Wedding Pictures

How to Start Planning your Wedding

August 01, 2022

Congratulations!! You just got engaged. This is such an amazing and exciting time in your life! And now you have a wedding to plan! It's super exciting...until you start thinking where do you even start? How do you begin?? All those little details start adding up and you find yourself overwhelmed. Don't worry though!! We made this blog just for you, to help guide you through the process. We don't want you to feel stressed. This is a fun time in your life and we want planning your special day to be just as exciting.          


1. SET A BUDGET

Start off by figuring out a budget. Talk to each of your parents and ask them if they'd like to contribute to your wedding. Find out how much they'd like to give you, or what specific things they'd like to pay for. Creating a budget will help you to keep track of all your expenses and help you decide what things are more important than others.


2. SET THE DATE

Setting the date! Is there a date that is special to you? Is it the same month and day you first meet? Not only will it be the first question everyone will ask you, but you'd be surprised how difficult it will be to make any progress on planning your wedding without knowing the date. If you're more flexible on the exact date, choose 2 possible dates to have for your wedding. Think of the time of year you prefer, holidays, and yes, even football season (or whatever sport your fiance/family is crazy about). Then choose your #1 preferred date, and have #2 available in case your #1 date isn’t available.


3. WHAT IS YOUR WEDDING STYLE?

Deciding on your wedding style before picking out a venue is key. This will help you narrow down your search for wedding venues. Are you thinking more rustic, formal, classic, low key? Knowing this will help you out greatly while you plan your wedding!


4. FORM YOUR WEDDING PARTY

This is such a fun part!! You get to ask your closest friends and/or family to be a part of your wedding day! While some couples opt not to have any attendants at all, especially if they're having a casual event, most choose between 2 and 12 members of the bridal party. Sometimes it’s hard to decide on a number, but once you do, go ahead and ask them! You can have a lot of fun with this; some brides give their bridesmaids-to-be handwritten letters, a gift, and even surprise them! If you can’t think of any ideas check out Pinterest for some inspiration!


5. CREATE YOUR GUEST LIST

Creating your guest list is something that is so important to the wedding planning process for many reasons, most vendors NEED to know your guest count and they will ask you that during your consultations and bookings, so don’t put this one off. Make it fun! If you can’t think of everyone at the time, make sure you have a very close estimate. The last thing you want is to be over max capacity for your venue or run out of food!


6. BOOK YOUR VENUE

Once you have all the above steps done, you can start researching and touring venues. When you’re researching and you find a venue that you like, I recommend contacting them and asking if they have any of your possible dates available. If they do, get on their schedule to tour the venue. Give yourself 1-3 weeks to tour all of your possibilities (depending on how long you have before your wedding date of course). Once you have your venue booked (meaning deposit made and contract signed), your date is secured- and you, my friend, are well on your way to getting your wedding planned out!


7. BEGIN LOOKING INTO OTHER VENDORS

You’ve already figured out which elements and services are most important to you, so now you can start looking into vendors to find out cost, availability, reviews and if they fit what you’re looking for. Researching potential vendors is HUGE. There are so many amazing wedding professionals out there now, and you want time to be able to choose the right ones for your big day. You definitely don’t want to be rushed, but at the same time, time is of the essence. When you’re researching, I recommend that you check out their portfolio, bio, and pricing info (if they have it available). Feel free to do research on every single type of vendor you need, but the ones that are crucial and book up quickly are the planner, photographer, videographer, and caterer (if applicable). [After you’ve completed the following steps for the previously mentioned vendors, then you’ll move on to your entertainment, rentals, florals/event decor, cake/cupcakes and invitations. From there you’ll go on to hair and makeup, transportation, party favors, tux rentals, and anything extra.]


8. HIRE YOUR VENDORS

You guessed it, the next step is to pull the trigger and hire one of those vendors that you’ve met and fallen in love with. After your consultations, try to let vendors know your decision in about a week from when you meet with them. Important note: Once you’ve hired a vendor, please let the other vendors that you met know that you won’t be going with them. A nice, simple email is all you need.


9. WEDDING DRESS TIME!

The moment you have been waiting for!! I mean, come on, who doesn’t like wedding dresses?! You will want to be sure that you research the types of dresses you like and the stores that carry them. If you're not sure on the style and type of dress you want, set up an appointment at a dress shop and try some on! You’ll want to get your wedding dress anywhere from 6-9 months in advance in case any alterations need to be made.


10. DESIGN & DETAIL INSPIRATION

Know that when I say “design and details”, it really just means what your wedding will look like. This too is something that requires a large amount of research… which we like to call INSPIRATION! I’m sure many of you have probably already started saving photos of things that you like and are Pinning away on Pinterest. You want to make sure that you have enough inspiration to be able to accurately convey to your vendors what it is you want for your wedding. Don’t forget to bring your inspiration with you to your consultations! This will help vendors get an idea of what you're looking for.


I hope all of this will help some of you out and get you going on the right path as you start planning your wedding! There are of course other things that have to be done as you get closer to your wedding, but all of this will definitely get you on the right track. If you have any questions, please know that I’m here to answer them, shoot me an email or leave your questions in the comments below! HAPPY PLANNING!!!

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