at a fine dining establishment, and was scheduled to work on an evening that my future hus (didn't know that at the time) had invited me to attend his summer outing for work. My boss said that if I missed that particular evening, she would fire me. And, you know what? She did. Money was tight for a few weeks after that, but I got through it... And who knows? Perhaps that was the night I sealed my fate with my husband.

4. Death: It's not easy to cope when a loved one passes away, but life eventually goes on, and we heal. Living through it is hard, and stressful. Kinda makes stressing over which passed hors d'oeuvres to select for cocktail hour seem miniscule, right?

5. Illness: Less than a year after I got married, my husband passed SEVERAL pulmonary embolisms through his heart and into his lungs. It was horribly scary (I was terrified that he would die, and it's a miracle he didn't!), and I hope to never go through anything that intensely horrific again. I'm pretty sure I dropped about 10 pounds in one week, and struggled with PTSD thereafter. Thankfully, he's doing great, but man... Talk about perspective!

6. Public Speaking: I don't usually have a problem with this, but sometimes it sneaks up on me. And for most people, it's painful. Right? I mean, oftentimes, there's sweating involved, racing hearts and sweaty palms. Ick! Super stressful!

7. Job Interview: "Don't fuck it up. Don't fuck it up. Don't fuck it up." Yeah... That's what used to play over and over again in my head when I was interviewing. And, depending on the job at stake, interviewing takes preparation, poise and confidence. Throw in some competition for the position... Yikes! Totally exasperating! 

8. Pregnancy/Birth: Do I really have to elaborate? I have two incredible children, but man did I fight to have those little assholes. We went through IVF, and between the needles, blood draws, wands (that's my special word for an internal ultrasound or transvaginal ultrasound. Ewwwwww! Use your imagination!), and everybody and their mother seeing my vag... To say it was a stressful time in our lives would be a huge fucking understatement! I don't want to scare anybody out of getting pregnant, so I'll leave it there, but pregnancy? Birth? FUCKING STRESSFUL!

9. Parenthood: You know that joke about how babies/kids don't come with an instruction manual? Well, they don't. And there have been numerous times since my kids arrived that I totally would have sought from said manual if it existed! I LOVE being a mother, but I also like knowing what I'm doing, so sometimes it's really fucking hard.

10. Divorce: I mean... Think about all of that money you're spending on one day, bridey. Now imagine spending quadruple that amount, and not nearly getting everything you want. That's divorce!

Perspective. Perspective. Perspective. 

Image via Examined Existence

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Why Planning Your Wedding Actually IS a Full Time Job!

You know that nagging feeling when when someone says something to you that you just can't shake? And, in the long run, you know it's not a big deal, but mentally, you can't let it go? Well, I am having one of those moments. Last month, I wrote, "Help! I'm Not Excited for My Wedding", which was also featured on Huffington Post, and one of the comments stuck with me. Like, it's been nearly a month, and I just cannot let it go. I keep coming back to the article waving my hands in the air and swearing at the screen. The comment? Well, this woman said, "Are you kidding? It's not a full time job to plan a wedding and if it is, you're doing it wrong. Seriously, you've got to be kidding, it's not that hard." I know, right? What the fuck? (And, not for nothing, I'm curious what her wedding was like...)

The thing is, bridey, the woman who wrote this comment? She's not alone. Several people believe that planning a wedding is easy, and that you must be doing it "wrong" if you're stuck. And, as somebody who has planned a gazillion weddings, I can tell you with absolutely certainty that there is nothing easy about planning a wedding. I mean... Forget the décor, logistics and the wedding gown... That's the easy part. That's the gravy. The full time job is balancing the precarious combination of family, money and anxiety. Right? That's the shit that makes planning a wedding difficult. That's the shit that takes on a life of its own. Now, does that give you the right to be an entitled, bridey bitch because things are challenging? No, but it does give you the right to raise your hand and ask for help; something I feel that brides should do more often. (Ahem... Hire a wedding planner!)

