Since we looked at rings last spring, I had been pinning anything wedding-related and I started googling venues. I figured that planning a wedding would be no big deal once we were engaged because I would pretty much already know what I wanted. We wanted something casual, small, boho/hippie, and we wanted bbq. I figured our families would be so thrilled about our simple ideas. Then it happened…we got engaged and my head has been spinning since January 1st, 2017.
Here are 5 things I realized when I started actually planning:
1. Everyone has an opinion
At this point, I’m surprised my cats haven’t given me their two cents about our wedding plans. I’ve gotten everything from, “You should get married on a cruise, they do everything for you” to “Your affordable venue is going to be really expensive”. I wouldn’t say it’s necessarily a bad thing because it makes us think. We’ve never done this before (obviously), so maybe others have better ideas. However, when someone keeps telling you the same opinion over and over again, you have to remember that is YOUR day, not theirs. My hairdresser told me, “People are going to tell you ideas. Don’t be afraid to veto them. Seriously.” I’ll take her advice.
I really had it planned out in my head that our wedding would be cheap. Who the hell was I kidding? Apparently outdoor weddings/barns are all the rage right now, so it’s pretty difficult to find one that isn’t a million dollars just to rent. My advice to you: if you own a barn, fix it up and rent it out for weddings…no joke. I honestly didn’t really want a barn, but the one we found is pretty reasonable and has a fire pit (a must have, because, ya know, s’mores bar).
So, what I’m saying is, be prepared to have TOTAL sticker-shock. Photography will most likely cost about $2,000 depending on how much you care about it, your catering will probably be $3,000 or more, and I remember my best friend pointing to her buckets of flowers the day before her wedding and saying “There’s a lot of money in those buckets……..”
3. If you’re on a budget, there’s no perfect venue
I found prefect venues, but they are either way too expensive, they accommodate smaller groups, or they are 2 hours away. The venue that we found that we’re 99.9% sure about, is at a park. I don’t know what the chances are, but there are baseball fields behind the barn and there might be a game the night of our wedding. I wanted round tables, but our venue has rectangular tables, and that’s one thing I’m willing to be okay with. There’s certain things you have to be willing to be flexible about if you want to survive the planning process.
4. Your fiancé will suddenly have input on something
I’ve heard various opinions on this, so this might not happen to everyone. Brian is an easygoing kind of guy who goes with the flow. When we got engaged and we started planning, he started speaking up about certain things. He has been pretty involved in a lot of the decisions thus far. He’s suddenly not the type of guy you “tell when and where to show up and he’ll be there”. He’s very involved and opinionated, and he wants us to have a really nice wedding. I’ve heard that other fiancés have left majority of the planning to their fiancée, and that’s okay too.
5. You have a lot more family members than you thought
The first thing I did was draft my portion of the guest list. I know that I have a small family, but I was surprised to see that I would be inviting about 70 people. Of course, some of these people live out-of-state and probably won’t attend. Suddenly, our lists combined have about 100 people. I still think that’s a small-ish wedding and others think that’s a lot.
What are some things you discovered when you started wedding planning? Any advice on how to survive (please?)?
ps. I highly recommend the planner featured in the photo. You can get it here on Amazon (affiliate link)