Congratulations on the recent engagement! Did you get engaged during the Holidays? We want to hear your engagement story, leave it in the comments. If you are reading this it’s most likely because you are going in circles on where to start. You are looking at venues, but then checking your budget sheet, you are calling caterers to get a sense of expenses, but then circling back to your guest count. Well I hope I caught you right before you and your fiancé are ready to throw in the towel and go down to the courthouse.
Start a Pinterest Board
You have likely already done this, but now you can make it public now, and enjoy pinning a way into the wee-hours of the night. In all seriousness having a Pinterest board is helpful to give yourself a reference point to styles you may be drawn towards and at least a vision board to help you not start this process and end up somewhere you had no intention of being in the first place. This will help you stay focused when trying to choose a venue, photography style and even floral arrangements all the way down to the smaller details that ties everything together.
Pick a Date and Start a Guest List
Things to consider when picking a date is weather, three-day weekends and Holidays. Many couples choose to get married on a three day weekend such as Memorial Day or Labor Day if there will be a lot of guests needing to take a flight to your wedding. In which case these can be excellent days to get married for your wedding guests. However, if most of your guests are in your town you might actually want to avoid choosing a Holiday Weekend for your wedding date. Most people like to try and get away on those three-day weekends. There’s not a wrong answer here, just think about your guest friends and family and what will work best for the majority of the group or the VIPs of your wedding.
We recommend picking 2-3 dates that could work for you. This allows you flexibility when you are wedding venue shopping. We don’t want you to be let down that your dream venue doesn’t have your date.
Yuck! I know, not the fun part. However, having a budget is going to help you get through wedding planning with your sanity. You need to be able to choose the things you love with confidence. When you know an item or a vendor can fit into your budget it’s like finding a special treasure. A budget helps you avoid the unexpected feeling like things got out of hand too quickly. When you set aside your budget you can enjoy spending it on the things you love most.
Wedding Venue Shopping
The venue dictates a lot about what your wedding will end up looking and feeling like. As soon as you have your estimated guest count, date and budget in mind take another look at your Pinterest board and start venue shopping. After considering venue capacity and price, consider where hotels are in the area. Will you need to add transportation to your budget sheet to bring guests from the Hotel to the ceremony space, wedding reception, then back to the hotel? Lastly, read your contract! Venues can be sneaky in not allowing certain vendors that you really had your hopes on using to make your day special.
Wedding Venue shopping can look vastly different from couple to couple and offer an array of different things. There are very paired down rooftops and parks that offer a really unique setting, but not a lot of conveniences. Then there are hotel ballrooms and country clubs with catering and tables at the wedding venue. Or you can search for the hidden sweet spot of venues which is a unique wedding venue that includes all the conveniences like tables, chairs, catering, and sometimes they can even offer. Deity, our Brooklyn Wedding Venue, includes all these things, plus DJ, additional in-house decor, cake cutting, event-coordinator, and pricing even includes a bar budget.
Photographer and Florist
Here’s the fun part. Flowers and Photographer both help put your stamp of personality on your wedding. Some venues need more than others, so keep that in mind when venue shopping. If you pick a more bare bones venue you might need a lot of extra florals to create focal points and centerpieces. A more inclusive venue might only call from some little touches to put your personality into your wedding. Then your lovely photographer is another big chunk of your budget. It is not an after thought. Do some research on Pinterest and Instagram. Follow some of them and see what they post over a period of time. Do you find their content memorable? Then that might be your photographer. You want an aesthetic that will capture your wedding like you want your guests to experience it, because that will be the lens in which you remember your big day. Choosing a photographer also has a lot to do with personality. Do you want to spend all day with this person? Can you expect timeliness and contributing ideas to create memories? Do they tell a story with their wedding albums? These are all factors Deity thinks about when recommending vendors and especially photographers to Deity’s recommended vendors list.
A Good Mindset is Key for Wedding Planning Too
There’s no doubt that wedding planning can be stressful. We want wedding planning to be the most enjoyable process possible, so keep in mind how you want feel and how you want your guests to feel on that day and that will always point you in the right direction on what to choose and how to plan. Remember to budget and allow yourself to have fun spending that budget on the very thing it is for. Otherwise this whole process might sting a bit more as invoices are being paid. Our last piece of advice is just take a break when needed. We understand that simple decisions like which appetizers to pick or a color scheme can somehow end up being something you struggle over. Don’t be afraid to take a beat and come back to it. The wedding day will come and it will be incredible! We’ve shared a little bit of our experience, but now it’s time for you to take the reigns. You will learn a lot through this experience and I am sure you will be ready to share your advice with other brides in no time. Remember by the end of it all that matters is that you and your best friend are married! I promise that cannot be a bad day.