The very first step in wedding planning, regardless of the venue, is to nail down your guest list and overall budget. You should not make any plans or sign any contracts until those two things are finalized between you, your soon-to-be spouse and your families.
The guest list and the budget will be the two guideposts within which all of your other ideas must fall. You need to make sure that your plans can accommodate your guest list, and you need to make sure that you can afford your plans, given the size of your guest list. In other words, is the home and yard big enough for your guest list, and can you afford to host that many guests in your home and yard.
After agreeing upon the budget and guest list, you will want to set the date, or at least narrow your focus to a range of dates. To do so, you’ll want to consider your family and close friends’ schedules, perhaps also the availability of a preferred photographer or band, as well as both the average weather conditions in your area and your desired honeymoon location.
Check out my Sample Planning Timeline for more recommendations on how to map out your wedding planning.
Photo courtesy of Katie Stoops Photography.