You’re Engaged… Now What?

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A Mini Timeline To Help You Start Planning

So your significant other popped the question… or maybe you did. Once the shock has worn off it’s time to start thinking of a game plan for the wedding. It may be hard to figure out the best course of action, but luckily we created this mini timeline including essential steps to take to get you started!

Step 1: Make your announcement

Of course, you want to let your close family and friends know the news before anyone else. The last thing you would want is the unnecessary drama of your brother-in-law seeing the announcement on Facebook before you had a chance to tell him yourself. Once you let them know, it’s time to let your extended loved ones know. There are a variety of ways to make your announcement from a simple post on social media to sending formal cards the old fashion way. Once this step is complete, you’ll probably be fielding a bunch of questions about wedding details so, it might be a good idea to have answers to the typical questions someone might ask such as, when and where.

Step 2: Determine a budget

You can’t plan a wedding until you and your significant other determine the budget. The old tradition of the bride’s parents paying for the wedding’s cost is pretty outdated. Sit down with both sets of parents to see if they’d like to contribute, and if so, how much. Or if you’d prefer to cover the costs on your own, look at your finances and where you have the extra money.

Step 3: Start thinking of a date and a location

You probably won’t know the exact date of your wedding until after you get engaged unless you’re a couple that has had a date in mind since you first met. Either way, it’s good to start planning and doing research on the best time and location that will work for both of you. If you’re trying to plan a large, extravagant wedding, giving yourself a year or two is a good idea as trying to plan in a shorter period of time could cause a lot of stress which no one ever wants. If you’re a quick planner and work well under pressure, a smaller more intimate wedding could be planned within a year.

Step 4: Who will be in your wedding party?

Some of us have known who our maid of honour will be since we were little kids, but others may not. The maximum number of people in your wedding party realistically should be no more than five, however, if you can physically and mentally handle more than that then more power to you. A large wedding party can sometimes be overwhelming and expensive. If you’re having trouble choosing who should be your maid of honour, it’s become more common to actually have two maids of honour or a maid of honour and matron of honour. Choose a wedding party based off of what works for you personally.

Step 5: Who do you want at your wedding?

Figuring out your guest list might be the hardest part of the wedding planning process. You don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings but you also want to make sure that your wedding is personal to you and your significant other. Think about what’s best for the two of you. Does the friend of your work friend who you just met a month ago need to be invited? Probably not. Start by each of you making a list of who you need to be there. Come together and compare lists, then go from there.

Step 6: Register

Once you’ve sent out your guest invites, it’s time to register for wedding gifts! This will make it easier for your guests to find what you need as a couple and to ensure you don’t receive any duplicates. Wedding registries have changed over the years with more couples living together before marriage, and luckily there are plenty of nontraditional registry options and custom wedding gifts to choose from.

Step 7: Order your dress

It can take months for your wedding dress alterations to be complete. It’s important to go dress shopping early to find the right one and assure that it’s ready in time. If you don’t have enough time to wait for a dress to be made, try buying a sample from a retailer or off the rack. Regardless of where you get it from, make sure you give yourself enough time to find the dress that fits your style and have fun doing it!

Step 8: Book the caterer, photographer and music

These three details are a few of the most important wedding essentials. Finding the right caterer, photographer and music choice will take some time and attention. Designate specific time during the early months of your engagement to do the research and find the right choices for you. Once these are booked, you’ll have a weight lifted off your shoulders and be able to focus on the finer wedding details (like the decor).

Step 9: Order wedding bands

A fun step in the wedding planning process is shopping for wedding bands. Many couples shop together to pick out what kind of band they would like. Many brides now actually send their engagement ring out before the wedding to be fused with their wedding band.

Step 10: Nail down a beauty regimen

It’s important to solidify a beauty routine that works for you to ensure that you feel and look your best by your wedding day. Many brides-to-be get monthly facials leading up to their wedding to give themselves beautiful, clear skin. If you’re looking to introduce new products into your skincare routine, be sure to try them well before your wedding in case of a negative reaction. As for hair, it’s important to begin taking care of it early on. Doing hair masks, taking biotin supplements, and getting regular haircuts will give you the healthiest hair result.

Step 11: Book your honeymoon

A great part of weddings is the honeymoon to follow! Make sure you arrange with work early enough to get the time off and book a place in advance. Going through a travel agent might be helpful for this part, as they can help determine the best places to go to and things to do!

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