So the moment you’ve been waiting for has finally come – you have a ring on your finger and you’re getting married. Now what?
Truth is, the weeks following any proposal are always a whirlwind. There are so many things to think about, so many people to contact, and so much to do. But before you do anything, take the time you need to celebrate your engagement – call your parents, tell your friends, take a selfie, get your ring sized, and relax. When you’re ready to tackle the wedding planning process, don’t be overwhelmed – here’s how to dive in.
1. Gather inspiration and set a vision
Envisioning your big day is always the fun part!
Whether you’re a Pinterest addict or Instagram pro, it’s time to create your wedding mood board. As you build out your board, look for recurring themes regarding color palette, venue details, and floral designs. The end result should give you a clear roadmap of your ideal wedding experience.
Is it a fall mountain wedding, a spring garden wedding, or a destination wedding off the coast of Mexico?
2. Decide on a date
Your inspiration board should also steer you towards the right date, but if it doesn’t, set a date in the season that you want. Remember that there’s a season for every mood. This will determine the colors and flowers you should use on your big day. If season isn’t an issue, think about meaningful dates like anniversaries and holidays.
3. Choose your wedding party
Before choosing your bridal party, you’ll need to determine how big your group will be. Next, ask yourself, “Will this person still be in my life five, ten, and even twenty years from now?” After you think that through, the right people should naturally fall into place.
4. Determine your wedding size & start building a guest list
Creating a preliminary guest list is one of the first things a couple should do after they get engaged. If there’s anything we’ve learned in our years of shooting weddings, it’s that guest counts can add up quickly. That number plays a huge role in your final budget and wedding venue. This is a good time to think about whether you’ll be inviting all your coworkers (and their plus ones) – or just close friends and family.
5. Set a budget
Will you be paying for your wedding on your own – or will others be contributing? Either way, set an attainable number that you feel comfortable spending. For reference, most couples spend around $30,000 on weddings.
6. Research and book a wedding venue
Close your eyes and imagine what your dream wedding looks like – or simply revert back to your mood board. Then, pick a few venues that align best with your vision.
Is it a black-tie ballroom, a rustic barnyard, or an outdoors affair? Remember that venues go beyond local hotels and banquet halls. And don’t forget to recruit your wedding gang to help scout out venues too!
7. Hire important wedding vendors
Many top wedding photographers and vendors are hired a year in advance, and once they’re booked, they’re gone forever. So, find them early and lock them in.
If you haven’t found a wedding photographer who just gets it, let’s talk. Our wedding photography team works hard in order to make sure you look the part and are joyful in front of the camera. But you don’t have to take our word for it… Here’s what our clients have said:
From day one, Nhieu & Susan were energetic, ultra responsive, focused, and eager to produce a lasting and high-quality product for our special day. The pictures were great and they worked their tails off. Value is especially important to us, and they delivered on that as well, beating the prices of MANY other vendors we spoke to. – Parin
We chose Nhieu for his artistic shots; crisp, clean detail; and ability to find angles and lighting to create a great photograph. He is full of ideas for poses – where to stand, how to tweak our expression, when to lean in, where to look, etc. He takes great care in setting up the detail of the shot so that we (the subjects) look the best. – Whitney
Nhieu and Susan are so prepared and flexible and can handle any situation. We could not believe how quickly they were able to provide us with all of our photos from our wedding. They are incredible and I would recommend them to anyone! – Jamie
Imagine what’s possible for your wedding day with the right team.