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Wedding Planning Bootcamp Session #1

19 January 2011

There is a fabulous resource for brides both here in Nashville and nationwide called Ashley's Bride Guide. She has great DIY and style ideas as well as amazing discounts through local Nashville wedding vendors of all sorts.

This January, Ashley decided to assemble local vendors, planners, newlyweds, and brides-to-be for this incredibly informative "wedding planning bootcamp."

Session #1 was all about Vision and Values.
As it turns out bridezillas are bridezillas because there is no plan. In fact, they find themselves with no direction and grasping at whatever wedding-esk thing they can in order to make sure they don't forget anything. Errrrr! Wrong!

For Mr. Collier and I, we want a joyful day that is full of laughter, friends and family. Great food and an excellent time! Everyone comfortable and relaxed. Nothing fussy. As it turns out, this bootcamp session #1 was exactly what I needed because I began feeling the pressure and grasping at straws.

Here is a list of things/tips I learned:
1) The first step to planning is to visualize your wedding day to identify your values.
What do you see? (twinkly lights or a gobo monogram on the dance floor?)
What kind of feeling do you get? (formal, comfortable, romantic)
Who is there? (or who do you want to be?)

2) How to make your values come to life.
Defining our priorities allowed us to home in on the essentials and make sure from here
on out when we contract vendors, they honor this list. Also, knowing your priorities
allows the vendors to get a sense of who you are as a couple and align (or not) with your

3) Be true and honest with yourself.
You might want a simple wedding and your family wants something more formal but you have to stay true to yourselves and your vision (within your budget). One panelist described a situation as a bride where her mother's highest priority was flowers whereas the bride didn't really care about flowers so she ranked them lower on her budget. To respect her mother's wishes, she ended up having her mother direct all the floral design with the understanding that the mother's priority was fulfilled and they could move on with the remainder of the bride's values.

Thanks to Ashley and her crew, I walked away with a brand new perspective on this whole wedding planning thing. Honestly, having heard professional input from planners, counselors, and post-brides put things into perspective for me.

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