Congratulations, you’re engaged!
What happens now?
Congratulations, you’re just got engaged to the love of your life, you’re on cloud nine and full of excitement for your future together!
But before you can even come back down to earth, family and friends are asking ‘when’s the wedding?’, ‘have you set a date yet?’ and ‘when’s the big day?’.
You may be ok with this and be excited to take the next steps of planning your big day straight away. But don’t worry if you’re not quite there yet. Maybe you want to take time to enjoy your engagement and why not!? For most, it’s a once in a lifetime experience so lap it up and enjoy being in that little engagement bubble!
On the other hand, you may be nervous about planning such a big event and you have no idea where to start. Well, don’t worry, we have all the tips and expertise in this blog to help get you start with your wedding planning.
Wedding planning doesn’t have to be stressful. Again, for most, it’s something you’ll only do once in your life so try to enjoy the whole process.
Set a Budget
As much as we will all want to start planning the fun and exciting parts of your special day, unfortunately, the first thing on your wedding planning ‘to do’ list is discuss your budget. In a dream world, we’d do whatever we wanted for our big days no matter the cost but in reality, we know this isn’t the case. The majority of couples need to create a realistic and affordable wedding budget. Couples should consider what they can afford and if they need to save some money, how long will it take them. Are parents or family members offering to make contributions? If so, these conversations need to be happening right at the start of your wedding planning. It’s probably the most boring part, but, it is essential as it will help with all future decisions.
The next step is to discuss where you want to get married. Do you want to get married near to where you live? Or perhaps nearer to parents or family. Maybe you’d prefer a destination wedding. It is good to take into consideration your closest family and friends and whether they would be willing to travel or even able to. However, you need to keep in mind that it is your wedding, and you may not be able to please all guests, no matter the location.
Rough Guest List
Before viewing any venues or Ceremony locations, it is important to come up with a rough idea of how many people you will be inviting. It doesn’t have to be an exact amount, but this number will then help you when searching for venues and working out final budgets. Think about who you really want there. Don’t feel like you must invite people just for the sake of it. Remember, it’s your day!
The Time of Year
Spring, Summer, Autumn, or Winter wedding? Every season makes a perfect wedding day but it’s time to think about your preferences. Do you imagine a beautiful Summer’s day with warm evenings and outdoor Ceremonies or perhaps a crisp Winter wedding with stunning sunsets and maybe even some snow! The time of year can also affect your budget as Autumn/Winter months are often lower priced than Spring & Summer. Also, the day of the week will also affect the cost. As Fridays & Saturdays are the most popular days for weddings, these days are the most expensive but remember, most venues host weddings 7 days a week and weekday prices are often lot less than weekends.
Create a Pinterest Board
Now we can start with the fun parts! Couples find that using Pinterest is a great way to create wedding mood boards and gather ideas and inspiration for their dream day. There are an infinite number of images that offer décor ideas, colour schemes, flower arrangements, wedding dresses, photo ideas and lots more. Bringing together your ideas will help when you start talking to suppliers such as florists and venue dressers about what your vision is for the day.
Start your Pinterest boards here – https://www.pinterest.co.uk
Civil Ceremony, Church, or a Celebrant?
The main part of your wedding day is the legal Ceremony, and this can be performed at a licenced premises by a Registrar or at a Church. Becoming more popular are wedding Celebrants.
It’s now time to start searching for your dream venue. Websites and apps such as Hitched & Bridebook are a perfect place to start. They enable you to search venues by size, style, county, or search area. Once you have shortlisted a few venues online, you can make an appointment to go and view them in person. Venue viewings are the perfect opportunity to look around the venue, find out what the venues offer and get to know their wedding team.
Bridebook – https://bridebook.com/uk
Hitched – https://www.hitched.co.uk
Once you have booked your venue and started to look at other suppliers, it is always encouraged that you obtain wedding insurance. Some suppliers will not even take a booking without you having insurance! Insurance covers you for those unexpected and sometimes unavoidable times during wedding planning. It can cover things such as your booked suppliers not turning up, the cost of cancellation or rearrangement, any damage to a hired suit or dress or even, the worst-case scenario, where a member of the close wedding party falls ill. Many insurance companies offer different levels of cover for a reasonable charge so it’s definitely worth getting, just for that extra peace of mind.
Send Save the Dates
You’ve picked a date and booked your venue! It’s now time to send out your ‘save the dates’. Different to official invitations, save the dates are a way of letting your guests know when and where your wedding will be, giving them plenty of notice for them to book time off work, not arrange a holiday or sort out childcare. Save the dates can be a simple email or text, a proper postal invite or via a wedding website such as withjoy.com. Wedding websites are becoming more popular with couples as they enable you to keep track of guests invites and RSVP’s and can also include all the relevant guest information.
Wedding Website – https://withjoy.com
Book Your Suppliers
You can now carry on looking for your other suppliers such as photographers, venue stylists, cake makers and entertainment. There are hundreds of wedding suppliers out there, all offering different services, so it is important to do your research and find the ones that best suit you and your personal style. If you have a particular supplier in mind, it is recommended that you book them as soon as you know your wedding date to avoid disappointment.
Wedding planning doesn’t have to be hard or stressful. It’s something that most of us will only do once in our lives so try to enjoy the process as it will be over before you know it. If you are struggling, don’t be afraid to enlist the help of friends and family. And remember, your venue and wedding suppliers are also there to help along the way and will be more than happy to offer advice and answer any questions you may have.