On Bitchless Bride, I stand on my hot pink soap box and preach about being nice while planning your wedding, by on the same token, I preach the brutal truth about WHY weddings can be such a pain in the ass. Let's be honest, dealing with family dynamics and financial shit when you're not planning a wedding can be laborious, but dealing with family dynamics and financial shit while planning a wedding? Fucking brutal. Seriously, that's why I wrote, "Help! I'm Not Excited for My Wedding" in the first place. The three P's (pressure, precedence and perfection) can really fuck you up when you're trying to balance all of the other delicate pieces of planning a wedding. For most brides, it takes a lot of strength to filter out the noise and push forward. That's why so many couples head to Vegas!

See why I'm so pissed about that stupid comment? One little, asinine, blanket statement managed to completely minimize everything a bride goes through to keep up her balancing act. Because, to some of you, planning your wedding actually IS full time job simply because of the dynamics you're dealing with along the way. Bridey, I know I can be tough on you, but this time? I 100% have your back. So, stay strong! Plan the wedding that you want, and don't let stupid little comments get in your way. I'll try to do the same!

Image via Mushy Cloud 

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ 7 Reasons Why Couples Divorce and How to Overcome Them...

The other day, I ran into a groom whose wedding I had planned 8-9 years ago. Once it registered who I was, the first thing out of his mouth was, "Christin and I are still married!" After nearly choking on my gum, I said, "Good! You two were one of the good ones!" He thanked me and then asked, "You must wonder about that a lot... Like, if couples you've worked with are still married?" Another jaw dropping moment for me... But, yes, I do... ALL THE TIME! So, following a few pleasantries, chatting about our kids, etc. we parted ways, but I couldn't shake what he said to me. I mean... It's a perfectly valid question considering the shitty wedding statistics, right? Bridey, as you embark on the biggest day of your life leading up to your future, let's talk about how to over come the dismal marriage statistics, shall we?

Bridey, the truth is that one out of every TWO marriages fail. Um, that's 50%! Holy shit, right? Pretty grim stats! I mean... We spend all of this time and energy dating, obsessing and finally committing, thinking we finally found the right one, and then BOOM! A few years after the wedding (that I worked my ass off planning), divorce. WHY? What changes after the wedding that didn't present itself before you said "I do"? Or better yet... Maybe nothing changed, and the little red flags were there the whole time.

Here are a few well known reasons why couples divorce and my ideas on how to overcome them before you walk down the aisle:

1. Lack of communication. This one always baffles me. Do you communicate now? Yes? Good! Well, then keep communicating. Not communicating so well? Then fight it out if you have to! Yell it out! Scream it out! But, no matter what, bridey, get it out! If something is on your mind, then do something about it! Shockingly, this tends to come easily for me, as I am a bit of a loud mouth, and the people in my life always know where they stand, but you don't have to be a loud mouth to communicate. Just do it, bridey. In your own way. Sometimes it's as simple as an email outlining how you feel. Hide behind the screen if it helps you tell your partner how you feel. Who cares how you do it, but just get it out there! Because if you're starting your marriage with shattered lines of communication, then ultimately? You'll be communicating via attorney after the wedding.

2. Cheating. Why? I know I sound naïve when I say this, but WHY cheat? Seriously, besides the fact that cheating is the most cowardly, selfish and insensitive thing a person can do to somebody that they supposedly love, it's breaking the ultimate bond; the sanctity of marriage. A bond which both parties are about to knowingly enter into. So, keep your junk in your pants, and get in touch with why the urge to cheat is present in the first place. Bridey, if cheating is something that you're currently dealing with, then I highly suggest adjusting your focus from choosing your linen colors to reexamining your choice in partner.

3. Money. There's a shocker. Right? People fighting about money? I think it's so sad how money has the power to make things weird and cause friction between people. And yet, it totally does! Throw in the differences in your spending (or saving) habits, then the whole money thing can definitely contribute to the great divide. Why people aren't up front with their expectations, money wise, astounds me. Bridey, you're about to spend a shitload of cash on your wedding,  but, when it comes to the everyday stuff like bills, and groceries, etc., you argue. For the love of God, start having REAL conversations about money before you get married! If one of you likes to shop, and one of you likes to penny pinch, this could be a real problem, so figure it out now or allocate a portion of your salary to your divorce attorney.

4. The "we" is killing you. There's no "I" in "we". Bridey, you've lost your sense of self, and you're feeling the ramifications. It's really hard not to lose a piece of yourself when deeply ensconced with another person, but... TRY. Don't let go of your friends simply because you found "the one". Don't forget about the hobbies you enjoyed prior to getting into a relationship. Don't forget who you were before the rock! You're a big girl... You don't always need to do couple things. So, loosen your grip on "we", and focus on "me" every now and again.

