|The Question has been popped… Congratulations! Now that the initial shock is beginning to wear off, your families have been informed. It’s time for yourfirst 10 major decisions:|
|What is the date of the big day? It’s the second question you are going to hear after the big announcement to the family, the fi rst being, “can we seethe ring”. Many factors can impact the decision on a wedding date. The two biggest being the availability of your chosen offi ciant, Rabbi, Priest, Pastor and the location of the ceremony and the second being availability of reception halls, if you are planning a full blown day of wedding festivities. Contact the people and locations that you are planning on and make sure they are free. On a side note, since you are getting married in Michiana, Notre Dame Football will be a factor if you are deciding on a late fall, early winter wedding. On non home game weekends the wedding vendors are booking up a year in advance, so get on the phone. If your wedding is going to have few out of towners having it on a home game day may be to your benefit, since it is an off wedding day you may be able to fi nd some good deals on hall rentals, caterers etc.|
|Design Your Event. Is it going to be formal or relaxed? Luxury hotel or country club, backyard extravagance or beach barbecue? What is the color theme? It’s time to run out to the local magazine shop and pick up the latest issues of Modern Bride or even this magazine you hold now. Peruse the pictures, get some ideas of what you want and where you are going. So that you can move on to the next decision…
Decide on a budget. Ultimately, dollars, and not dreams, you’ve had since childhood, are the determining factors for what you’ll have at your wedding. The wedding day is going to be a major expense. We’ve heard of weddings being planned for as little as $1500 with celebrity weddings running into the millions. The average in the Michiana area tends to be $10,000 to 20,000.
|Choose your bridesmaids and groomsmen. So who do you choose? The people that mean the most to you, those you want to be part of your day: best friends, childhood buddies, siblings, even your dog can have a special part in the ceremony. Keep in mind that those who agree to be part of the wedding party are going to be spending their hard-earned money and time; Be sure to be kind by keeping your attendants informed about the plans, and making sure they know how much you appreciate them. To keep people informed an internet blog or website would be a good idea for those who live some distance away, besides the traditional phone call.|
|Announce your engagement. Call your local and parents newspaper. Many newspapers now post guidelines or a standardized form, on their websitesthese days to submit your announcement. Also fi nd out if there is a fee for publication.|
|Gather a guest list. As you begin to build your guest list, you’ll need to consider a number of factors. How many guests does the ceremony location hold? How many guests does the reception hall hold. If it is going to be under a tent, how big will the tent need to be and do you have room? Do you want a small and intiment day with just family and close friends or do you want a once in a lifetime party for all of your family and friends. Your budget will be a strong determining factor here since the more people who attend the higher the costs.|
|Do you or don’t you need a wedding consultant / wedding planner. If you are planning from out of town a wedding consultant or planner can be invaluable in dealing with the major and little factors or planning a wedding. If you are planning a really extravagant wedding a consultant/planner can be a major help also. This ultimately will let you relax and enjoy the planning of the wedding, while they handle the day to day decisions and instruct your vendors, based on your wants and desires.|
|Choose your Photographer & Videographer It may not seem like it now, but these two decisions are in the top 10 for your wedding day. The Videographer and Photographer are documenting the day, creating family heirlooms that will be treasured by family and friends, children and yourselves for years to come!
The joy of sitting down with future children and watching yourself walk down the aisle or leafi ng through the photos and see the joy, excitement, wonder in your child’s eyes is a moment you will treasure for ever. So don’t skip! I havetalked with many, many brides after the day who years down the line regretted skimping on these two very important decisions.
|The Gown. Every little girl has dreamed about how she is going to look on her wedding day and now is the time to make the decision, which gown is going to glide with you down the aisle. Learn gown lingo before stepping foot in a salon. Learn what trains, necklines, silhouettes, and shades of white will flatter you. The season you are getting married in is going to affect your decision. During the hot summer, choose lightweight fabrics such as chiffon, linen, or organza. Being married during the winter? Brocade, fur, and velvet fabrics will keep you warm. Also look for a gown with a complementing coat to keep out the chill while outside. Satin, silk, tulle, and shantung are always appropriate year round.|
|Entertainment at the reception. Besides the meal, the entertainment is your thank you to the people who have decided to join you and celebrate this wonderful day. You need to decide is this going to be a sedate dinner party style reception with soft music gently wafting thru the hall or are you going to have a kick up your heals rock and roll party of dancing celebration. Disc Jockey, Band, Quartet or Harpist? Do your research! The entertainment will either make or break the wedding reception.|