It’s our favorite time of the week… it’s time for another installment of our Couple of the Year series with Jacqueline and Jared! In today’s blog post our newlyweds are talking about two of the most important pieces of wedding planning, budgets and support systems. This is a post you’re definitely going to want to read…
A few weeks ago I mentioned how happy I was to be able to be away from reality while we got engaged, and how crazy the attention can get when everybody finds out about the wedding. If an engagement-moon isn’t a thing already, it should be, trust me.
It is true that there’s a lot of pressure and attention that come from friends and family right when you get the ring; but what I didn’t mention is that as soon as the date is set, or maybe even before that, the pressure is ON and most of it will be from yourself, or from you and your fiancé. I don’t want to speak for everybody, but chances are—at least some point in your planning process, you will put yourself through more stress than anybody could put on you in the first place. But it really is not necessary!
The most helpful thing that I could tell you about the planning stress and how to deal with it is to make sure you plan how you are going to plan. I don’t mean just making lists, and schedules, and appointments, and more lists and then some more. I mean really, really communicating with your fiancé on how you two are planning to tackle this thing.
Full disclosure: before I start talking about planning stress, just know that we do not have a wedding planner. I am sure they would be able to help you out in 900 ways that I don’t even realize, but I suggest doing all of this before you even interview wedding planners so you can go in there being on the same page, with a plan for how you want this to be done. I do not even feel like I need one and have no regrets (so far…).
Figure out what you each want out of this wedding right off the bat. Set up your budget first as your guideline (you already know how I dealt with that— or didn’t…) and then figure out together what your individual priorities are for the wedding. For example, Jared cared more about the music, and the food than anything else. My answer was obviously more complicated; it was easier for me to tell him what I didn’t care about more than what I did care about. We decided he could be as involved as he wanted, or as uninvolved as he wanted, as long as when I asked his opinion on any detail he would give me a real thoughtful opinion and help me. It has been working out GREAT, honestly.
Talk about what roles you want your families to play in the planning process, with your fiancé first. Discuss it amongst yourselves first to avoid anybody getting frustrated or offended, and then go to your families with it. PRO TIP: a glass of wine might help with this part. This could include any aspect of your families’ involvement: from which factors are important to include, financially contributing, religious and traditional preferences, logistics, events, if they want to tour venues with you, ect. See what they want to do, what they can do, and what they are willing to do even if they don’t really want to! If you figure out how you want your families to be involved before bringing it up to them, it will just help you stay on the same page. Too many of you might already know that reality is, they will probably tell you what they want before it even gets to this point; but let’s imagine we are in a perfect world here and that we are completely in control, okay?
Gather your support system. Nobody can plan a wedding completely alone, unless you are completely committed to losing your sanity, then go for it! Your support system might just be you and your fiancé, or your family; or your vendors and their wedding planner. Others may want a bridal party whether it’s very small, or a bunch of your closest friends and family. As long as you have some sort of support, you are good! We (of course) have a big wedding party— two maids-of-honor, two best-men, and 12 bridesmaids & groomsmen combined, and we feel lucky for that! Please do not get me wrong though, I am not saying make them do ALL the planning with you, and put them through the same stress you will end up feeling…I am here asking you please, do not do that! But, it is really great to know that before you dive deep into the planning, you have people to run ideas by and to help you get excited about all this lovely chaos you are about to get into.
Find your wedding community. What does this even mean, right? I had no idea at first! Until I heard somebody talking about it and now, I. RELY. ON. IT. The most helpful part of wedding planning, hands down, is talking with a bunch of other people that are in the same position as you or recently have been. I am in at least 4 or 5 Facebook groups, of engaged couples/ girls. NOTHING has been more helpful in giving me inspiration, saving me money, and finding answers to so many questions I had; especially when you are planning from out of state like we are. Find the accounts of local wedding magazines, blogs, forums, go to bridal expos, find Instagram accounts, and talk to brides that got married at the venues that you are looking at. If you are engaged and reading this right now, you are already on the right track! You will have so many questions and an outsider’s perspective/opinion will make all the difference; and won’t drive you nearly as crazy as a distant family member’s opinion that is equally as strong as it is unsolicited (queue: another glass of wine).
Speaking of a wedding community, The Newport Bridal Show is coming up this week and I am so excited for it! We are just about 6 months out from the wedding and although the big decisions are made, we still have a lot to go. The devil is in the details! I am looking forward to taking in all of the new inspiration from the show, and I will be sure to share it all with you the next time you read!
-The Future Schumers