What should I do first when I get engaged?

Enjoy yourself! Take a couple days or weeks to just enjoy being engaged, this is a special time for you and your fiancé, and you won’t get to experience these moments again after the wedding. Flaunt that ring, use that title, and embrace telling that proposal story to loved ones that can’t wait to hear it.

After taking some time, you will want to have a general idea of what you want your wedding to look and feel like before you begin meeting with vendors. However, even if you don’t know yet, that is something a planner can help you iron out by asking key questions and helping you hone in on your interests and values for your wedding.

When you are ready to start planning, the first steps are to hire those key vendors. If you are working with a planner (like me!), that would be one of the first people you will want to hire, as we can assist you with finding and hiring the perfect vendors for the rest of your day. In addition to this, venue and photographer tend to be the vendors that are booked farthest in advance, so to have reputable vendors that meet your style and needs, you’ll want to hire them as soon as you can.

Once the main vendors are ironed out, you can go ahead and hire the rest of your vendors, such as caterers, decorators, sound/music services, and anything else you may need. Since these vendors typically rely on having the venue set, you will want to hire them after you have signed contracts with your venue. It is never a bad idea to hire your vendors as soon as you can, as this helps negate any risk of them being booked by someone else on your wedding date.

Look for that attire! You will want to look for gowns at least 6 months out from the big day, ideally even farther out if you have the time. As far as suits and bridal party attire, it is again a good idea to start looking as soon as you can, but generally 4-6 months will give you the time you need for ordering and altering.

After vendors are booked (before or after you have your attire, depending when you decide to shop), the nitty gritty details come into play. You will have to design invitations, manage guest lists and menu, and prepare for any pre-wedding events among a lot of other wedding planning tasks. A planner can help iron out all the details of your wedding with you so that you can have less stress and enjoy your time being engaged. All of these things and more come into play in a more detailed wedding planning timeline, but for now, if you are newly engaged, focus on what is listed above, and don’t forget to enjoy your time as a fiancé!

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