Annabel Farley Photography - Berkshire wedding and family photographer | 12 Things You Should Do After You Get Engaged

12 Things You Should Do After You Get Engaged

April 12, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Congratulations, you've said yes!! What an amazing time in your life! As a wedding photographer and wife, I can honestly say that you're about to embark on a wonderful journey. It all starts with that shiny diamond ring that you likely can't stop staring at but it's so much more than that. Marriage is a wonderful adventure that is full of discovery and experiences. My husband and I have celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary this year, but it still feels like yesterday to us! We wish we could do it all over again! You've got so much to look forward to.

But first, it's time to plan!

couple posing for photo at Berkshire weddingcouple posing for photo at Berkshire wedding

In the next few months you'll be planning the very first day of your lives together and, although it will be so much fun, it can be slightly overwhelming, too. As a wedding photographer, I know a thing or two about weddings so today I thought I'd share with you a few tips on things you should do after you get engaged. Here we go!

bridesmaid photo at Gloucestershire weddingbridesmaid photo at Gloucestershire wedding

1. First things first: celebrate! Whether you go out with friends or have a celebratory dinner with family, make sure you take some time to celebrate this joyous occasion. 

2. Set a budget. Once you've celebrated, you'll want to start planning all the beautiful details of the day, but it's important to not get swept away before sitting down to calculate a budget. After all, you don't want to fall in love with a venue or even wedding dress that's not in budget. Setting a budget can be challenging, especially if your parents haven't broached the topic yet, but figuring out numbers is the most important thing you can do in this initial period in the planning process.

3. Draft a guest list. Once you have a budget, you'll need a guest list so that you can determine how much you can spend per plate for your reception. Having a guest list will also allow you to know the size of the venue you should be looking for.

Hampshire wedding venueHampshire wedding venue

4. Research venues. Now comes the hardest part of wedding planning, in my opinion. But don't fret, because there are lots of tools to make this process easier. My favorite resource for checking out venues is Hitched. At the click of a button, you can find out tons of helpful information on each venue.

5. Think about an appropriate season. Once you have a budget and venue in mind, you'll be able determine what season would be best for your wedding. Venues have different price points during different times of the year so it's important to plan your wedding at a time when venue prices can accommodate the budget you've allocated. 

6. Gather inspiration. Now that you've got your venue, head to Pinterest to create an inspiration board to start brainstorming color palettes and design elements for your wedding. This will be largely based on season and location but you can find so many unique ideas on Pinterest to fit any taste. 

bridal party photo by Newbury wedding photographerbridal party photo by Newbury wedding photographer

7. Select your bridal party! This part can be so fun! Think about how you will ask your bridal party to be a part of your big day and try to make it unique and memorable. You can invite them all out on the town or if they're not local, send them a special package in the mail with a thoughtful note.

8. Book your photographer. Out of all the vendors you'll need to book, I highly recommend booking your photographer immediately after reserving your venue. Photographers tend to get booked out a year or two in advance. Plus, you'll want to do an engagement session soon and the best person to do that with is your wedding photographer. This will allow you to get to know each other before the big day so that you're completely comfortable with their approach to posing. Another benefit to booking your photographer early on is that you'll have plenty of time to get your engagement images printed so that you can use them for your save the dates.

engagement photo by Newbury engagement photographerengagement photo by Newbury engagement photographer

9. Schedule your engagement session. Now that you've got your photographer, it's time to schedule that engagement session. Pick a location that is meaningful to you or pick one that is especially picturesque!

10. Go dress shopping! At this point you've done so much work, you deserve to do something fun! Make a date with a couple of the special ladies in your life and go try on dresses. Remember to try on all types of styles because you just don't know what a dress will look like on you until you've tried it on. Countless brides have told me that they ended up going with the dress that they least expected! 

11. Research wedding fairs and put a few of them on your calendar. Wedding fairs are a great place to get ideas and get to know vendors in person. Be sure to bring along something to take notes, like a cute notebook or wedding planning guide.

12. Have a date night. Remember to focus on each other during your wedding planning. It's too easy to get wrapped up in the planning so make sure you are setting time aside to spend time together talking about anything *except* wedding planning! 

There you have it! I hope these twelve tips are useful to you in your planning. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions and if I can be of any help. 

Learn More

Annabel Farley Photography offers natural, romantic wedding and portrait photography in Berkshire, Hampshire, Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire. Click here to view my wedding portfolio or contact me for availability and pricing.


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