From Pinterest to wedding blogs, magazines to the advice of friends and family, there is a lot of wedding planning information out there. Brides and grooms have never had so many ideas at their fingertips to consider when planning their wedding. Today we are going to cover a fundamental piece of advice for wedding planning: where to start.
While I appreciate a beautifully designed wedding editorial feature and swoon over wedding blogs for fun, I think there is another step that should be taken first before turning to these wonderful resources. In this blog, I’m explaining the first step that I encourage you to take as you begin to plan your wedding.
STEP 1: Start with your story
Before pulling together any visual inspiration or deciding on any details, I recommend starting with your story. Your wedding provides a unique opportunity to tell your story as a couple in an extra special way. Through every carefully chosen detail, your loved ones can get a better sense of who you are as a couple. This can include details that share your story up to this point, and can also communicate your hopes for the future. By using your story as your primary source of inspiration, your day will feel like you. And by weaving the threads of your story into every aspect of your day, you will create a memorable wedding that is unique to you!
So how do you make this actionable and fun? By talking through your story and unpacking it together. Dillon and I did this by answering the questions provided in the wedding planner we used, which can be purchased HERE. I’ve included some of their examples below, as well as some of my own, to help you get started:
- How did you meet?
- What did you do on your first date?
- Are there any locations that are particularly special to you as a couple?
- What is the story of your proposal?
- Do you have any traditions as a couple?
- What is the story behind your engagement ring?
- Are there any recipes or meals that are special to you?
- What is one of your very favorite dates to share together?
- Consider how you spend quality time together. What is your favorite way to spend a weekend or your favorite activities to share?
- What are each of your favorites for the following? Season, vacation spot, travel destination, stores, accessories, book, food, movie, music, color
STEP 2: Consider the larger story
Once you’ve unpacked the foundation of your story as a couple, consider the influences that have shaped you. Look to your families, colleges, career paths, etc. Are there any meaningful details or elements you’d like to include? If family is especially important to you, are there any traditions from your parents’ or grandparents’ weddings that you would like to include in your own?
STEP 3: Look to real-life examples
Reflect back on weddings you’ve attended in the past and answer the following:
- What did you like best about your favorite wedding?
- What stands out, good or bad, about the weddings you’ve attended?
- Are there any traditions you want to incorporate or skip?
Make a date out of it!
In conclusion, when you first begin planning your wedding, start with your story. It is unique to you as a couple and is filled with snippets from which you can pull inspiration. You have permission to make your wedding uniquely yours! I encourage you to take this step and make a date out of it. Grab a notebook and a pen and go somewhere fun together, whether it’s Starbucks or the beach or the top of a mountain on a favorite hike. Spend time here before moving on to anything else. This will help you to set a solid foundation for all of the decisions that lie ahead.
If you hire a wedding planner, this pre-work will help you to provide them with a great starting point as they cast a vision for your wedding design. If you’re planning to handle the design and logistics on your own, this will give you a reference point to come back to throughout the process. And most importantly, pause to savor this season. It is so sweet and fleeting. Enjoy it together!
Read more of my wedding planning advice HERE!