Are you newly engaged after Christmas or New Year? Congratulations! I vividly remember the moments after Pete proposed and feeling ecstatically happy, dancing around the place and telling all of our friends and family, while drinking Champagne. It sounds a bit cheesy but being newly engaged is a pretty special time in its own right. It shouldn’t feel any different but somehow it does.
What you probably don’t know yet about being newly engaged, though, is that quite a lot of people, from your friends and family to glossy wedding magazines, will have a view about what you should be doing in terms of planning your wedding and even in terms of the type of wedding you should have.
You will probably have wedding planning advice coming at you from all angles and if you check out the #justengaged hashtag on Twitter you’ll be forgiven for thinking that you should have booked the venue, decided on the outfits, hand made all of your decor all while packing away your Christmas presents and planning a stylish New Years Eve party.
Well I’m here to tell you not to worry about it. Not yet, at least. Being newly engaged is exciting and wonderful and lovely and really deserves to be enjoyed. I prescribe a period of at least a couple of months where you just enjoy your engagement.
Wedding planning, however low key (and I’ve photographed everything from a tiny London elopements to destination weddings) doesn’t have to be stressful but it does involve some work, decision making and planning of logistics, so why not have fun ‘just’ being engaged for a while? Spend time together, celebrate and put weddings out of your mind until you’re ready.
Don’t worry about searching for a wedding venue or agreeing the guest list or booking your wedding photographer. Just breathe. Don’t smother your happy just-engaged-glow with the logistics of planning a wedding. The planning will be there, waiting for you when you are ready.
When you are ready you might want to pop back to this post, as you’ll find some useful resources below to help you along the way.
Wedding Planning Advice – Not to be looked at until at least three months after getting engaged: by order of Babb Photo.
This visual guide to planning a wedding from Veronica Dearly will guide you through the process:
Once you do get into the nitty gritty of wedding planning, this article about timings and how they work in relation to your wedding photography might come in handy. In fact I have a whole series of articles on wedding planning advice in relation to wedding photography that you might want to read. If you’re working with another wedding photographer, of course they may work differently so you’ll need to have a chat with them about their approach.
Some of my favourite resources for wedding inspiration are listed below:
If you need some help with styling you might want to have a chat with my lovely friend Alexandra at The Bijou Bride, as she offers a wedding styling service alongside her other wedding planner services.
My guide to wedding photography styles and how to choose a wedding photographer will help you to demystify wedding photography and if you do want to learn more, you can find a little about my style and approach here and this article about How Not To Brief Your Wedding Photographer might come in useful too.
Most of all, more than any of the advice, links or sources of visual inspiration listed above please think about what you want from your wedding. Some of the happiest weddings I have been a part of in the last few years were so special and emotional because they truly reflected the couple and their personalities.
Whether you want to get married with just the two of you against the backdrop of a beautiful landscape, or involve 150 of your favourite people in a party of epic proportions, there’s no reason that you can’t have a wedding that truly reflects your wishes. You don’t need to think about that now though. Crack open another bottle of fizz and celebrate your engagement!