The ring’s on your finger, the champagne’s been popped, your friends keep pestering you for a wedding date, now what? Wedding planning!
There are three tasks you should do before diving deep into the world of lush silk and perfect bows:
1. Decide on a location
2. Draw up a guest list
3. Set a budget
Together with your fiancé/é decide where you want to get married. I’m not referring to the actual venue at this early stage, but the town, city, or country in which you want to hold your wedding ceremony and/or reception. In many cases this will be a no brainer but if you’re indecisive then think about the following to help generate ideas:
- Would you rather stay close to home or have a destination wedding? If you want a destination wedding, do you think your family and friends can afford the costs associated with air tickets and accommodation?
- Do you want a city wedding, country wedding, or beach wedding?
- What type of venue do you envision hosting your wedding in? Is it a grand castle surrounded by a moat, a stately home with elegant decor and luscious manicured lawn, a contemporary gallery in the city, a divine five star hotel, or is it a family barn in the middle of the countryside?
- The distance from the nearest airport. If you have guests flying in to witness your nuptials then you want to consider the distance from the airport to your chosen location.
You should also decide if it will be formal or casual as this will help with process of elimination later on when searching for venues. If you want a formal wedding you won’t look at certain venues such as barns, 3 star hotels, restaurants, etc., you should only look at the appropriate venues and where they may be located. As you’re answering these questions you start to understand what type of wedding you want and eventually you’ll narrow in on a location.
Together with your partner and both sets of parents, draw up a first draft guest list which has two separate columns. One column is for those guests that must be invited to the wedding, and the other column is for guests you would like to invite to the wedding. Tips for editing the guest list will come in another post…
Things to consider when drawing up your guest list:
- What size wedding do you want?
- Will you have the budget to cater to all your guests?
Figure out realistically how much you have to spend. Sit down with your fiancé/é and your parents to discuss the wedding budget in depth. If your parents want to contribute in someway but don’t like the idea of just giving you a fixed amount of cash, then suggest they pay for certain parts of the day such as the photography, or the band, etc,. so they know where they contributed.
If you’re on a budget, figure out where friends and family can help. There are tons of ways to save. First and foremost, hire a wedding planner! We save you thousands of pounds from the strong relationships we have with our vendors. As proof, I saved one couple £4,800 today alone! If you prefer not to go down that route then friends and family can help by calling vendors to get quotes, making flower arrangements, baking the cake, designing and printing the stationery, etc. Think outside the box and be creative. One thing I do suggest is signing an agreement with friends if they are playing a big role in your wedding such as baking the cake. Make sure the baker understands your wedding envision, the time of your wedding, the time he/she has access to the venue, the time the cake stand must be removed from the venue the following day, and the details of the order. It does bring your personal relationship into a mildly awkward business relationship, but for good purpose.