4 Things I Wish I’d Known Before I Got Married {and one thing I’m glad I did}

4 things I wish I'd known before I got married via

1. Choose housing wisely.

Storage space, room to entertain and most of all privacy are three things we didn’t have in our first home. We opted to stay in the one-bedroom apartment that I acquired before we met. The only reason we did so was the price – it was very affordable. However, the apartment was a furnished walk out basement in a family’s home. It wasn’t the worst situation ever, but I think we would have been much happier if we’d moved out and into a traditional apartment. Oh well.

2. Make room for new stuff.

I had no idea how much extra stuff would end up in the apartment – between wedding gifts and Paul’s possessions, we were buried in boxes. I wish I had done a good (and well-thought out, see #4) purge of my belongings and moved more things into storage before the wedding showers – long before Paul moved in.

shower gifts!

3. Register strategically. 

I was completely overwhelmed by the registering process, so my registry was a hit and miss list of mostly entertaining pieces. I wish I had registered for more basic items like pots, pans and baking ware. My sister was a rock star when it came to registering – click here to read her tips for registry success!


4. Don’t be overwhelmed with trying to make room for all the wedding gifts or your spouse’s stuff.

Because we had too much stuff in a small space, I started clearing out my personal belongings like a mad woman. I actually let my landlady sell a lot of my stuff on Amazon (she pocketed all the proceeds, dear lady that she was). I wish I’d taken a few deep breaths and evaluated how much I’d miss those Anthropologie knock off cereal bowls.

If you receive duplicates of basic appliances (iron, hand mixer, food processor, etc.) and have room to store them, think before you return them to BB&B. You’ll be glad you have a backup when those things break and there’s no room in your newlywed budget to replace them!


And the one thing I’m glad I knew:
5. Focus on your marriage more than your wedding.

Because that’s what is most important!

honeymooners in gatlinburg

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11 thoughts on “4 Things I Wish I’d Known Before I Got Married {and one thing I’m glad I did}

  1. So many great tips!! And popped up so many memories of those fun, early days! 🙂 You’re right – I don’t think you’re prepared for the amount of stuff that comes with combining two lives for the first time. The need to purge is real! And there was definitely a time in those first two years where I wished I had saved that extra blender! Love that tip!

    But so agree – wedding is for a day. Marriage is a lifetime!! Preparing for marriage shouldn’t be taken lightly!!

    Katie @ Cup of Tea


  2. Great tips!! We ended up putting a lot in storage right after our wedding and moving across the country. Ten years later I was THRILLED to finally get to use our precious wedding gifts and special items that had been stored for so long. I like your tips about the registries. I went the opposite direction and was very practical about what I registered for. Thankfully, my friends and family surprised me with fun serving pieces and other unique gifts that I didn’t think to ask for. You end on the best note – focus on your marriage more than your wedding. Amen!!


  3. We also lived in a basement apartment when we were first married. We needed temporary housing before moving in six months so we took what we could find. And believe it or not, neither of us had a lot of STUFF back then. It is amazing what we can accumulate over the years. I agree with all of your advice on this post Whitney, especially to focus on your marriage and not things!!


    1. Thanks, Arlene. Paul and I got married after living on our own for several years, so combining two apartments into one small space was a challenge! It seems like most people have a good story about their first home together – that’s just part of life. 🙂


  4. We had a tiny apartment when we first got married bc we were still in college and living in married student housing. I made the same mistake of returning or giving away A LOT of wedding gifts that I have regretted ever since. I wish I would had just found creative storage solutions, but my desire for space sent me on a purging quest one day that had me sending piles of things to friends and Goodwill. Oh well, live and learn :-). Great tips!


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