Where do I start with wedding planning
Updated: Dec 9, 2022
Where do I start with planning my wedding?
After the euphoria of your engagement has finally sunk in the two of you will soon face a new challenge: where to start with planning the wedding. For most of us planning a wedding is a once in a lifetime experience and not one that you will necessarily know much about. You are certainly not alone if you are feeling daunted and out of your depth as you embark on the final steps on your journey to married life.
Our couples often ask how long do I need to plan a wedding? The answer is that we have
planned and executed weddings in a little as 5 weeks. Equally we have worked with couples over 2 years ahead of their wedding. It really is driven more by your preference as a couple, your guests’ availability and potentially how long you require to set the money aside for the type of wedding you want.
The most important of all the decisions you will need to make will be the size of your wedding. Do you want to include everyone you know and throw a wedding that includes a rainbow of people from across all aspects of your lives? Would you prefer a more intimate wedding ceremony and celebration including only your closest inner circle? Or is an elopement just for the two of you your ideal wedding day, giving you a day just focused on the two of you with no one else to worry about?
There are pros and cons to all of these choices. A large wedding has the benefit of being totally inclusive with no one being upset because they are not invited, equally a large wedding is not a cheap option, and often money stresses and planning can cause friction on the run up to your special day. A smaller more intimate wedding or an elopement will mean restricting your numbers and some people may feel put-out by your decision, equally you will have more control over your budget and can perhaps spend more per head on a smaller number of guests perhaps to include a few days away together.
The primary decision that drives all else is your guests. Think carefully about who you really want around you on your wedding day and how much time you want with them. They are the people who will create the environment and vibe on your wedding day. No matter how amazing your venue, if it’s too big or too small for the guests you have in mind it can feel uncomfortable for all. No amount of floral displays can make up for the love and warmth you can feel from your guests. Equally if you feel that your potential guest pool contains "issues" that cannot be left behind on your wedding day. Let’s go there. We all know these issues are real and not so rare: family disputes or divorces can make bringing certain people together risky.
Our advice is this. If there is any doubt in your mind that these people cannot put you first on your wedding day, leave them all out and focus your day on the two of you. You can always have a family based celebration or more than one celebration with your friends and family after your actual wedding day. Those that truly love and respect you will understand your decision, whatever it is.
And money is a huge consideration
Most of us must consider our wedding budget seriously. Once you have decided the ideal size for your wedding you will need to sense check this with your available budget. We urge you not to get into debt to cover the costs of your wedding.
Every wedding we arrange is different and there are many variables e.g. size, time of year, whether accommodation is required. To help our couples shape their wedding day we provide example packages as a starting point including accommodation, wedding day co-ordination, wedding ceremony, cerebration meal, flowers, photography, hair and make up and the registrar or celebrant. We then work with our couples to tailor the package to suit their ideal balance between what they really want on the day and budget available.
As a very broad guideline we suggest the following starting point for your wedding budget based on the venues we work with:
Elopement for 2 - £1500 - £3500
Intimate wedding for 20 - £2250 - £8500
Small wedding for up to 60 - £5000 - £12000
You can see some example packages here and elopement packages here.
The rest rolls from there
Once you have made the big decisions - who to invite and how much you want to spend the rest comes down to prioritsing your budget against what you want on the day.
Although we rarely see the parents of the bride foot the wedding bill in full these days, we do see parents and friends paying for extras as their wedding present to the couple. We see everything from doves being released by the coupe after the ceremony, evening entertainment, additional flowers and even the wedding cake. It’s a nice way to make people feel included in a day that will create memories for you and your chosen group that will last a lifetime.
If would like to explore the options Petite Weddings can offer please do get in touch with Jane on 07411 117294 or firstname.lastname@example.org.