5. Sex. Or, lackthereof. Do I really need to say more? Just do something about it. This is the easiest fix on the list.

6. Lack of effort. Um, you have to work at maintaining a healthy relationship. And, sometimes? It's fucking hard. We all fall into ruts, but it's how we dig ourselves out of the rut that counts. Bridey, put you're heart into your relationship in the same way you're putting your heart into your wedding plans. You gotta work at it... Period.

7. Wrong partner. I'm about to tell you something you already know, bridey. He/she isn't "the one", and you know it. So, quit fucking around... It's not going to get better, so get out before you waste time and money getting married.

Sadly, I could go on and on, but why bother? Bottom line, if it doesn't feel right, then quit while your ahead... OF THE WEDDING!

Image via GCSE Religious Studies

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ The BEST Advice from the BEST Wedding Vendors in Boston!

Bridey, today's post is like hitting the jackpot of wedding planning. SERIOUSLY. If you are recently engaged or are in the midst of planning your wedding, stop what you're doing, and focus because you are about to be educated by the BEST in the wedding biz! I asked some of my absolute FAVORITE vendors in the Boston area to share the best piece of advice about planning a wedding, and these peeps? Well, they completely spilled the beans. I mean... There is so much wedding planning goodness in this post, that I could fucking chew it!!!

I rarely say cheesy shit like this, but this is a must read!! So, are you ready to learn? Ready to say, "Thank you, Bitchless Bride!!" Good! You're welcome! 

Wedding Planners:

When you are newly engaged, you tend to become inundated with information overload and it can be daunting to say the least.  My advice to newly-engaged couples is to forgo the route of hiring all of your vendors until you’ve secured the right, professional, experienced wedding planner. Some couples feel it’s best to hire a “day of” coordinator and do the rest themselves, only to learn how much money could have been easily saved by avoiding costly mistakes and uneducated decisions along the way. The right planner should be your guide, your educator, your confidant, your representative along the way and you need to put your trust into this person as they do this every day and truly look out for your best interests from the start. 

Paula Marrero ~ Marrero Events 

My advice to new brides: Don't panic, it's all overwhelming at first but it's important to book the top 3 first-top priorities (if you're not working with a planner) are to find your venue, photographer and band--then breathe!  I also advise brides to wait to design the space until about 6 months before the wedding... You'll be able to have a couple months thinking about ideas, pinning on Pinterest , etc... I find that so many of my clients go in with one idea and once they've relaxed and see what is out there or trending in their wedding year they change their idea of what their wedding looks like--so ultimately they get what they want instead of what they thought they wanted--big difference! 

Amy Kimball ~ Amy Kimball Events 

Invitations:

Invitations are the introduction of your wedding to your friends and family; they set the tone for the event. You can’t just get a quote as there are a lot of factors to consider such as quantity, quality, type of inserts, type of print, etc. There is a lot more involved then most people realize. So, plan accordingly.

Mara Weiner ~ Allure Invitations

Cake:

Be your own "bride" ...don't worry about what family, in-laws, friends & co-workers want for YOUR WEDDING. Follow what YOU have wanted & dreamed about. 

Paula Kirrane ~ Icing on the Cake

Entertainment:

Once your venue is booked, the next step is to lock in your entertainment. In order to get the best DJ or band out there, you have to book well in advance. Remember, first and foremost? Your guests are going to remember if they had a good  time. That’s why good entertainment is vital.

Always ask your entertainment vendor about their other recommended services. This is how you get the best deals without making a laundry list of phone calls. They may already have what you need and could save you time and money without sacrificing quality.

Mike Amado ~ Entertainment Specialists

Photographers:

Lately couples are asking me if they should do the "first look". My answer is always YES! The first reveal is always so sweet. The moment is far more emotion and allows for a more intimate/private moment with just the couple. 

Some brides envision this grand moment when they are walking down the aisle, and the groom is sobbing… However, in reality, in a traditional formal setting with 200 people looking at you… The groom often looks like a deer in head lights. Not at all the magical moment you think it will be! So yes, do a first look! 

