About a month ago I got engaged. I’ve probably been dreaming about getting married and planning a wedding for years. I can, without a doubt, say that just because I’ve been dreaming about it doesn’t mean I have any idea how to actually plan a wedding.
It’s strange because for such a long time getting married and planning a wedding was just a fantasy. Something I could plan on Pinterest without any real thought of executing it. Well now it’s really happening and I’m kind of freaked out.
I’m 25 and I’m a Libra. That means I’m not good at making decisions!
Consider this the first post in a wedding series as I figure out what the heck I am doing.
(Can we just elope on a boat???)
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We’re hoping for the date to be sometime next fall, hopefully, December 2017. That means at this point we are about 15-12 months out.
Whether you’ve got 12+ months to go before the wedding or 6 months to go, below are the first things you want to think about you begin wedding planning:
- Visualize – First thing I did was make a Pinterest board (or several). I actually did this years ago. All the lists I’ve read say this is the time to fantasize about what you want the wedding to look like. Making multiple boards on Pinterest seems like a good place to start. I’ve also gathered multiple wedding magazines and clippings over the years. It all helps to start getting ideas about what you want.
- Planning – Next thing I did was make an account on The Knot. It’s free! You can basically manage everything from the guest list to vendors all online or on the app. They even make you a free wedding website. I also bought the binder (here) that goes along with it. I just like to have something physical but you can get any binder or folder if you want. This thing really helps to feel organized through this crazy process.
- Budgeting – This next one is the big one– the scary one. This is something that has caused a little bit of animosity on the subject of getting married for my fiancé and I. He is determined on not going into debt for the wedding and I agree. So we had to figure out what we can afford. How much are we going to be contributing from our savings? How much can we save monthly and how long will it take us to reach our goals? Who is going to help? My parents? His parents? A few things that might help are making a list of priorities and see what exactly is important to you and your fiancé. This will help down the line planning too.
- Guest List – The next thing you want to think about is a guest list. This is something that will probably change but for now get an idea of how many people you’re thinking about. Venus will always ask for a rough idea.
- Venue & Date – Now these next two things kind of happen simultaneously and go together with the guest list. Setting a date and finding a venue. Have an idea of when you want the wedding with some wiggle room. Just think about the season. But also think about any special days to avoid (birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays). Like I said, we’re thinking about December but it’s a tough time because it’s right around all the holidays. But because we’re in Florida and want an outdoor wedding. We can’t take the chance it’ll be too humid or buggy. Finding a venue is tricky, though; there’s so much to choose from so it really helps to have these other ideas already. Walking into a venue knowing about much you’re willing to spend on the venue really helps narrow down options. Knowing your priorities helps too. There might be a venue you like but only holds 100 people. If your priority is your large guest list than the venue is out or vice versa and it’s time to start cutting people. OR the budget might not allow for that venue and that amount of people. All those details play a part.
So far this is where I’m at. Of course, another thing you might want to do is think about the wedding party. My fiancé (I love saying that, btw) has already asked his groomsman. I, on the other hand, am taking a little bit longer to ask my bridesmaids. I will do a post on that once I’ve asked them all. But it’s just something to think about for now.
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Let me know if you think there’s anything else you found helpful to think about when first getting engaged. There’s so much to think about, but what might have been something that really helped you get on track or get organized?
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Christina is a twenty-something living with her beagle, Mash, and husband, Nate in their van. She loves traveling, shopping, art, and photography. She’s also a vegetarian, pop-culture enthusiast, book-lover, and Dave Matthews Band fanatic. Catch her somewhere around the country in a converted camper van or at home in Florida for a visit.