Cue the confetti, the stars in your eyes, and the endless stream of well-wishes – you're engaged! Congratulations on this magical milestone that marks the beginning of your journey down the aisle. Now that the sparkle of that gorgeous ring has settled in, it's time to embark on the adventure of wedding planning. Fear not, dear brides and grooms-to-be, for we have your first-class ticket to the exciting world of "I Do's" right here. Let's dive into the first steps of turning your engagement bliss into a beautifully orchestrated wedding celebration!
1. **Soak in the Moment: Celebrate Your Love!**
- Revel in the joy of being engaged before diving into the planning frenzy. Once you start planning, it becomes a job. Take as much time as you want to just soak in all of the love as an engaged couple.
- Host an engagement party or intimate celebration with close family and friends. This is a great opportunity to ask your besties to be part of your wedding party! (If you need help curating a proposal box, we can help with that!)
2. **Dream a Little Dream: Define Your Vision**
- Sit down with your partner and discuss your dream wedding vision. You may think you both want the same things but until you talk about it all, you can't be sure.
- Consider themes, colors, and overall vibes that reflect your unique love story.
3. **Budget BFFs: Set a Realistic Wedding Budget **
- Determine a realistic budget that aligns with your vision and financial situation. No one should be going into debt over their wedding. It's a huge day in your lives, yes, but you don't want to start the next chapter together stressed over finances.
- Consider priorities and allocate funds accordingly. Think about weddings you've attended in the past, what stood out to you and what things didn't. This will help you prioritize your must haves vs. nice to haves.
4. **Ring in the Professionals: Research and Book Key Vendors**
- Start scouting for wedding professionals like a wedding planner, photographer, and venue. If you have particular vendors in mind, book them early. Wedding dates book up fast, so you'll want to score your dream team early on.
- Attend bridal shows, read reviews, and schedule consultations to find your crew. Be sure to ask the important questions when interviewing a potential vendor. They should be informative and professional and you should have good vibes about working with them. If someone rubs you the wrong way for any reason even if they check all the other boxes, keep searching.
5. **Lock Down the Date: Choose a Wedding Date**
- Consider meaningful dates or seasons that hold significance for you as a couple or decide if you're open to being flexible.
- Check the availability of key venues and vendors for your chosen date.
6. **Guest List Galore: Draft an Initial Guest List**
- Begin compiling a rough guest list to estimate the size of your celebration. It's helpful to break it down into your A List (closest friends/family that you couldn't imagine your day without), B List (more distant friends/family, coworkers, plus ones) and Courtesy invites (the guests that are unlikely to attend but still should be invited ie: elderly family or out of the country guests).
- Considerations for family, friends, and any must-invite guests.
7. **Venue Vibes: Select Your Dream Wedding Venue**
- Visit potential venues that match your vision and budget.
- Ask about available dates, capacity, and inclusions.
8. **Save the Date Magic: Announce Your Wedding**
- Create and send save-the-dates to give guests a heads up.
- Utilize creative and personalized designs that reflect your style. Need help designing? Keep It Sweet Studios can create custom stationary designs to fit your vision.
9. **Pinterest Paradise: Create a Wedding Inspiration Board**
- Dive into the world of Pinterest to gather inspiration for decor, dresses, and more. (Bonus points if you break it up into sections). This is so helpful for creating a cohesive vision and communicating your preferences to your vendors.
10. **Stay Organized: Set Up a Wedding Planning System**
- Choose a planning tool, whether it's a wedding planning app or a physical binder. (We offer organizational tools when you book our planning or coordination services.)
- Keep track of contracts, timelines, and to-dos to stay on top of the planning process.
With these initial steps, you're well on your way to transforming your engagement excitement into a well-coordinated wedding celebration. Enjoy every moment of this planning journey, and remember, it's not just about the destination – it's about the joyous adventure you embark upon together. Here's to love, laughter, and the happily ever after you're about to create! Cheers!