What Makes a Good Wedding—Use These Wedding Ideas for Your Big Day

The big day is on the horizon. You have heard stories from family and friends about the best weddings they have been to. You and your partner want to give your family and friends the same type of experience but are stumped on how do you do that? What exactly makes a “good wedding” a good wedding?

For questions such as these leave it to Reddit. Redditors reveal the “best wedding” they have been to and explain what made them the best. Read on to learn to find out what they are plus what wedding ideas you can incorporate to make your wedding a “best wedding.”

Wedding Ideas #1. It Is About the People You Invite

“Actually knowing the couple. I find that if I’m not too close with the couple then I’m just there as a formality. But if I know the couple well, regardless of the level of quality in each [wedding], I have had a great time. Your party is only as good as the people enjoying it…if you invited too many people that were just out of “consideration” then there’s a higher chance of it [not being as good].”

Put simply, the people you invite matter. Yes, it is considerate to invite your new coworker or your next door neighbor you shoot the breeze with once in a while. But you may be doing them a disservice if you invite them out of obligation.

They may like you but, at the same time, they don’t know you that well. Which may make attending the wedding an obligation on their part too. Think twice about who you choose to invite and ask yourself if you are inviting this person out of obligation or because they have played a large part in your life.

Wedding Ideas #2. Be Yourselves

“What makes a wedding stick out for me is when it incorporates the couple’s hobbies, interests, and just who they are. The best wedding I’ve been to was obviously low budget, but it incorporated the (rather quirky) personalities of the couple just perfectly…[T]he bride had just gotten her degree in chemistry, so the centerpieces used chemistry glassware instead of vases…”

Long story short, it pays off to be yourselves. If you and your partner love The Big Bang Theory, why not have a Big Bang Theory themed wedding? Or perhaps you both cannot get enough of the surfing. In which case, it only makes sense to have a beach wedding.

If you cannot have a wedding at the beach, consider incorporating wedding ideas—such as mermaid centerpieces or sticking some seashells in your wedding invitations—that relate to the beach.

At the end of the day, the purpose of a wedding is to celebrate you and your partner’s love for one another. Part of that is being able to show off your individual and unique personalities.

Wedding Ideas #3. Your Wedding May Be Remembered for Its Food

“Good food. It’s usually [the] most expensive part of the wedding, but I think people should try to save money on other things and get the best food with their budget. I don’t have an opinion on nice centerpieces or how much the wedding dress costs, but I always remember which weddings had good or bad food.”

What can we say, good food is good food. Which is all the more reason to make sure you have it at your wedding. Often times, couples will go with whatever food the hotel is offering.

Yes, this may be good food…and it also could not be. Instead of going with your standard chicken parmesan and wild rice, why not consider a high-quality menu that will go with your wedding theme?

Read online reviews and talk with family and friends to see if the catering has been top quality in the past. And, don’t be afraid to ask to try some of the food. As the Redditor mentioned, a large part of your wedding budget does go towards food. Why not make sure it is high quality, fresh food you and your wedding guests will love.

Wedding Ideas #4. Don’t Forget About the Little Details

“We put so much effort into our wedding, so many little details…and there were lots of lovely comments about everything… But apparently the thing that was the most favorite…was the photo booth…We also had our wedding book there for people to put pictures in, so they could sign next to their picture…It was loved by so many though, there was a bigger queue for that than there was a the bar…”

It isn’t always about the expensive wedding dress or the to-die-for DIY centerpieces. Sometimes, it is just that one small decoration or add-on that makes all the difference. That being said, as far as wedding ideas go, aim small, not big.

Maybe it is recommending a playlist to the DJ that you know your guests will love? Or perhaps it is giving your guests home baked cookies as their wedding treat?

You can always combine this with Tip #2 and add that extra personality touch—perhaps Star Trek cookies?

Wedding Ideas #5. Don’t’ Sweat the Small Stuff

“[T]he best [wedding] I ever went to was in a blizzard…The bride and groom were lucky to hold the ceremony…The reception involved us [driving] with the groom’s parents after stopping at Safeway and buying the last cases of PBR and Beast. Why did it rock? Because in the end, we all laughed about it, gathered around the fireplace and just told stories. The only people crazy enough to make it were the ones super close to the couple, so it made for a good night.”

