Diffusing Wedding Disasters Before They Happen

The saying "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" is doubly correct in the world of wedding woes. On the day of your nuptials, many things will be out of your control, but keeping these four common disasters in check is easy if you just do a little pre-planning.   So, what should a frantic bride do if...   You're Worried About Long Speeches: The best thing you can do is limit the amount of time set aside of speeches. Tell whoever is giving a speech how much time they should allot for it. During your pre-wedding meeting with the person who will run the show on your big day (probably the DJ), relay that time allotment to them and provide a list of scheduled speakers. To avoid an hour's worth of mic-passing, have a time at your rehearsal dinner for extended speeches from the rest of the bridal party.   You're Fearing Drunken Relatives: If you're having a heart attack just thinking about your brother getting near an open bar, think about letting your venue know about your concerns. They should be cutting someone off if they don't look like they can handle any more alcohol, but give them permission to deny anyone who gets a little too rowdy. If you don't want to single any one guest out, plan to have an open bar only when food is available, and close everything up a few hours before guests leave. If you don't think any amount of limiting will solve your family's wine and beer enthusiasm, there's no harm in a dry reception! You're Worried About the Punctuality of Vendors (and Others): If your main concern is that the caterer won't show up in time for cocktail hour, or that your perpetually-late fiancé will waltz down the aisle 30 minutes after the music starts, your best bet is communication and a timeline. As for your vendors, ensure the punctual arrival of your flowers and other goodies by keeping lines of communication open up until the day-of. Make sure your caterer is 100% sure of the wedding timeline, and don't be afraid to go over it more than once. Account for travel time, travel time with traffic, and as many things that could possibly go wrong as possible. Write everything out, including times you want people in places (not just when they have to be there), and make sure everyone gets a copy of the timeline that needs one.   You're Fearing Family Fights:
To avoid explosive arguments between factions of your social group that seem to be brewing already, your best friend is the seating chart. If you aren't planning on having a seating chart, make one anyway. You have control over the mood and air of your reception space; use that control while you have it. If your best friend hates his ex-wife, but they're both a big part of your life, take fate out of the equation and seat them far, far away from one another.