So, for right now, these 4 To-Do’s should get you through the next month or so and prepare you for the onslaught of planning ahead, without taking away from your enjoyment of the engagement.
1. Announce It!
This one is a fun to-do. You’re engaged! So take some time and tell everyone! Make sure to let family and those close to you know first, take a great picture of the two of you or one of the ring, or both, to post on Facebook/Instagram and prepare for the congratulations! Come up with a short and sweet version of the proposal story that you won’t mind repeating over and over whenever someone asks.
2. Start Dreaming
Begin with a simple Google search, fall or spring wedding photos, wedding color schemes, wedding party attire, and try to find colors, a theme or a look that speaks to you. Have your fiance do the same and then talk about how your ideal wedding would look and feel. How many people will be there? Should it feel classic and elegant or a little funky and non-traditional? Should the ceremony be in a church or on the beach? Rustic country or sleek and modern? Create a picture in your mind of how you want your wedding to look and feel. This vision will not only help guide you in planning and finding vendors that meet your style, but will allow for clarity in decision making for both you and your fiance. If you are going to hire a wedding planner this vision is also probably the first thing he or she will ask you for…better to plan ahead and give them a clear picture so they can make that dream a reality.
3. Get Realistic
As you dream it is great to look and big and extravagant; however, once you have gotten your fill of dreaming, it is time to narrow down your list to only what will keep you, your fiancé and your budget happy. Your mom may be over the moon about huge floral centerpieces, but if you and your fiance would rather spend money to throw in extra menu options or hire a more experienced photographer, make it known. Prioritize your dream wedding by deciding what items are most important to you and your fiance, and as you determine your budget and the cost of each service, start with the non-negotiables and move down the priority list. Prioritizing these items will help prevent overspending and ensure that your must-haves make the cut.
4. Research Vendors
Now that you have a realistic concrete vision, as well as a prioritized budget, begin researching venues and vendors. Find at least two to three options for each service: wedding planner, venue, photographer, caterer, florist, etc. Then, as you set up meetings and attend them, let the vendors you love (maybe the photographer you found understands your vision and has a portfolio and experience that match what you’re looking for) lead you to the vendors they love. Most every venue will have a list of local vendors that know the location and have provided services for other events and will be happy to help point you towards those with which they have good working relationships. Use these connections to your advantage, as most of the time, working with vendors that are familiar with the venue and the area will not only simplify planning but will also be more cost effective.