Tips for Getting Started with Wedding Planning

Congratulations on your engagement!! What an exciting time! Now that you have a wedding to plan, you may be thinking “Where do I even begin!?” Well… you’re in luck. Here are a few wedding planning tips and information you should gather to start.

1. Guest count

Estimate how many guests you plan on having attend your special day. This count will be critical information when you begin wedding venue shopping. Most venues will have a maximum guest count allowed, so you will need to be able to provide a rough number to make sure the venue space can fit your entire guest list. If you’re looking for a San Diego wedding venue, Grand Tradition can accommodate 230 guests at Arbor Terrace, and 300 in the Beverly Mansion.

2. Budget

Set a wedding budget for what you’re comfortable with spending, and possibly even break it down by spending within each category – venue, food, dress, flowers, photography, etc. Don’t forget about the extra items such as flower girl basket, ring bearer pillow, wedding cake knife and server, and a card box (luckily, these items are included with your package at Grand Tradition).

3. Date

Now set a date for your big day or at least figure out a time of year you want to get married in! This is important when venue shopping! When selecting a wedding date, remember to think about any holidays and the weather, especially if you’re having an outdoor wedding. But try and be flexible with dates just in case your dream wedding venue doesn’t have a specific date available!

4. Theme

A wedding theme isn’t important just yet, but it is something to consider. A theme or preferred style of wedding decor will help narrow down venues. If your theme leans more towards classic and timeless, you may be better off looking at venues that fit in with that theme (such as the Beverly Mansion here at Grand Tradition). Later down the line, your wedding theme will help guide you in brainstorming details such as wedding favor ideas.

5. Location/Venue

Now it’s time to start wedding venue shopping! With so many options, you’ll want to get an idea of the look you’re going for, so you can begin to rule out venues that don’t match your vision. Location can also be a major factor in venue shopping. One thing to keep in mind as you’re touring is to ask about nearby accommodations for your guests.

6. Vendors

After booking your venue and selecting a date, the next major thing to check off your wedding planning list is booking vendors. Ask your venue if they have any that they recommend (Grand Tradition has a list of amazing preferred vendors). The main vendors you will want to have on your wedding vendor checklist are a ceremony officiant, a DJ, a wedding photographer (and videographer if you choose to have one), a florist, and a bakery. Try and book these vendors relatively quickly to ensure your favorites are available for your wedding!

7. Entertainment

Once you’ve finalized your wedding guest list, another key detail to decide is how you will entertain all of those guests during your wedding reception. There are many different wedding entertainment ideas out there, from a cocktail hour to a photo booth. Keeping in mind your wedding venue and location, as well as the theme of your wedding, will help decide these activities.

8. Additional Events

Along with your big day comes several additional events, such as a bridal shower and rehearsal dinner. You will likely get help from your bridal party and loved ones when planning these events. However, you will still have a say in the venue and theme of these events, so it’s important to start thinking about those details as well.

9. Gift Registries

Along with your big day comes several additional events, such as a bridal shower and rehearsal dinner. You will likely get help from your bridal party and loved ones when planning these events. However, you will still have a say in the venue and theme of these events, so it’s important to start thinking about those details as well.

10. More Fun Ideas

One way to stay nice and organized with all your wedding emails is to create an email address specifically for your wedding. Now when you are contacting vendors, venues, etc., all of your wedding-related emails are in one place! Another fun idea is to create a wedding website. A wedding website is an easy way to keep your guests updated with everything pertaining to the wedding (such as directions to the wedding reception, nearby accommodations, registry information, etc.).

Planning your wedding day may seem stressful initially. However, now that you have accomplished the biggest tasks on your wedding planning checklist, break up everything else into smaller sections – the process will become that much smoother! Also, ask for help when you can (especially from your bridal party, that’s what they’re there for!) This will alleviate tons of extra pressure and lead to a much easier wedding planning process.

Sincerely,