The Ultimate Guide to Planning Your Wedding*

*This is a collaborative post*

So you are now engaged, and are facing the stress and torture of trying to get everything ready for the big day. The sooner you get started, the less stressful it will be, and the more joy you will have during your preparations. Follow the below steps to make sure that you don’t have to face last minute emergencies, and your loved ones will be impressed with your organisational skills.

“Wedding” by Evan Forester is licensed under CC BY 2.0
Create a Budget
You will need to make sure that you are prepared for spending a lot of money but to also stay within your budget. You don’t want to spend the first few years of your married life paying off a huge loan. If you have already picked your diamond wedding bands, put down a deposit and pay a little each month. Consider the cost of the venue, catering, travel, and photographer, as well as the invitations and entertainment. Once you have a budget, it is easier to keep an eye on your finances.
Set Your Date First
Before you would start planning anything else, you need to choose the date. This way, you will know exactly how much time you have to complete each step. If you have a busy life, you can wait years after the proposal, before you actually tie the knot. Allow yourself enough time to get ready mentally and physically to be married.
Pick a Venue Early
The sooner you choose your venue the better price and packages you can get. You don’t want to run around hotels just a couple of months before the big day trying to find a place that suits all your guests. Sit down with family members and friends, and ask them for their preferences. Talk to at least three or four places before you pick one. Compare the offers and services, as well as the prices and capacity.
Choose Your Helpers Carefully
It is important to ask for help and choose people who will be happy to be involved in your big day. Get commitment from your friends and family members, and tell them exactly what you need help with. There is no point choosing a bridesmaid who lives hundreds of miles away, as they are not likely to visit just to accompany you on your trips to the wedding dress store. Choose helpers who have free time, and are willing to travel with you to different appointments.
Involve Your Future In-laws

It is important to maintain a good relationship with your future family members. Make sure that you ask for advice from your in-laws, and involve them in important decisions, such as decoration, music, and the venue. Ask them for their guest list early, so they know that their voice is heard, and they have a say in your wedding.
Planning a wedding alone, without the help of an event organiser can be challenging. Make sure you start early, talk to your family members, and choose the right people for each job, so you can enjoy every minute of the big day.

*Contributed by Sam Jones

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