1. Keep the table decorations simple
Do I need to say more here? Crowded tables make busy photographs and somewhere along the line, everything gets lost in translation.
2. Keep the toasts simple. And short. And funny. Not potty-mouth and private-joke funny... just funny.
3. Keep the ceremony simple. Say what you wanna say, jump over the broom, smash the glass, fill the sand jars, and light the unity candle, but not all of the above.
4. Keep the crowd involved. How about asking the guests to join the solist on the chorus of a familiar hymn? How about asking all the guests to gather for a group picture? How about a wedding packet as they arrive? This could include; Your story, favors, a time-line for the rest of day, directions for the guestbook, small map of venue, mini flashlights to get to their cars later in the evening.
5. Keep them dancing. Don't rush the first dance, but once you get them on the dance floor, keep them there. The music is key here, folks, not the DJ and "chicken dance" requests. You snooze on the dance mix, you loose.
6. Make it your day! After all, it's your day. Use your personalites to create your theme, and throw in some surprises, here and there. Once you've thought of a great idea, don't tell everyone what you're doing (except the photographer & videographer), let the day unfold and embrace everything. Remember, it's YOUR day.
7. Figure out what you want people to say about your wedding when it's all said and done. Go with that.
8. If you don't want a receiving line, when the ceremony ends, you have to get outta dodge at the end of the aisle, or voila, you'll have a receiving line.
9. OK and here it is for the umpteenth time. Have a "first look" with just wedding couple and the photographer/videographer. If you don't see each other until ceremony time, 1/2 of your wedding day is over, and you only get one day. Remember in Bridges of Madison County, when the photographer, Clint Eastwood was trying to capture the covered bridges at dawn and dusk? If you don't want to be ready at dawn (I've seriously thought about asking couples to meet me in the morning mist---ahhhhhhhh---I'd shoot that wedding for free), then you'll for sure want some dusk shots.
10. Keep it simple, with a twist of personality, and a side of creativity ... and then simply, keep it.