Newb questions

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from Oneofakind85. Show Oneofakind85's posts

    Newb questions

    Hello All!

    So I am recently engaged and had a few questions for those of you who i'm sure are much farther along in your planning then I am!

    We haven't set a date yet because we are trying to work out the logistics of paying for the wedding and how we are going to do it.  Do you have any reccomendations on any budget sites to help plan? Or if we decided to enlist the help of family members how to go about asking them? Should we not ask them and just hope that they offer at some point?

    Also, I have already joined theknot.com is this the best wedding website to be  using?

    Thank you ladies for your input!
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Welcome!
    Just a couple of thoughts on your post.  Depending on your relationships of course, I think it's OK to ask your parents if they are willing and able to contribute.  I asked my parents and they told me how much they were willing to help.  We never asked my MIL since traditionally the bride's parents pay and because we weren't sure she would be able, but in the end she paid for the rehearsal dinner and the limos.  (The limos because she insisted I had to have them!)
    The Knot is good for certain things... and not so good for others.  I mostly used it to look at photos of bouquets, cakes, and bridesmaid dresses.  Just try not to buy into all of their lists and rules!
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Congrats and welcome!

    General advice, never be passive about your needs and expect people to figure out what you need, that you'd appreciate their offering to help, and offer exactly what you're hoping to receive right when you need it.  If you want help (or anything else) ask.  Otherwise, you'll be ticked at everyone for not reading your mind, and that's not fair.  It's especially true with your husband after the wedding.  If you expect him to read your mind you'll be disappointed and he won't even know why.

    Other than that, relax and enjoy this cool time before the details start bogging you down.  If you haven't even set a date yet you have plenty of time.  Consider your style and budget before anything else.  Do you want something formal in the evening?  Informal in the morning?  Are you religious?  Write down your top three "must haves" and "can't stands" for your wedding and ask your fiance to do the same.
     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from poppy609. Show poppy609's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Congrats!  A few things off the top of my head that I found helpful when planning mine (which was a year ago...):

    • Enjoy being engaged and don't worry too much right off the bat about all of the planning.
    • Talk to your FI about what you both envision for your wedding.  From there, determine where you think you'd like to have it (the type of venue as well as location).  Start researching venues and getting an understanding of prices.  Plan everything else (date, etc.) around that.
    • How long have you been engaged?  Has anyone mentioned money?  If it's just been a very short time, give your families a chance to let your engagement sink in before starting money conversations.  My mom said, "I have x amount of money to contribute" which was great because then we knew the parameters in which we were working.  My in-laws wanted to contribute but didn't give us an amount, so it was more awkward and in the end we didn't end up asking them for anything other than the rehearsal dinner. Oh, and try not to accept any money that comes with strings attached...
    • When you start negotiating with venues, don't be afraid to ask for discounts in a "what can you do for us, we really want our wedding here" kind of way.  Every time we said anything to our venue like that, they offered to knock off another thousand dollars.  This might not always be the case, but it worked for us and we wouldn't have known if we (well, my FI) hadn't asked.
    • If possible, go with a venue in which you have to use an outside vendor for alcohol (this is often the case in dry towns, like Topsfield).  It might seem weird and sketchy at first, but is MUCH cheaper than dealing directly with the venue for the bar.  And most venues who have to use an outside vendor handle all of the ordering for you - we never had to talk to that vendor at all, and had plenty of everything. It was the only way we were able to afford open bar all night.
    • Become familiar with Etsy.com.  It will be your friend.
    • Use these forums - they were very helpful to me!
     
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from Oneofakind85. Show Oneofakind85's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Thanks so much ladies for your input and advice!

    We just recently got engaged, very recently so I think you are right Poppy I need to just enjoy being engaged.

    I think my Fiance and I will just have to sit down and talk about what we want etc and then plan our budget and what not.

    It's just all so exciting and I keep thinking about all the fun things that I have to look forward to.
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Looking forward to go through the planning process, highs and lows, family drama, everything with you!!  Fasten your seat belt for a wild ride - YEEEEEHAAAAAAH!
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from ajuly09. Show ajuly09's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Congrats and welcome, oneofakind!  One piece of advice that has not been stated yet is that your guest list will determine how much (overall) you will spend on the wedding.  If the food/drink is 100pp then you need to multiply that by the number of people.  I am sure this is already on your mind, but the guest list will also determine where you will have the wedding. We had a boston wedding with 200ppl, and called around to places to find out many places could only accommodate 150.  So just a thought.  Figuring out your guest list and asking your family to do the same can help figure some things out before you start really making decisions. Oh and beware, at least this was true for my family, my mom gave me a HUGE list of people and I told her to cut it down to the most important.  Good luck! 
     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Absolutely right, ajuly!  Start the guest list right away and finish it before you go much further with planning.  Everything is greatly affected (budget, available venues, etc) on how many people you're going to have.  And, yeah, be prepared for it being unpleasant.  The line has to be drawn somewhere so there will always be people you'd invite if you could but you can't.  And, everyone has an opinion on who "must" be there, and you might agree.
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from cosmogirl. Show cosmogirl's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Congratulations!  I agree that coming up with your guest list is the most important thing you need to do before you start looking at venues.  Start with the "we-can't-get-married-without-them-there" list.  Ask both sets of parents for their lists of "must invites"; you'll need the names to see if there are any overlaps.

