• Plan + Simple

The First 9 Things You Should Do When You Get Engaged

Photo by Kara Abbey Photography

1. Celebrate

The very first thing you should do when you get engaged is celebrate! You’re entering such a fun and exciting time of your life, so make sure you sit back and take it all in. Before you know it, you’ll be caught up in the craziness of planning!

2. Pick a Date

Picking a date is so important! Not only is it a date that you’ll remember for the rest of your life, but it sets everything in motion when it comes to booking vendors. You can’t check the availability of your favorite photographer if you haven’t set the date! Another important tip while picking your date is to check your calendar and your immediate family’s calendar. You definitely want to make sure that Grandma doesn’t have a scheduled surgery or that Mom and Dad don’t already have plane tickets to head out of the country.

3. Set a Budget

The best piece of advice I could ever give in terms of setting a budget is to remember that your budget is not what you want to spend, but what you can afford to spend! While making your budget, be sure to sit down with your fiance and go over what the most important things are for the both of you! Consider those things top priority or your “worthy of splurging” category.

4. Hire an Event Planner

If you plan on hiring an event planner, do it early on in the game! Let them take away some of the stress and help you with your growing to-do list! If you’re wondering if it's worth it to hire and event planner, check out our blog post, 8 Reasons to Hire an Event Planner.

5. Make a Rough Guest List

If your wedding date is far away, it may seem silly to make a guest list so early — it may even seem impossible! How could you possibly know who you want to invite when the big day is 2-3 years away? Honestly, you can’t really know! That’s why you’re creating a ROUGH guest list! It’s so important to have a general idea of how many people you want to invite before you start looking for venues!

6. Pick a Venue

Now that you have a rough guest list, you can start looking for a fun venue that will fit you and your guests! It’s important to remember to pick a venue based off of how many guests the venue can hold. If your guest list is at 250 but the venue can only hold 150, don’t book it! It will make it so hard on you and your fiancé to have to cut out people that you really wanted to be there. Another great reason to book your venue early is that you can see what the venue has to offer and then book other vendors from there. Some venues offer catering, a DJ, etc. so check out what your venue offers first!

7. Find Your Photographer/Videographer

Your memories of your wedding day will fade over the years, but you’ll always be able to relive it through gorgeous photos and videos. Do your research and find a photographer whose photos and style you love! Photos that you will happily revisit over the years to refresh your memory. Find someone who will make everyone feel comfortable and who will capture the most important moments from the day.

8. Pick a Caterer

Let’s be honest, having good food is SO important. I always leave weddings talking about what I had to eat. Most caterers offer a free taste testing, and my advice is to take advantage of that! Take your fiancé and find something that you and your guests will love! Caterers are one of the vendors that will want your rough number of guests — so have that ready to go! Also, remember that most caterers charge per person!

9. Pick a DJ

You have your event planner, your venue, your photographer and your caterer. Now it’s time to really get the party started and find yourself a fun DJ! Focus on finding someone who has music that everyone will like and knows how to read the crowd. Also, make sure to check that your DJ has his own equipment. Most venues don’t provide it for the DJ.

There are obviously SO many other details that need to be done before your big day can happen, but these are the very first things that we think need to be done! Read our 10 Things I Wish I Knew Before Planning My Wedding blog post for more tips and encouragement!

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