Congratulations on your engagement!
The first thing to do is NOTHING, take a few minutes, and soak it in. Get comfortable with saying fiancé and not boyfriend/girlfriend and enjoy being engaged.
After you’ve taken some time to enjoy, it’s time to set a plan.
Whether we like it or not, planning a wedding is often planning by committee, it typically involves one or more family groups, depending on who might be contributing financially, and even then, there are people who want a lot of input.
One of the hardest conversation in wedding planning, probably in your adult life, is having conversations about finances with parents, possibly multiple sets of parents; but that’s a divide and conquer item. Let each of you have the financial conversations with your own parents.
Without knowing what you and your family(s) are comfortable contributing it’s hard to start the rest of the process of putting together a guest list and a working budget.
One of the most important things to remember in planning is the Golden Rule; “he or she who has the gold makes the rules”. If you are accepting financial assistance from one or more family, know that they will probably want to have input into how it is spent.
A great way to manage this is to take whatever money each person / family is committing and dedicate it for something specific. “Thanks so much for offering to help, we’d love to use that money for our wedding cake and flowers”. This way you’re happy to accept their input, but not on everything, just on flowers and wedding cake.
Next step is to make a rough guest list, are we looking at a Florida destination wedding on a beach with 50 of our closest family and friends, or something larger in another type of Tampa Bay area wedding venue like a hotel or historic venue with a larger guest count.
Knowing approximately how many guests you are considering not only helps you to know how far your money will go but also how many people each segment of your families are able to invite.
The next really important piece involves you and your fiancé, we’ve found that if each of you make a list of your top three most important wedding items you’ll learn a lot about compromise and prioritizing. Is amazing food most important or is it a beach ceremony at sunset, it might be music, photography or possibly the honeymoon?
Once you work through that and have a joint top three list, a rough number of guests and an idea of your total budget you’ll be ready to move forward with planning.
Our Special Moments Events Team is happy to chat with you about your beautiful Tampa Bay area wedding. Engaging us early in the planning process can help keep you from making costly mistakes and streamline your wedding planning process.