I can picture the scene. You are engaged to be married and you think “Oh my god – what do we do now, I have never organised a wedding before”. Kiwi girls are very much a do it yourself kind of girl. There are some who choose to have someone else organise their wedding – but more often than not it is YOU the Bride.
So starting from that point what do you need to do.
1. Talk with your husband to be - establish what kind of wedding day you want to have. There is no right or wrong when planning a wedding but your must decide what you want to have for your day – because without a goal you have no direction in which to organise and plan. So what kind of day is influenced by where you have your ceremony. Do you want to have the ceremony and reception in the same venue? Do you want a small intimate wedding or are you having a wedding with over 80 guests? Do you want a relaxed fun day or are you thinking something quite formal? Will there be drinks before or after the ceremony? Remember it is your wedding day and although you will want to discuss your ideas with others – keep in mind it is YOUR DAY!!
2. Set a budget - it's important to stick to a budget and to keep your plans realistic. While this is a very special day in your life, I would suggest you don’t spend money you don't have or cannot save. Always think that you probably can’t have all the things you'd like. That being said, you can still have many wonderful days ahead and you don't want set yourself up for tough times as you begin your married life with too much debt. A simple wedding budget will get you started and here is the link for one: http://www.nz-wedding.co.nz/bpf3.htm
Remember if you know anything about budgets if you overspend on one part you might have to cut back on another. So flexibility and being clear what you have to spend is a key point.
3. Set the timeline for planning. You need to be sensible with your time line and although I will talk about a year long plan – there are brides that have chosen to take much longer with bookings already made to the end of 2014. And then there are the brides who hardly leave anytime and still others that have weeks not months. But let us assume you have 12 months in which to pull your wedding together.
The key things to book that will play a major part in your planning is:
1. The venue: In Christchurch there are many venues that you can choose from.
On Facebook this is link to a page and when I get ideas and time I add venues to it. https://www.facebook.com/groups/193630334082602/
Visit your venue and discuss your plan. Always ask for all the costs upfront so again you can be clear in your decision. Does this venue tick the boxes for your day - the right size, the right feel, everything in the one place, time to set up etc? Does it fit in the budget for the day? Book and pay a deposit to confirm the booking on that day of your choice. Remember you can have weddings on any day of the week and to get your choice of venue you may have to have a Sunday or maybe Friday wedding. Guests like to have an excuse to finish work early on a Friday.
WITH YOUR VENUE CHOSEN YOU CAN THEN BOOK EVERYTHING ELSE
2. Book Celebrant: I am amazed at the number of brides that have everything sorted and then think oh my god I haven’t booked a Celebrant yet. So do your research, ask friends, read feedback on-line, watch them in a video clip and choose your Celebrant to meet with. Do you want a male or female Celebrant? Will they listen to what you want and deliver it with a smile? If you feel comfortable book and pay your deposit to ensure you have the people around you that you really want for your wedding day.
3. The Photographer/Videographer – this is the other key person that can impact on the feel of your day as they capture all your magical moments. Again do your research on line and ask people you trust on what they think. Visit your chosen photographer to meet them and be sure you will feel comfortable with them for your day. Have a look at their work and be sure they can deliver what you want and within the budget. Many photographers have a number of different packages depending on what you need and want.
SET UP a book/folder to capture everything about your wedding. Set tabs on your book so that when you are working on each area it is easy to find. All quotes and agreements should be filed for easy reference. I know there are many software programmes that can help you plan a wedding. I personally still like to stick paper and cards into a folder. Find a system that is for you and pull it together. It might be a combination of different things.
So you have chosen your venue, celebrant and photographer – you have a plan on which to work. I recommend you ask to join BRIDES OF CANTERBURY on FACEBBOK – a good place to get ideas. I would also suggest you start with Pinterest if you aren’t already! Good luck – more about planning over coming weeks!