What this Redditor’s story shows is that you do not have to go for that huge wedding on the top of a hotel. Like we said with Tip #1, it is about who you invite that matters. While it helps to have a Plan B in case something happens, know that in the end you most likely will still have a good time. So, long story short, don’t sweat the small stuff.

Wedding Ideas #6. Atmosphere Plays a Big Part Too

“The atmosphere. The only person I knew there was my boyfriend and yet it was the most fun I’ve had a t a wedding. It was a Brazilian wedding and the bride was a dancer so they had lots of dancing and props (boas, funny glasses, party blowers, confetti, etc.). Everyone, old and young was on the dancefloor all night dancing to this festive South American music. So much fun!”

What needs to be said is it is not the location that makes a difference, but how you use it. Yes, you can have a beach wedding.

But if all the guests do is sit around and eat, you are not getting the most out of it. This is when it helps to ask about dance floors and music when you check out wedding venues.

In doing so, you can better assess how the space will affect the atmosphere of your wedding. Know that even having a tight budget, a little music, a dance floor, and party favors can go a long way. Keep this in mind when thinking abuot wedding ideas.

Wedding Ideas #7. Don’t Resort to Checking Off a “Wedding List” Simply Because You Feel You Have To

“I’ve never liked wedding that feel like the bridal couple is obediently running down the Official Checklist of Things You Have to Do at Your Wedding. Do some stuff that‘s uniquely yours, toss the stuff that you don’t care about.”

It is as simple as that. Often times, when couples plan for their wedding, it can get easy to feeling like you have to keep up with the Jone’s. Most likely, this will backfire and could end up being a “forced” wedding, where you are doing certain wedding traditions simply because they are traditions and you feel like you need to do them.

The truth is, this is your wedding, your special day. That means, while you do want to accommodate your guests and ensure they have a good time, you want to carry out certain traditions because you want to.

This may mean walking down the aisle but having Mom and Dad walk you down. Or, it would be having the first dance but then going from formal ballroom to casual dance routine.

Wedding Ideas #8. Destination Weddings Are Great for Many Reasons Than Just the Wedding

“Many of my best wedding memories aren’t from the weddings themselves, but at weddings where we traveled somewhere and stayed a day or two. It was the time we got to spend with family preceding the wedding that was the best. Some had board game nights, bowling, site seeing, football nights, or sitting around a bonfire.”

If you do decide on having a destination wedding, be sure to add an extra day or two for guests to arrive a leave before and after your big day. Remember, destination weddings are great for two reasons. For one, you are celebrating your special day. And two, you get to have a vacation too, and explore what the location has to offer.

As far as wedding ideas go, as the Redditor stated, make this destination wedding about family and friends spending quality time together. Arrange ahead of time activities you and your loved ones can do together that will make this time extra special.

In doing this, your family and friends will look back at your wedding remember not just the amazing time you had on your big day but the memories coming before and following after.

Wedding Ideas #9. Use Your Time Wisely

“First is always the food and available drinks, but other than it is time management: The ceremony does not need to be over an hour and the wait between wedding and reception should not be over two hours. I would say one hour or less would be ideal for both. I have been to two hour long ceremonies and most of the guests were [angry]; you could hear audible anguished sighs throughout the ceremony.”

Time management is something you can’t take lightly. Your guests may be taking off work or have rescheduled important events to attend your wedding. This means honoring their time (as well as yours) and make sure your wedding is running smoothly.

This is where it doesn’t hurt to enlist the help of a wedding planner or, if you are on a tight budget, get the help of a very organized friend. Run through the events of your big day, starting with the ceremony and then transitioning to the reception.

How long did the ceremony take? How far is the ceremony location from the reception location? How long will it take for the food to be served and guests seated? In a nutshell, start thinking about these types of logistics well in advance; your guests will thank you.

As a rule of thumb, try to choose a reception venue that is at most an hour away from your ceremony. However, the less travel time there is, the better. (Speaking of reception venues, consider reading “6 Common Wedding Reception and Ceremony Fears (and How You Can Master the Situation Should They Happen).”)

