The Who, What, When, Where and Why Guide to Wedding Planning
Just got engaged over the holidays? Congratulations! Now it’s time to start planning. And this is where it all gets a little tricky. When it comes to planning a wedding, it’s hard enough for the bride and groom to agree on every little detail. Then there’s mothers, grandmothers, friends and pastors to please. By the time your big day rolls around, you may be wondering exactly how your small beach wedding turned into 200 of your closest friends in a church. So when it comes to planning, how do you get it right?
Follow this Who, What, When, Where and Why Guide to Wedding Planning:
The people present in your special day is part of what makes it special. But think carefully about who you invite. More isn’t always more. When it was time to put my invitation list together, my mom felt obligated to invite tons of cousins and “family friends” that I had only met once or twice in my life. My list went from 100 to 200 quickly, and I spent a good portion of my wedding day greeting and chatting up virtual strangers.
Pro Tip: Invite just the people you really want there. While you will have to make some tough decisions along the way, it’s better to have a crowd you can really be yourself around.
Obviously the objective is to get married, but what parts of the tradition do you want for your day? Do you want to get married in a church or on a mountain top? Do you want a diamond or nontraditional ring? Do you want a dinner/dance reception or a shower of rice leading to your getaway car right after the ceremony? There are so many decisions about what will actually happen on your big day. Sit down with your fiance and make the big decisions so you can more easily narrow in on the details.
Pro Tip: Decide, yes, we want a beach with all our friends. Or, yes, we’ll hit Vegas with our besties. Once you’ve got a general idea of what you want the day to be like, it will be easier to determine the exact location and other fine details.
WHEN & WHERE
These two parts are as much to do with your own preference as who you want to be there. A hometown wedding makes it easy to get more of the people you love to show up. But if you want to do a remote beach wedding, as I so wished I had, this will cut way down on who can attend and how long your guests will need to plan and save.
Pro Tip: The farther your destination is, the more notice you should give your guests. As soon as you’re locked into your date and locale, send out Save the Dates. Refrigerator magnets are handy for keeping your special day on their minds!
All of this wedding planning is supposed to be joyful and what you’ve dreamed of since you were a little girl. Somehow, it can still be stressful and even cause animosity between loved ones and the couple.
Pro Tip: Keep in mind why you decided to plan this shindig in the first place and have regular sanity checks. Plan a bi-weekly date night with your fiance and make wedding talk off limits.
Getting married is the biggest commitment of your life, and the day you commit to one another should represent who you are as a couple. Turn off all the outside noise and commentary, and make the day yours!