I am in the process of attempting to plan my wedding to my fantastic fiance. I have trouble deciding what to have for lunch most days, so I am pretty much terrified at the prospect of planning such a huge event! At this point, I am in the beginning stages of planning. I am hoping that chronicling my journey here will help me organize my thoughts and maybe help someone else who feels as overwhelmed as I do, and I welcome any (positive and constructive) suggestions you may have!
Last week, I made a few forward steps to get started!
1. I went to Barnes and Noble and picked up these to help myself get motivated and organized! I picked this organizer because it has an actual 3-ring binder as well as a 3-hole punch inside, and I thought that could help me keep organized more easily. However, after looking more closely at the content, it doesn’t seem as helpful. I’m considering exchanging it for one that is better suited to my wedding style and budget.
2. I checked out my first wedding venue with my mom! I found the experience a little overwhelming, but overall very helpful! It feels good to have gotten a tangible start to the process and feel like something has been completed. Although I plan to continue looking at a few more options since this was only the first, I think that this particular venue is a real possibility. It combines a classy feeling with the option to add some fun and personal touches. In addition, the wedding coordinator is AMAZING, which I think will be an extremely helpful thing in the long run. She seems to be on the same wavelength as I am when it comes to ideas, so that’s really going to come in handy if we choose this venue. In addition, she spent nearly THREE hours with my mom and me, discussing options, ideas, decorating plans she had previously implemented, helping choose tentative color schemes, touring the facility, etc. She was SO wonderful, that I could consider choosing the venue based on her alone. In short, I feel MUCH better about the next steps in planning after checking out the first venue and meeting with the wedding coordinator. Here are some lessons that I’ve taken from this experience:
- Choose a venue that has a vibe with which you connect.
- Look into the details, too, not just the overall look of the venue. For example, this particular venue’s banquet rooms are names for Founding Fathers and other famous historical figures from the American Revolution, which I think is cool because it ties into our Washington, D.C. proposal!
- Make sure the wedding/event coordinator goes through the package information and pricing with you. Find out where you can cut corners, what options can be customized, and what can be changed. For example, if the package includes an open/hosted bar for the entire reception, but you only want to have it for the cocktail hour, find out if the venue can accomodate this preference and what change it will make with the package price.
- Ask about extra fees, taxes, and gratuity!
- Take a look at the bridal changing area and see if you like it.
- Check out the ceremony site, if there is one, even if you aren’t really planning to use it. You never know what you might find!
- Choose a wedding coordinator who “gets” you! If he or she doesn’t like the same ideas you do, it’s going to make things much more stressful and difficult. If you LOVE every idea that he or she suggests or tells you they’ve done in the past, you’ve got a winner!
I’m sure I’ll have more to add to this list as time goes on, but these are a few things that I noticed during the appointment and thought would be important!
3. I chose my dress!!!!!! Sorry for all the exclamation points… but not really 🙂 My mom and I really went just to look at a bridal salon that a family friend recommended to see if we would be interested in scheduling an appointment. But, it turned out that they weren’t that busy, so they had me try a couple things on. The first dress was pretty, but just not quite my style. But the second one… It’s perfect! Obviously I can’t post a photo just yet, but I am so excited to have found a dress that I love and by such happy accident! I cried, my mom cried, even the consultant cried! I was a little reluctant to say “yes” right away, but once they had me completely try it on (it wasn’t actually available in-store in my size, so it took a little consultant magic) and they reminded me that it was on sale for nearly half off, I just couldn’t pass it up! Let’s just say that the dress incorporates some of my favorite things in the world, and I can’t wait for MY dress to come in so I can try it on over winter break!
Okay, well, I think that just about covers it for now! I hope that you have enjoyed this first installment, and please let me know if you have and questions, comments, or suggestions!