Planning a Wedding Day: Your First Step

Congratulations!  You have decided to get married and can now start the fun of planning a wedding, and a lot of fun it should be.  The trick to avoiding the bulk of wedding stress and anxiety is to be extremely organized.  Having a complete checklist of what needs to be done and when is the key that all wedding planners use.  Even if you are using a wedding planner, you will need your own checklist yourself.  The following are the biggest items that you need to work on first.  It is not an exhaustive list and other details will arise as you start the process.  Once you get these first steps done, you can start moving on to the details of planning the wedding party itself.

Envision your wedding

– This is where it all starts.  Sit down first by yourself, and then with your fiancee.  Close your eyes and think about what you want your wedding day to look like. Are you in a flowing white princess gown in front of a beautiful mansion, or in a cathedral?  Or, are you in your own backyard with a tent, a big group of friends, and the barbecue smoking away?  Weddings come in all shapes and sizes.  Budgets can be accommodated for pretty much any vision.  Just spend the time upfront to really think about the style and size you want, the general colors, and a theme. The rest of your planning will flow from there.

Set A DATE

– When you decide on your date, think about some of the logistics involved.  Depending on the style of wedding you want, your date may be determined by the season, number of people who need to make travel plans.

Pick A Planning Plan

– This seems a little mundane, but you need to decide on your system for planning and taking notes from the start.  Wedding websites are often free and are great for keeping track of everything.  Most people are fairly computer savvy these days.  A simple Excel spreadsheet can facilitate your budgeting as well. Then again, there is the old-fashioned binder and notepad.  It’s worked for centuries.

Select A RING

– The sooner that engagement ring is on your finger, the sooner you can show it off to all your friends.

Choose your key wedding party members.

– Who will be your maid of honer, best man, bridesmaids, and groomsmen?  Ask nicely, just in case they don’t want to do it.

Your Budget

– This is one of the most difficult parts for many people.  If the bride’s parents are not paying for everything, the traditional approach, you need to figure out where the money is coming from and how much you want to spend.  Think about your priorities as they relate to your wedding vision when you decide where you want to spend the budget that you have.  Is the music and entertainment the most important part?  Spend more there and look for second hand designer dresses.  Is the location more important?  Think about changing the type of reception to something less traditional and less expensive, such as dessert only.

Determine number of GUESTs

– You need an approximate number when selecting locations. You will also need a general idea of how many people will be travelling from far away and need accommodation.

Select the LOCATION

– This means figuring out the type of ceremony you want, along with the type of reception you envisioned and what you can afford. Don’t forget to actually reserve the officiants you want to use.  If they are not available on the date you want, you may want to change that date depending on how important they are to you.

Send out RED BOOM (card)

– These could be via your wedding website, email, or more traditional snail-mail methods.

Once you have all these basic steps completed, you can start working on the rest of the details of planning your wedding. That’s where the real fun begins.

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