Happy new year! Congrats if you’re getting hitched in 2018! This is your year!
I hope you’re enjoying the planning process thus far! If you’re just beggining to think about your big day, I have set out some preliminary points below to get your wedding planning kicked off to a great start. Follow these simple steps and you’ll have that wedding folder filled in no time!
Here are the most important things to set out and plan from the start…
Image: Fleming Photo
1 Set a clear timetable
You’ll need to plan as much as you can as early as you can, so set a monthly timetable of what/when. Then, closer to the big day, set out a weekly schedule to get everything booked, done and checked off in time.
2 Pick a theme or style
Maybe you want a destination wedding? Or a cool urban wedding? Or perhaps you’re a traditionalist at heart? Marquee wedding or pub wedding? Perhaps you’ve got your heart set on a castle? Whatever you like, you should discuss this as early as possible with your other half to make sure you’re on the same planning page. What’s the most important thing to you for the day, and why?
The Devine Bride team setting up a marquee wedding in Chiswick last summer.
Image: Fleming Photo
3 Set a budget
This can be one of the most difficult things to stick to, but it’s also one of the most important things to plan early on. A clear budget from the beginning will make the whole process so much easier. Have frank conversations about how much you want to spend and how much you can financially afford. Again, make sure you are both on the same page about this.
4 Choose your wedding party
Take the time and think really carefully about who you want standing by your side to support you; not just on the big day itself, but along the whole planning journey too. Think of the people closest to you who have seen you at your best and worst, and who you trust with your life. (N.B., You can’t un-ask someone to be your bridesmaid!)
5 Write a guest list
This doesn’t have to be your final list, but it’s good to estimate numbers early on to make it easier to select your venue. This will also be a good indication of what you can afford, as most wedding packages are charged per person. It’s likely your list will chop and change a bit through your planning process, and that’s completely normal don’t worry! It’s important to set a realistic absolute maximum though, to allow you to stick to your budget.
6 Set a date
Think about what time of year you’d like to get married and work from there. Your venue and budget will affect what month and day of the week you’ll be getting married so this comes hand in hand with venue shopping (see below).
7 Book a venue
Popular wedding venues can get booked up years in advance (unless you’re ok with a mid-week wedding) so draft a list of places (based on your budget and potential guest count) and get calling! Often it is much more efficient to get a straight answer by phoning on your lunch break rather than emailing and awaiting a response.
8 Go dress shopping
Maybe the most exciting part? Once all of the above is underway you’ll have an idea of what shape your wedding is taking; if it will be a summer or winter wedding, a traditional or boho wedding, a religious or party wedding… and you can choose your dress accordingly! Once you have your outfit chosen, things will start to fall into place, so it’s worth having a look quite early on. Remember that you may also have to have up to three fittings before your big day, too.
I hope this list of wedding resolutions was helpful, it’s just the basics for starters. Things may seem daunting but sticking to a plan will really help, and the hardest part is getting going in the first place. Buy youself a pretty new 2018 diary to help get you started!
(And if you need any help just let me know, my planning, coordinating and styling services are pick + mix and super flexible!)