Here at Love Stories TV, our goal is to help every couple plan their dream day without stressing so much over every decision. In fact, our little secret? You should do exactly what you want to do as a couple—it’s your day!—no one else’s opinions matter. However, we know it’s easier said than done to not stress over a wedding so we’re sharing some of our best wedding planning tips with you.
Do you know how to kick off wedding planning? Or the very first thing you should do after the proposal happens? Our Head of Editorial, Katie Kortebein, took a break from her own wedding planning to advise you on the five things you should do immediately after getting engaged. Watch the video for all Katie’s tips below.
Hello everyone! My name is Katie K and I'm the Head of Editorial here at Love Stories TV, which is a video platform for wedding planning. I’ve been in the wedding industry for over six years so trust me when I say I know what I’m talking about. And, not only that, but I'm also currently engaged so I'm planning my wedding right along with you!
So I'm the first person to tell any engaged couple that they should do their wedding completely their way. No rules, no traditions. None of that matters except for what you and your partner want to do. However...today, I'm going to talk about the five things you should do right after getting engaged. My partner and I got engaged in December 2020. We were visiting my parents in California and decided to take a little trip to go skiing at Lake Tahoe. He suggested we go for a hike around the lake while there. It was absolutely gorgeous—there were snow-covered mountains in the background—we wandered around taking cute little selfies. I literally had no idea what was happening. He didn’t even seem nervous. We got out to the very end of the pier and he gets down on one knee. My lovely response was, “What are you doing? Is this real? This is not real. Stop it.” I'm a delight. It turns out photographers are taking photos the whole time—he really knocked it out of the park.
Tip #1: Celebrate!
After the proposal, we drove back to my parents and popped a bunch of bottles of champagne and just like really reveled in the fact that we are engaged. That night we started calling our closest people, really mostly family. The next day we called our best friends and a few others. We also decided to take a couple of other bottles of champagne and go have an outdoor picnic because a bunch of our friends had surprised us by sending bottles. (Thank you to those friends, we really appreciated it!) We've been together for over six years so, trust me when I say I have been getting the “When are you getting engaged?” question for literally YEARS. People were very happy and we had bottles on bottles of champagne for probably four days straight. It was amazing.
Tip #2: Figure Out the Location
I'm from Arkansas, my family lives in California, my partner and all of his family are from New Jersey, plus that's what we currently live, so, naturally, even though I thought I was crazy at the time, people were asking, “Are you going to get married in Arkansas, California, New Jersey?” Ultimately, my partner I talked about it, and we just really want to get married in New Jersey. It's where we made our home, where we moved in together, where we got our dog, and I just personally really want to show all my friends and family, since they're all spread out throughout the country, what a beautiful place it is that I now call home. The biggest thing for figuring out location is you have to really figure out, do you want people come and see you? Do you want to travel? Do you want to make a weekend out of it and have a destination wedding? Do you have a beloved hometown chapel you've always dreamed of getting married in? Just figure out what is most important to you and your partner. That's the only thing that matters. That is my be all, end all for wedding planning.
Tip #3: Figure Out Your Priorities
Your top three priorities will affect your entire wedding planning moving forward and, most importantly, your budget. Say you and your partner are really big foodies and the wedding details you’re most excited about is the cocktail hour appetizers, signature drink and, of course, reception meal. Those are going to be items you want to prioritize in your budget, aka you can spend a little bit more on catering and bar service and then say save a little bit on floral and décor, for example, if those are details you're not as excited about. Naming your three priorities will the biggest thing in helping you figure out what you want in your wedding. For instance, my partner and I really just want to prioritize video, obviously, music, food and drink because we want a big party atmosphere. We basically want to throw a music festival, brought to them by us.
Tip #4: Figure Out Your Wedding Budget
You literally cannot do anything without knowing your wedding budget. The venue alone could be anywhere from 20% to 50% of your budget, depending on how much they offer and include, like catering, linens, rentals, etc. Now I know I keep mentioning the priorities, and I'm going to keep mentioning that, because it really is important. For instance, if you are prioritizing video like I am, then you're going to want to prioritize your videographers. Now, if you're looking at videographers and you fall in love with one but realize they are a little bit out of your budget, you can now look to those vendors that you're not as excited about, take a little money out of that category and apply it toward your videographer. This way, you can splurge a little on those categories you are most excited about and save on categories that you're just don't really care that much about. So, again, you really can't do anything without a wedding budget. In fact, if you talk to a wedding planner or venue, one of the first things they ask about is your budget so make sure you figure that out as early as you can.
Tip #5: Research Your Priority Vendors
Priority is coming in again. I am telling y’all, this is super helpful. Once you know your location and priorities, you can start researching all the vendors that you know are going to be most important on your wedding day. That way, when you figure out your specific wedding venue and your date, you can reach out to your favorites for their availability, as soon as possible. Trust me when I say this is extremely important especially right now...think of all those 2020 and 2021 weddings that were pushed back… Let's just say it's going to be a very hectic couple years for weddings and you're going to want to lock in your priority vendors ASAP.
So there you have it—the five things you should do immediately after getting engaged from a wedding expert and current soonlywed. We hope this is helpful and make sure to check out all the real wedding inspiration on lovestoriestv.com.