Lauren Killian ~ Person + Killian Photography

Don’t do a winter e-session! People look freezing, and are super uncomfortable. Nothing like having dirty snow and branches coming out of everyone's heads! Wait until the spring when the temperatures are higher, and the trees start to bloom. I highly suggest April-November.

~ Anonymous Photographer

Cinematography:

1. Make sure that your photographer and videographer work well as a team. Even better, choose a team where your photographer and videographer have worked together and enjoy the experience.

2. Ask your prospective wedding film maker how they operate during the wedding day. Will they have lights on their cameras? Will they be on the dance floor circling the couple during the first dance? Will they stand behind the officiant during the ceremony - Or will they stake out spots based on experience and fade into the decor?

3. Ask your toasters to limit toasts to under 5 minutes. 3 is even better. There’s not much they can say (that won’t be dumb or embarrassing) after a couple of minutes.

4. Invite your guests to leave their phones and cameras in their pockets or purses. You’re paying for pros to document your wedding - don’t let the amateurs get in the way!

5. When considering wedding cinematography, check out the sound  as well as the images of potential pros. Capturing pristine sound of your grandfather’s blessing and knowing how to integrate it with music and image, is a complex art form. Don’t settle for pretty pictures if you already have a photographer you love. When it comes to film making, sound is 60% or more.

6. If you desperately want a top notch film maker to capture your wedding, and have a limited budget, consider one of the following:

a. Grab pics from the HD / 24 Frames per second of the video capture and forego the photographer.

b. Hire the film maker you want and see if you can work out a payment plan that works for you.

c. Opt for the best film maker you can afford, ask them to produce a short highlights now, and wait until you’ve financially recovered to have them edit the feature film.

Naomi Raiselle ~ Generations Cinemastories 

Florist:

The Best way to trim your budget is to trim you guest list (it literally makes every line item more affordable - period, the end)! (AMEN!!!!!!)

If you "absolutely love and have to have peonies" - know that you absolutely MUST select a wedding date in May or early-June!

Bring as few people to each and every appointment that you book ... the less opinions, the less stressed out you will be!

~ Anonymous Florist

And there you have it... You're welcome, bridey!!! Now, all you have to do is listen to the professionals trying to help you.

Image via The Perfect Job

The Truth Hurts Tuesday Why Each Day After Your Wedding Is a Gift... Perspective Is a Bitch!

***In case any of you missed my article on Huffington Post last week... Even my mother commented that this post tapped into "the deeper side" of BB. ***

I am absolutely heartbroken and angry as I read about the most current shooting in San Bernardino. Actually, more like fucking pissed off and on the verge of hysteria, and I know I'm not alone. The statistics are staggering, the loss of life, absolutely heart-wrenching. This type of shit is becoming commonplace, almost expected, and it's frightening. And, if you're like me, you squeeze your hus and your kids a little bit tighter after each of these horrific events, praying that it doesn't continue to metastasize and spread to you and your loved ones.

What does the San Bernardino shooting have to do with planning your wedding? Quite a bit, bridey. It's called perspective. And, as I have said a million times, perspective is a bitch! Perspective sucks. Perspective hurts. But, perspective is necessary. And unfortunately, it's times like these where perspective comes in, shakes us to our core and (hopefully) snaps us the fuck out of our selfish little worlds, forcing us to appreciate what we have been given. Life. Marriage. Family. Friends. Notice how I didn't say "wedding"? I said marriage. And, marriage is a whole hell of a lot more than one day. It's work, it's difficult, and it's wonderful all wrapped into one.

Bridey, contrary to what some may think, I love weddings. I love everything about planning a wedding and seeing it come through to fruition. I love what weddings represent. I love that outside of your funeral, your wedding day is probably the only time in your life that everybody you love will be under the same roof (morbid, but true). But, what I hate about weddings? Narrow-minded bullshit. Bitchy brides who completely lose sight of why they are getting married in the first place. Brides who get so wrapped up in the wedding day, that they forget about life afterward (and during)! There IS life afterward, remember?

It's disgusting that shit like a soulless, cowardly shooting forces us to take a hard look at our lives and reevaluate our priorities, but that's usually when our greatest epiphany presents itself.  And planning your wedding? Well, it should be fun and exciting, but your epiphany should be the person you are going to marry. Each day after your wedding is a gift! I mean, how cool is it that you have a partner for life? Right? It's fucking amazing! It's exhilarating! It's awesome! And, you're amazingly lucky because sadly, fourteen people died on Wednesday, and many lost their partners. Feel that? That pit in your stomach? Focus on that, not your "perfect" wedding day. Your wedding day doesn't really matter in the scheme of things, it's how you live each day after your wedding that counts.

So, bridey, the next time wedding planning feels overwhelming or things get stressful, remember the outcome. Remember that at the end of the (wedding) day, you have a partner for life. So, cherish it. Enjoy it. Hold on to it. Because the day itself represents the future, and we are all incredibly lucky to still have one.

Image via DeviantArt

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Monkey in the Middle... It's a Real Bitch!

Bridey, I gotta ask you a question... Who's in charge? Who's wearing the pants? And, I'm not talking about your relationship with your sig other. Not only is it none of my business, but I don't give a shit. (I mean... For the sake of womankind, I hope it's an equal partnership, but again, none of my biz.) How you manage your relationship is your business, but what is my business is managing the details of your wedding. So, when your soon-to-be MIL calls me (or the venue, or the florist, or DJ, or the band, or the caterer... you see where I'm going with this), and wants to make significant changes to items we've worked hard putting in place, I get a li'l nervous. Therefore, I need to know, who's in charge?

Yesterday, I was boozy brunching with a friend of mine (God I missed mimosas while I was pregnant!), and when I told her about Bitchless Bride, she starting sharing some crazy-ass stories with me (that's usually the reaction I get when I tell people about BB). Anyway, she told me how a friend of hers had some serious issues with her MIL as she was planning her wedding. You're gonna want to sit down, bridey... Trust me.

So, this poor woman's MIL had the audacity to call the bakery and change the flavor and design of the fucking wedding cake. OMG! What the fuck is that about? Right? And, for some of you, the cake is like Holy Grail. It's the one thing you care about the most. You've invested tons of time and energy selecting the particulars, and then this bitch makes a single call and ruins it.

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Bitchless Bride is Having a Baby!!

It's true! My life is about to be rocked, and this time not by a needy, bitchy bride, but by a needy (potentially bitchy) baby. I'm scared and excited, but most of all I feel completely elated. And, just like anything else in life, it was hard work to get to this point (put it this way, bridey, I could write a fertility blog peppered with pregnancy complications!), but here I am; I made it through, and realized that I am stronger than I thought I was... Kind of like you. The wedding planning is a bitch, but totally worth in the end. Well, so is this... And for many of you, pregnancy and babies are the next step in your lives following the wedding.

So, wish me luck! And don't miss me too much... Thinking BB will be back up and running by the end of August. In the meantime, bridey, I have put together a summer reading list (fan faves and my faves) for your reading enjoyment and education:

1. From Strapless to Fabulous! ~ This one kinda pissed some people off...

2. My Very Own Fantasy... Wedding!

3. The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Defending Your Right to Choose... The Guestlist ~ Talk about HEATED & CRAZY! The comments (43 of them) from the Erica & Trevor's Real Wedding were absolutely abhorrent. 

4. The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ 5 Tips on How to Not be a Bridey Bitch ~ The cartoon makes me laugh every time!!

5. The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Why It's Important to Hire a Wedding Planner ~ Sorry, but, DUH!!!!

6. Real Wedding Wednesday ~ A Rustic, Outdoor, Dinosaur, Tattoo & Kickass Cupcake Wedding 

7. The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ What if Your Wedding Vendors Review You, Bridey? ~ Probably one of my favorite posts to date... Would you change your attitude if you knew you were being reviewed?

8. Real Wedding Wednesday ~ A Warm, Gorgeously Romantic, Washington Wedding

9. Fantasy Friday ~ A Super Glam & Gorge, Masquerade Themed Styled Shoot ~ This is SO FUCKING COOL!

10. Real Wedding Wednesday ~ I Found Myself in Wonderland... An Alice in Wonderland Inspired Wedding ~ WOW! Just wow!!!

That's all I got, bridey! I'll still be tweeting, pinning and FaceBooking, so feel free to reach out to BB while I'm on hiatus! Got it? Good! Stay Bitchless! 

