FOUR INSIGHTFUL WEDDING PLANNING TIPS FOR RECENTLY ENGAGED COUPLES
You're engaged!! (And probably stressed out and overwhelmed about planning the wedding). Now what?!
Congratulations on your recent engagement!! Saying yes to spending forever together is such an incredible high to experience, but what comes next?
You're filled with a range of emotions from excitement, joy, love, and more, but once most couples start down the road of planning the wedding, that joy and excitement quickly turns to stress and overwhelm once the reality of it all sets in. I'm writing this article today to hopefully shed some light on the frustrations that may surround planning your wedding and help guide you in the right direction.
While I'm not a wedding planner and do not pretend to be one, having worked in the wedding industry for over six years, I like to believe I have some solid and useful knowledge about the process. The following is my advice on planning your wedding and the top things to consider to host an event that is unforgettable for your family, friends and, most importantly, yourselves.
1. TALK ABOUT YOUR BUDGET
Before you start creating your Pinterest boards and asking your girlfriends for referrals, you have to have a serious talk about money and financials with your partner and family. It can be uncomfortable, but it's incredibly important and imperative to be on the same page when it comes to the vision for your wedding and how much you are willing to invest to make it reality. The saying "you get what you pay for" still remains true when it comes to narrowing down who to hire for your wedding vendors. Once your budget ballpark is agreed on, the more fun and exciting parts of wedding planning come next.
2. CHOOSE A DATE FOR YOUR WEDDING
Your days of searching for arm candy as a date to a wedding may be over, but choosing a day to host one of the most important days of your life on is here! After setting a budget, you're ready to pick the perfect date. On average, couples plan their weddings 12-18 months in advance. Be sure to give yourselves enough time to get everything in order. Be flexible, your dream venue could be booked in advance and you may have to look at alternative dates.
If you're getting married here in South Carolina, the region is categorized as a humid subtropical climate and experiences all four seasons to varying degrees, from very hot, very humid summers to a rain-soaked hurricane season. Spring and early summer months (April, May, June) tend to have the heaviest rains and thunderstorms, and we're known to receive a hurricane or tornado around this time as well. The autumn season tends to be the most popular time for weddings in Charleston and throughout the Lowcountry and will book up quickly, while the winter months (Post-Thanksgiving through Valentine's Day) have been the slowest months on average. I would suggest avoiding common national holidays and busy weekends that may make travel difficult for out-of-town guests, not to mention are sure to inflate the cost of everything.
3. DECIDE ON A WEDDING VENUE
In my opinion, the wedding venue should be one of the first wedding vendors that you contact. Because they are hosting your event, you cannot set a wedding date until you've booked a venue and set one, so try not to drag your feet here. Charleston is home to dozens of breathtakingly romantic wedding venues with a few of my personal favorites to photograph being the Legare Waring House, the Magnolia Plantation, Lowndes Grove Plantation, or the beautiful I'On Meeting House or high-end Creek Club at I'On.
4. Find the perfect wedding photographer for you
Booking your wedding photographer is one of the most important and sometimes stressful parts of the wedding planning process. I understand there are so many of us out there doing our thing. While I could dedicate this paragraph to shameless self promotion and telling you why you should hire me, the honest truth is to find a photographer that you vibe with. Finding the right photographer is much so more than finding someone who takes cool photos. Your photographer is the one vendor that you'll be spending the most time with, besides an actual wedding planner, so making sure they're the right fit for you makes all the difference.
I hope these short, insightful tips have left you informed, confident, and excited to start planning your wedding here in Charleston, or wherever in the world you're planning to say "I do". If you have any questions I didn't cover, feel free to send me an email and I'll be happy to help you.
If you've booked your wedding venue and want to talk about wedding photography, let's chat! I would love to hear from you.