By RileyGrey|Wedding Planning|May 19, 2023

From 'Yes' to 'I Do': Essential Steps for Newly Engaged Couples

Photo: Andres Ayrton

You said yes! In the throes of excitement around your new relationship status, you are likely being bombarded with everyone’s favorite next question - “when are you getting married?” First off, congratulations! This is a really special time filled with joy, anticipation, and dreams of your future with your significant other. In order to help ease the transition from engagement bliss to wedding planning-mode, here are the first five things that every newly engaged couple should do to kick off their wedding planning journey.

From choosing a wedding website to building your guest list, let's get into it.

1. Celebrate and Enjoy This Special Time

Amidst the flurry of planning, it's crucial not to lose sight of the reason behind it all: your love and commitment to each other. Take a moment to pause and celebrate this exciting milestone as a couple and realize all of the love and support that is about to be showered upon you. Enjoy the magic of being engaged before diving headfirst into the nitty-gritty of wedding preparations. Plan a romantic date night or a getaway together to commemorate this special occasion. Live it up during this time that’s all about you, remember this feeling.

2. Discuss Your Vision and Priorities

Now is the perfect time to sit down together and have an open and honest conversation about your wedding vision and priorities. Discuss your desired wedding size, location, theme, and any specific elements that hold significance for both of you. Talk about how you’re going to communicate your vision with your families. This early communication will help align your expectations and set the foundation for the planning process. Remember, compromise is key, so be willing to listen and find common ground. By understanding each other's wishes from the beginning, you can create a wedding day that truly reflects your shared dreams.

3. Selecting a Wedding Website

One of the essential tasks for modern couples is choosing a wedding website. Wedding websites have become invaluable tools for organizing and sharing important information with your guests. Take the time to research different platforms and select one that aligns with your style and needs. Wedding websites like those from Riley & Grey offer various features such as RSVP management, guest accommodations, customized domains and more. By setting up a wedding website early on, you’ll secure the URL that you want, and have a centralized hub to keep everyone informed and engaged throughout your wedding journey.

4. Set a Budget

As unglamorous as it may seem, establishing a budget early on is crucial to avoid any financial stress down the road. Sit down together and determine how much you are willing to spend on your wedding. Consider all the essential elements, such as the venue, catering, attire, photography, and entertainment. Prioritize what areas are most important and allocate funds accordingly, being mindful of potential unexpected expenses. A value-based budget will serve as a guiding principle throughout the planning process and allow you to make informed decisions while keeping your finances in check.

5. Compile an Initial Guest List

Although it may seem premature, creating an initial guest list is an essential step that will influence several aspects of your wedding planning. Begin by listing close family members and friends, and then expand to include extended family, coworkers, and other important individuals in your lives. Keep in mind that the guest count will affect your venue options, catering choices, and overall budget. By compiling an initial guest list, you'll have a much better understanding of the scale of your wedding and can proceed with other planning decisions accordingly. Remember that the guest list is a fluid aspect that may undergo revisions as you progress, but having a starting point will help you stay organized and focused.

Wedding planning is a marathon, not a sprint. There are a lot of decisions to be made and in most cases, you’ll have a good amount of time to make them. By choosing a wedding website, celebrating your engagement, discussing your vision and priorities, setting a budget, and compiling an initial guest list in the beginning, you'll lay a solid foundation for your wedding preparations. Remember to enjoy this special time as a couple and savor the excitement that comes with planning your dream day. With some strategic planning and a shared vision, you'll create a wedding that reflects your relationship and sets the stage for a lifetime of happiness together.