Well Congratulations! You’re engaged. Before you start planning your wedding, take some time to celebrate with family and friends and of course, each other.
Then. It’s time to get down to business and if you are like a lot of couples we meet, you may be feeling a little over-whelmed right now about planning your wedding. But don’t run for the hills just yet, we have you covered with our easy to follow wedding planning tips that are designed to help you kick-start your wedding planning the right way.
There are a lot of decisions to make when it comes to your wedding and some of them are ones you will want to make fairly early on (like finding a venue), but before you rush off and do that I want you to take a little time, together, to discuss what is important to each of you about your wedding day.
I Do Crew Tip: We love the idea of a distraction free date night for this activity
Now is the time to discuss questions like;
Not sure about the style or vibe you want for your Wedding? Think about your style and who you are as a couple. How would you describe each other to someone you just met? How would those close to you describe you? What do you love to do together? What are you known for amongst your friends and family?
There is a lot of inspiration out there to help you find your style (I see you Pinterest) and we don’t say, don’t go there, but just keep in mind, that the very best weddings are the ones that reflect the personality of the couple. You can’t go wrong if you start planning your wedding there.
How many guests are you inviting is a question you are going to get asked a lot as you start contacting Suppliers about your wedding, so whilst you may not be ready to sign off on that final list, you need to have a rough idea of who you would like to invite. Knowing your numbers may also dictate the style of wedding you are going to have, which is another reason why you need to tackle this job early on. There is no point planning your wedding at your local cosy restaurant, if your numbers would fill a ballroom.
The best way to draw up a rough list is to do a brain dump of everyone you know. Start with the non-negotiables like immediate family and close friends and move on from there. Once you have done this, go back through the list and cross off anyone you are confident you won’t invite and then circle anyone who stands out as a maybe. This will give you a good indication of your maximum and minimum numbers and at this stage, this is what you need to move on with planning your wedding.
As with your numbers, it is hard to move past this part of the planning process without having some idea about the money you have to spend. Plenty of people try to and then instead of working out what they actually can afford they make some pretty random decisions about spending along the way and just kind of hope it all works out at the end; sometimes it does, sometimes it really doesn’t. So do yourselves a favour, even if your cash flow is reasonably healthy, don’t commit to spending in this early planning phase, without having an idea of what funds will be available to you for your big day.
A good way to approach this is to first speak to anyone who has said they will contribute, or who is likely to contribute. Let them know you are doing your budget and ask them to put a figure on what they are going to put in and when it will be given to you. This can feel uncomfortable, but if someone is close enough to you to give you money for your wedding, they will admire you for doing a budget.
Next, look at your household budget and the commitments you already have when it comes to your money. Consider any savings that you have and are willing to contribute to your wedding and the amount of money you are prepared to allocate each week, fortnight or month over the months between now and your wedding date. Add these amounts to any contributions from others and you have your budget.
I Do Crew Tip: A wedding is a lot like a renovation; things invariably cost more than you expected and things always come up that you did not budget for, which means it is always a good idea to have a contingency in your budget. General advice is that this should be 20% of your overall budget.
What if we don’t have enough money for the wedding we want?
If you are looking at the amount you have and wondering how on earth you are going to do it, it may be time to go back to the very first exercise and do some more talking. You may need to re-evaluate the style of wedding you want and your expectations and perhaps that guest list does need to be trimmed. If you are really feeling the pinch, your engagement may need to be a little longer than you intended so you can save some more. Whatever the case is for you, don’t move past this point without checking in with each other about what the figure means for you and then make a decision together about how you are going to handle it.
Once you have decided what type of wedding you would like, you know roughly how many guests you will invite and you have a budget you are comfortable with, it’s time to decide where you are going to have this wedding. As with everything else we have discussed in this section, if you don’t know where, its pretty hard to move forward in your planning.
Another very good reason for tackling your venue choice early on is that this can be one of the harder and more time consuming parts of planning a wedding and if you are getting married in a popular time of the year, it can also be hard to get your first choice if you don’t get in early.
I Do Crew Tip: By all means dive into researching Venues by using the Internet and recommendations of people you trust, but if you want to preserve your sanity try to keep your short-list of candidates to view, SHORT; 3-4 is ideal.
To help you find your perfect Venue we have put together a list of questions to consider and ask of your short list.
If you are still feeling over-whelmed when it comes to planning your wedding it’s time to bring in the experts. Here at the I Do Crew we can help you to kick-start your wedding planning and find your perfect venue. Like all of our services, these packages can be tailored to suit your particular needs and budget so if you would like a little help contact us today to find out how we can save you time, stress and money when it comes to planning your wedding.