I’m getting married! OK so not until June 2020 but still! This is possibly one of the most exciting times in my life and although I have enjoyed celebrating our engagement, I am so ready to officially start planning our big day. I wanted to share with you all how my plans are going and if/when I have any bridezilla moments!
After the initial shock of being engaged wore off, (and I finally took a moment to peel my eyes away from my gorgeous new ring on my finger) I suddenly thought “crap! How the hell do I plan a wedding?” I needed to start making decisions with the end goal being that I knew how to plan our wedding. Here is where I am at so far…
Setting a Wedding Planning Timetable. The minute we got engaged, everyone was asking us for a date. But realistically, we weren’t able to set an exact wedding date until other major decisions like choosing (and booking) our venue were made. So we focused on a range of dates that worked for us, the season we wanted and any major holidays or family events we would want to avoid conflicting with, and how long we would need to plan.
Finding Our Wedding Vision and Picking a Venue. I have gone into planning our wedding being completely (OK mostly) open-minded when imagining the style and vibe of our ideal wedding. We knew we had to consider things like did we want a big or small wedding? Did we want to get married outdoors or inside? Did we want our venue to be close to home or a bit further away? Were we going for something modern, classic, vintage, rustic or all-out glam? This is where Pinterest, Instagram and wedding magazines become a great help for inspiration. I also discovered a really good wedding planning app called Bridebook. Everyone has asked if I am going to get a wedding planner but honestly, this app has made it so easy that I don’t think I will actually need one! It has all the tools I need, including a personalised budget, checklist, venue and supplier search, and guestlist, all in one place – and it’s free!
Setting our Wedding Budget. The dreaded discussion of “how much is this ONE day going to cost us?!” We are pretty much paying for our own wedding but our families are contributing where they can also. We have agreed on a budget (which I am going to keep to myself for now) and this is what we are aiming to stick with when deciding how we plan our wedding and any purchases we make. It hasn’t been the most enjoyable conversation to have, and we have had the odd disagreement here and there, but I am glad we have got it out the way so we now have a realistic picture about what we can spend.
The Wedding Guest List. Being that our wedding is some time away, the guest list has been quite challenging. We have had to consider a number factors, particularly how many people our venue can accommodate for both the ceremony and reception. We both have large families so we wanted to make sure all the important people (parents, grandparents, siblings, aunties, uncles and cousins) were at the ceremony, along with some close friends. The venue and catering is where our biggest expense lies so we have had to keep in mind that the more guests we have during the day means the higher the price will be as catering costs are calculated on a per-head basis.
Insuring the Ring. No matter how careful I am, the peace of mind that engagement ring insurance has given me and the fiance is so worth it.
Choosing the Wedding Party. I couldn’t wait for it to be our turn to propose to our bridesmaids and groomsmen. I wanted to ask them as soon as we could so we could start asking them for their help and opinions too. I have four bridesmaids and a brides-man and Adam has five groomsmen. We have tried to keep everyone informed about our plans and hopefully they are all excited and know how much we appreciate them.
Booking our Wedding Venue. We only viewed two venues before we decided, and even after the first viewing, we knew that was the venue we wanted to get married in. It was important for us to find a venue that would be the perfect backdrop for all of our wedding photos, that it wasn’t higher in price than we had budgeted and it could accommodate all of our guests. We also wanted our venue to have in-house catering and drinks package so that we didn’t have to source that ourselves. So, I can happily say that we have signed our venue contract and we now are officially getting married on 6th June 2020 at Hyde House & Barn, Cheltenham. Eeeek!
Snapping up Our Photographer. Booking a venue and a photographer were my key things to get done this year. A lot of recommended photographers are hired more than a year in advance and once they’re booked, they’re gone. For me, a photographer was one of the highest of my wedding priorities so I wanted to get this booked ASAP. We have booked Ben from Blooming Photography as we liked the style of his photos and the fact that we is a recommended supplier at our venue.
So that is where we are so far with the wedding planning. My next steps are to buy and send our save-the-dates out and to start shopping around and trying on wedding dresses. Until then…