You’re newly engaged, you’ve announced the news to your family and friends, toasted with champagne and received endless well wishes. Now that the initial excitement has plateaued, you’re starting to feel anxious about getting organized and bringing to life what just might be the biggest day of your life. Well, look no further. Our savvy wedding planners have planned countless weddings from simple to elaborate. One thing they all agree upon is creating your personalized blueprint to stay focused and ensure everything fits together perfectly. By following these essential first five steps, you’ll be on your way to wedding planning success.
Step #1 — Setting a budget. We recommend choosing your budget as step number one because really, everything stems from that. Things add up much faster than you’d think! If you’re looking to limit your expenses, we offer a few suggestions. First, prioritize what aspects of the event are most important to you. It’s different for each individual couple, but this is essential for maximizing your investment in the things that mean the most to you. If you find yourself just looking to cut costs in general, we recommend a few things. Consider having an off-peak season wedding, emailing your save-the-dates and RSVPS, choosing a Friday or Sunday wedding instead of Saturday, or offering select drinks and cocktails opposed to having an open bar.
Step #2 — Creating a guest list. For creating your guest list, we recommend a simple format to organize and prioritize. Start with the “must have”. This is for the VIP’s. These guests are non-negotiable. They are required to get an invite because your big day simply wouldn’t be the same without them. Either that or you might cause World War Three. Then move to the “would-like-to-have” category. These are the people that ideally you would want to be present at your wedding but it wouldn’t absolutely make or break your day if they weren’t there. We’re talking about your acquaintances, your workout group, the neighbors, your old high school friends, etc. The reason we suggest splitting your guests into two groups is because it’s useful when it comes to picking the accommodations. Not only that, but it makes it easier for you to cut costs in this area if need be. We say this because more guests equals more expenses.
Step #3 — Deciding a theme and/or color palate. This is your opportunity to really let your personality shine through. Choose something that describes you as a couple. Some of the popular themed weddings that our planners have seen are sports themed weddings, rustic, vintage, nautical, etc. Maybe a specific theme isn’t your style and you’d rather just stick to a more classical wedding vibe. That’s great too! A color palate is necessary in any wedding whether it be themed or not. This is where you’ll pull colors from for your bridesmaid dresses, your centerpieces, your invitations and save-the-dates, your bouquet, and all the other accessories and details. Something that’s common is having a color palate that coordinates with the season. For instance for fall and winter weddings we tend to see lots of dark or neutral colors, and for spring and summer weddings we tend to see lots of pastels and bright colors.
Step #4 — Choosing the right venue. Our general rule of thumb when it comes to wedding venues is the sooner you book it, the better. Most brides feel much more at ease with that checked off the to-do list. When choosing your venue it’s important to keep in mind the time of year your wedding will take place. We say this because certain venues can book rapidly depending on the season. As for variety of venues, we’ve seen it all. We’ve seen venues ranging from TCF Bank stadium, The Science Museum, The Minnesota Zoo, historic mansions, historic libraries, and the list goes on. The most important thing to consider while choosing your venue is what kind of look and feel you’re going for. Do you want a smaller venue with a more cozy and intimate vibe? Or do you want a big venue, with tons of room for your guests to dance and socialize? That decision is up to you. Your guest list and wedding theme will most likely help to sway your decision as well.
Step #5 — The details. Ah, you’ve reached the last and final step in your wedding blueprint! This is where things really get fun. Here, you get to take all of the decisions you’ve made along the way, add them all together, and put the finishing touches on. We’re talking the decisions on what type of cake to have, what catering company to go with, whether to have a band or a DJ, and all the other details that fall in between. Since you’ve already made most of the big decisions, this part of the process is usually a breeze. However, it also is the part of the process where we recommend you stay extra focused. Make sure to keep in mind your budget, guest list, theme and color palate, and venue when deciding on all the small details.
Well, there you have it! All the steps you need to create your own personal wedding blueprint. If you decide along the way you need an extra set of hands in getting your plan just right, contact one of our professional wedding planners! They’re the best in the business and more than happy to help. Happy Blueprinting Brides!