If you and your sweetheart are one of the many couples that got engaged over the holiday season, Congrats! You are about to embark on one of the most special times in your lives together. The engagement-to-wedding journey can be one of many ups and downs, lots of stresses and joys. But in the end, your happily ever after will begin.
So now that you’ve put a ring on it, you’re probably wondering, what do we do next?
2) Make it Social Media Official: Once you’ve let your closest circle know the good news, make it social media official. Post a photo of the proposal or perhaps one of you and your spouse-to-be with your new bling.
3) Get Ring Resized if Need Be: If the ring doesn’t fit the way you want it to, make plans to get the ring properly sized as soon as possible. And if you have the means, get your ring insured. Always better to be safe than sorry.
4) Begin Looking at Dates: Sit down with your sweetheart and begin the discussion on when you’d like to get married. It doesn’t have to be an exact date right away, but at least start thinking about the season and year you plan to tie the knot so that you can start planning accordingly. Your wedding date will help determine your timeline for the rest of your wedding to do’s.
5) Decide on a Local Wedding vs. Destination Wedding: The location of your wedding is typically dependent on how big your guests list will be. Do you want it to be a huge celebration? Or do you prefer a smaller more intimate wedding? Keep in mind, destination weddings tend to weed out a lot of people on your guests list simply because some won’t be able to travel, take time off work, or afford the trip. So bear in mind that when it comes to planning a destination wedding, your guests will be incurring their own costs to attend. But most importantly, plan your wedding at a location you both agree on — this is your day to celebrate your love.
6) Start an Inspiration Board: When it comes to weddings, there are tons of details involved. And whether you plan on having a wedding planner or not, you can start the planning process by creating a vision board of what you want your wedding to look or feel like. Pinterest is the most popular option for creating an inspiration board. So start searching for those ideas and pin away!
7) Wedding Planner vs. Self Planned: Wedding planning is hard work. So if you can, invest in a planner/coordinator who can take care of the big details — or at least hire a day-of coordinator at the very least. You’ll find that having someone to organize and take care of the overall planning will help a ton when it comes to alleviating wedding stress. If you don’t have the means to hire a planner or coordinator, then invest in a good planning book and ask your friends/family for help. Keeping yourself organized is most important if you plan to do it on your own!
8) Create a Wedding Budget: Determining your wedding budget is often the hardest and most stressful part of wedding planning. Sit down and talk with your sweetheart about wedding finances and also take time to determine whether you will have any financial support or help from your parents. And always keep in mind that there are typically unexpected expenses that will come up during the planning process so plan to set aside extra money as needed.
9) Start Saving $$$: Planning for your wedding can be a huge expense. So after your plan your wedding budget, set aside some time to determine how you plan to save along the way. Perhaps it means cutting back on other expenses in your life, just remember, saving up for your wedding is temporary. Also don’t go broke planning the wedding of your dreams — a wedding only last for a day, make sure to plan for your marriage and life together as well after the Big Day.
10) Start Booking Priority Vendors: If you’ve had your heart set on booking a particular vendor (i.e., photographer, videographer, entertainer, caterer, venue, florist, hair/makeup stylist, etc.), it’s important to reach out to those vendors right away to secure your date. The earlier you book these important vendors the better, as vendor pricing can often increase without notice.
11) Ask for Parents Input on Guest List: Once you’ve decided on a venue and budget, it’s time to start drafting up your guests list, consult with your parents on their thoughts as well. Take into consideration their input when it comes to who gets invited, and then make it a joint effort with your spouse-to-be to decide on who makes the cut. It’s normal to have various revised guests list and keep in mind that the location of your wedding may affect who attends your wedding as well.
12) Go Dress Shopping: Some brides likes to go dress shopping early, some like to wait till later. But at the very least, start looking at the different styles and designers of wedding gowns that catch your eye. Remember that some designers will require that you order your dress months in advance, also keep in mind that styles change, so if you don’t plan on getting married for a year or more, it may be better to wait. And don’t forget, to set aside time and money for alterations! This goes for the groom as well — it’s never too late to start looking for that suit or attire for the Wedding Day. Just make sure you set aside enough time to account for alterations.
Most importantly, enjoy the process of wedding planning. It can be a stressful process, but just remember that in the end you’ll end up marrying the love of your life. So enjoy the journey!