I’m getting married!!! Where do I start ???
For any newly engaged woman I’m sure this is a fear that rocks your happiness! Where do I start? What should I arrange first?, When should things be done? These are a just a few of the many thoughts rolling through your head. You want to start arranging your perfect day, the day you have dreamed of since you were a little girl. But now it’s actually happening, it’s hit you that you actually don’t know where to begin.
Well I am going to hopefully help you and give a bit of advice. With a quick go to guide, I’m going to do a brief check list and time order on how to get started. So brides let’s go !!!!
FROM 24 MONTHS
These are great to start gathering together all your ideas on venues, flowers, gowns etc! The only down side is that you can put so much info into them that it’s a hard job carrying it around with you. Have you ladies heard of Pinterest? It’s a great new app that allows you to scroll through ideas on everything and anything and pin your likes to a virtual board. You can have as many boards as you like, so for instance every gown you like the look of, pin it and you can refer back to it later when dress shopping. Bridal shops tend to upload photos of what they have in-store, so you can pin their photos and when you have an appointment with them you have a picture of the gown you like with you. We have recently joined this new media site and are uploading our ranges, check us out at here!!!!
It’s very important to determine what budget you have before planning anything. The last thing you want is to go over your limits and spend the start of your marriage burdened with repayments. Surely you don’t want to start married life with a debt hanging over you. Speak to relatives too, a lot of the time families want to contribute towards a part of your wedding. May this be small or large amounts, every little helps.
Obviously one of the first things you must do is arrange the date, without this you have no deadline to work too. Will you be a spring, summer, autumn or winter bride?
Not everyone dreams of the perfect summer wedding, some of you may want a romantic winter wonderland theme. Certain things will apply depending on the time of year of your wedding.
Decide on where your nuptials will take place, are you having one venue for the ceremony and reception or do you want to separate this over two locations. If so, be sure to check out commute times and directions for your guests.
This can be one of the hardest parts of your wedding. It’s so hard to please everyone and arrange who is going to attend the ceremony and evening or just the evening. What I will say is please do not forget that this day is about two people. The bride and Groom!! I would suggest getting together and draw up your lists. If you are working to a budget you must be Brutally honest and keep the numbers low!
To those of you eloping and marrying abroad. Give guests the option to join you. Find out the rough cost for them to book along on the holiday, but ensure they do not feel obliged to join you. It can be quite pricey and be prepared that people may not be able to come because of cost. Let them no you do understand as if you are choosing this style wedding you have to consider all the people you would expect to be there at home may not be able to share your special day.
Book your photographer and videographer early to ensure your date is available. You don’t need to worry about all the fine details and specifics right now, but just be certain that they can cater for your requirements on your big day.
We work along side a fantastic photographer and highly recommend his services. Philip James Photography is a contemporary photographer with an amazing portfolio, check out his website here and you will agree. Additionally, when you buy your wedding gown from Lisa’s Bridalwear, Philip offers you and your lovely fiancé an engagement photoshoot free of charge to see how he works! For more information contact a member of the Lisa’s Bridalwear team or Philip James directly. http://philipjamesphotography.co.uk/
Hire a planner if required
If you know you are not going to have the time to get plan your big day yourself, there are some amazing wedding planners out there to help! What I would advise is be certain you have had a good relationship with them and have researched their work before hiring them. This is one of the most important times of your life so you need to make sure it’s in safe hands with someone you trust, and who really understands what you want
Why not start off with a party to celebrate the engagement. It’s a great way to get people meeting before the wedding, especially bridesmaids and groomsmen that will have to work together and attend appointments on a regular basis. You want everyone to feel comfortable around one another. Plus why not have some fun before the stress of the planning starts.
THE WEDDING DRESS
By far the most important part of the day. ( not that we’re biased� I’d suggest looking a style you like early on. You must take into account the time of year you’re getting wed, and what style wedding you are having. Be sure to bring someone with you whose advice you value and who will be honest. Taking too many people to your appointments can be a bad choice. Although you want help you don’t need to many people with different opinions, the overall decision has to be yours. You want to feel special in your dress, and when you find “The One” you will know! You must then be sure to STOP! Too many decisions can end up being a disaster. Don’t shop around to much as you can find something you like in every shop. Check out our website or call us to arrange an appointment. Your perfect dress could be hanging on our rails waiting for you 0121 7066060!
FROM 12 – 9 MONTHS
If you are having a civil ceremony you need to apply for your marriage licences with the local Registrar.
Decide on your colour scheme, getting swatches of fabric together is a good idea once you have decided. This is something small that can then be placed in your purse for reference.
You should have by now decided on your style of gown so let’s get ordering. Gowns can take around 6 months to be delivered once ordered and you need time to have fittings, usually around 12 weeks before the wedding so this can not be something left to late. Your accessories to match your gown such as veils, tiaras and jewellery can be added slightly later so do not panic if this is not done at the same time. But I would still keep it in this 12 months before box.
Will your groom and his party be hiring suits or purchasing them? These can be ordered around 6-9 months before, but you need to be sure you know what you are going for. At Lisas bridalwear we supply Dessy cravats, bow ties pocket squares and waistcoats, and this can be great to match exactly with your bridesmaids. Moss Bros are our recommendation for suit hire!
I would also look at ordering your maids and flower girls gowns at this time. The time limit for us is 4-6 months for delivery. We stock Dessy of New York and have a huge collection to choose from. Again you need to order in time in case any alterations need to be made.
