Thursday, December 20, 2007

Getting Engaged Over The Holidays? Here's a plan!

The holidays are a huge time for engagements. If there is a
ring in your future, here's what you need to do to start the
wedding planning.

Of course you're excited. You need to call everyone
and shout it from the rooftops. Do what you have to
do as far as announcing it, but put the brakes on
immediate wedding plans. Take a week or two for
the excitement to subside so you don't make any
planning mistakes. Don't immediately rush out and
sign contracts! Enjoy the moment!

You and your fiance need to set a date. Together.
One that mutually will fit into your life.

You need to agree on a place. Whether its a church,
a garden or a destination wedding, you need to discuss the

You need to define your wedding. Formal, informal,
reception hall, event center, backyard barbecue.

You need to set a budget and determine who
paying for what part of the wedding.
Don't assume your parents are willing to foot the bill
for a fairytale extravaganza or that his parents are going
to host the rehearsal dinner, provide the liquor and pay
for the honeymoon. Talk to your parents individually to
see what, if any, financial help they are willing OR able to give.

Attend bridal shows. January and February are the
prime time for bridal shows. This will give you a chance to
do a face to face with all sorts of wedding vendors. Bridal shows
offer discounts for bookings either at the show or by making
an appointment after the show. You can compare florists,
DJ's, makeup artists and more. Look at the wedding dresses
in the show. Make appointments to interview
vendors. You SHOULD take the time after the show to
look at photographer's and florists' portfolios
BEFORE you sign any contracts. If its a caterer, make an
appointment for a tasting. Make an appointment to
try on wedding dresses.

Get references. Ask for names of previous customers.
Ask your friends who just got married if they would
recommend their vendors. Call the Better Business Bureau.

Realize that weddings take time to pull together.
While I am advocating NOT jumping into any contracts
or being pressured into a purchase, you also need to
order your wedding items or book your
vendors in a timely manner.
You'll need to order your wedding dress at least 6 months
in advance. Wedding dresses have a lot of hand beading
that takes time to produce. They are like snowflakes,
no two are exactly alike.
Many vendors are booked in more than a year in advance.
Don't expect everyone to be available for you in
an instant's notice.

Make a decision, cross it off your list and to
on to the next item at hand.

Once you've settled on a wedding item, stop shopping
purchase it. Don't second guess yourself. Don't even
think about changing your mind. Your first impulse
is usually the correct one. If you are making a horrible
mistake, someone ,whether it be a family member or
your wedding vendor, will tell you its a mistake.
I would never let anyone walk out of my bridal shop
in an unflattering dress or blend horrible colors for the
bridesmaids. I'll tell you upfront that its wrong.

If a vendor is high pressuring you to buy, RUN!
There is a national wedding dress chain that is notorious for
high pressure sales. The sales consultants are
commission and under pressure to sell. Not a week goes by
where a bride doesn't come in and tell us of her regret for buying
her wedding dress under pressure. Don't knuckle under to
pressure by any vendor. If time is a constraint, they may be telling
you the truth. You can't magically produce a dress, but
if you have 6 or more months, don't cave to pressure.

Comments or questions? Fire away!

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