Wedding Ideas #10. Know Your Vendors

“I think the best weddings have a personal connection with as many of the vendors as possible. I love hearing how the couple personally knew the photographer, the musicians, the cake decorator, the officiant.  Although this can go terribly wrong if you just hired a bunch of amateurs. If you know professionals in your network, though, you can get great deal and a more personal experience.”

As the Redditor states, knowing your vendors will create a more personal wedding. Yet, at the same time, you may want to think twice about doing your friends any favors if they are amateurs. While we support the comraderies, remember, this is your wedding.

You have every right to not want your friend who just started getting into the baking industry to have her first cake be yours.

This is why we recommend mixing up the vendors. If you have friends who are in the music, photography, and flower industries, great; but if you don’t have a wedding planning contact, it may be best to hire a wedding planner instead of turning to your best friend to take the reins.

Wedding Ideas #11. Everything Adds Up to a Good Time, And It Doesn’t Hurt to Have Fun

“I think it was a combination of a lot of things. The food was excellent (and served family style for each table, so you could choose your portions, the drinker weren’t watered down, the DJ was good… and the bride and groom were having fun. I think the liquor helped them loosen up, but seeing the bride and groom actually enjoying themselves, taking silly pictures in the photo booth and dancing like crazy on the dance floor, really helped set the mood.”

This Redditor is right. Yes, the food, music, and drinks can help make everyone have a good time. But if the groom and bride are not enjoying themselves, it may make the guests uncomfortable and the mood a bit stifled.

Remember, you and your partner set the tone of the wedding—no matter how big your budget is or how many balloons you have. If you are having fun, know that your guests most likely are having a good time too.

Yes, be considerate and a good host by visiting all of the tables and interacting with your guests. But at the end of the day indulge in your wedding day and be selfish; dance on the dance floor, eat as much wedding cake as you like, and take as many funny photos as your heart desires.

Wedding Ideas #12. At the End of The Day, It Is About the Love

“The love. I was a guest at my father’s wedding a few years ago, and the most memorable thing to me was how happy and in love he was…The same could be said about a lot of the wedding I have attended. They are so full of love and support. The outpouring of emotions from everyone that day is incredibly uplifting and wonderful to be surrounded by and a part of.”

This Redditor sums up what weddings are all about: celebrating the love you and your partner share for one another.

This is the day where you get to tell everyone—all of your friends and family members—how much you love one another and can’t wait to spend the rest of your lives together. Essentially, this is one of the best days of your life, and is worth treasuring.

Even if you don’t have a huge budget, wasn’t able to book your top wedding venue, or one of your vendors ran late, none of that matters. What matters is being a part of the love and joy of this day. If your guests can see how happy and in love you and your partner is, your guests will enjoy your wedding. While we can recommend all of the wedding ideas in the world, this perhaps is the top one.

Wedding Ideas: Final Thoughts

Weddings are meant to be fun, enjoyable, and memorable experiences. While a dose of time management and planning comes in handy, don’t sweat the details.

As long as you pay attention to what you and your partner want in a wedding, all will work out. What other wedding tips do you have to offer? Do you Reddit was right? Be sure to leave a comment in the comments section below.

Wedding Tips: Summary

  • Don’t invite people out of obligation; invite them because you want them to be there
  • While you may think you are doing a kind deed, the other party may go to your wedding out of obligation as well
  • Be yourselves, and let your wedding show off your unique personalities
  • You don’t have to do wedding traditions simply because you have to; in fact, more than likely this will show
  • It is about the food; you may want to add some room in your budget to make sure you serve high-quality, delicious food at your wedding
  • Don’t forget the details but don’t sweat the small stuff, at the same time
  • Spice up a location by having a dance floor, good music, and party favors
  • Plan a couple days before and after your destination wedding so friends and family can do activities together
  • While having personal connections with vendors is a plus, don’t compensate by going the amateur than profession route
  • Don’t be afraid to be selfish and have fun
  • Yes, mingle with the guests but still manage to get out on the dance floor, take silly selfies, and have a good time
  • If your guests can see you and your partner having a good time, then they will too
  • Show off the love and happiness you and your partner have for one another
  • At the end of the day this is what matters at a wedding, and is the top wedding tip to take away

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