Attention to details can make all the difference

An old saying goes “the devil is in the details.” Your wedding should be a little bit of heaven on earth, not a slice of life from down below. You can help make that happen by watching the details that sometimes slip by in the frenzy of planning the wedding.

Here are some suggestions from, a “real life” advice page that includes numerous articles on every aspect of wedding planning:

If you want to announce your wedding in the local newspapers, there are a few things to keep in mind:

• Ask if there is a form for you to fill out.

• Type or print your information neatly.

• Be sure to give information such as your wedding date, wedding location, the bride’s maiden name, your parents’ names and where they live, and where you will live when you are married.

• If the announcement can be lengthy you might include the names of your bridesmaids and their cities of residence.

• Include your honeymoon destination.

• Add information such as where you each grew up, where you went to school (college or high school) and place of employment or business.

• Be sure to include your contact information.

• Ask the paper what kind of photograph they prefer, and be sure to write your name and address on the back.

Make sure you’re prepared for emergencies on your big day. Brides should bring along a purse or bag containing items such as Band-Aids, clear nail polish, needle and thread, aspirin, an extra pair of hose and other things that might come in helpful in a minor emergency.

When you feel unnerved by planning your wedding, try sitting down with a glass of something good to drink and some soft music. Put your feet up and just relax. Close your eyes and clear your mind. Just thinking about nothing can be the best stress-reducer you can find.

For dinner extras try adding one of the following touches:

• Have waiters circulate during dinner to offer grated Parmesan or Romano cheese or ground pepper.

• Have a cappuccino/espresso bar.

• Have a sundae bar, cotton candy machine or theater-style popcorn popper.

• Have waiters hand out glasses of champagne to guests as they arrive.

A well-fed band is a happy band. Ask your caterer or catering hall to set up a simple cold buffet for the band (sandwiches, salads and cold drinks) accessible to them all night. They won’t be at the mercy of the kitchen, and your guests are not at the mercy of the band’s stomachs. It should cost you less than feeding them an entire wedding meal. (They should be playing, anyhow.)

Don’t have a cash bar. Cash bars are not only controversial, but etiquette experts say they’re plain tacky. Inviting people to your wedding and then asking them to pay for their drinks is not polite.

(If you can’t afford an open bar, have a limited selection of alcohol instead. If you can’t afford that, then consider nixing the alcohol altogether.)

A good compromise is a “limited bar.” This is an excellent option for alcohol: Guests don’t have to pay for their own drinks, and you don’t end up with a huge bill. You decide beforehand which beverages you’re going to serve (usually a mix of wine, beer and maybe mixed drinks), and then have the bar open only during certain times, such as during the toasts and for an hour or so after dinner.

If you have a very busy job or a very short time in which to plan your wedding, or if you’re getting married out of town, you may want to consider hiring a professional wedding consultant. A consultant can help alleviate the headaches of phone calls and take care of other details you can’t.

If you work full-time and are planning your wedding, use your breaks to make calls to vendors, update your wedding calendar or address a few invitations.