I was never one of those little girls who played "Pretend Wedding" with a pillow case veil and Ring Pop on my finger. What can I say? I just never cared about all the little details that would eventually create my dream nuptials.
Related: The Best Bridal Hairstyles Right Now
And then I got engaged … and found Pinterest.
There is something so addictive about scrolling through hundreds of inspiring images, from starfish-adorned cupcakes to peony bouquets in mason jars. I quickly found myself creating multiple boards for wedding-related pins -- dresses, hairstyles, makeup, floral arrangements, you name it, I was pinning it.
Related: How to Look Amazing in Every Photo
I had an online scrapbook of inspiration photos so massive and overwhelming, I practically broke out in hives every time I logged on. How was I going to sort through all of the images to find the winners? What was I going to be able to pull off -- and what was better left in my virtual scrapbook?
In the end, my wedding turned out pretty amazing if I do say so myself -- and my slight (OK, total) obsession with Pinterest turned out to help my planning a lot. But I did learn a few dos and don'ts along the way. Here's my wedding flipbook … and the crucial wedding-planning Pinterest do's and don'ts I discovered.
If you've just started planning -- and have no idea what you want -- just start pinning any and all pictures (wedding-related or not) that you're drawn to. Then, look through them for common themes. It'll help you dial in to your perfect makeup, hair, colors, and even your location. I promise.
Unless you're uber-crafty, you'll drive yourself nuts trying to DIY that elaborate floral arrangement in the painted mason jar. Choose one or two projects you really love (for me it was these chalkboard table names) and skip the rest.
After looking at birdcage veils and mustache photo booth pictures for weeks, you might feel like having any of these "trendy" things at your wedding will make you look like a copycat. But here's the thing: your guests aren't obsessing over these pins like you are, so almost everything you "borrow" will be brand new to them.
Beachy waves or sleek straight hair look gorgeous on models in wedding photo shoots, but after hours of partying, dancing, and posing for your own photos, your perfect, face-framing curls will be limp and stick-straight. You don't have to wear some stiff updo, but at least plan on some of your hair being away from your face.
Related: The Best DIY Wedding Hair Guide
They say to never try on a dress outside of your budget, but that doesn't mean you can't look at photos of them for inspiration. They're good to have on hand when you hit the bridal salon, so you can show the salesperson what you like. And you can always check out sites like preownedweddingdresses.com or oncewed.com for designer dresses (often ones that have never even been worn) for cheap.
Peonies are beautiful, but they're also seriously expensive. So use Pinterest to find examples of cheaper, but still pretty, bouquets and centerpieces and bring those pics to your florist. Doing a little research on flower pricing also helps, because there's almost always a bargain alternative to a pricey bloom.
And one more don't -- a really, really important don't:
Don't: Show your Pinterest boards to your fiancé
Sure, your groom should help with the wedding planning. But showing him your jumble of boards filled with thousands of wedding images may have him wondering what happened to the cool, laid-back chick he proposed to. Heck, your Pinterest boards are probably making you wonder what happened to her, too. Trust me, just show him individual pictures of the stuff you really love.
More from Total Beauty: