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If you’re sporting new bling, chances are you aren’t alone. The months between Thanksgiving and Valentine’s Day are known as “engagement season” in the wedding industry. During this time period, more couples get engaged than any other part of the year. But before you go into overdrive, take a deep breath and read these tips before you buy a dress, book a venue and tell everyone you know. Here are 10 tips to keep in mind from California-based wedding and event planner Amy Nichols of Amy Nichols Special Events and co-founder of The Poppy Group.
1. Hold Off on Blasting Social Media: Don’t immediately post the news on Facebook or Twitter. While it’s exciting to post on social media and watch the congratulations pile in, take a few days to enjoy the happy occasion with your family and fiancé.
2. Tell Your Friends Personally: Do tell your nearest and dearest personally. Per above, don’t let them find out on social media.
3. Talk About Budget: Do have an important conversation with all parties involved about budgets and financing your wedding. Will your parents be contributing? His parents? Grandparents? You and your groom? Get an idea of your total potential budget — this number will be key in the planning process.
4. Don’t Rush It: It can be tempting to want to lock in all the details now, but take it slow so you can enjoy the planning process and find the best experts who suit your style and your budget.
5. Remember, It’s Not All About You: Remember your friends, your family and your fiancé while planning your big event. Don’t continually talk about your what’s going on with the wedding. Ask them how their day is, what’s new with their job or if they’ve had any fun dates lately…. you know, the normal stuff!
6. Start Thinking About the Date: Do get an idea early on from your families about any date conflicts — college graduation, milestone birthdays and family vacations can all potentially interfere with your dream wedding date.
7. Consider Your Budget AND Your Wedding Party: Don’t ask all your wedding party to be bridesmaids right away. There are a lot of factors to take into consideration, such as your budget (all of those bridesmaids bouquets will add up!).
8. Share Your News With Your Coworkers: But don’t talk their ears off. Work is work. If people ask about the planning, feel free to share, but don’t turn it into a daily wedding monologue.
9. START YOUR PINNING: Do pin to your heart’s content during the early planning and brainstorming phase. It is a fantastic way to share your vision, style and aesthetic with your vendors.
10. Hold Off On Contacting Vendors: Don’t reach out to venues and vendors until you have at least a ballpark idea of your budget, and be honest with yourself about what you can afford. If your wedding budget is $20,000, and the site rental fee of the venue you love is $10,000 (before food and beverage), it’s probably not going to work. And if your favorite photographer starts at $10,000 and your budget is $3,000, don’t expect she’s going to “discount” her services to meet your budget. However, don’t be afraid to tell a vendor that you love his/her work and ask if they have recommendations in your price range.