What to do after the wedding

You’ve popped the bubbles, cut the cake and danced the night away – now what? Our newlywed to-do list will help you dive straight into life after the big day.

  • Story by Emma Lawrence & Photo Lavara O'Hanlon

You’ve popped the bubbles, cut the cake and danced the night away – now what? Here is a sneak peek into the first five points of our newlywed to-do-list to make your life easier once the wedding is all over. See our latest issue for the rest of our list so that you can dive straight into life after the big day!

1. Start making plans
If you experience a case of the post-wedding blues, you’re not alone. After months of planning for the one day when it’s all about you, it’s over in 24 hours – and this reality check can cause an emotional hangover that’s tough to shake. But while the sun may have set on your wedding day, it has also risen on your new life, and all the exciting things that lie ahead for you both as husband and wife. Plan a get-together with friends to swap photos and relive your favourite moments of the day. Then it’s time to move on and focus on your next big milestone, whether it’s buying a house, starting a family or planning your next overseas trip.

2. Pay the bills
Make sure all outstanding accounts with your wedding vendors are settled on time. Check your invoices against the quotes you were given and query any extra charges you were not made aware of. A handwritten thank-you note is a lovely gesture of appreciation for all the hard work your vendors put into your wedding. They also love to see photos from couples they’ve worked with, so email them a selection that reflects what they’ve contributed.

3. Collect your gifts
One of the most fun things to do after your big day is to open your cards and pressies, and revel in the love from those who wish you well. Set aside a solid chunk of time when you and your husband can open your gifts together. A keepsake box makes a perfect home for wedding cards. Be sure to make a list of who gave you each present, so you can personally thank each of your guests.

4. Say thank you
Send handwritten thank-you cards within three months of your wedding. It can seem like a chore, but treat it as an opportunity to reflect on your day and all the wonderful people you spent it with. Thank-you notes are from both of you, so share the load and create personal, heartfelt messages.

5. Store or reuse
Get your wedding dress cleaned by a reputable drycleaner as soon as possible after the wedding. Wrap it in acid-free tissue paper and pack away in a cool, dry place. If selling your gown, list it on a website such as TradeMe. Alternatively, book a fun photo session or have a tailor modify your dress into fashion pieces that you can wear again. Incorporate other elements of the wedding into your everyday life: use lace or trim from your linens to embellish pillows, or decorate the house with candles from the event. Bridal bouquets take on another life once dried and displayed in a stunning vase or box frame.

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