… And five things that can wait.
According to a recent WeddingWire survey, 40 percent of engagements happen between Christmas and Valentine’s Day, with Christmas Day being the most popular day to pop the question. So chances are, if you’re reading this, you’ve just gotten engaged (congrats!) and are probably just starting to transition from “Oh my God, I’m getting married!!!!” to “Oh. my. God. I have so much to do.” Wedding planning is stressful, especially in the very beginning, when your to-do list is miles long. How does anyone know where to begin? Don’t worry, RiverCrest has your back! Here, take a look at our short list of things to do as soon as you get engaged, with a chaser of the stuff that can wait.
But first? Deep breath. You’ve got this.
5 Things To Do Now
1. Insure your ring.
Get an appraisal—most jewelers do this—and add it to your renters or homeowners policy (it’s called a “rider”) or set up separate coverage. Better safe than sorry.
2. Start dreaming (or Pinterest-ing).
Sit down with your partner and envision what sort of wedding you want to have. Outdoor? Ballroom? Rustic? A laid-back party or a black-tie affair? This will help guide your future planning.
May we suggest a few of our favorite boards?
3. Set a budget.
The most important part of budgeting your wedding is to set your priorities. Even before you start collecting estimates, talk with your partner about the things that are most important to you and put together a ranked list. There will be a wide range of options available to you in every category, so it helps if you decide ahead of time where you want to allocate funds to choose the top of the line option. Have you always dreamed of having a magazine worthy collection of photos of your big day? You’ll want to make photography a budget priority. Are you determined to throw the party of the century with your friends rocking out until last call? Prioritize hiring a band that will make your guests pass the hat (twice!) to buy more time at the venue – this actually happened at a particularly legendary wedding in one of our blog team member’s family!
4. Start a (very rough) guest list.
Start out with the big picture instead of trying to list individual names. Do you or your partner have a big family, or a tight network of friends? How do the two of you feel about including kids? Where will you draw the “plus one” line? Thinking about these questions will give you an idea of how many people will be on your final guest list, which can help give you a starting point in determining your venue—and also your budget.
5. Choose a wedding season.
While you don’t need to lock down the date right away, it’s a good idea to settle on a general timeline (do you want a summer wedding, or are you hoping for snow on the ground?). This will also help you determine how much planning time you have. Keep in mind that locations and some wedding pros book up to a year in advance, especially for popular wedding dates – June and September are generally hugely popular wedding months. Our expert wedding team can help you navigate this one, we’ve hosted amazing weddings in every season!
… And 5 Things That Can Wait
1. Your wedding dress.
Have fun shopping around and browsing styles online. You don’t have to settle on a dress until six to eight months out.
2. Your seating chart.
Do this once all wedding RSVPs are in.
3. Your bridesmaid dresses.
Settle on these once you’ve chosen your dress. You’ll want to give your ’maids enough time to order and alter them, but have your color scheme and overall theme in place first so the dresses are a good complement.
4. Your wedding flowers.
While you’ll want to book your florist early, choosing your exact flowers isn’t something that needs to be done right away. Instead, let your wedding ideas and inspiration evolve and sit down with your florist closer to your big day to decide between dahlias and delphinium.
5. Your paperwork.
Changing your name? Combining bank accounts? Do this after the wedding. For now, focus on the fun stuff (like showing off your new sparkler).