So it has finally happened to you – you’re engaged! You’ve told the proposal story to everyone who would listen and have shown them your ring too. But now that the excitement is starting to wear off, you’re starting to realize one thing...you actually have to start planning a wedding.
You’ve been to a many weddings and may have been a bridesmaid a time or two, but do you know where to start with planning your big day? If not, I’m here to help.
Step #1 – Money, Money, Money
Set a budget. Point blank, period, the END! Or should I say...the beginning. I get so many brides that come to me and say, “I don’t really have a budget.” And by the end of the planning process, they’re not sure where their final payments are going to come from. Sit down with all of your wedding investors - you and your fiancé, parents, family members, and anyone else willing to contribute to your wedding. It’s going to be a hard conversation, but find out how much they’re going to give. Add it all together and you have a wedding budget.
Budgets are important in helping you figure out what style of wedding you are going to have. It gives you direction when looking for vendors and it determines how may people be able to attend.
Step #2 – Mark your calendars
This one should be pretty easy right?! Well, maybe. The easiest way to set your date is to choose 2-3 dates to have your wedding. Then ask yourself a couple of questions:
What time of year is it? What’s going on in the family or in town?
If you are big sports fans, what’s going on in football or basketball season?
Is anyone I know already getting married on those dates?
Pick your top choice and then start shopping around for venues. If the venue you want isn’t available, you’ll already have 2 alternate dates to choose from.
Step #3 – Make a list and check it twice!
A guest list that is... After steps 1 & 2, you can now start deciding who will make the list. In an ideal world, with unlimited budgets you can invite everyone you’ve ever known to your wedding. But, in reality, most wedding budgets don’t allow that. Not everyone will make the list. Think about it this way – The more people you invite to your wedding, the more money you will have to spend. So starting your guest list and knowing your absolute maximum guest count is very important.
So there you have steps 1-3. I have to say that every wedding is different and planning process is different. Start with these tips and you'll have a great foundation for an organized wedding planning experience. I have so many other steps to share, so I'll be back with more in my next post. Until then,