You’ve said “Yes!” (when to say “no” in wedding planning)

You’ve said the all important “Yes” to your partner, yes to the dress, the venue, the cake… For the sake of your sanity, there are times when you can say no.

Dress appointments

Perhaps you’d like to just shop with your Mum, or your best friend, but people keep adding themselves in. Much as you love them (OK, perhaps you don’t) you don’t have to include them all when you’re dress shopping. The more people there are, the more opinions there are, and the less impact your dress will have on the day.  The more difficult it is to book an appointment that they can all get to. And oh, the stress of keeping them all happy… What you wanted was a special time, just you and the people you wanted to be there. So, say no. Sorry, the shop can only fit three guests. Sorry, I want to keep my dress a surprise for you. Sorry, I couldn’t get an appointment everyone could get to… It doesn’t matter if a little white lie keeps the peace – this is an acceptable ‘no’ situation.


You want your sister and your best friend. Your future sister in law thinks you should ask her, her children, and all the girls from the Friday night club. She thinks you should have pink, because it suits her daughter, but not fresh flowers because of her hay-fever. Oh, and she has to wear really high heels, even though she’s already taller than you. And she’ll plan the hen party, and knows someone who makes cakes…… No. Sorry, I can’t afford more than one bridesmaid. Sorry, I’m a traditional bride and traditionally it was only the bride’s sisters who were bridesmaids. Sorry, if I ask you I have to ask everyone…

Dress fittings

Fittings are all about making sure the dress fits the bride, that her accessories match, that she’s happy. They’re not for giving everyone a full dress rehearsal and side lining the bride. They should also be stress free, but Aunty thinks the train is a waste of time and should be cut off. And what about adding sleeves, you can’t show your shoulders! Isn’t it a bit too tight? It’s a bit revealing… And all the time the little bridesmaids you didn’t want are running riot all over your dress while their Mums ignore you and compare hair styles on their phones. No, sorry, the shop has a one guest policy, I’m simply not able to take you….

You should wear my veil/ tiara/dress

Oooh… Tricky! Do you like it? Does it go? Does it fit? Do you want to wear it….?  Sorry, it’s beautiful but my dress is a different colour. Sorry, my Mum wanted to buy me a tiara, I couldn’t say no. It’s a beautiful necklace but my dress has a high neck, can I wrap your pearls in my hair instead? Thank you, that’s really lovely but I want to buy my own dress so I can pass it to my daughters…

Unwanted advice

Any comment beginning “If it was up to me”, “If it was my wedding”, or “If I was you” is someone choosing for themselves, not for you. They are probably trying to be helpful but they’ve missed the point – it isn’t their decision to make. Smile, say “Thank you, I’ll certainly bear that in mind…”