The rush of the proposal is intense – but short lived. As soon as people hear you’re officially engaged, they’re full of questions. When’s the wedding? Who will be in your wedding party? Are you having a big wedding? What about the reception? OMG what about the Honeymoon? Are you parents coming? Will the families be involved? Have you registered? WHAT ARE YOU WEARING?
Honestly, it’s (almost) enough to make you rethink this whole engagement thing. Also, it makes eloping look REALLY REALLY ATTRACTIVE.
Take a deep breath, steady your nerves and prepare to navigate through one of the single most stressful events in your life. Don’t worry, though, we’ve got your back with some tips and tricks that will help keep your wedding from becoming your mental breakdown.
1. Tell Friends & Family in Person
Your engagement isn’t something you want your nearest and dearest to learn about on social media. Get in touch with your close friends and family members to deliver the news over the phone or, better yet, in person. Let them know if you’re keeping it under wraps publicly so they don’t let the bat out of the bag too soon.
2. It’s OK to Say ‘I Don’t Know’
When people start firing questions at you, don’t be afraid to tell them you just don’t know the details yet. You aren’t really expected to know every detail the day after you get engaged. Your friends are probably just so excited they can’t help themselves. If you feel yourself getting overwhelmed by their zeal, be honest and tell them you guys are planning or haven’t decided and that you’ll make sure they’re in the loop once some firm decisions are in place.
3. Assume Nothing
Even if the two of you have talked about things you’d each like in a wedding, once you start planning your own it’s a good idea to throw any assumptions out the window. Start from the ground up when it comes to planning – including the most fundamental question of all.
4. Is Elopement an Option?
All joking aside, it’s worth considering if you’d like to have a simple, personal ceremony and the a big party or even a complete elopement. There is 100% nothing wrong with running off to Vegas or just going downtown and tying the knot with absolutely no one in attendance. In some cases, this option can make everything easier and simpler for a couple. That doesn’t mean you can’t still have a slap up reception later, it just means as far as the actual service goes, it’s a personal affair.
5. Pick Your Rings and Bands
Sizing and customization of wedding ring sets can take time. Be sure you won’t be play Beat the Clock on your wedding day by getting your rings sorted as soon as possible. If you’re looking to match your engagement ring, check to see if the jeweler already has matching bands or accent rings to complete the set. If not, consider options where you can customize a band or ring or choose a fully matched set. Having this issue done right away not only crosses a major To Do item off your list, it’s also one of the more enjoyable tasks you’ll need to do as a couple before the big day.
6. Pick a Date
Work with your fiance to settle on a date that will work for everyone. Consider things like having your wedding off season if you’re looking to save some money. Once you have a date in mind, don’t make it public quite yet as you’ll need to make sure the venue you choose has the date available.
7. Seriously Consider a Wedding Planner
Whether you’re having a large service and a reception or focusing only on the party, seriously consider whether or not you can hire a wedding planner. Yes, they can cost a lot and, yes, it means giving someone else control but it can be a huge help when it comes to planning an event as large as a wedding. When searching for a wedding planner, consider the following:
- Experience Matters – Planning a wedding is a massive undertaking. While you may be tempted to hire someone new to the game in order to save some money, remember you get what you pay for when it comes to this kind of service. That doesn’t mean you should choose the most expensive planner but someone willing to coordinate your entire wedding for next to nothing is going to give about the same in return.
- Ask for References (And Then Actually Reach Out) – Too often, people will ask for references from a service professional but then never take the time to reach out to those references personally. It’s easy to shoot out a Facebook message, send an email or even (gasp!) CALL THEM ON THE PHONE. You’re about to hand over a significant amount of money AND the reigns to the most important day of your life to this person – they’re worth checking out.
- Someone You Can Talk To – I’m not talking about someone you can communicate with regularly or someone who answers their emails and calls promptly (though that’s hella important). I’m talking about someone you can really TALK to – whether it’s describing the details that are important to you or being comfortable enough to be honest when they get something wrong, being comfortable with your wedding planner is absolutely vital. If you don’t feel at ease with a planner, thank them for their time and move on.
8. Begin Your Wedding Plans With a Vow
Even with a wedding planner, pulling off a wedding is a lot of work and a lot of stress. Before the circus begins, take some time for a night out with your new fiance. Make a promise to each other to be extra patient, to show a bit more kindness and to remember you guys are in this together.