Planning a wedding can be an overwhelming experience. Some couples choose to hire an event or wedding planner but there is a growing number who want to do the planning themselves. There are plenty of reasons why you might opt to take on much of the responsibilities yourself.
Here are some of those reasons:
- You’re working with a tight wedding planning budget
- you simply love all of the DIY possibilities
- You are a control freak
- You have a very clear idea of what you want for your perfect day
Whatever your circumstances, as long as you are organised you can do it yourself!
Really effective organization is the key. You really need to know what to do when and then stick to that! When you’re faced with decisions, lists, deadlines, and everyday life to deal with having a timetable is invaluable.
The first step is making sure to give yourself plenty of time for planning your perfect day. The longer a timeline you have the better! If you can, give yourself a year from the start of preparations to the actual wedding. Don’t forget that you have a partner to share this with, be sure to involve them too. Your wedding should be the two of you coming together and represent both of you.
One final thought before we launch into this… You are supposed to be having fun! Don’t allow yourself to get too stressed to the point that the whole thing turns you into a massive ball of stress! This is your wedding so don’t get too hung up on the little things. Don’t get pulled into family dramas and do lots of deep breathing. It really does help!
Here is Part One of our Guide to Planning the Perfect Wedding! We know that it will help – at least you will have a framework!
TOP TIP NUMBER 1 – Set Your Wedding Budget—and Stick to It
For many people setting your wedding budget will be the main factor for many of your wedding-related decisions. It can also be one of the hardest decisions to stick to! Our suggestion is to be as hard as you can once that figure is decided. The challenge is that every little added expense will have a huge impact in the end. So the wedding budget should be the first thing that you tackle.
If you have generous family members who are contributing, chat with them about what they’re comfortable giving you. If you are fully responsible for the bill yourself, have a long, hard look at your finances and be really honest with what is a reasonable amount to spend.
We always suggest an extra 10 per cent for those unexpected costs or urges that are bound to arise.
TOP TIP NUMBER 2 – Get Together a List of Wedding Day Priorities
Sit down with your other half and work out the three most important aspects of your wedding for you both. Is it the venue or a specific wedding date that is more important? Having a certain wedding photographer or live band might be the most important aspect for you? Prioritize the important stuff and be open to the idea of compromise on the rest. This will help you stay within your budget and help you focus your efforts on what really counts.
TOP TIP NUMBER 3 – Figure out What is Your Bridal Style
Having a clear notion of the type of wedding style you want will really help when you start to meet with potential vendors. Don’t overwhelm yourself with all the wedding inspiration that’s out there. Our suggestion that seems to work well for many is to create a visual collage on a cork or poster board. This can useful when you are trying to determine your style.
TOP TIP NUMBER 4 – Get Really Organized
There are a variety of tools that you can use to help you get organised. You can use checklists, spreadsheets, Word, Excel, Google Docs as just a few examples. As long as you can bring together all your thoughts, budgets and numbers into one place. Have a play and settle on the one that gives you less of a headache and that you are confident that you will continue with.
TOP TIP NUMBER 5 – Involve Your Significant Other
Don’t feel like you are undertaking the whole planning process alone. Chat through ideas with your partner; their opinion is invaluable. Our experience is that couples that do this together have a much more representational wedding and more fun along the way! Working towards a common goal increases your bond and helps you grow as a couple.
TOP TIP NUMBER 6 – Create a Master Checklist
You can find free, online wedding planners on the internet. Have a look at a few options and choose one that best suits you, your partner and the style of wedding that you are going for. A Master checklist will help to keep you fully on track.
TOP TIP NUMBER 7 – Think About Dates and the Weather
Choose a few ideal dates for your wedding but do try to be flexible. That means you will not be restricted when you start to book the wedding venue and vendors. Think about things like how popular those dates might be for other to-be-weds. February 14th, for example, is one of the most popular dates for a wedding. If you want to get married on that date you would need to book a couple of years ahead.
TOP TIP NUMBER 8 – Select a Theme
A theme can be based around particular colours, the season, or an actual theme like The Hobbit, Game of Thrones or Fairy Princess. Whatever you decide upon it’s helpful to choose a concept to design your wedding around. Once you have an idea of how you want your wedding day to look, it’s easier to make design decisions.
TOP TIP NUMBER 9 – Consider Having an “On-Site” Wedding
An “off-site” wedding is one where the venue doesn’t have a commercial kitchen. That means you need to bring everything in yourselves. This would include places like a park, a public beach, even an open field. Some venues will allow you to do this too. If you have a venue in mind, ask them if they offer a BYO for catering, booze etc.
An “on-site” wedding will greatly simplify the planning process. They are likely to have a range of catering offerings available. There will also be access to a designated space, chairs and tables. They may have someone who acts as a coordinator on-site that can help you too.
TOP TIP NUMBER 10 – Research Your Venue Options
Many brides have the perfect venue in mind even before they get an engagement ring on their finger. A cautionary word… If you know that your perfect venue is out of your budget, don’t torture yourself! Instead, focus on what is within your budget.
Check out prices, packages, and any restrictions which may include minimum budget spend or guest count. Find a couple of venues and go through this process. from several different potential wedding and reception venues. Even if there’s a venue and a package price that you really like, still, keep looking at additional opinions. Ask around and see what other venues are charging before agreeing on a price.
Destination Weddings are proving very popular with a full package being the norm. It can work out much more reasonable than you might at first think. Have a look on the internet to check out some options. Destination Weddings don’t just cover Bali or other overseas destinations. We are extremely fortunate to have some amazing Destination Wedding venues right here in Queensland.
If you are interested in finding out about the packages that Platypus Park Riverside Retreat offer please email us here. Alternatively, you can speak to Col or Julie Pearson on 0432 144 438