First of all Congratulations! All the cliche’s are totally true and this is absolutely that most exciting thing! For anyone that follows me on Instagram (or my lack of unsubtle pinning on Pinterest!) you’ll of seen that Rich and I recently got engaged. We had decided to keep everything under wraps for a few months and start the planning process with just our closest family which was absolutely one of the best decisions we have made as its lovely to enjoy the start of the process privately.
1. Call all of your closest family! This may seem really obvious but for me engagement etiquette was really tricky. Rich had asked both my parents and I knew they had shared the information, however all family members are different. Some are happy with hearing it through parents but others want to hear it from you! If you don’t have the time to call then send out engagement announcements before posting it on social media!
2. Chat with your new fiancé. And yes I totally appreciate how weird that feels to hear right now! I still call Rich my boyfriend and at 33, that is starting to seem less fitting! Get a good bottle of wine and have a really good chat about what you both want from your wedding. Rich and I have always been on the same page that we wanted it to be really special and to spoil our guests. You have lots of joint decisions to make about logistics etc and what you both think is best. This helps you to plan your budget too as you need to decide whether you want a smaller guest list but you spend more on catering, drinks, venue or want lots of people around you and then you scale back on things.
3. Start a Pinterest board! Planning is the best part and Pinterest is an absolute wealth of Wedspiration. Here is my Wedding Board by the way!
4. Make a draft guest list. Knowing your numbers allows you to start planning a budget and thinking about your venue requirements. Also, be prepared for this to change (a lot!), ours went from being a small wedding of 25 to double that for the day and double that again for the evening. People will begin to make valid inputs of who you should and shouldn’t invite, but you also need to be really strict too. Be warned as well, this can get stressful but the best thing you can do is stay true to who you want to see at your ceremony.
5. Plan your budget. This is essential after you know the rough size of your wedding as it allows you to plan your timings and what you can afford and when. We planned our wedding 18 months out which a lot of people thought was a long time however this worked out for us best as it allowed us to save for the wedding we wanted but also not stretch ourselves too much and make the experience unenjoyable.
6. Start looking at venues and vendors. This part is really really fun and exciting, you will also have a bout a hundred trillion opinions at this point. Honestly listen to them but you and your fiancé need to really trust your gut on this, it’s your wedding! Wedding Fayres are an absolute gold mine for helping you find this too and they are usually free, we found our venue, cake and photographer in one day! I personally recommend Love Actually for this.
7. Get Insurance. This is really boring, but also great piece of mind. You are sending people pretty hefty deposits and possibly not seeing them again for another year, if anything goes wrong at least your covered!