Congratulations!! You just got engaged! It has probably been a whirlwind with letting everyone in on your news, all the happiness and congratulations for friends and family, and the love you and your partner are feeling towards each other right now. ❤️
There may be a sense of urgency to start wedding planning right away, believe I did the exact same thing. So take it from someone who jumped in a tad too early. There are several things that you don't have to jump into planning and organizing just yet.
Buying the dress
It may be all to tempting to book that dress appointment at your favorite bridal store, to try on all of those amazing wedding dresses and finally get to feel like a bride! But I promise you, take a step back and wait. Instead, take this time to look through some inventory on bridal salon websites, search through magazines or even pull up good old fashioned Pinterest and search for styles of dresses that you like.
Typically your tastes will change, and a dress you thought you loved, might end up only being a small contender when the time is right. Once you have taken the time to let your engagement sink in, done some well thought out dress research, maybe even tried a couple on, then take the time to pick out your dress and buy it. Depending on the store, I've found it can take anywhere from a month to upwards of six months to order a dress. So, don't wait till a month before to purchase your dress. Six to eight months is a good average that leaves time for any alterations and fittings.
Choosing your bridal party
Chances are, the first people you called or texted after getting engaged, are the ones who you will ask to be in your wedding party, but you don't have to ask them that minute! Everyone will be very excited and happy for the two of you and let that all sink in. Seriously, right after you get engaged, you are allowed to be selfish and revel in all the attention!
Weddings have a way of bringing about drama, so my advice is to let some of the excitement from your engagement settle before asking those of whom you would want to stand by your side. Some friends or family might be enjoy your wedding better as a guest, rather than a bridesmaid or groomsman, and that's ok!
Picking out bridal party attire
This goes hand in hand with asking friends and family to stand next to you on your wedding day. Similarly to buying your dress, don't get caught up in deciding what your bridal party will wear. Throughout the wedding planning you are going to hop from one idea to the next and your vision will evolve. You don't want to make a dress or wedding attire decision before you are settled into a wedding style and vision. It's a lot more challenging to match those smaller aspects to a larger vision. It's like fitting together two puzzle pieces that really don't go together. Save yourself the stress!
Planning the honeymoon
Oh the honeymoon! Along with your pre-engagement wedding planning, I guarantee you've thought about your honeymoon and maybe even planned a dream version of it. We've all been there 🙋🏻♀️
It is becoming a bit more popular to wait a few weeks after your wedding to jet off on your honeymoon. This is in part due to the fact that it is easier to plan one thing at a time, and sometimes more financially doable. If you do want to set off for your honeymoon the day after your wedding, I suggest having everything planned to a "T" six to eight months before your wedding day. Around the same time you would be buying your dress!
The legal stuffs
Joining together in marriage takes a lot of calculated planning and it shouldn't be over looked when it comes to the legal documents that you will need to fill out and sign. However, the most important document to have prepared before wedding day is the marriage license. Everything else, like joining bank accounts, setting up tax forms or changing your name, can all be taken care of after the wedding! Don't sweat it beforehand.
Those smaller wedding day details
Linens, favors, and flowers oh my! There are a lot of smaller wedding day details that will need to get picked out come wedding day, but now is not the time. Like a lot of these decisions, it all goes back to the style and vision of the day. If you get wrapped up in the little details too early, chances are your tastes will change. Maybe the idea of individual favors, isn't the way to go. Or the table linens now need to be cream instead of white. Trust me, you'll be having nightmares about your napkins chasing you around a poorly decorated reception hall by the end of planning. Well, maybe not, but now is not the time to worry!
If you are getting overwhelmed, take a breath, look down at that gorgeous ring on your finger, and chat it up with your soon to be spouse. They are here to plan with you!