Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Wedding Planning: Where to Begin?

It’s an extremely exciting day in your life when you get engaged.  All of a sudden, you have this event ahead of you, this day that is a true symbolic representation of who you are as a couple and what you mean to each other.  Then you are bombarded with everything bridal, and the choices seem endless!

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Start by discussing the basics – church or no church?  Indoor or outdoor?  Formal or informal?  Time of year?  Big or small?  Once you can narrow down the big picture a bit, it’ll be a lot easier when you start your search for the perfect place.

Hubs and I both liked the idea of a small, outdoor, untraditional wedding on the beach.  When I found Knots Landing at Ocean Isle Beach, NC while looking around online, I knew that it was exactly what we had been hoping to find.  A nice, private place where we could plan the wedding exactly as we wanted it (and as a bonus, be able to provide a place to stay for quite a few people!)

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Next, before you do anything else, you’re going to need to get down to the nitty gritty and discuss money.  Pick a figure that you, or whoever is generous enough to contribute to you, is willing to part with.  Then take that figure and estimate what you’re going to have to spend on each element of the wedding.  Budget calculators like this one on theknot.com are perfect for this. 

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Until you have a figure in your head of what you can spend on something, don’t shop for anything – prices vary widely, and people use the word “bridal” as an opportunity to mark up like crazy!

Lastly, pick a theme.  I went with the classic beach theme because I wanted to complement the natural beauty of the venue I chose.  It’s a good idea to have a general concept to work around to keep the choices from being overwhelming, and helps give your event some signature style.

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Any other brides out there have tips on how you got started planning your wedding?

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