• Joshua Anderson

5 Wedding day details you really should talk about ahead of time

Updated: May 29, 2019

Bride and groom have glowing smiles after first kiss
All photos in this article are taken at Gramercy mansion in Maryland by Tell It Well Photography

Let's face it, almost every wedding nowadays has some similarities. Some come by necessity, and others by tradition. Nevertheless, some of these similarities are details that can be a source of conflict if not executed properly. Happy wife, happy life? Don't start with unhappy wife on the very first day. That's why an engaged couple should sit down and talk about these details of the wedding day to come to an understanding. 

Bride and groom kiss in the gazebo at Gramercy Mansion in Maryland
The first kiss can make her dreams come true or give her second thoughts.

1. The first kiss

This is a simple detail of the wedding that most people don't consider talking about. The wedding day comes, and there they are, standing at the altar. The officiant says, "I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may kiss the bride."

The anticipation is over, and the bride and groom come together for their first kiss as husband and wife. The bride is expecting to receive her frequently fantasized fairy tale kiss from her Prince Charming. Instead, Prince Charming is trying to invade the beaches of Normandy with his kiss. 

Guys, you only get one shot at the first kiss and your fiancée probably has a preference. Communicate your expectations, and do whatever she's expecting. It's that simple and quick, and to do it her way isn't a big deal. What is a big deal? Stomping on her fantasies.

My wife and I decided that I would cup her face in my hands, and we would kiss for 5 seconds, take a second break, and kiss for another 5 seconds. We did this for the enjoyment of it, but also so that the photographers and videographers would have ample opportunity to get whatever shots or footage they needed. 

Bride and groom cut their wedding cake at Gramercy Mansion in Maryland
"The groom feeds the bride" can lead to "the groom sleeps on the couch."

2. The feeding of the cake

Need I explain? If you both want to kindly feed each other, then kindly feed each other. If you both want to playfully smash the cake into each other's faces, then by all means smash away and laugh. Just don't smear cake when the other doesn't want it. If that isn't common sense, I don't know what is.

I don't know if you've ever been to one of these weddings where the bride didn't want cake to ruin her makeup, but the groom went ahead and squished the cake into her face. The look in her eyes will tell you all you need to know. His first night of marriage will be spent on the couch. 

My wife and I just so happened to be so hot from our outdoor July wedding in Cyprus that we didn't even eat the cake we cut. Even though we agreed beforehand what we would do, when the moment came we just forgot all about it and went on to do that toast with our arms intertwined. 

Bride and groom dance in the courtyard at the carriage house of Gramercy mansion in Maryland
A little practice can go a long way

3. The first dance

Nothing like walking out in front of a crowd of people who know you and doing something you've probably never done before. Yeah, that'll end well.

You'll do a lot better dancing in front of people if you at least sit down together and come up with a basic plan.  Better yet, you can take time to practice or get dancing lessons if you really want to get passionate about it. At the very least, have a plan.

My wife and I were a bit nervous as we walked out onto the dance floor, and we had practiced a little. We made it through the dance by keeping it slow and simple. 

Bride gives her vows to the groom as the officiant recites them at Gramercy mansion in Maryland
Heartfelt vows create heart-binding commitments

4. The vows

When my wife and I got married, we had a traditional religious wedding, and we were asked as to whether or not we wanted to include the word "obey" into her vows. Honestly, the day was such a blur that I can't remember what we had decided, but since all I can control is how I'll serve her, the word didn't really matter to me. Nevertheless, it's good to talk about it and avoid any kind of awkwardness at the altar. 

I like the trend of doing your own vows. A lot of times they can be very moving and funny. My only word of advice would be to not be easy on yourself with self-written vows. Traditional vows may sound extreme, but they're meant to be. You're making a strong and powerful covenant with this person, so put your personality in there for sure, but don't neglect the durable and substantial language of responsibility and commitment from your vows. 

I can't tell you how limp the vows feel when people stand at the altar with friends and family coming near and far just to witness vows promising to walk the dog and do the dishes. 

Groom smiles while standing amidst shrubs and trees at Gramercy mansion in Maryland
Help keep each other from self-sabotaging your wedding day best.

5. Grooming

Finally, I recommend sitting down for a simple conversation about how you want to prepare yourselves for the wedding day. If the bride comes to the altar wondering where her groom is but can't recognize him because he shaved his beard off that morning, it might cause a bit of a stir.

Likewise, if the bride comes to the altar in her strapless wedding dress, but has bold tan lines because she didn't heed her photographer's advice to be careful at the beach and with tanning beds at least 30 days prior to the wedding, it may cause a lifetime of regret.

Ladies and gentlemen, if your wedding attire is not flattering, then get different wedding attire. Photographers can position you to look as flattering as possible, but if you don't even like how you look, what hope do you think the photographer has to take a good picture of you?

Seriously, as a wedding photography couple, we both can tell you that there's only so much Lightroom and Photoshop can do. Actually, there's quite a bit Lightroom and Photoshop can do, but we're not miracle workers nor are we willing to spend over an hour with each photo correcting your tan lines, skin folds, hairy armpits, etc. 

Bride and groom hold hands in the marble gazebo at Gramercy mansion in Maryland
Simple communication can avert many disasters and make stronger bonds

In Conclusion

So sit down, talk to each other and learn to be accountable to one another in the days leading up to your wedding day because your significant other often is looking out for you more than you are. 

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