The days (and weeks!) after getting engaged can be a whirlwind of emotions and activity, with well-wishers dropping by full of congratulations and questions.
As a result, it can be difficult to take the time to fully digest what’s happened and to move onto the next stage of the process: planning the big day.
With that in mind, we’ve taken a look at everything you need to do between getting engaged and getting married, so you can get a head start as soon as possible. Read on to find out the next steps…
Call your loved ones
The first thing you need to do after getting the ring on your finger is to call your family and friends to let them know the good news. You’ll want to start with your immediate family, then your closest friends, before deciding whether you want to personally call any of your more distant relatives.
Once you’ve let all your loved ones know, you can then make your social media announcement!
Next comes the big celebration. Getting engaged is a massive milestone in your relationship and it deserves to be celebrated, so get your nearest and dearest down to the pub for some drinks, food and fun.
Alternatively, you could throw the perfect engagement party instead!
Get your ring sized
One of the most important things to do once you’ve gotten engaged is to make sure that your ring is the perfect fit. Although some of you might be lucky in getting the measurements correct, most of us aren’t so lucky and it will need resizing.
It might not seem like a pressing commitment but after the thought (and money!) that’s been put into finding the perfect ring, you don’t want to end up losing it mere hours after getting engaged!
Once you become engaged, it can be tempting to rush into planning your big day immediately. However, it’s important to take a breather, appreciate the feeling of being engaged, and spend time with your betrothed before the hectic planning begins.
For some ideas on how to relax together, check out this post by Mindful Minutes.
Pick a date
Once you do begin your planning, one of the first things you need to establish is your date as this will determine your choice of venue. Try to be lenient, however, rather than picking an exact date, and instead aim for a month or season to give you as much chance as possible to score your dream venue.
Decide a budget
The next thing to decide is a budget. You’re likely to begin with a rough estimation at the start before finalising it once you’ve researched venues, vendors, catering and other expensive aspects of the wedding. However, try to give as accurate as a figure as you can to help you stay on track from the start.
Plan your guest list
Again, this will be something that will start as an estimate before finalising later one. Before looking at venues, and by taking into account your budget, try to decide the size of your wedding party with a rough idea of numbers. Once you’ve booked a venue and finalised your budget, you can then write up your guest list.
Just make sure you aim lower, as it’s easier to add on guests than to remove them! For more tips, check out this post by the Knot.
Choose a venue
Once you’ve decided on these initial aspects, you’ll then need to choose a venue. The best venues get booked up months (and sometimes years!) in advance, so this is one thing you really need to start early.
However, don’t rush into anything for the sake of it and make sure you extensively research your chosen venues to ensure you’re not wasting your time. Try to look at photos from other weddings to get a real feel for the space (and one that hasn’t been perfectly posed by the hotel!), as well as going into it with an idea of how you want your big day to look.
One of the best parts of planning your wedding is the creativity and free reign that comes with it, so get stuck into it! Start early with your inspiration by creating a Pinterest board or attending a wedding fair, so you can get ideas and really start the process.
Get a planner
This will be personal preference as to which way you want to go but a planner is essential regardless. Decide whether you want to do it alone and use an online planner such as Bridebook or whether you want to go the traditional route and hire a professional planner.
In some cases, such as here at Broadoaks Country House, your wedding venue will provide you with a wedding coordinator to help with all aspects of your big day.
Open a wedding savings account
Many newly engaged couples tend to overlook this step and, although it isn’t essential, it can make things a lot easier when planning your wedding. By having a specific savings account used for the wedding, and depositing a monthly amount into it, you can keep track of all your payments, invoices, and budget without having to check each of your individual accounts.
Plus, when those cheques inevitably clear, you won’t see a huge drop in your personal savings!
Register for gifts
If you’re opting for the traditional wedding gift route, you’ll then need to register for gifts. You can do this on a store-specific basis, such as the John Lewis registry, or use an online service that allows you to register across lots of different stores.
For a comprehensive comparison of the top gift registry services, check out this post by Hitched.
In order to make your big day actually happen, you’ll need to make sure you book all the necessary vendors. Again, like venues, the best vendors will book up a long time in advance so get in early to avoid disappointment.
Your priority should be your officiant, photographer, catering, and entertainment, before moving onto less vital things such as hair and beauty artists, florists, and transportation.
Another thing you’ll need for your wedding to be a success is your guests, so sending out invitations is key! Aim to send ‘save the date’ cards 6-8 months prior to the day and the formal invitations around 8 weeks prior to your wedding date. If you’re throwing a destination wedding or one that will require more travel, try to send them even sooner.
Although it should be fairly obvious what needs to be included, this post gives you everything you need to know.
Choose your outfits
Finally, one of the key elements is to choose your outfits. Your wedding dress, suits, and the corresponding colour scheme will go a long way in helping you to really enjoy your big day and help you feel as amazing as possible.
Although many brides and grooms-to-be opt for a size slightly smaller than they are now, it’s always best to choose the size you’ll be most comfortable in. Losing weight might feel like an attainable target at the start but it only adds extra pressure and you’ll look fantastic whether you’re wearing a size 6 or a size 16!
So, we hope this has given you some tips on where to begin once you’ve become engaged, although we’re sure you’ll find lots of little things cropping up too!
If you’re just starting to plan your big day, why not take a look at our beautiful venue here at Broadoaks Country House?