First 6 Things to do After Getting Engaged
Ahh!! They finally asked and you said YES!! Time to show off that ring on your finger! Start all things wedding planning….right? But where to start first? Most likely this is the first wedding you’ve ever needed to plan (and hey, if it’s not, that’s okay too! Trends, desires, and processes change and it might still feel like you’re doing it for the first time!). Either way, take a deep breath and just trust that everything will come together as it should! Once your mind is made up that your wedding is going to be beautiful no matter what then you can begin the process with a grateful heart, ready to rock this! Here are the first 6 things to do after getting engaged!
1. Announce to family and friends personally
I’m not talking about just posting it to social media and calling it good. I mean, making sure you give your great grandma who doesn’t even know what Facebook is a personal phone call or visit to share the good news. Make sure those that mean the most to you and have been there through the journey of your dating and relationship get to hear it from YOU and not from a social media shout out. And also not “through the grapevine” or gossip.
2. Pick a wedding date!
A few things to consider when choosing your wedding date: how much time you want or need to plan the wedding, what season you want to get married in, and also any dates that are special or unique to the two of you. Your wedding date does not need to be on a weekend or Saturday!! You can choose any old day of the week if you want! The people who want to be there will make the sacrifice to be there. Yes, even if it’s in the middle of the work week.
Adam and I had originally chosen a date that was special to us and our family talked us out of it because it wasn’t on a weekend. I sometimes regret that and wish I had just picked the date we wanted – after all, it was our wedding!
Not to mention, if you do decide to get married on a weekday, most likely you will have more vendors open to you. Some even offer weekday discounts because you’re filling up their calendar on a day they otherwise would probably not have booked.
3. Decide how “large” you want your wedding
The size of your wedding takes into account two factors, more or less. Number one is your budget. And number two is the number of guests. More people = more money, yes but it also depends on how you imagine spending your day! Do you want a small, intimate dinner where all the guests in attendance are sitting around one table having a completely customized experience? Or do you want a room full of your most faithful supporters, a hundred (or two hundred! or three hundred!) glasses raised in celebration of the two of you? Before you can decide on a venue, you’ll need to not only know how much you’re willing to spend on the wedding, but also how many guests you’ll need to fit in the space.
From elopements with just the two of you and one or two witnesses to a micro wedding with 40 people or less. All the way to your traditional wedding with a large guest list!
4. Consider hiring a wedding planner
If you’re struggling with knowing how to plan everything within your budget and the number of guests, you may want to consider hiring a wedding planner. I know this sounds like just an additional cost on the budget, but in all reality? A wedding planner can help you STAY on budget. They have great resources for vendors of all budgets and guest lists of all sizes. Planners are an asset to you rather than just another vendor to pay. They can take your vision in your mind – or your Pinterest board filled with SO many pins – and narrow it down to something that really feels like the two of you. Wedding planners guide, plan, execute, make phone calls, give vendor suggestions, and have ALL the connections. A good planner is definitely someone you want on your team, no matter if your budget OR your guest list is small or large.
5. Start looking at venues
Now that you know about how many people will be on your guest list, and also what you’re able to spend, you can start looking at venues that will accommodate for both those amounts. Here are a few things to think about when deciding on a venue. First, what kind of “vibe” are you hoping for? Do you want downtown, funky and upscale? Maybe a venue out in the country with a rustic barn for its reception space?
Will you have lots of guests coming in from out of town that will need a place to stay? Where will you and your partner stay on the night of your wedding? What kind of activities do you want available for your guests during cocktail hour or the reception? Is having an incredible view important to you? Will you be dancing? Parking, transportation, lodging, wedding coordination. Some venues offer all of these services within their package!
That was a lot….let’s rewind and start with one thing. Begin with the vibe, or the type of setting you can imagine the two of you celebrating in. That will narrow down your choices a lot. You can find these through hashtags on Instagram or Pinterest, in Wedding Groups on Facebook, or by a Google search. Or, again, if you’ve chosen to work with a wedding planner they will know all the answers to the above questions about any given venue. And probably so much more that you may never have thought of!
6. Hire your wedding photographer
In all honesty, you actually don’t need to wait until you book your venue to hire your wedding photographer, especially if you have a general idea of what city it will take place in. It’s not unusual for photographers to book 12 – 18 months, and sometimes even 2 years in advance. If you have a wedding photographer you KNOW you want to work with, don’t hesitate! Reach out to them as soon as you decide on your date! Get that date reserved!
If you don’t have a photographer in mind already, you can begin your search by asking for suggestions from friends and family. Your wedding photographer is going to be a major factor in the flow of your wedding day, so if someone you know has worked with a great one, that’s a good place to start. Again, if you’re working with a wedding planner, chances are they have a list of recommended photographers that they have loved working with in the past.
What to do after getting engaged
Thanks for reading my suggestions on the First 6 Things to Do After Getting Engaged! This is a great place to start as you begin the wedding planning process! There are tons of resources out there, which can actually get confusing and overwhelming. Start with one task – like choosing your wedding date – and then just take it one thing at a time. Remember, your wedding day is going to be amazing no matter what. Don’t let the overwhelm let you forget that the wedding day is just day one of a great marriage. At the end of the day, you’ll be married and that’s the most important thing!
View Sawyer and Sara’s surprise proposal session in Cashiers, North Carolina here!
Meghan Rose Photography | Asheville Wedding Photographer
Meghan is an Asheville Wedding Photographer based in the Smoky Mountains of Western North Carolina. She serves clients all up and down the Appalachians and throughout the South. She loves working with fellow sentimental romantics who crave sunshine, days spent along a creek or up a mountain (or at the beach!), and don’t mind taking off their shoes and going barefoot for a bit.
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