Congratulations on your engagement! I also got engaged during the holiday season and it was so fun to be able to see so many loved ones in person and share the news! I’m so excited for you and what comes next. As someone who got married recently and also a wedding photographer, here are my tips for what you can do now to start planning.
1. Make an appointment to try on wedding dresses
So much of my family was in town and not very busy during that week between Christmas and New Years, because of that I made an appointment to take my mom, mother-in-law, sisters, sisters in law and nieces wedding dress shopping! We had so much fun and it really inspired me to figure out what kind of dresses I liked. You can look online endlessly, but it’s so helpful to see how a dress fits your body in real life. Make an appointment with the intention of getting an idea of what you like and gathering inspiration. A few of my personal favorite shops around the Seattle area: I Do Bridal (Greenwood), Brides for a Cause (Ravenna),and A & Be (Ballard).
2. Do some venue research and make appointments for tours
If you already have a venue you love, get in touch with them immediately to find out what dates they have available. If you haven’t toured it yet, make an appointment to see it in person with your fiance and anyone else whose opinion you value.
If you’re not attached to a venue, decided on a season, a month, or perhaps even an exact date and start your venue research from that point. To help you get started, check out these 3 unique Washington wedding venues.
3. Gather inspiration
Use the single best visual inspiration machine available–pinterest! I recommend pinning anything you like to a board and then starting to niche down from there. Once you can see all the colors, settings, and ambiance you’re attracted to, you’ll be able to find the common threads. You’ll be able to see how often certain elements pop up and you’ll begin to craft your vision for your wedding.
4. Start vetting your big vendors
I think the most important vendors to secure are also the ones who will book up the quickest! They are your wedding planner/coordinator, your photographer, your venue, and your band/DJ. I think a personal referral or recommendation is always the most reliable. Start asking friends whose weddings you really loved for their recommendations.
Of course, I’m biased and think you should start looking for photographers first! Maybe you have a friend or cousin whose wedding photos you loved, ask them for a recommendation! Try not to get overwhelmed, if you’re searching the instagram #seattleweddingphotographer you might get dozens or even hundreds of options. Try to narrow your focus to what you’re immediately drawn to, photos that inspire you and make you happy. I’d love to talk to you about how to choose a wedding photographer.
5. Plan an engagement celebration!
Whether it’s a casual get together with friends at your neighborhood bar or a full out party, plan a time to celebrate with the people who are so excited to celebrate you!
There are so many options when it comes to your wedding and it’s easy to get overwhelmed! Try to stay aligned with the vision you and your fiance have for your wedding and set a deadline for certain decisions, that’s the easiest way to avoid overthinking. You’re in for quite the adventure.
Get in touch with me–let’s talk about your ideas and what you’re looking for. We might be a perfect fit!