Listen to Lea Michele talk about what it’s been like to plan her wedding to Zandy Reich, and it quickly becomes clear: She loves cheese. “I’m just not a dessert person,” says the former Glee star. “I have actually explored the idea of having a cheesecake, but made out of cheese. That would be a true dream if I could have an actual cheesecake.”
Unsurprisingly, a Cheese of the Month Club membership was one of the first things the couple added to their registry—and the first thing guests bought for them. While dairy was an easy decision, other aspects of the wedding planning process proved a little harder to nail down.
“The things I didn’t expect to be stressful became the most stressful. I was like, ‘Oh, it will be a breeze to place people at their tables,’ and then six poster boards torn up later, it’s just not that easy,” she says of her table plan.
In a conversation with Jennifer Spector, director of brand for Zola—the one-stop online shop for wedding planning and registry with a new NYC pop-up shop—Michele offered a sneak peek of her registry, dished on the one thing a good guest never does, and shared why she won’t be participating in a choreographed dance at her reception. These are her “I dos” and “I don’ts” of planning, hosting, and attending a wedding.
Do: a cheesy bachelorette party
“We did all the traditional stuff,” says Michele of her recent bachelorette getaway to Hawaii. Every celebratory festivity you’d expect to see in rom-com, they did it. “My friend made cookies that looked like penises. The drinking games were really great. And the matching pajamas.”
Don’t: choreograph a dance
That is if you don’t have the time. “I think it’s super, super cute, but there’s a lot that goes into the wedding planning process. If you have time to choreograph a dance, God bless you. But I think that’s one thing I’d rather not worry about,” she says.
Michele and Reich might not be heading to City Hall at a last moment’s notice, but that doesn’t mean she isn’t swooned by the spontaneity of an elopement. “I think eloping is totally great. It’s an ‘I do.’ Hundred percent ‘I do,’” she laughs.
Don’t: hang by the open bar all night
Michele’s one etiquette rule for guests? “Don’t get wasted, be present, and help if needed,” she says. At a recent friend’s wedding, Michele and fellow artist Darren Criss subbed in for the ceremony band after they canceled due to a rainstorm. “Flexibility, being able to roll with the punches, and offering to help where you can make great guests,” she adds.
Do: plan your registry like you would your home
“I’m very minimal, weirdly,” says Michele of both her home and her wedding style. “I just like everything to be clean and simple, and the same thing [is true] with what I’ve put on my registry. Everyone is like, ‘Please add more stuff to your registry. You only have towels and sheets!’ It’s like: I need towels and sheets! And that’s just what it is.” The wine and cheese club memberships, oh, and the five vacuums that she jokingly added to her list—are thrown in the mix for fun.
Don’t: have all your friends bring their kids
Considering the majority of Michele and Reich’s friends are on their second or third child, the duo is currently in the process of deciding how many little ones they want running around on their big day. “That’s been a really tough part of this process for us. We’re trying not to go too heavy in the kid department, but it’s sort of hard. It definitely goes back to the things [I] didn’t think would be stressful decisions,” she says.
Do: feed your friends via food truck
“I would have a food truck follow me wherever I go,” laughs Michele. “If a grilled cheese truck is listening, call me and come to my wedding.” A grilled cheese truck and a literal cheesecake? Michele makes a serious case for forgoing sit-down dinners.
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