Thursday, August 5, 2010

Getting Ready: The Calm Before The Storm

The morning of our wedding started off quietly and slowly, with my mom, sister and I heading to one of my bridesmaids’ homes to start getting all dolled up for the special moments to come.

As we entered the quiet house along with our hair and makeup stylists, I relished the serenity of the day, but felt eager for the hustle and bustle I knew would soon follow. After all, this was my wedding day, and every moment was supposed to feel action-packed and fun, right?

But since a few bridesmaids had gone to a separate salon, things remained calm and relatively peaceful for quite a while. My mom made a Starbucks run, as stylist Jana and her daughter worked away. Stephen’s sisters joined us, patiently awaiting their turns in the makeup chair. My phone on my lap, I found time to blog and send off a few fun “wedding day” messages.

But sure enough, as the morning wore on, the house started to fill up, both with people and things. My future mother-in-law brought us lunch, leftover from our rehearsal dinner the night before. Future father-in-law? He also stopped by, kindly heading to Jamba Juice to grab our favorites. The rest of the girls arrived, and there was excited chatter, plus hugs all around.

As the kitchen table became strewn with plates, boxes of crackers, and empty plastic cups, one or two of the girls’ boyfriends even popped in and out of the picture, while photographer Damien steadily snapped away, alongside his assistant Nicole. Photo equipment filled the living room, as my gown hung happily in the window, where it could finally have its day in the sun.

Things were calm yet crazy, and quiet yet joyously loud. It was the perfect combination.

LESSON LEARNED: Before your wedding day, think about exactly what type of “getting ready” experience you’d like, as this can set the tone for how you feel going into the entire day – nervous, excited, calm, and so on. Do you envision a boisterous morning to get you pumped up? A calm, relaxing moment shared with just your sister and mom? A mix of both, like me? Let your personality be your guide. Plus, when choosing a location, be sure to pick a spot that is large enough to comfortably accommodate however many people will be there. A place that will lend a great backdrop for photos doesn’t hurt, either.

Where do you or did you plan to get ready on your wedding day? Do you prefer to be surrounded by a large group, or to keep things small?

(Photo Credits: Personal Library & Damien Smith Photography)


  1. I got ready with just 2 of my 4 bridesmaids and it was the perfect number of people to have in the room. After we were dressed everyone else started to show up which added to my stress level so I'm glad they weren't there the whole time.

    Love the pic of your dress hanging!

  2. great post! ..It was at my parents home. I had a very small intimate wedding of just 50 people. And 1 MOH and 1 Bridesmaid. The morning off was very calm. Being pregnant didn't help. I was very nauseous the entire day :(

  3. Love that dress photo! I think our "getting ready" time will be a little stressful, only because my mom is kind of a stress case. We will be getting ready at a salon and later the hotel. Speaking of which, I need to start on our day-of timeline!

    Jamba Juice seems like a great, filling snack before the wedding. I'll have to remember that!

  4. We're planning on getting ready in one of the historic homes on the same property as our venue. As of right now, I think it will just be me, my bridesmaids and my mom, so I hope to have a calm and relaxing morning while we all get pampered with hair and makeup. We'll see if that becomes the reality.

  5. Because we're having a daytime wedding, our getting ready schedule will be compact and possibly a little stressful as a result! I'm staying with my three bridesmaids in a hotel room the night before, so we'll wake up and get ready together (I'm excited about that part!) My mom, who's staying in the same hotel, will also be there. :)

    Also love your dress shot!

  6. Great post. The wedding I worked this past weekend - we needed a conference room with a long table that fit 20.
    Great dress.

  7. That dress photo is just gorgeous! And it was so nice of everyone to bring you food and drinks!

  8. Love the photos; me and my bridesmaids and me mum all went along to the hairdressers at different times then we all came back to the house to get our make-up done!

    It was all quite calm for a while then there was a bit of a rush at the end!