First, Congratulations! Before you do anything, let’s talk about next steps!
1. Tell your family & closest friends:
Wait! Don’t post it just yet . . put down the Snapchat! Those closest to you will really value being the first to hear your wonderful, joy-filled news. Make sure to tell Grandma and your besties before the social media frenzy begins!
2. Get a manicure
Umm, hello beautiful new bling! Like it or not, your hand is now the focal point of every conversation—everyone is going to want to see, so your nails best be decent.
3. Set up date night!
This marks the beginning of a crazy, amazing journey towards your walk down the aisle, and THE MOST important thing is to be in the moment with your partner! Plans and details begin to take over and that can make it hard to find quality time. If you do not have date night set up already, take out your calendars and find that one night a week that no matter what, it’s just you two! One night, no wedding planning, no tastings or color swatches, just being with the one you love. This could be as simple as cooking dinner at home and eating together. DO NOT proceed without completing this step. ; )
4. Insure and size your ring
Although they try, it’s not often that the ring fits just right. You don't want it too tight, and heaven forbid too loose!! The top priority is to get your ring feeling secure. Now, I know it will be hard to take it away so soon, but trust us on this one. Additionally, if your finance hasn’t already, call your insurance agent and add on coverage for your new ring. This is not just a invaluable symbol of your commitment, but an investment in your future.
5. Start thinking engagement photos!!
• Create a Pinterest board! • Determine your style, location, theme, attire • Research photographers
6. Start drafting your guest list
Excel will be best. Here is a link to a handy guide if you’re struggling to decide on a guest
7. Have the “Money Talk”
Nobody likes the Money Talk, but I promise it’s the best part!! No, I am not crazy. Empower yourself with the specifics so that you can proceed with planning. Talk to all parties and determine contributions. Set a budget and stick to it. If you do this, you are guaranteed not to stress about money—and you do not need extra stress!
8. Narrow down and set the date
Firstly, we have to consider the budget. If budget is not a concern, skip to step 2. If it is, consider the following:
On season or off? June through October are the most popular months, mostly due to weather. Choosing a date outside of this window could offer some savings depending on your venue. Did you know that some venues have increased rates for Saturdays? Choosing a less traditional day of the week like a Friday or Sunday can also save on budget!
Step 2: Reflect
Do you have a favorite season as a couple, and if so, what is the weather like?
Is there a theme or overall vision you have always pictured for your wedding?
Don't forget to consider holidays.
What about time off work?? Not just for the wedding, but your honeymoon, too!
Finally, don’t rush! Unless, of course, there is good reason. As a wedding planner, I would recommend giving yourself about a year. Planning a wedding can be a full time job even when you have plenty of time, so there is no need to add stress. Which leads us to:
9. Meet with White Sage Wedding & Events
No matter your vision, skills, or budget, having a wedding coordinator at least on the day of is a minimum requirement. The day of your wedding YOU, your family, and your friends should be free to focus on enjoying every moment. Getting married for many is a once in a lifetime experience. It goes by so quickly and we are only left with memories. Let White Sage Wedding & Events put your mind at ease with a custom planning package to suit your needs and concerns. This process is personal—getting to know and build a friendship with our clients is important to us. Send us a message and let’s grab a coffee! Click here to read what our clients think about working with us!
10. Research and set venue tours
Your parents/friend have the perfect backyard!!?
Okay, for everyone else, whether you are working with your planner to find the perfect spot or scouting on your own, start comparing. This basically means a date with your hunnie to explore new and beautiful places—yes, brunch should be included! But in all seriousness, it’s important to do your research! Venue packages can include perks like tables and chair or even a bridal suite! However, they also have specific rules like exclusive vendors, minimums, and operating hours. It is important to get all the details. Remember to reflect and weigh the options based on what is important to you and your partner. Make sure to read every contract VERY carefully. Deposits can be non-refundable. But most importantly, as one of my recent clients put it, “We got the feels.” Find the place you want to stand next to the love of your life and devote yourselves to each other forever.
11. Engagement party??
Talk to family and friends, make sure one is not already in the works, and start talking about it. Do you even want an engagement party? Chances are it will be about a year before your wedding and who says getting engaged isn’t reason to celebrate!?
12. Choose your wedding party
So you've told everyone, your nail game is on point, weekly date night is in full swing, and more details are starting to come together. You should be feeling pretty good! You’ve got a handle on this! Your guest list is coming along, the date is set, venue, and planner are booked! But who will stand by your side? Taking the time to thoughtfully ask your most important people to support you is a big step. When you’re ready, here we go!
13. BONUS Step: Inspiration!
Start pinning!! **Pro tip: create separate boards for:
Bridal Party Attire
Signage & Activities
Gather your group and:
Go to a Bridal Show!
Start dress shopping! (Order no later than 8 months out!)