Christmas and New year is over for another year and sometimes its an even more special time with proposals happening also! I got engaged on Christmas day a few years back and I remember how exciting it was meeting all our family and friends and sharing the news with them! If you want to read my proposal story you can view it hear. Once all the initial excitement passed, it all got a bit scary and over whelming with planning and all sorts of advise from friends and family but also online sources too. Looking back a lot was really lovely but also unnecessary panic and to be honest false info!

So here is a few points of what you should do just after getting engaged, the truth … with no propaganda 😉

Recently got engaged?

1: First off, just ENJOY being engaged!

Don’t even think about the wedding yet, you have plenty of time, trust me. Being engaged was one of my most favourite times, I had a two year engagement to save the pennies but actually even if we didn’t need to save I would still of had 2 years as it was so much fun!

2: Budgets and spreadsheets

Sit down together and work out approx. costs of everything you would like to spend money on, at this point you may not have the foggiest of ideas about what certain things might cost, thats fine. This is just a reference point at this stage. Spreadsheets where so helpful to me, I kept updating and changing them through the planning process, and kept me on track with payments to various suppliers etc.

You can find guidelines on the internet of costs of things to help you get started but please be aware many are either American or very outdated so do not reflect the current climate here.

3: After you have spent some time being engaged, work out between the two of you a date you would like and start initial browsing of venues / churches etc.

Venues would be the first point of call to get booked in as some book over 2 years in advance especially in the summer periods. Think about what kind of wedding you would like as the venue would reflect this.

wedding planning

4: Once the venue is booked start looking for wedding photographers.

Much like venues, professional wedding photographers also get booked up very quickly. I’m currently getting a couple of 2019 enquiries come in which is very organised of couples! =) There are many different style of photographers out there, natural light photographers, flash lovers, documentary style, ones that love to add grain to their images or a vintage look etc and all will have different skill levels. To begin with just start looking at lots of different photographers work, you will soon pick up what you like or do not like about their work which will help you home in on what you would really love to have!

Once you have an idea, ask your friends and family who they have used for those who have been married already, you cannot beat word of mouth and recommendations. I have been lucky enough to have based the majority of my business off recommendations which I’m internally grateful for. Remember though, not to feel pressured into a family/friends recommendation, they may be amazing and the best photographer for them but they might not have what your looking for personally and thats OK!

One key thing I will mention here is, please book a photographer because you love their work (and them!) and not because of budget restraints. Doing the latter, always ends in regret. I understand that everyone has budgets to stick to, I did myself but I prioritised what was most important to us. Having said that and on a side note, if a photographer is say 4k they still may not be the right photographer for you from someone who is 2k! So just find someone you love, do not think about the money side of it at the moment. Your wedding images will be there for you and future generations to look back on. This is precious.

engaged5: Relax

Take a break. Once the two key things above are booked you have some time to crack on with everyday life and carry on enjoying being a fiancé. =) Most other suppliers do not get booked up as quickly.

6: Get you check list back out.

The next items to check off your list is your wedding dress! These can sometimes take 6 months to order and any alterations needed. Again don’t panic though! You may not want a dress from a bridal shop and would prefer high street shopping! Think about what season you are in though, as if your looking in the Autumn/winter you may find it hard to find pretty summer dresses! Or if your like me and was high street shopping for the majority of the planning stages and then last minute bridal boutique shopping, certain ranges do have a much quicker turn around time.

Carry on with you check list, take time finding the suppliers you love, chat with them and if you can meet with them. If your planning to do a lot of DIY decorations, do not leave this to the last minute. This always takes longer than planned.

Finally, a few words of wisdom. Don’t get too addicted to Pinterest… This is an AMAZING platform for ideas but ideas is all it is – you will never be able to copy and paste a pinterest board into real life I’m afriad. Not only that, it can sway you off from what you both want from the day.

Also be cautious of some content that is released into the big world, often big bridal platforms and ‘market-y wedding sites’  have a lot of false content of things you should do. This makes me angry but thats a whole other story! =)

Importantly though, keep reminding yourself that it is YOUR day and nobody else’s. Do what makes you both happy and I promise you, there is absolutely no right or wrong way of doing anything! … ANYTHING! Let your personalties shine though and don’t get swamped down by what others think should be done or not.

I did a little blog post when I was in the wedding planning stages, which you can view here.



Lucy Noble photography


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