You’re going to be a bride and you’re saying to yourself “I just got engaged, now what?” It’s time to plan your big day. Where do you start? Don’t stress. Just read below. (Need tips for the groom? This article is for you – For the Groom: I Just Got Engaged. What Do I Do Now?)
I Just Got Engaged, Now What?
Here’s a checklist list of things to do to keep you in-check as you’re preparing for your big day.
- Pick The Date – What time of year do you want to get married? Do you want a cold winter wedding or a warm summer wedding? Do you prefer to have your ceremony inside or outside? Pick the date based on these preferences.
- Set The Budget – Figure out who is paying for what. Are you and your fiancé paying for everything? Are your parents or his parents chipping in? How much do you want to spend? Have these conversations so you can decide if you will be having an intimate or grand-scale affair.
- Organize The Wedding Party – Once you and your soon-to-be husband decide how many people to have in your wedding party, it’s your turn to pop the question. Gather up your sisters, cousins, and/or best girlfriends and ask them to be by your side on your big day. And don’t forget about the flower girl and ring bearer.
- Start Your Guest List – Sit down with your fiancé to discuss who to invite. Once you get a basic list, you can ask your parents and his parents to help.
- Choose The Venue – Make sure the venue is available for the time of year you want your wedding to be in. Also make sure it holds the amount of people that you are planning on inviting.
- Hire a Photographer – You’re going to want to capture as many moments as possible. Hiring a professional photographer gives you great photos creating lasting memories to look back on.
- Book Your Entertainment –The music makes the party, so it is important to pick wedding entertainment for your guests. This is the one thing they will remember for years to come. So it’s time to decide if you want a live band or a DJ. No matter which you prefer, it is smart to attend a live music showcase to help you pick the perfect entertainment.
- Decide On The Food & Cake – You and your soon-to-be hubby should decide together on food and music. To make it more fun, you can ask your maid of honor and his best man to come with the two of you to food and cake tastings. It is a good idea to have other people’s opinions on this.
- Pick Themes/Colors – What colors do you want your girls and his guys to be wearing? Do you want to have an actual theme like “The Great Gatsby” or “Winter Wonderland”? Talk about your ideas with you groom. You may not think he would care about themes and colors, but he just may surprise you and come up with great ideas too.
- Order Your Dress – The best part of planning the wedding is picking out your dress. Make sure you start looking soon as possible. Do some research online or on social media to find the top three or four styles you like before going to the dress shop. Bring pictures of what you like and they will be able to guide you in the right direction. Eat a nice meal and wear comfy clothes because it may be a long day.
- Decide On The Bridesmaids’ Look – Okay so you have a color scheme and you have your girls, now you need to put the two together. Do you want the girls to wear short dresses or long dresses? Which color out of your color scheme are you going to have them wear? Do you want them all to wear the same dress or different styles but same color? These are all of the things you’re going to have to think about. You also have to decide whether you want to pick their hair, makeup, accessories, or let them pick these details themselves. Through it all, remember that it is your wedding so it is your final decision to be made, not theirs.
- Get a Little Gift for Your Husband for the Big Day – You want to get your new husband a small gift for the big day. Write a little love note with it. Have one of your bridesmaids deliver the gift to him on the day of the wedding while you are getting dressed. He will find this very sweet and memorable.
- Book Your Honeymoon – Aside from the wedding you also have to plan your first getaway together as a married couple. Do you want to leave the day after the wedding or wait a few days? Do you want to go somewhere tropical or somewhere adventurous? How far are the two of you willing to travel? What is your honeymoon budget? These are the decisions that will help narrow down the places for you two love birds to travel to after your big day.
- Get The Marriage License – This seems so obvious but can be so easily forgotten in the midst of the excitement and stress of planning. Make sure you get your license in plenty of time.
- Remember The Rehearsal Dinner – Typically this is the night before the wedding. The bridal party practices for the ceremony and then everyone enjoys dinner together before the big day. Make sure you have this in your plans to decide who is hosting this so you’re not running around last minute.
- Don’t Forget Thank You Notes – After it is all said and done with don’t forget to thank everyone for coming and being there on your big day. A little thank you note goes a long way.
Keep things in mind and you can answer that nagging question “I just got engaged, now what?” without stressing yourself out. All of the planning and preparation might sound like a lot, but just take it one step at a time and you will be okay. You are preparing for one of the most memorable days of your life. Make a list of things to do and cross things off your list once they are planned and done. This will help you see that you are getting your tasks accomplished. When it seems overwhelming, just take a breath and remember to enjoy the process.