Celebrity-Worthy Wedding Ideas from Mindy Weiss

Top planner Mindy Weiss weighs in on big trends, celeb style and reveals how to make your own wedding shine like a star's.

Heidi Klum and Seal, Katy Perry and Russell Brand, Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale, Hilary Duff and Mike Comrie. These are just a few of the boldface names who have called upon uber-planner Mindy Weiss for their nuptials. “I’m humble pie!” Mindy tells us. Now she’s sharing her celeb-tested spreadsheets, checklists and timelines in her new book, The Wedding Planner & Organizer. Here, she imparts some of her signature wedding-planning wisdom.

Top Celeb Weding Trends

• Classic luxe is coming back in a big way, Mindy says. “Think pure white weddings, tuxes and fabulous vintage automobiles.”

• Couples are putting their personal food faves in the culinary spotlight: “Monica and Shannon Brown brought in Fatburger to grill burgers for a late-night snack and Nicole Richie and Joel Madden centered their second course around their beloved butternut squash.”

• Receptions are becoming more guest-interactive. “We’re doing game stations,
photo booths and “living” guestbooks on video so friends and family can be even
more involved in the day!”

Lanterns, blooms and flickering candles at Hilary Duff's wedding. Photo Credit: Simone and Martin Photography

Starworthy Style for Less

“For Hilary Duff’s wedding we brought in natural wood furniture, flowers galore, gorgeous hanging lanterns and candles everywhere!” Any bride can achieve the same look by scouring local thrift stores and antique shops for vintage pieces, Mindy says. And don’t be afraid to mix and match wooden tables and chairs—you can use white linen cloths and runners for a stunningly clean look that pulls everything together. “Floral treatments on napkins, lots of flickering votive candles, white- and-blush-toned centerpieces…all add up to that classic, rustic look.”

Crunching the Numbers

Even celebrity weddings have to toe the bottom line. “Successful planning starts with the budget,” Mindy counsels. “Know from the beginning how much you want to spend and what your ‘must-have’ items are—and know what areas you’re OK with cutting back on. Don’t keep spending over the budget, thinking you will find the money somewhere! The closer you end up to your initial budget, the less stress you’ll have during and after the wedding.” That said, Mindy advises building a 10 percent “splurge cushion” into your overall budget to offset any unexpected or last-minute purchases.

At the Top of the Checklist

Be they celebrity or civilian brides-to-be, the one thing most of them forget when planning their weddings? “Their sense of humor,” Mindy says. “I have to remind all my brides to keep their sense of humor intact during the planning process. And I always tell my brides to take it slowly. It’s not as if the whole wedding has to be planned the first week they become engaged!”

Star-Quality Tips from Mindy’s Book

Food: Not all weddings have to be elaborate, five-course affairs. If you have budget concerns, a cocktail reception with platters of crudités can be just as satisfying and elegant. Or consider a breakfast, brunch or lunch wedding with mimosas, Bloody Marys and Bellinis.

Flowers: To avoid skyrocketing costs, be flexible about your flowers. Forces of nature, labor issues, transportation snafus may all affect availability. Let your florist know what’s most important to you, whether that’s a particular hue, texture or style, and you should be in good hands.

Happily Ever After: It’s not uncommon to feel some post-wedding blues. Once the festivities are over, it can feel like something’s missing. But the end of a wedding means one important thing: The beginning of a marriage.

Mindy answers your 10 most pressing wedding-planning questions!