Wedding Regrets: confessions from brides on the bits that weren’t perfect


You might have it in your head that wedding planning is clouds of tulle, cake testing and sipping bubbles, but the reality can be not quite as rosy. Things can not go quite as planned, or guest list politics can cause friction with your wedding planning. After the popularity of my wedding regrets post, I thought I’d dive into the results of a survey I did of brides last year. I wanted to see what bugged other brides about their wedding day. The survey was anonymous, which allowed the brides to share their wedding confessions in a frank & honest manner.

These regrets from the wedding planning process are not here to feed your drama llamas (but you can do that too). The purpose is to take these confessions and apply their learnings to your own wedding planning process.  Looking back over the posts, you might notice that several bits of advice contradict each other. That’s advice for you! Take of it what you can – ignore what sounds daft to you.

I wish we had started earlier. 14 months is flying by and I feel like not enough time is left


Starting too early!! You just change your mind all the time!!! and I’ve still got 18 months to go!!


I should’ve said no more… actually I still should say no more! I was horrifically late because I didn’t say NO and I am still kicking myself. Just because I wanted to be “nice” and not called a bridezilla.


I didn’t get a photo of just me and mum. Put some thought into a list for the photographer cause you get swept up in everything.


I wish I had been firmer with my other half regarding the place of the wedding, as much as I love Wanaka, I do wish we were getting married in Nelson, my home town.


I wish we didn’t have such an early RSVP date. It was 3 months before the wedding (I wanted to get firm numbers for catering/budget). We had guests say yes then change their mind closer to the time (because they couldn’t afford it or they had to work). Ended up costing me $$ and time 🙁

If you want some more information on when you should set your RSVP date, check out this post.

Don’t let anyone talk you into releasing all control. I was told to let others take care of everything on the day and important things didn’t happen like photos of me with Grandparents and other relatives, friends etc. that were on the photographers list but in the blur of the day & me being a bit nervous they were left out. I will always regret that as I have no photos of us with important people in my life.

Also my bridesmaid made me give her my phone. I would have actually quite liked to have had it and taken some cute bridal selfies as I love to document things like that but she took it and hid it.

And also, check or get your bridal party to be clear on them being in photos that may make their way into social media (and videos) so they don’t ask you to remove your weddings photos or videos if they are in them and tell you not to tell anyone :/ If you can, arrange for a friend or family member who knows you & your family etc. well who can help the photographer in getting all the photos you want. And mostly, have the day that you want. Don’t worry if it isn’t what other people think you should have or like.

We had an unplugged ceremony (no photos during ceremony other than professional photographer) after seeing wedding photos destroyed by other people getting in the way or flashes ruining what could have been a great photo and out of about 80 guests we only had 2 complain to us about not being able to take photos and they still go on about it but we are happy with our decision as most people said they enjoyed the ceremony more and our photos are lovely 🙂

For more information on unplugged weddings, read this article.


Do It Yourself? More like, Don’t Get Round it it yourself. You don’t have the time. What a waste of money.



Spending too much money.  Stress with the partner ( him not agreeing to my plans)


Not doing things my way. And getting married because that’s what other people wanted.


Buying one bridesmaid dress online from china. Should have bought all 3 at the same time because subsequent dresses didn’t match.

Yikes – one of the perils 🙁 Check out my advice on buying bridesmaids dresses online here


You will never have a wedding like the ones on the movies. It’s just one day make sure it’s all about you and your partner. You don’t have to have a big wedding. I regret not noticing that my partner was freaking out about the big wedding I was planning and checking in with him about how he feels, I regret he wasn’t honest with me because he didn’t want to upset me. Communicating honestly with each other is important, it is both of our days and we both have to be honest with ourselves and each other about what we want… hopefully we only do it once so do it for yourselves not what you think is expected from others.


Booking somewhere when you’re not ready, get your finances sorted first


We’ve had a big fight with my parents. But I’m still unsure of the advice to avoid that.


Guest list – we are paying for our wedding ourselves with my parents paying for the cake and flowers and my partners for the alcohol. We said each family could invite 15 family friends each. Wish I had only said 6 at the max as this has caused dramas!

Guest lists – UGH! I have a handy flowchart and advice on this here

Sending out so many “save the dates”

It happens – we get excited and the budget crunch hasn’t hit… check out how to uninvite guests that you’ve already sent Save the Dates to here

I wish I wasn’t having such a big, family-oriented, traditional, stressful, expensive wedding. Instead, I wish we had just gone to the registry office and then had a party. Hindsight is 20/20

Do you have anything you regret about your wedding day, or the wedding planning process? You’re welcome to share it in the comments below. You can use a name like “Ms X” if you want to remain anonymous.

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