Ten Top Tips For The Newly Engaged Bride To Be

Recently I met up with one of my friends who had just recently gotten engaged. I've only been engaged 8 months myself, but speaking to her I realised that in that time I've picked up so many hints and tips along the way. Especially about the initial stages of wedding planning, including so many things that you don't initially think of or even know about when you first start planning. It's all a bit of a whirlwind when you get the ring, show the family, tell the friends and then if many of us are honest, the next thought you have is oh my gosh where do I begin? My friend and I both admitted that we almost felt like 'bad brides' for not having been making a wedding scrapbook since the age of five! So here are my top tips to get you started on the path to the isle!

1. Keep Calm and Plan Your Wedding- My first tip is do not panic and most importantly, do not let other people make you feel panicked or worried about wedding planning. I think the best place to start is with booking your venue. The reason for this is that once you've booked your venue you'll have a date and trust me on this- when you go to the wedding fayres that's the first thing everyone asks you (possibly to judge whether they should give you the full sales pitch or not). Also once you have a venue, you can start picturing your colour scheme, your wedding accessories and table decorations.

2. Wedding Stationery- By this I don't mean the cards that you send out to your guests, I mean wedding planning books and lists. Wedding planning books are really undervalued because they set out all of the things that you need to think of. From the big things like when to pay for the venue to the littler things like making sure you've got gifts for the bridesmaids.

3. Venue- When yourself and your partner have chosen your venue, ask the wedding planner about exclusivity. This means that if you don't wish to bump into another bride or groom in the bathrooms on your big day, you need to ask the question. The venue that we've chosen for our venue could only guarantee exclusivity of the venue from other weddings and events Monday to Thursday, so that's what we decided to go with to ensure privacy on our special day.

(Image from Pinterest)

4. Wedding Date- Before we started looking for a venue, my fiance and I just assumed that we'd probably get married on a Saturday... because that's what people do isn't it? Well no, not if they'd like to save some money because the difference between choosing a day between Monday - Thursday opposed to choosing Friday - Sunday, saved us £2,000- for the exact same thing, including exclusivity of the venue!

5. Food- One of my friends who got married recently gave me some really helpful advice about wedding finances. She said that she'd found that the food was by far the greatest expenditure within their budget. When we initially started looking into venues ourselves, we were looking at places that charged individually for everything. So this meant that from the Bucks Fizz on arrival, to the canapes, wedding breakfast courses, wine and water on the table, champagne and evening meal- they were itemised and charged per person. Which then leads you to look at how much you can afford and then apply that to the amount of people that you can have. My tip is to consider a package instead, because they can be quite all encompassing and whilst stating a minimum number of guests, if you want to go over, you can then always pay for extra people.

6. Wedding Fayres - A man whom I knew that's getting married next year gave us some helpful advice as far as wedding fayres are concerned. What he said was that each fayre is organised by a different company. So if you can make sure that each fayre you attend is a different organisation to the last, then in theory they often use different exhibitors. Which means that you won't keep seeing the same companies over and over again. We've attended at least 6 in different places and they've all had something a little different to offer.

(Image from Pinterest)

7. Photographer- There are so many wedding photographers out there, and it can be difficult to choose between them. But before you do I suggest re-visiting your chosen venue and writing down what are the key photos that you'd like taken on your special day. For us it was to capture the key moments like the dress, the shoes, the flowers etc in 'Instagram'-like detail. In addition to having the traditional group shots, as well as the fact that our venue has a great view. So we knew we needed to find a photographer that could really capture the panoramic shots as well as the details. Finally we wanted to be able to own the rights to our photographs to be enable us to print them ourselves at a later date. As often the photographer's prints and albums can be pricey, when you can have so many great things made on the internet now.

8. Spend what you can afford - A lot of people will tell you that weddings cost the earth. But what we've found so far is that whilst they can be costly. They're only as pricey as you make them. So by this I mean that if you go mad and decide to buy all of the optional extras from the doves to the confetti canons, ice sculptures and chocolate fountains. Then it does start to add up. So before going to a fayre, agree with your partner what your priority is. That way you can compare prices so that you'll know when someone's doing a good deal. We've found with two of the things we've booked, that massive discounts were given at wedding fayres for booking on the day.

9. Hair and Makeup- My cousin, who used to manage a hair salon, gave me some great advice on hair and makeup; that the price of an up-do often triples when you put the word wedding in front of it. And if you have the hairstylist out to you, some may charge you for their travel time aswell. But if you just have a 'normal' booking at the salon, it could save a lot of money.

(Image from Pinterest)

10. Enjoy It! The time between getting engaged and married can seem like a long way off, but it flies by so make the most of it and saviour the experience, including friends and family as much as you can along the way.





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My blog takes you through a daily look at sport, diabetes and everything in between. As an athlete that lives with type 1 diabetes I want to let you into news, views and all that is important to both of my passions.

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