XO,

BB

Baby Image via Medical Daily

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Speak Up Now or Forever Hold Your Tongue

Bridey, it's time to speak up! It's time to use that big mouth of yours. It's time to put your pedicured foot down! Huh? WTF BB? Well, it's come to my attention that some of you are... meek. Yikes! OMG! Right? And, while I've done a ton of writing about how not to be a bitch while planning your wedding, I've not focused as much energy on when it's absolutely appropriate to get in touch with that inner bitch of yours and unleash! Maybe not unleash, but definitely stand up for yourself! To whom you ask?? Drumroll please... Your future, opinionated, meddling mother-in-law! Yup! I'm sorry to say that the stereotype exists for a reason, and if you don't stand up for yourself now, then you're essentially allowing her future bad behavior to win in every.single.situation for the rest of your life for as long as you both shall live. So, squash it now, bridey.

I hate to say it, but some of your future mother-in-laws (MILs) have the power to destroy marriages. True story. And if yours is "helping" you and your sig other plan your wedding or worse, paying for it, then you must stand for yourself! I'm lucky... I happen I love my MIL (and I'm not just saying that because she's a fan of BB). But, this lady? She stood back and let us do what we wanted to do, and when we eloped, she was one our few supporters... Unfortunately, she learned the hard way that awful MILs can destroy marriages; that their power is strong enough to rock the foundation of a marriage and fuck it all up. The silver lining? She learned from her own experience, and has been nothing but loving and accepting of me (and my foul mouth) and my relationship with her son. Period. Like it fucking should be!!

The reason I'm bringing this up? Well, outside of the fact that sadly, many of you are currently dealing with this shit, I've learned that if you don't start standing up for yourself as you plan your wedding, then it becomes like a fucking cancer.... And it grows and grows until it ultimately takes over your entire life. However, if you catch it early, then you have a better chance of surviving, and your quality of life improves drastically.

Look, I don't care who's paying for the wedding, bridey, or how much it costs. What I care about is you and your sig other. And if your wedding day is going to mean anything at all or symbolize your glowing future with your hus, then make sure it's actually about the two of you and not your MIL. How? Start small, and fight the fights only worth fighting. Fight loudly enough so that your needs are getting met, but not loudly enough to bring down the precious foundation. Some of you may actually have to unleash depending on the severity of the situation, but do so only if it's a last resort. Because, as I mentioned, this "cancer" does not go away... It gets worse. 

Got it? Good luck, and Godspeed!

Image via Maestrano Blog

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Bridey, It's Not What it's Worth to You, It's What it's Actually Worth!

Show me the money, bridey! Seriously, I kinda can't believe we have to cover this. I mean... You've been doing so well, so to have to have this convo with you feels like somewhat of a regression. Look, I am all for saving money (especially as you plan your wedding), but sometimes I think you are borderline insulting when you push your wedding vendors too hard. Particularly if you haven't even hired them yet! Huh? Allow me to explain.

I was shooting the shit with one of my fave hair people as I was getting my locks cut, and as we were chatting, she told me about a bride who had reached out to her, inquiring about the cost for wedding updos, etc., and before my friend could even get a word out, this bride immediately asked if she could do "bridal hair" for $25 per person at the venue site. Now, before I go on, bridey, I just want you to answer a simple math equation. Let's say, this bride had six bridesmaids, okay? So, a total of seven girls (including the bride) getting their hair done on the most important day of this chick's life (just sayin'), and she thinks it's completely acceptable to ask a total stranger to do hair for seven girls for $175 TOTAL? REALLY? I mean... Most of us can't even get our hair cut for less than $50 (I say very generously), and this girl wants to pay $25/pp for wedding hair? Fuckin' lame.

I know I am not making myself very popular with this post, but bridey, surprisingly, this has nothing to do with your wedding budget. I could give a shit about your budget. But, let's face reality, shall we? If my hair person were to accept this job, she would lose money. A lot of money... Simply by being absent from the salon. Not to mention her travel expenses... I've said previously, that I am a huge fan of "if you don't ask, you don't get". But, perhaps some of you need to do your research before you ask (and ultimately waste your time and the time of the vendor).

