The First 5 Things You Should Do After You Get Engaged
Congrats!!! You’re engaged and probably living on cloud 9! However, reality hits you hard when it sets in that you are going to have to plan a wedding- something you (hopefully) have never done before!! No need to panic, grab a glass, or a bottle, of wine and follow these 5 steps to get you started!
1. Establish a Guest List and a budget
The first thing you should do after getting engaged (besides call your parents!), is to establish a guest list and a budget. Nothing has to be finalized, but at least get some rough estimates together. This will help you in your search for a venue, because some venues have very strict max guest counts and F&B minimums you have to reach!
2. Pick your Venue
This is the absolute first thing you should book, unless you want a planner to help you on your search (then hire a planner first!). Your venue availability will likely determine your wedding date, and you cannot start booking your other vendors until you have this!
3. Google your wedding date
This is something so small but so helpful when planning your wedding. Look up what is going on in your area on your wedding day to see if there will be any issues for your guests as far as transportation, traffic, hotel room blocks, etc. This can help you and your guests plan accordingly and motivate you to get your stuff booked ASAP! Story time: I once planned a 300 person out of town wedding the same weekend as a massive annual arts festival, so hotels were already booked and traffic routes through the city were changed due to lane closures! But we knew about it 16 months in advance, so we were able to plan accordingly!
4. Hire a wedding planner
Obviously I cannot stress the importance of a wedding planner enough! Hiring one early in the process will make your wedding planning process so much more enjoyable and stress free. Bonus points if you’re planner is also a wedding stylist (like me!) and can help you create your overall wedding design from the beginning. Check out my recent blog post to see wedding design boards brought to life!
5. Prioritize your Vendors
Once you have your wedding date, venue, and planner, the way you should approach the rest of your wedding planning is by prioritizing the rest of your vendors. There are two ways to do this. 1. Pick which things are most important to you and try to book those vendors first (photography, dress, flowers, etc.) 2. For the rest of your vendors, try to book the vendors who tend to book far in advance- these will be the vendors who can only do 1 wedding a day. For example- photographers, videographers, DJs, etc. Other vendors such as florists, bakeries, rental companies, etc. can do multiple weddings in a weekend so their schedules tend to be more flexible! For tips and tricks on finding your perfect vendors, check out How to Find Your Vendor Dream Team!
Follow these quick 5 steps and planning a wedding won’t seem so hard anymore!