5 steps to START PLANNING YOUR WEDDING?
Once you are engaged the automatic next question is when and where? For most couples there will be some parts of your wedding day you are very clear about and the rest will take some time to think through.
Planning your wedding may feel like an overwhelming task right now, but you can easily break it down into bite-size, manageable chunks.
Here are the first 5 steps to help you start planning your wedding, with each step you will pick up knowledge and help you to get the ball rolling…. Each step leads on to the next one. Enjoy the process, it’s an exciting time!
ENJOY BEING ENGAGED! This is a special time for you both as you share your news with family and friends, immerse yourselves in the celebrations and enjoy the excitement that being newly engaged brings. Don’t forget to document these special moments and the beginning of your new lives together with loads of photos.
SET A BUDGET – and stick to it. Decide for you as a couple what are the most important parts of the day – Is there a particular place or church you would like to get married in? Do you like the work of a photographer or videographer? Is there a band you want? If these are the things that are important to you – Start there
Work out how much you feel comfortable spending on your wedding. Have family members offered to contribute? Now is the time to establish this, so that you can factor it into your budget.
Make a list of all the suppliers you have in mind for your wedding day and do a bit of research of the costs involved for each of these. This can be an eye opening experience and helps you to define what is truly important for you to have on your day. This step also helps you to make a savings plan, how much money do you have saved already and how much will you need to save to cover the cost of your wedding day.
Top Tip: Remember to include a 15% contingency for any unforeseen costs that inevitably arise or those must-have splurges!
DRAW UP YOUR GUEST LIST – now that you have established your budget you will know how many guests you can invite to celebrate with you on your wedding day. If you create a guest list that works within your budget, it means you can afford a few little luxuries along the way.
When you are making your guest list have two lists, one that has all the people you can’t do without on your day and then have a list of people you would like at your wedding but with numbers you may not be able to invite them. For this list have the most important at the top. When you send out your invitations and you receive regrets then you can send out an invitation to the top people on this list.
Top Tip: make sure you send out the invitation to your second list as soon as possible so your guests don’t feel they were left out.
Ok, now for the deal-breakers and the must-haves! This is the fun part of planning your wedding. This is when you sit down and decide how you are going to make your wedding your own. The time where you discover your partner has a previously unknown passion for dinosaurs or something equally random and they want to incorporate into the day!
As a couple you need to decide – What are your must-haves? What are the things that as a couple, you are not willing to compromise on? It’s important to establish these at the start, so you can get a clear vision of your wedding and how you can adjust your budget to accommodate this vision.
Now that you have completed steps 1 to 4 and you are armed with your budget, your guest numbers and your ruthless list of must-haves, you’re ready to start searching for the wedding venue of your dreams!
Hopefully in Step 4 you will have discussed what kind of wedding venue you imagine having your wedding, you can now fine-tune your search to a venue that suits your guest numbers, your budget and ticks all the boxes that are important to you. By doing a lot of research online, using filters and search terms that refine your specific needs and the area you’re searching in.
Once you have completed your online research and are satisfied that the venues you’ve selected meet all your requirements (including the all-important budget!) it’s time to arrange a show-round or viewing.
Visiting the venue in person gives you a real feel for the property, and a chance to soak up the atmosphere and to meet the person who’ll be looking after you and your wedding vision. Ask as many questions as you need and certainly don’t feel pressured into signing anything on the day. Take time to talk it over when you get home and look through the packages they offer. Think of anything you forgot to ask when you were there and give them a call or email. If it is the right fit for you, you will know!
Top Tip: Limit your visits to around 3 venues to start with. Visiting too many venues all at once will leave you feeling overwhelmed, confused, and they will all start to merge into one!
So, how do you feel now?
More confident now that you have a good plan of action?
You’re ready to start taking your first steps to plan your perfect wedding!