    I don't think there is anything wrong with asking both sets of parents if they would like to contribute anything to the wedding....unless you know that they're having financial difficulties.  But, this money can come with strings, so think carefully before you ask or accept.

    Do not ask anyone to be in your wedding party yet.  Although you're sorely tempted to ask all your high-school friends, college roommates, your cousins, his cousins, and co-workers to be your bridesmaids, DON'T. 

    Wait until you decide your budget and # of guests.  Then wait longer.  The smaller the wedding party, the less drama, expenses, and conflicts.  You should not ask anyone until the wedding is less than a year away.  Why?  Relationships change, especially as you are transitioning into different phases of your life.  You may be like a twin sister to a co-worker right now, but in 6 months, one of you may have a different job and never see each other. 

    I would recommend The Knot for pictures of hairdos and flowers but not for their boards.  Unfortunately, they're very young, immature, and mean girls.  The wedding channel.com group has morphed into another forum after they were merged with the knot.  I'll post the link here later.

    Always say "our wedding" not "my wedding".  Think of your guests' comfort and enjoyment, spend your parents' money like it's your own, and wear comfy shoes.  You will be a happy bride!

    Best wishes! 
     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from poppy609. Show poppy609's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Duh - can't believe I forgot to mention guest list!  Ajuly and Cosmo are absolutely right - figure out numbers of people you MUST invite, then start researching venues.

    Not to scare you, but the same thing that happened to Ajuly happened with my mom and her "must" guest list... which included like 50 people!  She was paying for the majority of the wedding, so felt she should be able to invite anyone she wanted (of course, this did not gel with the amount of money she wanted to spend... I couldn't seem to make her understand that if we invited those 50 people we could not afford the wedding).  This is what I meant by be careful of money given "with strings attached." 
     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    It happens to just about everyone because the families have dreams about their kids' weddings, too, that might not mesh too well with the dreams YOU have.  What are the chances you're all having the same dream, after all? :)
     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from Oneofakind85. Show Oneofakind85's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Oh you girls are wonderful! thank you so much!

    I have already begun my "must haves" my Fiance is going to start his asap.

    I feel like my mom and his mom's are going to be ridiculous so I may give them a limit, is that cheesy? Otherwise my mother will have my cousins,brother in laws niece there. Which is someone who may be lovely but not necessarily someone I know or want at our wedding. (Thanks Cosmo for that tip :) )

    This is so exciting. I am honestly still in shock, I am sad though we are taking my ring to get sized on friday so I will be without it for a few days!
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from Oneofakind85. Show Oneofakind85's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    P.S. WHen are all YOUR weddings? :)
     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Hello again,
    Most of us who have replied are already married, but I swear there are other brides-to be-on here :o)  My wedding date was in May 2009.

    For the guest list, I would make your list with your fiance and see where you're at.  Let's say you come up with 100 people.  Then you could say to your parents, we've already come up with 100 people and we don't want to invite more than 150 (or 180 or 200), so please keep that in mind.  Although, that didn't work too well with my MIL, so maybe others have better ideas!
     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Fram is right - present your parents with a number they are allowed to work with for people before they have the chance to give you a list of people they expect you to invite.

    1.  List everyone you'd want to invite if budget and space were no issue; include a guest for all your single invitees at this point.
    2.  Pare down list (hard part!) to be a reasonable number, whatever you decide "reasonable" might be.  This usually involves "circles" of relationships.   "No cousins," "No work friends," "No kids," for instance. 
    3.  When you pare it down, make room for the number of people you want to allow your folks to request since you know this will be an issue.  3 couples each, for instance.
    4.  When deciding to invite someone, do not make anyone's decision for them to not attend (it's too far for them to drive, Uncle Joe just died so Aunt Jane won't want to come, etc.).  You only should list who you'd LIKE to have there, and let let everyone invited decide for themselves if they will attend.  It's not the end of the world for someone to decline an invitation; it's what the two RSVP options are for.

