When it’s time to plan a wedding you will be on information overload. Who will you choose for your bridal party? What venue? What cake? There are going to be so many decisions. By the time the wedding actually gets there, you’ll be exhausted.

You should look back on your engagement and wedding with only happiness, not feelings of stress. After speaking with many couples that have been happily married for decades here is what I learned.


All of the couples agreed that the engagement period is one of the most exciting times of their lives. Many of them voiced that they wish there had been less time stressing about the wedding and expenses and more time just enjoying their engagement.

Several of the men said that one of their most exciting and nerve wrecking times for them was picking out the perfect engagement ring. All of the couples agreed that the engagement photos were something to not skip.

They said that those pictures were special because it was just about them. There weren’t any in-laws or bridal parties, it was just the two of them.

Bridal shower

Everyone agreed that bridal showers were a must do. When you are starting a life with someone, and most likely in your early adult life, you will need a lot to furnish your new home.

Pots and pans, microwaves, and decor can be quite expensive when you are buying it all at once. Many of the women expressed that they received personalized gifts that are keepsakes for them.

Lingerie Party

Lingerie parties are not as common as bridal showers and many of the women did not have them, but wish they would have. They recommend having a shower with some of your close friends. A lingerie shower is a great way to make memories with your friends while getting some goodies.

The Dress

The decision on the dress was unanimous. All of the couples agreed that the dress was worth the price. They all recommend getting the dress that was the first choice and cutting back on flowers and the other details if necessary.


Almost all of the couples agreed that they would play down the wedding venue, specifically the reception venue, if they were planning their weddings again. They all agreed that the actual wedding venue was important, but the reception venue expense outweighed its value.

Unless the reception venue has an emotional tie, they recommend spending less on it.


Flowers were one of the details that the couples were split on. Half of the couples said that the expense was worth it while the other half said no way. The half that would spend less on flowers said they wished that they had spent that money on a trip or something for their home.

One of the brides said that the flowers were worth every penny to her. She used Lilies in her wedding and said that every time she smells a lily, it immediately takes her back to her wedding.

Number of Guests

Almost all of the couples agreed that their guest list was too long. Not only did the list make it more expensive, but also stressful. They said that they were anxious standing before a crowd of their parents friends, coworkers, and people that they had not seen in years.

They recommend that you invite only your friends and family that you are comfortable with. They also noted that much of their receptions were spent mingling with people that they hardly knew instead of enjoying each other with their close family and friends.

After interviewing several couples with long lasting marriages, the consensus was that the wedding is important, but that many of the details they would scale back. Many of them agreed that they would have invested that money into their homes.

They also noted that they would have liked their weddings to have been smaller, with only people that they were close to.