Wedding Week

What You Can Learn From Other People’s Weddings

You’ll want to follow this advice.

By: Emily Ramshaw

Any entrepreneurial idea that is able to take a slice out of the $55 billion-wedding-industry pie (and that’s just stateside) is officially genius—because, honestly, the size of that pie means there’s plenty to go around. With that in mind, next up in a series we’re unofficially calling ideas we wish we thought of first: Carats & Cake, a digital wedding planning resource where couples can find the best vendors and venues across the country—no matter where they might be getting married. And the part where the genius thing comes in? Founder Jess Levin understands both our obsession with stalking strangers weddings on Instagram (don’t say you’re not guilty), and that when planning what’s meant to be the best day of your life, well, nothing but the best will do. So she combined those concepts and made recently married couples a resource on the site—meaning that you can freely study countless dreamy weddings, and find out exactly what vendors and venues were used.

Evidently, there’s a lot of learning and discovering to be done on Carats & Cake, but we asked Levin to simplify a little before we dive in and spend untold hours in a fantasy wedding black hole. Here, she outlines the top five things every engaged couple can learn from those who have already chosen the dress, the florist, the band, and gotten through alive and in love.

 

1. Delegate to the best (a.k.a. get a planner)

“Throwing a wedding takes a village, really. While a lot of the couples whose weddings we feature on Carats & Cake clearly have vision, most also worked with stellar talent in the wedding industry to create their events.”

 

2. The “best” is different for everyone

“Carats & Cake represents the work of the best planners, photographers, venues, florists, etc. in the industry but the ‘best’ means something different for everyone. Couples will have totally different experiences with the same vendor and while personal recommendations are key, before hiring, dig into a vendor’s portfolio of real weddings and clients so you can see if their work and event style align with your individual taste and needs.”

 

3. Pick the things you care about

“We see incredible work and we can often tell what elements within a wedding meant the most to a couple—be it the food or dress. Go in knowing you will have to make choices and be ready to make cuts on the details that aren’t important to you, so you can dial up spend on the things that matter to you as a couple most.”

 

4. Know your budget may change

“One of the most challenging aspects of throwing a wedding is the price tag. With so many gorgeous wedding visuals across the web, it’s easy to forget that all those tiny details you fell in love with come with a price tag. Many couples and families start with an arbitrary number as their budget, only to learn through the process how unrealistic their expectations are. Be open and listen to the vendors you meet with, especially those that take the time to educate you on what things cost, and be prepared to adapt either your vision or your spend or both.”

 

5. Looking at your pictures never gets old

“We may have a slight bias for imagery, but the importance of photography can’t be underestimated and when budgeting, this is not the place to skimp. Investing in the staying power of the photographs and carefully selecting the right photographer will serve you for anniversaries to come.”

Part of the series:

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