Looking to be your own wedding planner? You’re not alone! Many brides, whether it be for budget reasons or just their natural love of DIY, decide to plan their weddings — and they totally kill it as their own coordinators! But, as any experienced bride-to-be and professional planner will tell you, it’s a whole lot of work. With endless amounts of decisions, looming deadlines, budgets to manage, and miles-long to-do lists to tend to, planning your own wedding is no simple feat. So where should you begin if you’re the planner, the executor, and the bride? Right here.
Write out your goals
For me, this was not so much what I wanted to accomplish, but more so how I wanted to feel and what was most important to me. I’m in the process of doing this for every part of the wedding. Doing this has not only helped calm my anxieties surrounding these various events, but it has also made decision making easier by allocating purpose to each choice we make. For example, my goal for the rehearsal dinner is for everyone to get together in a casual setting to feel more comfortable and bond before the main event. Keeping this in mind has helped guide our decisions of where to have it, who to invite, what food to have, etc. Writing out your goals for everything helps you keep the focus on the big picture when you find yourself getting overwhelmed with the little details.
Start With a Budget
Before you can dive into any of the nitty-gritty details, it’s important to carve out how much this wedding is going to cost you. Plan out the maximum amount you’re able to spend on all the wedding vendors, details and decorations. Be sure to set a budget early on and stick to it throughout the wedding planning process.
Don’t Make Any Quick Decisions
After you’re engaged, you’ll be filled with urges to book everything as soon as possible. But remember, there’s no rush. Spend quality time getting to know vendors before signing on the dotted line. When it comes to selecting your date, pick a date that gives you enough time to save up some money and also plan the wedding of your dreams.
Find and book a reception site, and set a date.
The popular venues (country clubs, ballrooms and hotels, for example) might already be booked for Saturday night, but call them anyway to try for a Friday or even Sunday afternoon or evening. Also, think outside the typical wedding venue and consider nearby restaurants with event spaces or large rooms that can be sectioned off.
There won’t be time for fittings and custom orders, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have any options. Bridal salons host sample sales all the time where, if you’re lucky, you could take a designer gown home with you the same day as your purchase. Or check out any number of popular ready-to-wear stores that are now carrying wedding-worthy white dresses.
Make the Wedding Adventure Fun
Enjoy the time you’re spending planning your wedding and make it fun along the way. Weddings are a giant celebration of love and when you plan your special day on your own, you truly are planning the wedding of your dreams.
See? We told you it was possible. Happy planning!