Post # 1
I’m new here. I got engaged over Labor Day weekend. We set a June 15. 2013 date and I started my planning, but then got sick for a couple of weeks and didn’t get much done. I did pick out a dress for myself though! 🙂
I’ve looked at some wedding check lists, which all start off with what to do before and during the 9th month before the wedding and I’m already 8 1/2 months before mine.
I know lots of brides plan their wedding this far out, or even less, but I feel a little overwhelmed at the moment.
Does anyone have some advice on what I should focus on in my early stages of planning? I don’t want to focus on more then I should, but I don’t want to miss something and have to scramble to do something later.
Post # 3
venues for wedding and reception would be my first priority….they might not have your chosen date available.
Ohhhh and ring pics please….we ladies love ring porn lol
Post # 4
Congratulations on your engagement! 🙂 I just recently got engaged as well, and we’re shooting for the end of April. I’ve only got 7 months! What was really helpful was that my FI and I typed out every task that needed to be done, then categorized it according to when we need to get it done by. For example, the tasks I need to get done within the next six weeks are: Create a Budget, Color Scheme Palette, Find/Finalize Venues & Photographer, choose wedding party, create guest list, and plan honeymoon.
This allows us to not think of everything at once, but to focus on the tasks at hand and not worry that we’re missing something. If you are, just add it on the list! If you’d like, I’d be happy to private message you a screenshot of what it looks like on a spreadsheet. 🙂
Post # 5
Date twins, yay!
I was engaged May 13th, 2012, and had all the big stuff planned within about a month (and I work 60 hours a week)…so you can do it too!
Couple things you need to focus on first:
- Have an approximate head count; you will need to know this number when calling potential venues. Try to get this into excel, as it will help you later. Whatever you do, definitely get it on paper, because you’ll find that the number may totally surprise you (we were a bit surprised).
- Decide which is more important: the date you chose or a specific venue. You may need to flex on one or the other.
The “big things” include:
- Engagement party (if you’re having one)
- Budget: what are you working with?! Who’s helping out? What is everyone contributing?
- Bridal party
- Ceremony site (church, temple, outdoors or maybe the same location as the reception)
- Caterer (if not included in venue site)
- Music: DJ or Band
Things that are fun, but aren’t important immediately:
- Your dress (this kind of depends on your venue, so it’s a good idea to get that figured out first)
- Bridesmaid dresses
- Groom/Groomsmen attire
- Planning showers/bachelorette parties
Hope this helps!
Happy planning 🙂
Post # 6
Once you pick the places that will narrow down your choices for everything else. Like… I picked a garden so I didn’t have to buy a lot of flowers. And they only let me choose from 3 caterers, so that was easier than calling everyone in town. 🙂
Depending where you’ll get an idea of what needs to be done to the place and for your guests. I focused on venue, then food (incl cake!), then entertainment, then guest comfort (had to rent some chairs) and decor.
Trust me, it’ll all fall into place once you figure out an idea of what you want the day to be like.
Post # 7
I would first come up with a budget and estimated guest list. Write down all of the people you need to invite, then all of the people you want to invite. The Knot has some fairly useful budgeting tools that will help you figure out what percentage of your budget you should devote to venue, food, clothes, etc.
Then look for venues, once you know how much you can spend per head and how many people are coming. Book a venue first, before any other vendors. Then book an officiant for the ceremony and a caterer/rentals if necessary.
If you’re planning on a traditional wedding dress, you should start shopping for that soon. Some dresses take 8 or 9 months to come in, so make some appointments to try on dresses now!
After all of that is settled, the next big things are flowers/centerpieces and your photographer and DJ. Once your budget for each of those things is settled, look around for some portfolios and reviews, then make appointments and select your vendors. You’ll probably want to have settled on your “colors” when you finalize things with the florist.
Then you can ask your bridal party members, figure out transportation (if needed), wedding party attire and all the rest of it. Invitations should go out in March or April, so you can put those off til the beginning of next year.
I found myself stressing a lot less when I made a month by month plan with all of the big and little things to do. It looks a lot less daunting when you realize you only have a certain amount of things to do each month, and that there are plenty of things that can wait til the winter/spring. The Knot also has a decent checklist, though not every task applies to every wedding. But it’s a good place to start!
Post # 8
@sarbeartoo: Congrats on your engagement! You have 8 1/2 months to plan the big day. I found the beginning planning stages a little stressful … some of my other friends thought it was a breeze but I am a very detail oriented person so something that is not a big deal to others can sometimes be a big deal to me.
First make your guest list and have your FI make his. Like others bees said you’ll probably be surprised at how quickly it adds up. A guest count is important when meeting with vendors. Next come up with a realistic budget … you may go over so keep this in mind … anything WEDDING related costs much more than expected. I would suggest scheduling appointments with venue and ceremony location (that is if it would be different from your venue) ASAP. Next comes photographer/videographer, entertainment, limo, florist. After that I would suggest getting your BM’s together to go BM dress shopping. You want to allow at least 4 months for the dresses to come in and 1 month for the girls to schedule their alteration appts. I doubt you’ll want your girls to put down payments on their dresses right before, during, or directly after the holidays so if possible try to do this no later than Novemeber. If you wait till after the holidays you MAY be cutting it close (depending on the designer you go with). Once the holidays roll around you should be able to take a breather for a little bit. Then comes invitations, selecting tux for groom/groomsmen, wedding bands, etc. Usually a month prior to the wedding is when it gets little stressful again … the finalizing with ALL the vendors! I’m sure all of us bee’s will be on here venting lol