They asked. You said yes! Congratulations, you are officially engaged!! Welcome to the whirlwind that is wedding planning! What was one of the first things you did? Jump on the Internet and Google wedding planning? Yikes... I bet you felt just a little overwhelmed (or maybe a LOT overwhelmed). There’s a LOT of information out there- and it’s easy to be bowled over by it. It totally doesn’t need to be that way. Here’s a guide on the first five things you need to do:
1) First, Announce in style! Looking for a different way to announce your engagement? Check out these 3 unique ideas!
- After the requisite calls to parents and immediate family, use your phone to record an announcement video, and make it viral on YouTube. Vine or even Periscope it!
- Host a huge Google Hangout and announce it face to face! That way, your family and friends can see your glowing faces as you spill.
- Put together a dinner party, and just before dinner is served, make the announcement! Or if you can stand it, wait until after dessert!
2) Second, be boring- Discuss the non-fun stuff first. I know you want to get to the gowns and flowers and stuff, but hold on one second- before you start dreaming massive dreams, sit down with your other half and get down to brass tacks. There are things you MUST discuss before moving forward with the planning:
- Your budget
- Your guest list
- Your priorities
Why? Well these three items are intricately connected to each other and to the ultimate vision for your day. Your budget determines how much is available to spend (obviously), and your guest list determines what you can spend per person. Your top priority will determine what category gets the most money allocated. When you’ve found the ultimate balance between the 3, then you can move ahead. It will save you a ton of headaches and heartaches down the road. Use our Quick and Dirty Guest List Template to get started!
3) Third - Get your vision straight. What kind of wedding are you looking to have? Your discussion of guest list, budget and priorities have probably helped narrow down a few things, and now you can start thinking about style. First, pick a date. The season can really shape your wedding style. Hop on Pinterest and visit a few wedding blogs - look for gorgeous images that speak to you - think colors, textures, themes, ideas, gowns you love, dresses for the bridesmaids, flowers, favor ideas, etc. You'll probably find yourself drawn to the same kind of look over time. As you do this, a look will start to form in your mind and you can start making choices as far as what venues and vendors fit your style, and what wedding items to invest in.
4) Get a plan in order. Once you've set a date, and gotten an idea of your numbers (guest list, budget and priorities), your wedding style, you can start with your plan. Grab a wedding day countdown or checklist- we have one here. Some are more comprehensive than others, so always look for one that suits your planning style best. Don't be afraid to custom make your own. Or, if you've hired a planner, they can do that for you- then have one that will take you all the way up to your day without missing a beat.
5) Finally, just be engaged! The first few months of wedding planning can be a whirlwind, and it's important to take a step back and remember why you're doing it all in the first place! Put the tablet away, hide the bridal magazines under the sofa, and spend some time with that awesome fiance of yours. Just be together- hold hands, go for a walk, do something fun, or just sit and talk. The wedding can wait- these little things are the gold a solid marriage is made of.
**This article is an update of one we published wayyyy back in 2011!