Stop, and Enjoy the Moment
Before you jump into wedding planning, stop and take a moment to bask in and savor your newly engaged status! In other words, this is a huge milestone in your lives, so take the time to really celebrate your engagement! And no, we’re not – necessarily – talking about a formal engagement, We mean taking a little time to revel in – and share – your new relationship status before getting all wrapped up in the busy process of wedding planning. But, why, you might ask!? Well, because it’s a huge life event in and of itself, and should be properly acknowledged. Whether that means a date night with your fiancé, a casual backyard BBQ with your families, or even a full-on catered cocktail style engagement party, be sure to embrace your new fiance status and savor your engagement before diving into the planning process!
Get Your Ducks in a Row
As you start planning your wedding, you’re going to end up with lots of ideas, checklists, vendor and venue recommendations, photo inspiration, wedding magazines, bridal show tickets, contracts, and. Etc. So, you’re going to want to figure out an organizational system, so that you can keep track of all your wedding-related material. That way all your information will be right at your fingertips when you meet with potential wedding vendors or your wedding planner. You can keep all that info in a Google Doc, Evernote, a dedicated Pinterest board, an old fashioned wedding binder, a calendar app, or maybe a combination of several systems. The important thing is that it works for you and your fiance! We promise that getting yourself organized early will help to minimize wedding stress, so you can hit the ground running with all of those important wedding decisions!
Choose a Date (or Date Range)
Unfortunately, even if you have your heart set on a certain day in particular, you may not know your exact wedding date for a while! The truth is that the day you say “I do!” depends on many factors, like the actual availability of your top 3 potential wedding venues.
That being said, settling on a general date range will enable you to get some of your planning process started. For example: “Spring 2024” or “Next fall” will give your plans a little structure, and make it seem real! It will also be nice to finally have an answer when all your friends and family members start asking, “Sooooo, when’s the big day?!” Because, trust us, they’re going to ask!
Set Your Priorities and Budget
Setting your budget should be one of the first items mentioned on any wedding checklist! It’s crucially important that you and your fiancé are on the same page as far as how much you’re willing to spend on your big day! Now is a good time to consider your savings, family contributions to the big day, and things like your current debt load (including student loans). Then, have “the money talk” with your significant other to come up with a ballpark range. Once you come to a ballpark figure, you can start brainstorming ideas and getting in touch with vendors for pricing information. This will help shape your priorities, as in, “We absolutely need to have a photo booth at our wedding!” or “We’re not attached to the idea of having a traditional wedding cake at our reception.”
Create Your Custom Wedding Checklist
Maybe you have a really tight timeline. Or maybe you’re just not into the “traditional” wedding elements that most planners include on their lists. That’s why we think it’s a good idea to review a handful of different checklists and pull things from them to create your own, custom wedding to-do list. By piecing together all of the items that are applicable to you, you’ll have a personalized, hyper-focused guideline of what needs to be done, and when (where and why) you need to do it, so that you can accomplish your unique wedding goals!