Planning a wedding can feel like trying to take a bite out of a wall. Basically impossible, and if you do manage to pull it off, it just isn’t a good time. Luckily, no drywall chewing is required if you know what you’re doing and have a solid plan from the start (and stick to it)!
First Things First
Before we get into anything, there’s one thing to remember:
Yep, breathe. Seriously, that is our advice. Look, it’s going to be a bit crazy when the planning really starts. It doesn’t matter how type A you are. It’s going to be nuts (at least sometimes).
So, before you jump into wedding planning, take a breather. Enjoy the time together as a newly engaged couple. Take a trip, tell your family, post on social media. Do whatever it is that’ll help you properly enjoy and process this moment.
Don’t take forever, obviously. If you’re behind the eight ball on wedding planning, that eight ball is the size of a bowling ball. Take a week or two before you get into any of the planning and just enjoy where you are.
Where to Start
Before you do anything — and we mean anything — get a budget laid out. It doesn’t have to be perfect (maybe have a miscellaneous section that you can use as necessary), but it has to be pretty good.
If you don’t have your budget defined before you get deep into the wedding planning, you’re not going to have a good time. Wedding debt is nuts in the U.S., and you just don’t want any part of that.
Dream It Up
Notice that dreaming came after budgeting. Once you know how much you can responsibly spend, the fun part starts. Dream up your wedding. Think about what you want it to look like, sound like, smell like (hey, it’s your day), and get to the drawing board.
Set Your Ground Rules
Maybe principles is a better term than rules here, but whatever. Establish your timeline and decide who’s going to be in charge of what. Are you splitting everything down the middle? Is one of you going to handle everything while the other works full-time? However you decide to go about it, establish expectations upfront.
Yep, you’ll probably want these. Do you already have rings picked out? Are you going for custom wedding rings? What kind of rings you’re ordering will determine how far in advance you need to plan for this step. If you just went with a simple men’s wedding band, this step will be easy.
Source: shutterstock.com/Cast of Thousands
Venue and Vendors
Turns out lots of people like getting married, so you have to book further in advance. Sorry, just how it goes. You’ll want to book your vendors and venue well in advance. We’re talking months here, especially for popular ones. The more flexibility you have on your venue and vendor desires, the easier this part is going to be.
Use a Spreadsheet or Template
There are plenty of great pre-made wedding checklists out there. If you want to make your own, good for you. Just make sure that whatever you decide is something you can stick to. The more detailed and specific your checklist is, the simpler your life will be when crunch time hits.
These aren’t the only things you need to think about when planning a wedding. You have guest lists, cake tastings, hotels, and all that good stuff. However, you can only do so much at once. Once you’ve laid the foundation for your wedding planning, the specifics of everything else will fall into place more easily.