The question has been popped, the proposal accepted; the champagne has flowed, and the engagement ring has been admired.
Now all you need to do is plan your wedding.
You want it to be special. You want it to be a little different and unique; you want a theme that is fun and frivolous but, you also want the sanctity of marriage and the story of your relationship to shine through.
To top it all off, you also have the constraints of the budget within which you must operate. When it comes to understanding how to plan a wedding successfully, you need a few basic and simple steps.
Step 1 – what kind of wedding day do you want?
Do you want flamboyant? Is it going to be big? Is it small, intimate and romantic? Is there a theme? A colour?… the questions go on and on but before you get swept away in a tide of unanswered questions and ideas, you need to sit down together, as a couple, as decide what can, what must, what can’t and must not happen on your day.
Step 2 – the perfect wedding venue
In our how to plan a wedding guide, we suggest that the biggest purchase be decided upon first, and that is the wedding venue.
You may decide on a church or registry office, followed by a wedding reception or you may opt for the all-in-one approach with a wedding venue that does both ceremony and reception.
Ask around, do a bit of research online and then make some appointments to go and view places. Not only is price an indicating factor but you will also need to consider whether you have exclusive use of the venue, if it is big enough and whether there is a need for overnight accommodation, either at the venue or nearby.
We would suggest visiting two or three venues to see how far your money can stretch.
Step 3 – Get help!
You can successfully plan your wedding, creating a day that is not only memorable but fun too but, if you know you are going to struggle, then you need to decide on the best course of action when it comes to getting the right kind of help.
There will be a legion of relatives and friends all clambering to help you out. From writing invites, to making up hundreds of party favours, there is a whole raft of people to call on.
But – and we must sound a note of caution – a wedding can also be the time that people tend to get carried away with their ideas. What you want can become lost in the melee.
The answer to this is to hire someone who is objective, full of advice, suggestions and contacts as well as being completely on your side. You may think that hiring a wedding planner is an extravagant expense, but it can be money well spent (and save you a lot of stress and headaches too!)
Step 4 – Check out major wedding suppliers
From food to flowers, drink to entertainment, once you have your venue sorted and enlisted help, you now need to start putting the finishing touches on your day.
What can impact on your day is when something goes awry with a key wedding supplier, like the food being late, the flowers not arriving or the wrong wedding cake being delivered.
Finding the best suppliers within your budget is simply essential. Take a look online, read reviews and get recommendations. Many entertainers and musicians will use social media to showcase their talent.
Once you are satisfied you have found the right people and suppliers book them, confirming details nearer to time to prevent any mishaps or problems on the day.
Step 5 – enjoy your wedding day
You have had fabulous help from family and friends, your wedding suppliers have all delivered, all that remains to be done now is to go ahead and enjoy your day.
You have a superb venue, hand-picked entertainment, beautiful flowers and the partner of your dreams. Even better you have managed to plan your own wedding without going over budget nor becoming overly stressed about small, inconsequential things, known in the industry as being a bridezilla.
All of this means that when your wedding day dawns bright and early, everything is under control – bar the weather – and you can kick back and really celebrate the start of something wonderful together.