My newly-engaged sister recently asked whether there was anything I was adamant she should or shouldn’t do on the day of her wedding. My answers came quickly:
First, if at all possible, find a small enclave or room where you and your new spouse can retreat just before you are announced at the reception. Our reception was at my parents’ country club and the coordinator had set aside a small private room with a few trays of hors d’oeuvres and our respective favorite cocktails, and I still remember those ten minutes of alone time with my new husband more crisply and emotively than nearly anything else from the entire extravaganza. It was so beautiful to just sit with him and drink the entire day in together before celebrating with everyone else. I was radiating with nerves and joy the entire day but those ten minutes were food for the soul. I’ll never forget them. A golden memory for sure.
The second, more pragmatic advice: it’s a good idea to have food arranged while you’re getting ready and possibly for after the reception. The actual wedding itself is such a blur and I am so glad in retrospect my mother had the foresight to organize a catered lunch at our house beforehand and a basket of food sent to our hotel room after. I remember laying on my stomach eating ham biscuits from that basket while Mr. Magpie unbuttoned about 3,000 tiny covered buttons. Ha!
Finally, if, in spite of whatever snafus and mix-ups are thrown your way, you walk down the aisle and say “I do,” the day is a success. Bear that in mind when the inevitable mishap befalls. In my case, our cantor did not show up and I decided literally seconds before walking down the aisle that I did not like my blusher as I bawled on my father’s shoulder. It felt like chaos for a second there (and I recognize that these items are ultra-trivial compared to those of others — i.e., I once attended a wedding where the bus driver with the groom and groomsman got horribly lost and took them on an hour-long detour — meaning the wedding started close to 1.5 hours late), but, at the end of the day, I married my man. The rest are details.
One thing I’ve noticed in soliciting questions for my Magpie Mail series is that there are nearly always questions from brides-to-be about shoes, day-of details, and outfit options for wedding-related festivities. And this blog is rather expansive and text-dense to navigate if you’re looking for something specific like that, especially as my thoughts on the matter might be scattered across a few dozen posts over the course of the past ten years (yes, ten! I will have been writing this blog for ten years in 2020!). I’m putting together a suite of my favorite finds for brides to be here and will be updating it as I find additional items to share.
A few items I will call out:
+While I tend to be highly impractical when it comes to footwear, these LRs are beautiful and practical, especially if your celebration is outdoors (no spindly heel to contend with!) However, if you do go the impractical footwear route, consider these heel protectors!
+I prefer Fiji nail polish for formal occasions because it has a little more white in it than Ballet Slippers and therefore looks — to me — a little more “done.”
+These pearl earrings are absolutely stunning — and a lot less expensive than you’d think.
+A dress label is the easiest way to get your something blue! Plus, such an elegant way to commemorate the day.
+I kept all my notes in a little Smythson journal. Perfect gift for a friend tying the knot!
+I bought these gorgeous satin bow slides just last year (!) but they would have been a perfect option for a lowkey bride or to slip into at the reception. Available now gently used at RealReal in a few sizes.