Updated: Jul 2, 2022
If you just got engaged... This is After Saying Yes. The Wedding Planning Blog that you needed in your life.
I know once you get the ring it's all fun until you have to start planning your wedding and the question hits... How to Plan my Wedding? How to set a date? How much is a Wedding? Should I hire a Wedding Planner? How to pick the right vendors for my wedding? I know, I know... it's a lot of info, but I got you. I created this space for engaged couples that are ready to step into the planning journey. This blog will help you make informed decisions along the way as well as keep you company when you don't know what your next step should be; just drop your question.
...and on that note... let's get into context...
HERE ARE 10 THINGS TO DO TO START PLANNING YOUR WEDDING
CREATE A VISION/MOOD BOARD
The first wedding convo does not have to be the money talk, leave that one for the second step. Instead, start by daydreaming together about the wedding. Ask each other the following: "How do you think my perfect wedding looks like?" "What is really important for you?" "How involved would you like to be?"... these questions will help you guys avoid assumptions on each other and help you speak the same love language when planning. Collect a few pictures that represents the vibe, colors, and mood you would like the "Day of"; this will give some structure to your research.
2. STAY ORGANIZED WITH
MONEY: Budget, budget, budget and keep track monthly. This is the base of it all. Imagine you got a bill at the end of the wedding? What's the number that sounds reasonable and realistic? That's you base number; to that, add 5% for the "just-in-case" fund... I'll dive more into details soon in our blog about "How to Create your Wedding Budget?".
GUEST LIST: Weddings are calculated at a rate per person; therefore, your guest count will have the biggest impact in your wedding's total.
TIME: Look into the vibe of the wedding and ask yourself "what's the season?" to filter the months you'll pick from. The times are important. The date you set MUST be realistic to you and to your finances. Planning ahead can help you create payment plans that will help aliviate your monthly investment. As per most vendors; you'll pay in full a month before your wedding.
PAPER WORK: Read the small letters in all your contracts; Keep all paperwork together in the computer or in hard copies; You MUST keep a copy of all deals, promos, offers; Communications via email (get a wedding email) please and thanks; Find out the requirements for your marriage license County's Court with time in advance.
3. HIRE A WEDDING PLANNER
Us humans will educate you about the industry so you close you best deals with the vendors that align to your wedding vibe; therefore save and make the best out of your money. Not mentioning the peace of mind that having a planner gives you. Full, Partial, Day of? That's another convo but getting this service prior to booking will give you advantages of guidance, deals and real budget projections.
4. RESEARCH AND DON'T SAY YES RIGHT AWAY; but when you are sure about a vendor then book right away. Most vendors in the industry book one wedding per day so if you are sure on your pick, don't let anyone else take the only spot of the day. Connect with vendors not prices; there's no excuse to not connect with your vendors nowadays where we are all one zoom away. I know prices are important but the most important is getting the worth of your money.
5. EXPERIENCES OVER FAVORS.
I'm sorry to be so straight forward but 90% of your guest throw away wedding favors. Invest in experiences that will make them remember this night. 360 Video Booths, Unique Late Night Stations, Live Entertainment, Live Paintings... Get creative and don't blow your money.
6. PROTECT YOUR MONEY, INVEST IN A WEDDING INSURANCE.
I don't feel like I should explain why this is so important but if had to tell you one thing that can explain it better that anything I'll just say: 2020.
The year where all events were cancelled. Not that it will happen again but I guess having an insurance will hurt less than not having it.
7. WAIT UNTIL IT'S TIME FOR YOUR FINAL MEETINGS. I know once you book you'll get excited and fired up about the final meetings and tastings but rushing into them will just confuse yourself. Usually when you book your vendors, you are several months away from the "day of" and maybe what you want now is not what you'll want in 8 months.
8. BE AWARE OF HIDDEN COSTS. These are the most common pricing spikes:
Gratuities & Vendors Tips
Make up & Hair Trials
Extra hours: I'm all for it! I'm the planner that will tell you to add one more hour of party. However, it'll be one extra hour of: venue, dj, staffing, photo etc. Planning and being ready never hurts and when the nostalgia at the end of the wedding hits and everyone is having an amazing time it'll be easier to give that answer. Most vendors allow you to extend on the spot but if this is something that you know for sure, plan for curfews and having all your vendors on the same page.
9. TAKE THE REWARDS' ADVANTAGES.
Sooo, the investment will be made either way right?... Research about Wedding Planning Credit Cards that can benefit you. Even yours might have advantages on miles that you can use for the honey moon or simply cash back that won't hurt.
10. REMEMBER THE REASON WHY TO STAY CENTERED.
(If you read my BIO I did mention that I'm a cheesy writer and so this blog will have a lot of that) Find your faith as a couple. Invest not only on the wedding, but also on your preparation as life- partners. Take this time to find the anchor that will bring you both back to center when the tide gets high later on. Let the PROs handle the heat of planning while you get ready for a solid marriage.
*BONUS* Document everything! You don't know how much you want those pictures and videos until you get to see them after the wedding. Take advantage of the good side of technology and keep memories.