{Advice} Top 4 Pieces of Bride to Bride Advice + A DIY Wedding!

We are so excited to feature this wedding, submitted to us by Joe Hendricks Photography! Not only do we get to share with you this couple's amazing DIY wedding, the lovely bride has also shared with us some helpful tips for those whom are in the planning process of their own wedding and might need a little perspective.

Introducing Christy, and her Top 4 Pieces of Advice for Brides:

When Matt and I got engaged, I had no idea what we were getting ourselves into in planning a wedding. I will be honest, I thought, “How hard can this be? It’s like planning a big party and I love to plan parties. Why would anyone pay for a wedding planner? What a waste of money when you can just save that money and do it yourself? Why do people get so stressed? It’s supposed to be a happy time – what’s the big deal?” Well, I was wrong. So, so, so, so wrong.

I felt discouraged many times in wedding planning because I realized that I just wasn’t good at it. I’d never done it before (and Dear God would never be doing it again) but being on this side of things, married and having successfully survived the planning, I’d like to give a few pieces of advice to any current or future brides out there.

1.  Get a wedding planner. Period. Get someone you know and trust and will enjoy sharing this experience with. Jenny was a long-time family friend of mine and so I knew that I would enjoy going through the excitement and extreme stress with someone I trusted.

2.  Spend money on what matters TO. YOU. Matt and I paid for the wedding ourselves so we wanted to get creative to save money everywhere we can. We decided up front that we had a three priorities that we were willing to spend good money on. Everything else, we would be creative to make it work. For us, it was:
1.) Pictures. These are F O R E V E R. There’s no redo’s on this on and we knew we wanted the best. When it was time to book a photographer, Matt and I already knew we wanted Joe Hendricks. He and his wonderful wife Rhonda make this amazing team that are so wonderful to work with. I am forever grateful for his amazing talent and hard work.  
2.) The Band – The Band sets the tone for the entire reception and what Matt and I wanted more than anything was for people to have a good time!  
3.) Wedding Rings – This may not be in any one else’s list of Top 3 Things to Spend Money On, but it was on mine. I am wearing this sucker for the rest of my life so I want to love it.

3.  Do just exactly what you want to. I didn’t have a flower girl, ring bearer, Mother/Son or Father/Daughter dance, cake cutting, bouquet or garter toss…because I didn’t want to. I did have worship music during the ceremony, music with lyrics for the processional and communion during the ceremony – because I did want to. You need to have what you want to have. Forget tradition or what people say you “should do” or how it’s “always done.” You do what you want.

4. Get Creative and DIY – Once you’ve figured out what you are willing to splurge on, go cheap on everything else. It takes a whole lot more time and a whole lot of more effort to do things yourself but you will save literally thousands of dollars if you do. 

Such great advice! As a former bride myself I agree with most of what she said here. I didn't have an event planner. I took on the majority of the burden myself, and in looking back I wish I had somebody to commit to me and my needs, instead of me worrying about a friend getting to "wedding"ed-out...I had a day of coordinator at the venue, but I needed someone there months ahead of time.  So, if you are able to, I agree with Christy to find your event planner.

I also agree with doing only what you and your spouse-to-be want to do.  If you do things for other people, because they would like to see that happen at your wedding, how are you going to be able to enjoy your own wedding?  Putting those pretty feet down and letting people this is how it's going to be might be difficult, but in the end it is your day, and it is only a day.  

Regarding all matters DIY-I love everything seen here in Christy & Matt's wedding.  The signs are really cute, and they set up the different "stages" of the wedding.  I am swooning swooning over the hanging mason jars filled with flowers for the ceremony and tealights at the reception! Yes, please! The color palette and choice of flowers are really beautiful.  I always love to see burlap appear on bouquets-I'm a sucker for that!  The bridesmaids decked out in their pretty navy blue dresses and boots is a great choice, and is perfect for this summery outdoor wedding! 

Our thanks and gratitude to Joe Hendricks Photography for submitting Christy & Matt's wedding, and for Christy to share her great words of advice for all the brides out there! 

Photographer:  Joe Hendricks Photography//Band: Andy Childs Band//Caterer: Puckett's Franklin Catering//Bakery: Darlene's Kakes//Event Planner: Jenny Allen Weddings & Events//Tuxedo and Mens Attire: Jos. A. Bank//Hair Stylist: Style Kitchen//Dress Store: The White Room
Submitted via Two Bright Lights


  1. Amazing photographs.. Both of you look so stunning. Wish you guys all the very best.

  2. Okay, first of all, Joe did a FANTASTIC job on these photos, but I think that lends a lot of credit to the bride and groom who created such a beautiful day for themselves. And as far as the tips - all spot on. If you don't get a wedding planner from the get go, get a day-of planner - very important!!

    1. Thanks for the feedback, Nell! My level of stress would have been way less had I done that, as I was traveling for work at the time of planning my wedding, and I was way too involved with both. My knowledge of wedding planning wasn't what it is now! :)


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