Hello lovely readers! We hope you had a really magical Christmas and a wonderful New Year. We had a fab time enjoying the snow, great friends and lots of delicious food and are now looking forward to seeing what 2010 has in store.
To kick the year off, today we’re featuring a back to basics planning guide. So for all you newly engaged couples this is the post for you.
4 Back to Basics Planning Tips
1) Set a budget. This little piece of advice is as old as the hills but it’s so important and allows you to build a firm foundation for your wedding. Many couples struggle to set a budget because if you’ve never planned a wedding, it’s hard to know what is realistic and how far your money will go. However most people know how much they can realistically afford and how much they are comfortable spending on one event: it really is worth spending some time researching and getting your budget right at the beginning. Until you have a budget, you can’t begin approaching suppliers and all of your plans become a series of confusing ‘what ifs’. It’s much better to start things off properly with a good idea of what you can spend in each area.
2) Clarify your priorities. Unless you’re on a very large budget, you will have to compromise on some aspects of your day. Identify your top 5 priorities at the outset so that you can concentrate your budget and energy on doing a few things really well rather than spreading yourself too thinly and doing everything badly. We tend to find that for most couples that as they focus on a particular part of the celebrations that aspect becomes THE most important part of everything and that it becomes very tempting to overspend. Formally setting your priorities at the outset helps to guard against this and saves lots of heartache down the line.
3) Get the basics in place first. From the second that engagement ring is on, planning a wedding can be an overwhleming whirlwind of well meaning people asking questions and giving their opinion. Rather than allowing yourself to be swallowed up into the insanity of it all, take a couple of weeks to soak up your new status and to slowly chat your ideas through with your partner. Once you have a rough idea of what you want as a couple, you can begin (slowly and rationally) putting the basics into place. You’ll need to start with finding your venue and you’ll be able to narrow down the options by budget, availability and style. Once your venue is confirmed you will have a date and this will allow you to begin approaching the other suppliers. Here, our advice is to focus on those suppliers who can only do one wedding per day e.g. photographers, transport, entertainment, hair and make up artists. After booking these suppliers, you can relax and start thinking about the visual aspects of the day and finding items such as dresses and stationery. Don’t be tempted to do these things before you’ve confirmed your basic suppliers as you will only tie yourself up into stressful knots and end up making little if any progress.
4) Finally, view your wedding holistically. It’s easy to view your wedding as one long to do list but it’s vitally important that you don’t make decisions (especially regarding visual elements) without considering other aspects to ensure there is a thread of continuity running throughout your celebration. For example, it’s easy to rush out and buy a dress before you’ve really thought about items such as your venue or entertainment. However, the style of your dress should be heavily influenced by your venue and how formal your celebration will be. This in turn will effect the type of entertainment you choose, the style of your flowers and even the type of menu you serve. As bizarre as it sounds, it’s really important to consider all of these items together because if you don’t your wedding will lose its sense of flow and can end up feeling as though it has lost it’s soul.
By its very nature, being engaged doesn’t last forever so enjoy it while you can; take things slowly and don’t be tempted to wish it away. There are no second chances with weddings!