Congratulations on your engagement! Your engagement is a major milestone that you should fully bask in. It’s also the time you get to prepare mentally and emotionally for a new and exciting chapter with your partner.
While this new transition is an important time to celebrate and be in the moment, it also means that you must successfully plan a wedding within the upcoming months (or years). Knowing exactly where to start can be overwhelming and tricky! That’s why we’ve compiled a list of essential first steps for newly engaged couples to help get the ball rolling.
Announce Your Engagement
Announcing your engagement may seem like an obvious step. But it’s the first official step in letting your loved ones (and the world) know that you are officially soon to be wed. You can make a special post online, send out group texts and video calls, or even plan visits to tell your loved ones in person. This helps you ease into the process and allows you to be surrounded by love and support! For many people, telling everyone you know makes it feel more real.
Create a Wedding Planning Account
Before you sit down and scramble your mind with the endless list of tasks you need to accomplish for your wedding, make an account with a wedding planning site. These sites are user-friendly, organized, and help you break down each step into digestible pieces. You’ll be able to have access to local and out-of-state vendors and keep track of your progress and budget throughout the process.
Start Thinking About Dates
You don’t need to have a wedding date set right away. It takes time to think about the perfect season, day of the week, and the logistics of the time of year the wedding will be. Will it be over the weekend when most guests are off from work? A weekday to reduce venue costs? What about the season? Will it be a summer or winter wedding? There are many factors to consider when thinking about the dates, but don’t wait too long mulling over them. Your venue and vendors will need this date to lock in contracts and determine availability, so the sooner, the better.
Start Discussing the Budget
The budget is the most critical aspect of planning your wedding. Before you can book vendors, purchase attire, or arrange any other details of your big day, you need to discuss finances with your partner (or whoever else is helping financially). Determine how much you are willing to spend and how much you’ll allocate to each major category of your wedding. For example, do you want to reserve more funds for your photography or florists?
Be intentional and realistic with your wedding budget to ensure you get what you want out of your wedding without compromising your vision.
Start Thinking About Your Bridal Party
After you’ve completed the above steps, you should begin thinking about the important people in your life with whom you want to share your day. These are the people who will be standing by your side on your wedding day. It’s essential that they know they will have a role in your wedding as soon as possible. If you don’t have or want anyone to be a part of your bridal party, that’s perfectly okay! You can skip this step and start thinking about your guest list.
Guest List Drafting
Drafting a guest list may feel like a cumbersome task, but it’s another important step to consider as a newly engaged couple. Determining who will be present during your big day should take time, and you’ll have to think carefully. Write a list of people you can’t picture your day without. Create another separate list for extended family members and another for people you’ve developed friendships with that you’d be happy to see. Remember, this is your and your partner’s big day! Don’t feel pressured to invite anyone you do not want to see or don’t have a good relationship with to your wedding.
Before you dive into the often-stressful process of planning a wedding, don’t forget to enjoy the little moments and cherish them. This transition is a time for you to celebrate and enjoy. Don’t forget to take a step back and take a break when needed so you and your partner can avoid burnout. Above all, have fun and create memories during this exciting new chapter!