YAY! You're engaged and we are thrilled for you.
Most couples, after letting the engaged magic dust settle, ask "what next?" and we're here to guide you through four important tasks to lay the groundwork before the wedding planning begins.
- Celebrate! This one is obvious, but we are here to tell you to celebrate as long as possible. Celebrate every moment after getting engaged - have dinners with friends, take an engagement trip, or have a day off from work together. Take this moment; it's undoubtedly one of the best parts of the wedding planning journey.
- Guest List. Start discussing who you imagine at your wedding. Discuss openly with your fiancé: do you want a small, intimate wedding or a big celebration? What does small and intimate mean to both of you? Quantify what 'big' means to you. If you need to narrow the guest list down, close your eyes and use this test: if you plan to marry this year, do you see this guest attending? If you're getting married in five years, do you still see this guest attending? After you have created a preliminary guest list, bring in both sets of families. Sometimes, it helps to let them know how many guests they can invite. For example, saying, "Mom, we have given each parent ten couples to add to this guest list," helps to provide a framework to start a discussion with your families. Use this article from The Knot for some additional tips on creating your guest list.
- Financials. Open your favorite bottle of wine and discuss this openly. We recommend understanding how many guests you will have to understand how much your wedding may cost fully. It would be best if you involved your family members in this discussion. Then, divide your estimated wedding budget by how many guests you count at your wedding. That provides you with how much per guest you're budgeting. Does that figure sound realistic about dinner, bar, venue, floral, cake, table settings, photographer, etc.? Bring this amount into your discussions with wedding planners. Have an open mind when they listen to what you want and explain how to figure that out in your wedding finances. This is a friendly reminder that the venue, catering, and bar should equal around 40% of your overall budget for a Dallas or Fort Worth wedding. You can also use this free wedding budget template created by The Knot.
- Wedding Planning. Once you have this framework, you're already ahead of the curve. The information you have discussed and prepared above will create guidelines to frame almost every conversation with planners, designers, venues or vendor partners. You now know how many guests you have to fit within a venue, and you also know, in general terms, how much money you have to spend on your wedding. By using all of the prep-work information, hiring a wedding planner or wedding planning team to guide you through the rest of your journey is the logical next step.
Congratulations! Not only on your engagement together but also on completing the first few steps of planning a wedding. We would love to start a conversation together to see how we can help make the wedding planning process enjoyable and celebratory.
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