You’re engaged! Yay! You’ve accepted a romantic proposal, the ring has made a pleasing new addition to your left hand and now you’re fielding constant wedding planning questions from every direction. So you need to start planning a wedding, no big deal right? Then your best friend talks you into going to a wedding fair. It sounded like a good idea but you leave the wedding fair with more questions than answers. What do we need stationery for? How much should we pay for a cake? When do I need to book a photographer? Don’t be daunted. The key to planning is preparation and with our 5 steps you’ll be ready to make those all important decisions like a pro in no time!

1. Get Realistic With Your Budget

Have the all important financial conversation with (delete as appropriate) your significant other, parents, parents in law, bank manager. It’s almost impossible to plan anything without knowing the budget at your disposal and more importantly, if you can afford it. An exclusive castle venue, a royal banquet for everyone you’ve ever met and a diamond tiara could be tempting but remember you need to afford other things too… like rent.

2. Stay Realistic With Your Budget

Divide up your budget to cover all the costs. Allocate a percentage of your budget to each supplier and leave 3%-5% to cover any unexpected costs that creep up such as staff food, pre-wedding beauty treatments and delivery costs.

3. Draft a Rough Guest List

The budget stretches a lot further when you’re only inviting 25 people. You don’t need to be 100% on whether you’ll invite but rough numbers for the most expensive dinner you’ll ever buy will definitely help. It’s also useful to have an idea of the size of your bridal party (bridesmaids, groomsmen, etc) as you’re expected to pay for their outfits and flowers too.

4. Make Notes!

You don’t necessarily need a pretty planner to plan the perfect wedding but it helps! Keep your admin organised and keep a track of the decisions you make all in one place. It also serves as a memory of planning the biggest day of your life. We’ve found a really useful (and beautiful!) planner that brides love – buy it here.

5. Communicate with your Fiancé/Fiancée

Whether you’re taking the lead or planning it together make sure you have both discussed what you want to achieve. If you have differing visions for what you’d like on your wedding day, be prepared to compromise!

So now you’re armed with a budget and the tools to plan, plan, plan the (wedding) world is your oyster!