It’s been over two years since our original “Just Engaged” article. Why are we updating it? There are a couple of reasons.
One of them is obvious – COVID. It has changed SO much about the wedding industry and planning a wedding. The other reason is that we’ve learned a lot in the past two and a half years.
In light of everything that’s happened with COVID and how that has changed weddings, we decided it would be helpful to update our guide to newly engaged couples.
Congrats! You’re engaged! Now what? What in the world should you do first after you and your fiancé just got engaged?! What should you plan first? Read on for more tips about how to start wedding planning once you’ve got that bling on your left hand!
And bask in the excitement! Be sure to tell your closest family and friends! Maybe don’t post it on Instagram or share a ring pic with your Snapchat peeps before you tell/show your mom.
After you get engaged, there are going to be A LOT of decisions and plans you need to make, but before you start doing all of that, time some time and ENJOY. Just sit and breathe. This is a fun season of life, make sure your take the time to sit and enjoy it. We talk to brides who whish the wedding day would hurry up and come or they get so wrapped up in all the details and making sure everything is perfect that they never really get to enjoy engagement.
My family members in the insurance field would be so proud that I’m telling you this. I know this seems like an odd thing to think about right after you get engaged, but it’s VERY important. You never know what’s going to happen, but if something tragic were to happen, at least the ring is insured.
It’s not the most fun thing, but it can be surprisingly inexpensive when added to your renter’s insurance or homeowners’ policy. Need to know how to insure it? I can hook you up with a great, honest connection.
This is a free sub-tip* But still very important. I know it’s not fun to go without that brand new ring once you’ve just gotten it, but it’s important! I had been engaged for about 2 weeks when I had just graduated from college and was moving.
I (along with my dad) almost DIED because I realized my ring wasn’t on my finger anymore after packing up a box. I cried when I realized I was going to have to call Mitchel and tell him that I had lost his grandmother’s 40-year-old diamond, which wasn’t yet insured.
Luckily, we retraced my steps and found it inside a moving box I was packing before I had to make that call.
A tip my insurance agent-cousin mentioned is to try to find a place that can size it on the same day, you don’t want to leave that new diamond with just anyone. If you call around to some local jewelers, most of them will do same-day ring sizing. Luckily, you won’t have to be without that shiny bling too long.
Have you always wanted a Christmas wedding, always dreamed of it being warm on your wedding day? A lot of your vendors will require you to know or have a good idea of your date so they know if they are booked.
This is also a good time to think about your wedding size/guest list estimate. How large are either of your families? Are you planning to invite coworkers? Church friends? Etc?
Some photographers (me!) offer different pricing for intimate weddings, so it’s good for them to know about your guest size and needs
*updated 2021 tip: when you’re picking your dates, it doesn’t hurt to be flexible with your dates. The pandemic has created some chaos for venues, vendors, and couples.
Venues are more booked than they’ve ever been. So if you pick a date, don’t set it in stone until you’ve talked to vendors. We recommend starting with a “rough” date. I.e. the end of October or Early April.
Get an idea like that set and then you can narrow it down after you’ve pick the perfect location. Work around what they have and your needs all at once.
You might think that because I’m a wedding photographer, I would have chosen this as my number one priority. Not quite number one, but dates do fill up so quickly and it is a priority. We have brides that book anywhere from 9 months all the way up to 15 months!
If you have your eye on someone you want to photograph your day, go ahead and inquire as soon as you’re engaged, even if you haven’t nailed down your date, it’s good to begin the conversation and see what dates that photographer might have available!
This is even more important if you’re getting married in a more “popular” month, like October. A lot of photographers will book up in October a whole year in advance.
The same tip goes for videographers. Much like photographers, videographers tend to book pretty quickly. Aside from your venue, planning your photo and video should be a top priority after you get done staring at the ring.
When you’re picking your wedding photographer, it can be kinda overwhelming. With SOOO many great photographers out there – where in the world do you begin?
First, decide what style you like. Are you a fan of the dark and moody look or do you just LOVE the bright, and natural look?
Same as with your photographer, venues book pretty far in advance. With venues, you have a lot of things to think about, which means you want to give yourself PLENTY of time. Do you want an indoor wedding or an outdoor one? Is your reception going to be at the same location as the ceremony? Would you like an all-inclusive wedding venue?
Some photographers may ask what venue you have chosen, but the photographer shouldn’t need to have the venue completely nailed down in order to book you. You should at least have a general idea of the location and a few venues in mind though.
Of course, it takes some time to figure out which of your loved ones you want to stand next to you on your wedding day. But the earlier you can ask them the better.
Being involved in a wedding party is a big commitment. It’s kind to give them enough time to think and prepare instead of waiting closer to the wedding day.
Last but not least, CELEBRATE! Go out with your friends and family and enjoy it. Engagement is a true blessing and can be a fun time of life, don’t try and rush it.
If you’re just engaged, we would love to talk to you about how the Katie Jaynes duo can be there for your special day. We want to be with you on every step of your wedding journey. It’s our mission to be more than just wedding photographers.
If you’re still getting used to the ring on your finger, we would love to help you out with the whole planning process.