(Closed) When to start planning "officially"

posted 6 years ago in Logistics
Post # 2
3848 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: June 2014


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winteryyc:   We picked out and reserved our photographer and our venue 14 months ahead, then I took a break for a few months.  If you are getting married at a venue which books early, you might want to do a few things now.  Save the rest for later or you will burn out, believe me.  🙂

Post # 3
57 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

If there are any vendors or venues you HAVE to have I’d book now. I’m getting married in 2017 and some of the venues were already booked through mid-2017. Vendors and venues in our area (midwest) are booking up faster and further out

Post # 4
33 posts

I’m in the midwest too and one venue that I was midly interested in is already booked through next September (2017). So, to reiterate, if there’s a specific venue that you know you want to have it at, it would be a good idea to visit and reserve it (but keep in mind an approximate guest count for the size of the space, budget, etc.). I find it’s best to plan a little at a time and not to worry about the small stuff when you are so far out. 

Post # 5
2467 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2015 - St Peter\'s Church, East Maitland, and Bella Vista, Newcastle

Maybe look at the big picture stuff – work out an approximate guest list and budget and think about the type of wedding you want – hotel ballroom, church ceremony, rustic barn setting, intimate restaurant dinner, whatever.  Most venues probably won’t want to book you more than 18 months out so you have some time.  You could start looking at photographers’ work to work out what style and look you want as well.

Post # 7
122 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

Congratulations! I was in a somewhat similar situation because it was 2+ years from engagement to wedding. I was super excited and couldn’t wait to plan. However, I realized I really shouldn’t plan anything until I had a budget to work with, and that was a more serious discussion to be had between us, and both sets of parents. 

However, aside from again your must have vendors/venue, I would not recommend the other stuff quite yet. 2 years is such a long time for things to change, and I think it’s much better if you wait until a year out or so for choosing wedding colors, a dress, etc. Some things are really in vogue or trendy so I think it’s nice to be able to move with those or at least not be trapped. For example, I want a vintage-y garden wedding and with the decorations that are trendy and out there I probably would’ve gotten a bunch of burlap and wood chips and mason jars which are slowly on the way out and I would not want for myself now. Just a thought! 

Post # 8
3527 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: January 2017

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winteryyc:  18 months out. Set your budget, tentative guest count (min and max), and approximate geographic location…. and start looking into venues. Idk where you live so idk how fast things book. We started “officially planning” in February and our wedding is summer 2017 and a few venues didnt have our ideal date available already! That far out! So I was annoyed that I didnt start inquiring earlier.

Post # 9
432 posts
Helper bee

I sorted my venue (and therefore the official date) and my photographer shortly after we got engaged, about 16 months out. Im also someone who likes to plan things early, it keeps me from getting stressed out if I feel like I am doing something. I havent finalised any othr major details yet, but I used the new zealand wedding planning website to make a detailed budget, and I have a list of my preferred vendors, ready for when its time to contact them. Im also keeping myself occupied by getting started on all the diy details – Ive painted frames for table numbers, collected some cider bottles which we want to use as vases and found some antique crystal sugar bowls all of which are going to be part of our centrepieces. My bridesmaid and I are also sewing some flowers etc. Its nice doing these things with so much time to go – its actually fun, and not super stressful

Post # 10
877 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2017

I say go ahead and start planning the big things such as venue and photographer after you have sorted through the master guest list and budget.  I just booked my venue and photographer almost 14 months out and I am SO glad I did because both had tons of bookings already for 2017 and even some as far as 2018.  I also don’t feel stressed since I know I have a year and I can actually enjoy the process and take it piece by piece. The one thing I probably wouldn’t start so early is wedding dress shopping. I say start looking around the 1 year mark.  Starting this early may confuse you and/or giving you a case of dress regret. Congratulations and remember to enjoy the process! 

Post # 11
9439 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2016

We booked our venue almost exactly one year out and our venue was already filling up for the summer months, we actually had to go with a Friday to get the ceremony space we wanted. So if there are big things you really want I would start planning now. Some vendors may not let you book this early but they’ll let you know when you can so you can stay on top of it.

Post # 12
383 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2016

Ditto to what others have already said here. But first, have a chat with your fiance and discuss a general budget with rought head count and what you can do for your venue. For a must have venue, book it soonish or inquire. Also any super popular photographers. Our venue contract was for a lower number so you can always increase, which was nice. 

We booked our venue about 16 months in advance (originally 13 months but had to change original date due to some venue restrictions with local area events). We then booked DJ, makeup, and photographer 15 months in advance. So then it allowed almost 6-8 months of no planning before we did florist and decor. Then we got a house in that break, so worked out 🙂

Post # 13
3656 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2017 - City, State

Our wedding is in 2018 and we started planning right away. (Okay technically I’d already started planning before we got engaged so I was a bit ahead of the curve). We’re making appointments to tour venues next month and we’ve narrowed down the selection for most of our other vendors. I’m looking to book early so that we can hopefully get some 2016 prices before rates go up. So if possible, start today! 

Post # 14
1057 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

View original reply
winteryyc:  My Fiance told me to start planning about two years before we were engaged. I was hesitant and apprehensive about it but he assured me I should. We did do planning together and managed to narrow down in that time the venue, possible dates, guestlist, etc. When we actually got engaged, it was exactly one year before we wanted our wedding date, so all I had to do was put everything in motion. So far, we are mostly ahead of schedule in terms of timelines but I’m still nervous about falling behind. (Can you tell I’m a type A?)

I would say start with the guestlist and figure out how many people you want, how many you can afford and figured out your budget.

Post # 15
937 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2017 - Mississauga Convention Centre

We spoke to our priest the day after we got engaged, he gave us his blessing. In September one year before our wedding we are doing our Pre-Cana, our reception venue is also booked

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