You’ve been dreaming of the day when the man you love would get down on one knee and propose a lifetime together. But now that the special moment has come and gone and the shock has worn off, you may be starting to get a little worried. What comes next? You’re well aware that the planning has to begin, but you don’t even know where to start! What are the priorities? Do you need to book the chapel, get the dress, or start sending out save-the-date notices first? You’re not even sure you have a good idea of everything that goes into planning a wedding, much less the order in which it is accomplished!
Okay, first of all, take a deep breath. Millions of brides before you have done this and you can do it, too. Start by calling your parents (and his). Not only do you want to inform them of your pending nuptials, but your mom is probably a veritable font of information when it comes to how to proceed. You’ll likely want to begin by picking a date and then sending out announcements (or throwing an engagement party to inform all of your friends and family of the good news).
After that, think about attending a wedding fair. There are likely several such events annually in or around your area, so look online to see if any are coming up. Wedding fairs are not only fun (often including tastings, fashion shows, and giveaways) they are also a great way to discover the many facets of planning a wedding as well, as meet a number of local vendors who can help to make your special day complete. And you’ll start to get a good idea of what your options are and discover what you like (ribbon-wrapped bouquets, chiffon gowns, and tapas instead of traditional buffets) and what you really don’t like (Victorian bubble frames to preserve your entire bouquet…weird).
Finally, you need to choose a locale for your wedding. Everything else can wait a bit, but popular chapels and dining halls will get booked by other parties if you don’t jump on them (especially if you opt to marry during a wedding season such as summer or the winter holidays). You’ll probably need to reserve a space at least a year in advance if you want to get your specific date set in stone. This will also allow you to send out save-the-date announcement well in advance to give friends and family plenty of time to make travel arrangements.