Your wedding should be a reflection of your personality (and your fiancé’s), but fine-tuning every detail can make even simple choices not so simple. If you’re just starting your wedding planning adventure, don’t be afraid to skip certain details. And for the things that truly deserve your attention, here are five tips to help streamline the planning process.
1. Make it a team effort
Great ideas will come when you and your future spouse are together as well as when you’re apart. Either way, remember them by keeping them all in one place. Rather than jotting down wedding ideas on scattered scraps of paper, create a “Wedding” notebook in Evernote, share it with your fiancé, and literally get on the same page. It’ll sync with all your devices, so when you add something your partner can see it right away. You can also tag notes to organize them by category, such as “photographer,” “entertainment,” and “honeymoon.” This makes it easy to share timelines and checklists with vendors, venues, and even your entire wedding party.
2. Create your wedding checklist
When you’re newly engaged, keeping the important stuff on your radar can be tough. Creating a checklist helps you divvy up tasks with your partner and avoid feeling like you’re forgetting something. Wedding experts at Brides magazine have a full wedding planning outline, starting a year before your wedding date, which you can clip and save in Evernote. In addition, this party planning checklist can help you focus on what matters. Try it out and include the details you have in mind for your big day.
3. Set your budget and guest list
Many of your decisions will depend on how much money you can afford to spend and how many people will be attending the wedding. The Knot has a quick and easy budget planning tool to help you break down your wedding costs. Draft a guest list with the approximate number of people you want to invite, then create your budget. Once you know how much you have to spend, you can plug the details into our event budget template and move on from dealing with finances to enjoying the fun stuff.
4. Decide on your vision, theme, and color scheme
What’s your entertaining style? A luxurious, upscale affair at a five-star hotel? Or are you more of a backyard barbecue couple? Whatever your vision, gather inspiration from things around you, rather than trying to dream it all up from scratch. If you’re at a restaurant and see a place setting that inspires a theme idea, take a picture and save it to a note shared with your fiancé. If you find a color scheme you like online, Web Clipper can save it alongside all your other ideas.
5. Finalize your date and venue
Once you have a clear vision for your wedding day, start thinking about which season would be ideal. Avoid dates close to major holidays and choose times of the year when the weather is appropriate. For example, a beachfront wedding won’t be as much fun in mid-winter. The most popular times for weddings are late spring, summer, and early fall. The Wedding Spot is a great resource to find venues within your price range, and The Knot has an extensive database as well.
Your wedding should be one of the happiest days of your life. Keep it low stress by following these planning tips, and remember: the more you accomplish before the big day, the more relaxed you’ll feel when you walk down the aisle. Keep calm, stay organized, and your future self will thank you!