Allow me to join all of your friends + family in wishing you congratulations on your engagement! You're embarking on one of the best whirlwind, emotion-filled, roller coaster rides of your life. It's seriously the best!
And while there are tons of great blog posts and pins that will assist in those first steps of the planning process, the list below includes decisions and tasks to tackle BEFORE you commit to anything concrete.
1. Determine and discuss the most important elements of your wedding day, to YOU and YOUR FIANCE. Throughout the planning process, you'll be greeted with tons of ideas, feedback, and statements such as "you have to do this at your wedding" or "at my wedding, we did this, and you should too." Having a firm foundation for what's most important, you keep the focus centered on YOUR celebration and away from less desirable ideas, undoubtedly, coming your way.
2. When you know what's most important, you can move on to deciding where to host your shindig! Location can be a point of contention if you or your fiance, or both, are not natives of your current locale. Do you get married where you are now? And have guests travel to where your roots, as a couple, are growing? Do you get married in your hometown? Your fiance's? Or do you want your beginning as a married couple to be in an exotic location? Something low-key and destination?
3. Once you've decided, geographically, where to host your wedding, chat about whether it will be a big, over-the-top celebration or an intimate soiree with those closest to you. Whatever you decide will be a key component when it comes to discussing more important items like money allocation, overall budget, venue parameters, and oodles of other things.
4. Set up an email account to be used solely for the wedding. When you begin contacting potential vendors and signing up for the latest wedding trend emails, you don't want your personal or work inbox to be overrun. By creating a wedding-specific email account, you can keep all things wedding separate from that super important project at work. It also allows you and your fiance to have one, shared source of communication for vendors + wedding related tasks, keeping you on the same page.
5. Hire a wedding planner! Contrary to popular belief (and, ahem, popular wedding websites), we are a necessity vs. a luxury. And, I know I'm not alone, when saying, that your planning process is much better when we can be involved from the very beginning. There can be financial advantages to hiring a planner, but most importantly, a couple benefits from our expertise and network of vendors. In most, not all, cases a professional wedding planner is doing his/her gig full-time. Much like you're a full-time, valued professional at your job/career, a good planner is an invaluable resource and critical piece of the wedding puzzle. Choose someone you're comfortable with, locally or in your destination city. We'll be working together, closely, for an extended period of time. It's important that we jive on a personal level and can trust one another.
I promise, by thinking and talking about the items above, your planning process will run much smoother and everyone involved, including you, will appreciate your thoughtful legwork.
Until next time,