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Wedding Advice From Married Couples

February 8, 2023

Type in “wedding trends” on Pinterest and it won’t take long to start feeling overwhelmed with what you should be doing to keep up this year. Colors that are on point, custom dresses with the latest cut, and endless pressure to do it right. While I love gathering inspiration from trends, trying to fit into a box has never really suited me. Maybe that’s you too. So if you’re looking for real wedding advice from married couples with hindsight on their own experience, then come on in and cozy up! I’ll take you through the things they said actually mattered, and the things that didn’t. I’ll also share my own advice after being married over two decades.

Breanna and Tim's wedding in Boulder Colorado

Unique ideas

“Late night bites…I SWEAR by this. My guests LOVED this. This over gifts.” -Karter
What goes great with dancing and drinks into the midnight hour? Food, of course. Karter explains how they hired the caterer to put out popcorn and pretzels as a late snack to enjoy or take with them as they went home. It’s like at Thanksgiving when I have to bring out second dinner because we’ve all been playing games or watching football for several hours. Such a great way to keep guests having a blast.

“Polaroid wedding guest book.” -Ashley
Maybe this idea has been around awhile but it is right up my alley and worth sharing. Ashley says to leave an Instax Polaroid camera by the guest book to take photos of themselves. Then add it to the album and sign with notes or wishes to the couple. Having the vintage and candid look of Polaroid photos is an incredible way to preserve memories with a heartfelt message. I might need to get married again just to do this.


“I wish I would have gone with the more expensive photographer.” -Juliet
Translation: I wish I would have hired the photographer I really wanted. Please hear this. No other vendor spends more time with you throughout the day and portraits are one of the only things you keep from the experience. I mean, aside from your spouse! You’ll definitely want to hang onto them. But investing in a photographer who captures every small and big detail, each candid emotional moment, and makes sure you’re in the best light is invaluable. When you’re 80 and at your 50th wedding anniversary party, what one thing will you grab for memories? The photos. This is an area you want to be picky! Find a photographer who fits you and supports you in an unforgettable experience.

“Do what makes you happy, not what impresses other people.” -Julie
It’s cliche to say: it’s cliche but true…but it is. Situations often get messy when they involve a lot of people with a lot of opinions. As we know, weddings can sometimes be the worst, and if you’re an empath then standing up for what you want can be difficult. However I’m here to yell from the roof peaks that your day is about celebrating you two, your commitment, and your marriage ahead. There’s nothing selfish about creating an experience you’re going to love and remember for the rest of your life. Do it up, you style!

“Allow for plenty of wiggle room in creating a timeline of the day.” -Otter Images
Yes! This. If there’s one thing we can count on it’s the bridal party taking longer to get ready than expected. Which is perfectly fine! But having vendors who expect and plan for things to change provides such a sense of ease. You still want to be able to get all the portraits you’ve dreamed of having so planning for a little “wiggle room” is great wedding advice. Check out more tips for relieving wedding stress here.

wedding day

“Breathe, take a moment to step back and appreciate the process with your significant.” -Karter
One thing I hear consistently is that the day went so fast. It’s a whirlwind of lipstick, suit cuffs, hugs, and cheers. Before you blink it will be over so carving out a little alone time to get eye to eye with your person is wonderful advice. Many couples do a private dance or take a quick walk between events and that’s a great way to slow down. Soak up as much as you can in the moment!

“GOOD food, music and drinks!! That’s what your guests really want!! [Loved] having all of my family and friends in one place.” -Kate
When that DJ just keeps spinning the Thriller album and the bar is hoppin’, you can let go of every last bit of stress and CELEBRATE! The people at your wedding are there for you and their love will be palpable. What a truly unique time to have so many who support you all in one space. So go enjoy yourself!


“Give more effort to the marriage than the wedding! -Jennifer
I agree with all of my heart on this. We spend many much more {you read that right} years being married than planning a wedding. Absolutely put effort into your relationship.

“Treat every day like it’s your last.” -Syndie, my friend who lost her husband just weeks before I wrote this.
There may not be any more poignant wedding advice than these words, and it can re-shape what really matters to us. What would you do differently if you knew you had limited time? Maybe you’d elope in a winery or hire a luxury photographer or serve steak instead of chicken. Maybe you’d have kids right away or travel to all 7 continents in a year. I don’t know what that looks like for you but ask yourself what you really value and invest in that thing. I’m rooting for you!

My wedding advice

Invest in a therapist. My husband and I wouldn’t be married if not for two things: our faith in God, and our therapist. Finding someone to help us navigate our individual wounds, learn emotional intimacy and communication, and heal has literally kept us from filing for divorce. God brought us someone who’s an expert and it has made all the difference.

Have a wedding. But don’t go into debt to do it. I was married in 2001 and my biggest regret is not having a wedding. We exchanged vows around a fake Christmas tree on Pearl Harbor Day with our immediate families. There’s nothing wrong with that however, I do long for a few aspects of a wedding I missed. I was extremely young, and though I knew I wanted to be with my husband we rushed the process. I wish I would have taken the time to make it ours and really celebrate.

Know your boundaries and use them. In planning a wedding, in marriage, in life. You matter, friend. I encourage you to figure out your own boundaries in a variety of relationships so that you can live fully free to be what God made you. Want help with this? There are a ton of books in the Boundaries series to check out.

Wear comfortable shoes It won’t be just your feet thanking you but your knees and hips too. Wedding days are long and as you can see in the portraits at the top of the page, this bride knew some fancy sneakers were in order. Even if you don’t like that style, plan to have shoes for changing into or find a pair you can wear for extended lengths.

I hope you’ve found some insight with this melting pot of wedding advice. It’s been a kick to research for this post! Thank you to my incredible clients and friends who contributed. You mean so much to me!

WANT MORE? Check out these links for brides biggest regrets, and what couples say is are the best things about marriage:


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