You Are Engaged To Be Married, Now What? Eight Timely Tips…

 

 

There it is, that ring you have always dreamed about sitting on the third finger of your left hand.  It was placed there by the man you also have dreamed about.  And after your announcement photo has run in your local paper, it is now time to begin planning your next dream: your wedding day.  Here are a few tips for your planning journal:

  • Think about the when> talk to your family, and to your fiancé with input from his family as to when a general time (season) would be most advantageous for you and those who might attend your wedding. Does it need to be a weekend event?  HINT: Most reception venues offer healthy discounts on winter dates, days other than Saturday, etc. so you might take this into consideration.
  • Establish a rough budget> This step is not so much on possible costs but establishing how much money you and/or your family can comfortably set aside for the ceremony/reception, the gown etc. Some weddings save dollars by no host bar, casual attire for wedding party, and securing a group discount for guest rooms.  HINTMany forget to include honeymoon expense as well.
  • Ceremony / Reception site selection> Vows being exchanged on the Waikiki Beach may sound ultra-romantic but will your family and friends be able to join you? Exotic sites may eliminate attendance by those closest to you due to cost.  Brides sold on a destination wedding site may find a unique place in their home area thereby allowing friends and family to be brought together for a full weekend of memories.  Make sure, however, that your destination is one that has the credentials of producing successful, custom weddings.  It makes it accessible and affordable.  HINT: Most destination sites can help you find vendors with a list of proven vendors such as ministers, florists, photographers, musicians, etc.
  • Buy your gown> This is probably the most difficult step. Not only does your gown -that you will wear only once- meet your beautiful expectations but what is the cost.  How does it fit into your general budget?    HINT: Wedding pictures create an album full of lifetime memories to be enjoyed by generations to come while a wedding dress is worn only once.
  • Fine tune your budget> Some brides will spend up to 50 percent of their budget on the ceremony/reception with the honeymoon expense and the gown following close behind.  Then single digit percentage amounts for such things as the photographer, wedding attire for attendants, rings, flowers, music, invitations, etc. based on your personal prioritization.  HINT: Find a budget template example at <http://www.elegantelight.com/fine-tuning-the-wedding-budget-part-1-the-big-categories/>
  • Merge and refine invitation lists> You have friends and relatives you want to invite as does your fiancé; both families will have added people that “just have to be invited”. Once these lists have been merged with duplicates eliminated, see how the total number of possible guests times the “per person reception cost” fits into your budget.  If it fits comfortably, no problem.  If not, you will need to calmly begin the delicate chore of refining and reducing names from the list.  Then send out your invitations.  HINT: If you would not have a certain invitee “over for dinner”, you might consider not sending that person an invitation.
  • Plan for your wedding-day beauty> Most well-known ceremony/reception venues will have ideas as to where you, your attendants, moms, etc. can receive professional hair styling and makeup services near the venue. Make sure the salon is near your wedding site and be sure to make your salon reservations and include these times in the in the photo timeline you create.  Oftentimes when you do your site visit to a ceremony/reception venue, a visit to suggested stylists and makeup artists will help put your mind at ease.  HINT: Consider a bride and groom photo shoot before the ceremony.
  • Work your plan… and relax> Nothing allows you to enjoy the leadup to your wedding than having an established budget and timetable calendar in your planning journal. Following both will better help you to put a check mark in all the necessary boxes in a comfortable, anxiety-free fashion… for a relaxed bride is a happy bride.  HINT: Surround yourself with relaxing fragrances.  Proper aromas have been proven to take the edge off of stressful situations.

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