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How to Start Planning your Wedding

How to Start Planning your Wedding

One of the biggest questions you will have when you first get engaged is “where do I start?” You may already know that you are going to hire a planner, but want to figure out the date and location before you do, or you are just in “research” mode at the moment and need a second to get your bearings. Either way, this should help you navigate the first steps in How to Start Planning your Wedding. 

So, let’s get you started. There are three elements that when completed intertwine to create a strong event foundation:

  • Wedding Goals & Priorities. How you want to Feel on your wedding day.
  • Total Wedding Investment. How much are you investing into your wedding budget.
  • Guest List. Who you want to celebrate with.

These three elements are the most important decisions of your wedding planning because together, they will dictate the rest of the wedding and give you the end result you are looking for. Let’s break this down a bit further:

  • Wedding Goals & Priorities. Time for the sit-down. Sit down as a couple and determine what you want your wedding to be like, feel like, and look like. What experiences do you want to have with your guests? What are your must-haves, and have-nots? It’s important to then take this information and create your wedding goals and share it with your planner. It gives your wedding planning a direction, and helps you stay on track when the detailed questions come up. 
  • Wedding Investment. Determining how much you are willing to invest in the entire event is more of a challenge than many people expect it to be because most people have no idea how much a wedding will actually cost. That’s ok! But you STILL need to have a general idea of what you want to spend.  The best way to accomplish this is to first, figure out who is contributing. Talk with your families and decide what that range will be. Second, figure out two numbers, the “ouch, that’s a lot, but we can do it for what we want” number and the “this is the ideal” number. This will give you a range so that as you are going down the planning & design path, you will have some wiggle room. 
  • Guest List. Write it down. Be it in excel sheet, note pad, or sticky note, but write it down. This is obviously going to be a first draft, but this is important.  We have a Guest Manager that you will use as a client, but this will at least get you started. It will help determine your estimated spend for venue, catering, design and on and on… Also, be sure to include the “courtesy invites” {those you invite, but know can’t come for whatever reason}, just put a star next to these. For Destination weddings, we typically see approximately 75-85% attendance rates, with a higher range for local weddings or driving distances. 

Each of these elements intertwine at every step, and each one effects another. Have a good handle on these
and the rest will start coming together. This is all part of our Discovery Process for Full Service Planning & Design. Establishing a strong foundation from the very beginning will contribute to your overall amazing wedding experience.

For more information on our Full Service Planning & Design services, follow this link: SERVICES


Happy Planning!