Bridal hindsight really is 20/20. For the majority of people, this is the first time you'll have planned a wedding, so it can be tricky. We chatted with recent bride and best-selling author, Caroline Foran who told us her key wedding tips. We also found out what she learned from the process ond what she'd change, given the chance...

Where: Ballintaggart House, Co. Kerry
When: 7th September, 2018

wedding tips Image by Rafal Borek

What I wish I’d known…

“I wish I'd known that your venue has a completely different feel to it when it's filled with candles and your guests than in the cold light of day. The ambiance you are looking for will come, trust me.”

The one thing I’d change…

“I had day two in my parents' house and, while we had a brilliant time and brought in caterers, it was still a lot of work for them. I would have liked for my parents to have had more time to relax the morning after, which would have meant taking the day two celebrations offsite.”

wedding tips Image by Rafal Borek

A planning mistake I made…

“I was a bit of a disaster with my budget spreadsheets, so I would say a mistake I made was not keeping everything streamlined in one clear document to avoid surprises. When things get messy you miss certain costs. For example, we never factored in the price of our wedding rings to our overall wedding budget. A little bit more discipline with the budget would have been helpful.”

I wish I hadn’t spent big on…

“All of that faux foliage – it wasn't necessary. When you're working with florists as good as The Crate, who go above and beyond to transform your venue into the wild garden of your dreams, you really don't need to buy as much expensive faux foliage as I did. I panicked that I wouldn't have enough and bulk bought a lot from the US that I didn't even use in the end.”

wedding tips Image by Rafal Borek

I wish I’d invested more in…

“There's actually nothing I can think of that would have been improved with more money.”

The thing that surprised me…

“How present, calm and mindful I was on the day itself. It didn't fly by for me, it was a really lovely pace. I also worried that maybe I didn't have enough people going, a few months beforehand – there were lots of acquaintances that I thought would have been nice to have there. But when it came to it, I got to spend quality time with the people I really care about. I didn't have to spend the entire day making small talk with hundreds of guests.”

wedding tips Image by Rafal Borek

My best advice…

“My best advice will always be to take it back to who you are marrying and why you're doing it. Also, focus on what you can control and let go of the rest. Even if it's lashing rain on the day, you'll still have the best time ever. Be open to going with the flow once you've done all of the main bits. You'll enjoy it a lot more.”

You can get your hands on a copy of Owning It and The Confidence Kit for just €15.40 each from easons.com

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wedding tips Image by Rafal Borek

You can see the rest of Caroline and Barry's gorgeous Ballintaggart House wedding here.

Related to 'Wedding Tips': Been There Bride: Jewellery designer Chupi on what she'd do differently