5 Tips for the Newly Engaged

It's traditionally engagement season from the holidays through Valentines' Day. Here are five tips to starting wedding planning off on the right foot.

1. Before you tell everyone...

Take time to enjoy this special moment between you to and talk about how you envision your wedding day... before you tell everyone. While your friends and family mean well, they will barrage you with a litany of questions: Have you set a date? Where are you getting married? Who's your maid of honor? What kind of dress are you wearing? So talk to each other and come up with a response like, "We are looking to plan a small intimate wedding for fall of 2017 and will send out a save the date with more details shortly."

2. What's your wedding vision? 

Is your wedding day going to be a big blowout celebration with 300 guests or more on an intimate affair with 50 close family and friends? Do you want a formal event or something a little less fussy? What type of location appeals to you both? Some common location type are: hotel, private estate, ranch, museum, church, and vineyard. Once you decide on the overall feel of the wedding it will be much easier to book the right vendors for you.

3. Make a guest list

Include everyone who is a must on your list. Don't forget to talk to your parents too, they may expect to invite their friends as well. Once you have a general number then, and only then, can you start looking for a location. You don't want to book a location for a maximum of a 100 guests and end up with 150 people coming to your wedding!

4. Make a Realistic Budget

Weddings are pretty expensive, typically couples spend at minimum a $100 per person. Keep in mind that the guest count is the number one thing that will effect the overall budget. The higher the count, the more food, staff, flowers, and so on to make your event happen. Need help budget planning? Hire a wedding planner, they are experts at what they do. Not sure you need "full planning"? Most planners offer hourly consulting services which are affordable and can save you time and money in the end.

5. Breathe + Stick to your Priorities

Don't worry if you feel overwhelmed by the planning process. With pinterest, one zillion wedding blogs, and vendors of all shapes and sizes, it is by no mean easy to navigate the planning process. Decide early on the process what your top three priorities for your wedding day. It could be your dress, the flowers, photography or serving a five start meal to your guests. Then when you do get overloaded, revisit your priorities and make strictly decisions based on them. Putting your priorities first will ensure you spend money on the things that matter most to you, and will, hopefully, help you stay on budget. 

Photos from top: 1. & 4. Caroline Tran 2. Megan Sorel 3. Oliver Fly 5. Sally Pinera | Stylist: Kelly Oshiro