This is not limited to your the vendor you are selecting for your hair, bridey. All of your wedding vendors field these kind of questions, and it gets pretty tiresome. Not because you can't afford us, but because you haven't done your due diligence. I know that you don't know what things cost in "the industry", in the same way that I don't know what things cost in your industry. But, before I were to throw a number out there (which could be insulting), I would have done the appropriate research and ask about pricing shortly after pleasantries are exchanged. See what I mean? Then you can see if there is a happy medium between the two of you, and if not, then move on; find a vendor that fits your budget.

Image via Taranaki Weddings

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ What if Your Wedding Vendors Reviewed You, Bridey?

I had the opportunity to work with a truly amazing bride this weekend. She was friendly, organized and considerate of every single person who had a hand in the wedding planning. Totally Bitchless. And as I was placing the final touches at the venue, and bullshitting with the DJ, both of us said how great it was working with her because as we both know, it could go either way. And after a few traded horror stories about crazy, bitchy brides of the past, he said, "Wouldn't it be great if we could review them?" I stopped in my tracks... Holy fucking shit. It would be great if we could review our brides. It might even be life changing, for vendors and brides alike. How?

Well, think about it, bridey... If there was an outlet, similar to Yelp, WeddingWire, etc. where following your wedding, your vendors could write a review about you and your behavior/attitude while planning, would that impact how you conducted yourself? Wait! Before you answer the question, allow me to keep going for a bit... What if this outlet was powerful enough to alter the course of your professional life? Similar to the way a negative review can wreak havoc on our business, a negative review could potentially ruin a fantastic job opportunity for you, bridey (like it does for us), get you fired (as it can for us), and completely soil your reputation as you know it.

Imagine if a potential (or even your current) employer "Googled" you, and could read about how you treated your wedding vendors without hearing "your side of the story". Scary, right? Pretty fucked up? Yes! Because in their eyes? These reviews reveal a lot about how you behave under pressure, and how you treat people in the process... Bridey, if you were a raving lunatic or even had one looney moment, you'd probably have some explaining to do or maybe you'd miss a chance to land the next big career move; pretty damaging for some of you. Right?

Now, bridey, answer the question... If there was a site for vendors to review brides in the same way you very publicly review us, would that change your behavior during wedding planning? Would it change how you treat people knowing that your behavior and conduct could leave a lasting impression not only on your vendors, but on your career too?

Image via Box University Blog

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ Don't be a Bitch on Your Wedding Day! 6 Tips to Get Rid of the Bridey Bitch!

I've written quite a bit about how to not be a bitch while planning your wedding, but it dawned on me that I haven't really touched on why it's so important not to be a bitch on your wedding day. Bridey, I think it's safe to say that your wedding day is filled with a tangled web of emotions; happiness, elation, excitement, fear, anxiety, etc.... All perfectly normal... And, sometimes when we're filled with that kind of emotion, it's easy to go one of two ways... Euphoria or bridaldemia, and it's up to you to choose the better of the two.

The reason I'm mentioning this? Well, after an extremely busy weekend filled with two weddings, and everything you can think of in between, I realized that my very lovely brides each took on one of the two aforementioned emotions. And, frankly, I was shocked. Both were super detailed oriented, although easy to work with during the wedding planning (they must be avid readers of BB), and both had relatively supportive families. So, what made one bride go batshit crazy on her wedding day and one continue to be her fabulous self? THAT is a good fucking question!

And while I don't have the answer, I can tell you who had a better wedding day experience. If you guessed bridey B, then you guessed right. Bridey B was relaxed and happy. She took in each and every moment of the day, totally let go of "wedding planning mode", and slipped into something much more comfortable, her wedding day. While Bridey A was argumentative with anybody who dared crossed her path. Honestly? It was strange; something I didn't see coming based on our planning experience.

So, bridey, I got to thinking about what can we do to alleviate Bridey A from presenting herself on your wedding day, and here's what I came up with: 

1. Alcohol. Just kidding!! Well, sort of... I hate to admit that it was the first thing that came to mind! However, if you are careful not to get piss drunk, then there is nothing wrong with a cocktail as you are getting ready to walk down the aisle. Just be sure to nourish yourself with delicious food and plenty of water, and surround yourself with your favorite ladies!