Recommended suppliers: Lisa’s Bridalwear, Moss Bros
Book your florist and choose arrangements for your bouquet, church and reception site. We have a selection of florists we recommend in our brochure, which you can pick up from our store to view the ranges.
Book your required transport to the venue and reception. If you are having separate locations, be sure to arrange transport for guests ie; coaches or details on how to get from one to the other.
Recommended Supplier: Love Wedding Cars Solihull.
The decision on your honeymoon is something to be done together. Would you prefer a relaxing romantic two weeks in Europe, a sun and beach break in the Caribbean, a adventurous safari in Africa or a remote cabin in the countryside? It’s something special to look forward to and wind down after the build up of your big day. If you are going abroad now is the time to arrange your passports!
FROM 6-9 MONTHS
Select your stationary company and decide on designs for invitations, save the date, order of service, menus, table plans, place cards etc …
Recommended Supplier: Jen’s Hand Crafted Wedding Stationary
Book DJs, live music and entertainers you want at your reception. The better ones will get booked up early, so once you’ve decided who your going with get it confirmed and the date put in their diary! You should also decide on your first dance song, and if music will be playing during the meals.
Recommended supplier: The Wedding Violinist
If you require caterers that are not included in your venue hire then get cracking, also cake tasting would be a good thing to organise as this should also be getting ordered now.
You should have decided what your groom and his party are wearing by now, so let’s get booking them in.
Recommended Supplier: Moss Bros
For any decorations and balloons you may need at your reception, now is the time to sort this. You may want to arrange chair covers and table décor if this is not included in your venue package.
Such an important part of married life. The rings that show your love for one another for all to see. Now would be the perfect time to sort these out, you will then have time for any custom designs and inscriptions you want to add.
Recommended supplier: The Jewellery Quarter Birmingham
If you want that perfect smile on your photos then arrange for any dental treatment or cosmetic surgery you want to make. Book in with your dentist for teeth whitening to ensure your gleaming look is complete in time.
Recommended Supplier: Solihull Dental Practice
FROM 2-4 MONTHS
Compile wedding present wish lists and register where you choose. If you already have all you need you can contact your travel arrangement to discuss having payments towards your honeymoon.
Recommended Supplier : John Lewis
Now the dreaded guest lists are sorted the invites need to be sent. Keep track of RSVPs, gifts and thank you notes. Maybe have a diary with a check list of who has replied. Spreadsheets are another useful way to record this information. Be sure to keep a note of what gifts you receive. This way you don’t have to worry when it comes to thanking people.
Finalise your menus with the venue or caterer.
If planning to have a rehearsal dinner schedule the time and date.
Shoes / underwear
Start breaking in your new shoes, the last thing you want is blisters and sore feet on your big day. If you require underwear for your gown ensure you have purchased it as along with your shoes this is a requirement when starting your dress fittings.
Have a day out with Mom to help her purchase her outfit, and get any last minute-things you need for your honeymoon and going away outfit.
Hair & Beauty
Book in with your local salons for bridal hair trials, ensure appointments are then available on the day and day before the wedding for all your waxing, pampering and nails to be done.
Now is the time for your groom to be practising his speech is up to scratch, and if you’re adding a modern twist then yours too brides.
Decide on what you will be sorting for your guests and order them. Keep an eye out for our blog on favours coming soon. Lots of fantastic personal ideas.
Book blocks of rooms for any out of town guests or any guests that wish to stay with you and celebrate with breakfast the following day.
Hen party / Stag do
Hopefully this will be left up to your maid of honour and best man! But if nothing is mentioned by now then ask why!
From 4 weeks
Hair & Beauty
Have your trial hair run and determine what look you are going to decide on, also bring your maids along and arrange their styles too. If you are wearing a headpiece or veil ensure your hairdresser is aware. Same goes for your make up, if you are either doing your own or having a Make up Artist, trial this around now, be sure you know exactly what colours and look your’e going for.
This can be a long process and difficult at times. Spend time on working out your seating plan and be sure to consider everyone is going to be happy with whom they are seated by.
Purchase your gifts for your bridal party. These can either be given at the rehearsal dinner or on the day of your wedding after speeches.
If you are writing your own vows now is the latest you should be leaving it.
From 2 weeks before
Book either your tanning sessions or arrange your spray tan appointment. Also be sure to get your last minuet waxing appointment arranged.
Confirm all final arrangements in detail with everyone involved and send all final payments.
Advise your caterers on the final numbers. Collect rings from jewellers.
Any small tasks that others can help you with? Delegate them out, you have so much to worry about at this stage so take any help you can.
1 Week to go
- Pick up your gown all freshly steamed and ready for you
- Notify caterers and venue of final numbers.
- Have your final facial and beauty treatments
- Pack for your honeymoon
1 day before
- Have your manicure and pedicure
- double check all is ready!
AND THE BIG DAY IS HERE BEFORE YOU KNOW IT!
ENJOY, BE HAPPY AND TAKE IT ALL IN,REMEMBER EVERY MOMENT!
I really hope that this has been helpful, feel free to make a copy to refer back to! Planning your wedding can be stressful. Try not to let the stress take over this joyous occasion. When things get a bit crazy remember the reasons behind it all. I recommend a date night once a week or month in the build up to the celebrations! Keep it at the forefront of your mind what its all about and enjoy these precious moments together!
Lots of love
Lisa’s Bridalwear Boutique – Leading supplier of Wedding Dresses Birmingham