You are engaged, now what?

It’s been a couple of days, maybe even weeks since he popped the question. You’re excited but a bit overwhelmed, and now thinking, what’s next? Don’t worry, you are not alone! You may or may not have a bunch of bridal magazines already, some people probably suggested for you to attend bridal expos, and maybe make a picture board.  Then you also have the questions, “when’s your engagement party” ,  “when’s the Big Day”. Here is my first advice, breathe! Then, read my guide below:

  1. The first question to answer is the question that everyone keeps asking, “When is your wedding day?” Both, and I mean BOTH, of you should set the date you two are comfortable with. Don’t be a bridezilla and make all of the decisions on your own. Pick a date that is special to the both of you, or pick a certain date in the time of year you would like to get married in and let that be your wedding date. I highly suggest having 2 dates that you would be happy with in case your first choice is unavailable.
  2. Now that you have a date in mind, set your budget. This is not as exciting as setting your wedding day, but it is mandatory. The two of you must agree on the number and who will be paying for the wedding.  Will it be self-funded, contributed to by family, or totally paid for by someone else? These are all very important questions to go over with your fiancé. One thing for sure is to have some “wiggle” room that you will be comfortable with, because you will quickly realize that your budget in the beginning will most likely not be the budget that you actually end up spending. If you are set on spending no more than 40,000 on your wedding day, then your budget should be 35,000. Trust me on this, and you’ll thank me later when you are not pulling the hair out of your head trying to cut down costs.
  3. You have your wedding day and your budget is set, good job! Now make sure your ring is insured and re-sized if necessary. You don’t want to lose your beautiful engagement ring or lose it down the drain! I recently discovered that it is a lot cheaper to protect your ring through your renters/home owners insurance policy.
  4. To have or not to have an engagement party…Engagement parties are becoming extremely popular. The question is, do you need to have an engagement party? The answer is No. Do you want to have an engagement party? Now dear, that is really up to you. There are pros and cons to both having and not having an engagement party, and I suggest you weigh both options before making that decision.
  5.  Hire a wedding planner. They will help guide you through your engagement process. This will make your planning much easier and will keep the stress off of your shoulders.
  6. You might already know exactly how you want your wedding day to be, but have you asked your fiancé for his opinion? What is important to the both of you? How do the two of you imagine your wedding day? Give him a piece of paper and ask him to write down his wedding day vision. It can be a collaboration of random words you might not understand yet, but it’s a great start. Does he want to have a beach wedding, while you have always dreamed of a countryside wedding? Now is the time to find out!
  7. Hopefully your wedding visions are somewhat similar, if they are not, find out how you can incorporate both of your visions into one. Once you do that, Pinterest, Instagram, and wedding magazines are your best friends. Look for inspirations and SAVE THEM! You might see something that you really like and assume that you will remember it, but in reality with so many options out there, you probably will not. Save your ideas, create a picture board of things you absolutely love, or things that make you happy. You will thank me later when you go to visit your vendors and they ask you about your favorite colors, inspirations and etc. Purple might be your favorite color, but you might absolutely hate it for your wedding day, just keep that in mind.
  8. You have your ideal wedding day in mind, you know your wedding budget, your ring is insured and fits perfectly, you might or might not be planning your engagement party, you have your wedding planner in hand and figured out you and your fiancé’s wedding vision. Last but not the least, it’s time to select your bridal party. You can either ask directly or have fun with it, make something cute for your girls and help him come up with ideas for his groomsmen. These are the people that will see you at your worst, your best, and still love you, so treat them nicely. Once you select your wedding party and they agree to stand by your side through thick and thin of your wedding planning process, get them together. They might or might not know each other and this can not be a better time to introduce them over brunch, drinks, a night out or night in, spa day, or whatever else you like to do. It doesn’t really matter, as long as all of you can make it! One thing for sure, be prepared for their questions, as they will want to know what, when and how. This is when you can take out your “picture board” and introduce them to your wedding vision!

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