So, you just got engaged? Of course, you’re probably feeling the initial rush of adrenaline and everything is so exciting and new. All your friends and family are messaging you their congratulations and you are pumped! But then you stop and realize you have to plan a whole wedding in a specific amount of time, which can sometimes cause a little bit of panic. Trust me, I get it, planning a wedding is a big deal and you want everything to be perfect. So, it’s time to get to thinking and being proactive. Here are the top 8 things you should be doing right after you get engaged.
Create a Pinterest board
I realize that so many women probably already have a wedding board on their Pinterest account that they have been pinning to for the last 7 years. But if you just so happen to be one of the ladies that doesn’t already have a board then now’s the time to create one. Pinterest is a great resource to find all the picture-perfect elements you want in your wedding. They have a variety of styles, colors, and themes all throughout the website. If you already have a board, go through it and pick out all your favorite pins throughout the years and begin to build on that. If you’re new to Pinterest, create a board and start searching with some key words that describe your dream wedding. Thank me later, when you stop and realize you’ve been scrolling for hours and come up with the perfect wedding.
Pick a wedding date
This may seem a little common sense but you might find yourself going back and forth on the date for a while. There are other people’s schedules you need to work around, other weddings being planned, and you want to find a date that suits your perfect wedding idea best. Try not to get to overwhelmed or overthink it, just pick a date that you and your fiancé agree best suits you as a couple. This is a day you will want to remember and celebrate for the rest of your life. Once you have a date picked it will determine your venue, dress arrival, and so many other things. A date is essential to planning a wedding so make it one of your top priorities.
Pick a theme
If you’re like me then you’ve probably been thinking about your wedding theme since way before you were even thinking about getting engaged. You need to pick a wedding theme that best suits you and your fiancés personalities and shows people what you are like as a couple. This means you need to pick colors, styles, and even whether you want an outdoor or indoor wedding. All of these elements come together to create a cohesive and memorable wedding. It sounds like a lot but it’s okay to play around and see what all is out there. Don’t be afraid to change things in the beginning until you are happy with what you’ve come up with.
Schedule engagement pictures
Of course, as a photographer I think this is an important first step after getting engaged. Announcing an engagement to the world can be such an exciting thing and getting professional engagement pictures done will make for some amazing photographed memories. Remember, engagement shoots are for you and your fiancé! They are so you can remember this exciting time in your life when you were young and new to this whole wedding thing. I realize some women are not into getting engagement photos done but trust me, you will cherish those photos forever. You can make the photoshoot personal to ensure it magnifies who you are as a couple. Plus, this is a great chance for you to get comfortable in front of a camera, think of it as a trial run for your wedding day photographs. It is also a great way for you to get comfortable with your photographer. Contact me to learn more about my engagement packages.
Start researching wedding dress styles and silhouettes
This will go hand in hand with picking a wedding theme. You want it to match your personality and really show off your best features. There are so many different styles, lengths, silhouettes and so much more. This is where your Pinterest board will come in to play, start searching and pinning all your favorite dresses. This will not only help you determine your overall style but will really be helpful when you start to shop for your dress. Whether you want to base your theme off the dress style you like or your dress style off the overall wedding theme is up to you. You don’t have to be confined to a specific order to deciding things. Try to go with the flow and let the creativity come to you rather than trying to force ideas on yourself.
Plan a budget
You will hear the word “budget” so many times throughout the wedding planning process. Everywhere you go and everyone you meet will need to know your budget to fulfill your needs. Having this predetermined will keep everything organized and stress free. When you start considering vendors you will constantly be asked, “what is your budget?” Instead of taking the time to think everything through and delaying the process you could have one already made up. When you start planning your wedding, sit down with whoever else will be helping money-wise and brainstorm. Think of all the services and products you will want to have in your wedding. Budget out a small range you would be willing to spend on that particular thing. It will save you from so much stress and headaches later in the planning process. Also, a little side note, stick to the budget, it is in place for a reason.
Hire a wedding planner
Some of you already plan on having a wedding planner, some only want one for the day of the wedding, and others prefer to do everything themselves. This part depends totally on preference and what you think you’re capable of doing. Planning a wedding is an extensive, stressful task. There are a lot of elements that go into the final day. Now, I understand that wedding planners can be expensive and that is not something some of you would like to spend money on. You probably feel that the money would be put to better use on something else. I can totally see why you feel that way! If you ask me, I feel that everyone should at least have a wedding planner the day of the wedding. You and your friends and family can plan everything up to the big day but trust me, you will want to enjoy that day that you’ve spent so long planning. Put the stress and work into someone else’s hands so you don’t have to be running around stressed out when you should be taking every moment in.
Wedding vendors are the most essential part of the planning process. These vendors include the caterer, florist, officiate, planner, photographer, videographer and so much more. Without these moving parts the wedding would not work. Therefore, it is essential to get the ball rolling sooner than later. Start researching vendors in your area and consider their pricing and style. Determine which vendors you think will be a good fit for your wedding day and work with your budget. Don’t be afraid to call around and survey the options. You might find that you love someone’s website but don’t like their personality/attitude. Start a list of all the vendors you will need for your wedding, your favorite companies within those categories and their contact information. Once you feel you have nailed down a vendor, document it and move on to the next.
Planning a wedding is a fun and stressful experience. Take the first four checklist items and work on them and then move onto these checklist items. Work in sections and don’t overwhelm yourself with everything at one time. Whether you decide to hire a wedding planner or do it all yourself, I know that your wedding is going to be the most magical day.
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