2. Timing is everything. As a planner, I build a TON of extra time into the getting ready piece of the wedding day. I do this because inevitably there is always something (or someone) who will throw you off track, and there is nothing more stress inducing than being late. So, give yourself a lot of extra time.

3. Breathe. Seriously. What's done is done, bridey, so freaking out about the details on the day of your wedding will get you nowhere. Simply relax and breathe. Remember, that at the end of the day (quite literally), you will have gotten married to the man (or woman) you are going to spend the rest of your life with, right? How awesome is that? YAHOO! So, don't allow your anxiety and nerves to win. It will show through in your photographs, and for what? Shit that won't matter...

4. Let it go. Oh dear God. UGH! I just started singing that fucking song...

The Truth Hurts Tuesday ~ FLASHBACK: Am I Supposed to Tip These People???

***Brideys, for those of you who have been reading Bitchless Bride since inception, then you should recognize this post. This was one of my very first posts on BB; one that received 19 comments (when I had like no fanbase!). The reason I'm sharing this with you again? Because I'm proud of you, bridey! So many of you have been inquiring about who to tip, so that rather than reinvent the wheel, I thought I would share it again. Right? So, just read it and learn!!! And, don't forget to tip your vendors! (And check out all of the comments!!)***

November 29, 2011:

"Am I supposed to tip these people?" I will never understand why this even a question. The question SHOULD be, “Who should I tip, and how much?” not “Am I supposed tip these people?” Think about it… Tipping is a token of appreciation and gratitude for a job well done… Perhaps it isn’t as obvious to those of you not in “the industry”, but to put it into perspective… Would you leave an incredible dinner at your favorite restaurant without tipping? Well, consider this the dinner of your life. So, express your sincere gratitude to those lovely people that had a hand in the most important day of your life with some cash. Put this as a line item in your budget from the get-go. Please note, it’s important for me to state that if you don’t feel as though you received extraordinary service from any of these professionals, then skip it. But for now, allow me to take you back to grade school... Who? What? When? Where? Why?

Who Should I Tip and Why?

Tip anybody who had a hand in your wedding. I don't care if the woman who did your duchess ‘do owns her own shop. Do you love your hair? Well then tip her! I own my own shop too, and you know what? After a year of working with you, I shoulda charged more... A tip makes it all feel better.

Tip the wedding manager in charge of your wedding at that fancy venue of yours. Why? Well, first of all, I can assure you that they don't make nearly as much money as you think they do. And, secondly you probably have no idea how many hoops they had to jump through to get the job done, and done well. Don’t forget the banquet manager.... This person(s) literally made the floor plan come to life for your wedding. And while we are at it… remember the head server (or captain as they are sometimes called), bartenders, servers, etc. Basically, the whole crew. And, don’t forget the chef! Especially if your food rocked! 

Photographers, florists, DJs oh my!!! Yes, tip them too. All of them… The same rule goes for the photographers as with the hair peeps. Most own their own shop, and all of the verbiage online says to tip their assistant and not the owner. I completely disagree with this thought process. If you have a great photographer, it will show in pictures and can truly change the story of your album. Throw them a few bucks.

A few more peeps to consider: officiant, limousine driver, and caterer…

What should I tip?

Listen, I know that your wedding probably costs a lot more than you anticipated when you initially started planning the details, and I am certainly not about to assume anybody’s finances. So my best advice to you is to use your best judgment. If you’ve chosen wisely, then the wedding professionals you’ve hired aren’t cheap, and the last thing you want to do is throw more $$$$ at them. However, if you feel like they’ve done an exceptional job, then show them. A tip is never expected, just appreciated. If you are uncomfortable giving them cash, go for an AMEX gift card or a gift certificate to a fabulous restaurant. 

When and where should I give them their tip?

Most vendors receive their tip at the end of the night. Designate somebody you trust (like one of your parents) to handle this for you. Obviously tip your hair and make-up people before they leave wherever you are getting ready. And finally, I’d tip the chef (or caterer), wedding manager and banquet manager a day or two prior to the wedding. By giving them their tip ahead of time, odds are they will want to “earn” it by providing even more exceptional service.

There you go my bubbling brides… I hope this helps clear the air. Remember, every professional you’ve hired to be a part of your wedding day is in the service industry. In this country we reward good service, so quit being a cheap bitch and take care of the people that helped you set the tone for the rest of your lives!