You’re engaged and have started planning the day you have dreamt about. There are so many decisions to be made, details to be accounted for, and places to be. How do you keep it all organized? Over the years I have helped many brides plan their perfect day. So what makes a perfect day? What are some of the secrets to wedding planning?
Know your Budget
It is important to sit down with your fiancé and determine the budget for your wedding. I have seen a trend where a lot of the couples pay for their own wedding and get assistance from parents, grandparents and other family members. You will want to include all of these amounts to get your finalized number. You don’t want a flexible budget that changes all the time because it makes it difficult to determine what type of venue and vendors to target. During the course of your planning, you will make a lot of decisions. Knowing your budget ahead a time will help you stay on track during the decision making time. When asked “What’s a good budget?” I tell my clients create a reasonable budget based upon what type of wedding you want to have, but you still want to be able to live after the big day is done.
List your “Must Haves”
Create a “must have” and a “nice to have” list. This will help if you need to make a decision about spending in one direction versus another. Must haves should be those times which you’ve always dreamt of and can’t live without. The nice to have list should be those things that are really not a deal breaker for you. During my own wedding I had such a list and opted to go without chair covers because I had my heart set on a venue with hardwood floors.
Identify your Theme
What kind of bride are you? Classic or Contemporary? Or maybe event Edgy or Chic? It is important to identify what type of wedding you want and what overall theme you are going for. I can imagine you’ll be looking at every bridal magazine you can get your hands on, looking at Pinterest and even going to bridal shows. There will be so many ideas and beautiful designs floating around in your pretty little brain. You want to be able to find the common thread in everything that you want for your wedding. No matter what your theme is remember to always stay true to yourself. If you’re the edgy type, go edgy with style, you won’t regret it!
Hash out the Guest List
This is one of the biggest challenges I see couples have. Who should I or shouldn’t I invite? I would recommend setting the number of guests you want to have at your event and then working from there. To me, there are no hard and fast rules to this process. Some would say not to invite someone if you haven’t talked to them in a year. Well that would exclude that favorite teacher who’s had impacted your life and you want to invite them. Whatever process you choose, pick the bottom line number of guest you want to have and work from there.
Pick a great Photographer and Rocking Entertainment
I often hear “that was a great reception” and “those photos are awesome.” Photographer and Entertainment are two elements that you want to invest time in choosing. Pictures last a lifetime. You want to be able to look back and say, wow, I didn’t know the photographer captured that moment. And they often say the wedding is for the couple, but I tend to think it is for the couple and the guests or else you wouldn’t have invited them, right? You want to make sure your guests are having a good time. Great entertainment can get the crowd moving, especially if there are times you guys want to sneak away for a photo, or just to look into each other’s eyes and say WE DID IT!