    P.S.  Oh, yeah, I'm an old married f_rt...remarried, in fact.  November 2008.
     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from Shell7. Show Shell7's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    I am also planning my wedding for next August.  Since I am paying for the wedding, I want to keep the guest list small.  I told our families we would invite140 guests at max.  My fiance's mother said she had a few people she wanted to add, but is willing to pay for them if she goes over our limit.  I thought that was a nice gesture.
     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from bostonslp. Show bostonslp's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Hi,
    Just wanted to say welcome and that I agree with what everyone has said so far.  I was married last october and these boards were my go-to place for everything wedding related. 
    I wanted to add another website that I used when I was planning - weddingbee.com  I know not everyone likes it, but they have a lot of ideas for do-it-yourself projects, which I did a lot of to save money.  It is also a website that can be way over the top, but if you know that going in, then you will be fine.  I also liked to look at their photos for ideas. 

    hope that helps!  congrats!
     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from bostonslp. Show bostonslp's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Hi,
    Just wanted to say welcome and that I agree with what everyone has said so far.  I was married last october and these boards were my go-to place for everything wedding related. 
    I wanted to add another website that I used when I was planning - weddingbee.com  I know not everyone likes it, but they have a lot of ideas for do-it-yourself projects, which I did a lot of to save money.  It is also a website that can be way over the top, but if you know that going in, then you will be fine.  I also liked to look at their photos for ideas. 

    hope that helps!  congrats!
     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from ash. Show ash's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Since everyone gave good practical advice, I'll try philosophical, since I've been married longer than almost anyone here--almost 19 years--and I have 2 teenagers (for those who know me, my baby started high school yesterday, my oldest is a senior!).

    First, I agree with Poppy--try to enjoy being engaged.  It does get stressful, even in the best of circumstances, so it may not last long, but it is a lovely feeling you only get once (hopefully!)

    Second, since I firmly believe you should marry a man with whom spending one lifetime does not seem enough, you should look at your wedding day, in the end, as the day that lifetimes begins.  And it may very well be the happiest day of your life--up till then.  Every day after that should grow happier.

    Best of luck to you!  May you always find joy and peace.  And  bread on your table.

    P.S.  Sorry, don't know how the bold got put on, but I can't turn it off!

     
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from pinkkittie27. Show pinkkittie27's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    I have only a couple things to add:

    =Prioritize, and then don't sweat the small stuff. Figure out your budget and delegate it according to what matters most to you and oyur FI. Don't listen to the magazines or planners about all those silly things you don't really need, like programs or custom cocktail napkins. If they don't matter to you, then skip them.
    =Try to make your guests as comfortable as you would if they were coming to your home.
    =Don't try to do everything yourself. You have friends and family, let them help you. If the seating chart is driving you nuts, give it to your FI or someone else you trust. And if you DIY anything, make sure you have at least one other person to lend a hand.
    =Don't get upset if someone doesn't seem to care as much as you do about your wedding planning, or something related to it. Just because someone doesn't have an opinion about the table linen color doesn't mean they don't care about the wedding, it just means they don't care how the table cloths look. If your FI says "I don't care, you choose" it's because he trusts you, not because he's not excited.
    =Make your wedding personal. Include the little things, or big things, that set it apart from the cookie-cutter bridal mag weddings. Whether it's childhood pictures of you and your FI on tables, a Star Wars themed cake or an unexpected song selection- those are the things that will help make it special. Not pricey chair covers or expensive favors.
     
  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from Rapunzel41. Show Rapunzel41's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    My FI has all these wonderful ideas for our reception that he thought would just knock it out of the park, but he had NO concept of cost for these ideas.

    He wanted chair covers.  After I asked him how the h3ll he even knew what a chair cover was, I explained that would add significant cost to our modestly budgeted wedding.  Once we met with our caterer (who is providing all our tables and chairs) and he realized the cost of just the CHAIRS (nekkid chairs to boot) he was flabbergasted.  Needless to say, we're not having chair covers.

    He wanted string musicians to play for the ceremony and cocktail hour.  Rather than burst his bubble right off the bat, I said, "Okay.  Why don't you look into it and get back to me with some ideas?"  When he learned a duo could be upwards of $300 and a trio upwards of $500 to play for roughly 90 minutes, he changed his mind.  :-P

    He wanted a shuttle bus to get our guests back and forth from the hotel to the wedding.  I presented the costs to him ($800?!?!  That's insane!) and he decided against it.

    So, if there's something he wants to do, let him do the legwork to find out costs...  Chances are he'll decide he doesn't want it that badly.  LOL!
     
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Great way to handle it, Rap!  It's so adorable he had so many ideas for the wedding, though - too bad they are so insanely prohibitively expensive. 
     
  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from pinkkittie27. Show pinkkittie27's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    Great idea, Rap! so good to hear a story of a DH eager to help plan.

     
  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from tibird. Show tibird's posts

    Re: Newb questions

    I whole heartedly support Pink's suggestion to add personal touches, rather than standard "upgrade" ones that are pushed on Tv and in Mags.  We did some unique things that seemed strange at the time, but were fun & memorable and totally us!
    Also, I don't know the dynamics of your families, but I cringed a little when you said that your FMIL (future mom in law) offered to pay for any guests that she wanted, above & beyond your limit.  That could be a dangerous game to play, depending on personalities.  My suggestion would be to let that dog lie for a bit.  If you agree now, it could come back to bite you later on.  (DH's mom made a silimar offer and wanted her extended family of ~40+ppl added to our list of 110. By the time we caught wind of that & asked her to pare it down, she had already verbally invited them all.)

    Take some time to plan, just you & FI before you clue anyone in on details!  you want the day to be yours :)  Enjoy!
     

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