Congratulations! You are happily engaged and eager for the ‘big day’! It’s such an exciting time in your life and one of the most important! You and your fiancé are about to embark on a new chapter in your life-book and thus the planning ensues! It can quickly become very overwhelming though, sometimes it’s hard to figure out where to even begin! But do not fret, I’ve put together a quick list of quick tips to help you start planning for your wedding day:
- Give yourself time! Your wedding day is going to be one of more memorable moments of your life, so don’t rush planning it! Give yourself time to do venue site visits, meet with different vendors, find your perfect design elements and most importantly, time to celebrate you and your fiancé. When you rush the planning you can lose certain elements that you had wished for and I know it’s exciting and you feel the need to get it all done soon. But take a moment to take a step back, take a deep breath, and then start to plan.
- Stay organized! As a planner, I know this is a lot easier said than done. But find a way that works best for you to stay organized throughout the wedding planning process! One easy way is to use Excel spreadsheets – you can keep track of your attendees, gifts received, payments dates, even a timeline of what needs to happen on a certain day! It also a great way to be on the same page with your fiancé, planner, and family members/friends helping you plan. The more organized you are, the less stressed you will be!
- Research, research, research! You have hundreds of options for caterers, DJ’s, photographers, videographers, etc., and doing the research on them can be very time consuming and tedious. But I can guarantee that the research is worth it. Trust the reputation you have heard, trust the reviews-good and bad, and trust your gut! Ultimately you will be the one to make the decision on whom to choose and it’s best to be positive with your choice than unsure.
- Utilize your vendor’s knowledge! These people are professionals in their field and chances are they know everything there is to know. Once you share your vision with them, make sure to listen to their suggestions and ideas because they will be playing off of your dream and their experiences to create the perfect day for you and your fiancé. Also share your other vendors with all of your vendors. When vendors are able to work together on your event, they will be able to add special touches that complement one another and better attend to your weddings characteristics.
- Take advantage of your space! When working on the layout of your event at your venue, make sure to fully use the space you have. Talk to the venue coordinator and ask them for suggestions, ideas, comments and pictures because they know the space better than anyone and they will be able to help you use it best!
- When DIY, practice makes perfect! So you’ve found the perfect centerpiece, invitations, design elements, whatever it may be on Pinterest and it looks fairly simple. But be warned, not everything you find on the internet is perfect. Make sure to run trial practices when putting design elements together in order to ensure that it is as easy as it looks. This also allows you to tweak it to your special event, see what elements work together and what looks best. Also, make sure to customize it to you. Personalize it with you and your finances color palate, theme, and personalities!
- Create a contact packet and hand it out to those around you on the days leading to your wedding. Include the best way to reach you and the contact of those you’ll be with (just in case you don’t hear your phone), a timeline and the addresses of the places you have appointments, and vendor contact information. This will allow people to contact each other if need be and relieves some stress off of your shoulders!
- Manage your expectations. I know that this can be difficult because your wedding day is supposed to be the most important day in your life. But unfortunately (and sometimes without reason) things happen. So make sure to always have a back-up that you are comfortable with (especially a weather back-up for Florida), make sure to limit guest issues during throughout the planning process, and make sure that at the end of the day the only thing that you expect is to have a beautiful day! When it comes down to it, it’s all about you and your fiancé starting your new chapter together and ‘que sera, sera!’ What will be, will be!
- Give enough yet simple information! Provide your attendees with all of the information they will need from suggestions of places to stay, explore and directions to your wedding ceremony and reception. But do so in a clean and concise way- try not to over explain yourself (IE: after the lake with the red dock you make a left and then a right after the blue house with the green shutters, etc.). Give addresses with suggested routes but keep it simple!
- Last but certainly not least, have faith that all of your hard work will pay off! It can be overwhelming and stressful and there will be times where you may want to just run to City Hall and elope and get it over with. But at the end of your wedding day when you and your significant other are hand in hand, filled with love and excitement for your new lives together to begin, it will all have been worth it! You will be able to look back at the memory of your wedding day and how marvelous and special the day was!
Remember that it’s okay to take a step back at times and take a deep breath! Planning for your wedding is a lot to take on! But using the tips above will hopefully ease the stress of it all and help you to plan and create a day that you’ll never forget! Enjoy each moment and again, congratulations!