You’re recently engaged – first off, a huge congrats! – and the moment you’ve been waiting for is here.  There’s a new sparkly ring on your hand and it’s (maybe) starting to sink in that you’re getting married!  This moment is so surreal, yet so real, and the moments ahead are sure to fly by in a flash.  The next year or so will be filled with bridal magazines, Pinterest boards, dress shopping and all things planning. This is such an exciting time in your relationship, but where do you even start?  Here’s my best list of just-engaged advice!

Take a Moment to Celebrate Just the Two of You

Whether it’s grabbing a cocktail together after the big moment, or possibly waiting the weekend, you won’t regret taking some time to soak in this exciting moment just the two of you. It might feel second nature to jump straight to social media, or shouting your exciting news from the rooftops, but I promise you won’t regret taking a moment to soak in that newly engaged bliss.

Call Your People (AKA: Parents, Grandparents, Sibling, ect.)

We live in an age where parents and grandparents alike are on social media and chances are you won’t want the people closest to you finding out you’re engaged via the internet.  Pick up the phone and call (or Facetime) the people closest to you.  It’s likely your parents already know what’s happening and are patiently waiting by the phone for the big news!

Announce to The World

You might want to announce your engagement right away, or maybe you’d rather sit on the news a little longer.  Either way, once you’ve shared the excitement with those closest to you it’s fair game to tell the rest of the world.  Take a ring selfie and post it to Instagram, Facebook and any other social media network that might exist. #JustEngaged

Insure Your Ring and Get It Sized

Is your ring way too big? Or maybe even slightly big and could slip off anytime the temperature drops below 65? (Yes, most people’s hand change size with the weather… it’s a thing!) Either way, return it to the jeweler from which it came, and have it fit properly.  Depending on the extent of the resizing, it could be as short as a couple days, or as long as a few weeks.  Either way, the original jeweler should resize it for free and you’ll be happy you got it taken care of!

While it’s not the most glamorous part of getting engaged, it’s so important you get your new ring insured!  Typically, you’ll have two options – add a policy as a rider to your homeowner or renter’s insurance or go through a third party (such as Jewelers Mutual) to purchase a policy solely for your ring.  You’ll be surprised how affordable it is, plus the peace of mind is invaluable.

Plan an Engagement Party (If You Want One)

It’s totally okay for the newly engaged couple to plan their own engagement party or hand off the planning to parents or friends.  Either way, start thinking about what fits your relationship – Renting out a space, a backyard BBQ, or maybe drinks out with your closest crew.

Take a Breather

The stress of wedding planning will come soon enough.  Before diving in, take a moment to relax – after all, this is one of the most exciting times in your relationship.  Do something you both love, whether it’s a trip to the beach, a staycation at home, or your favorite date night.

Think About a Date

When I got engaged, I had no idea how many people, or how soon, would ask if we had set a date yet.  Aside from the general curiosity of your family and friends, the most desired wedding dates and venues book up quickly.  The shorter your engagement, the sooner a date needs to be a priority.

Start by deciding on a season, then narrow it down to your month of choice.  Find out what works for your families and if there are any conflicts for certain dates.  Once you have a general idea, you can begin looking at venues and checking their availability with your preferences.

Draft a Guest List

From budget to venue choice, your guest list will determine just about everything wedding planning related.  If your families are footing the bill, get their input. Once you’ve agreed on a guest count and budget (that’s next), you can commit to a venue and a wedding date.

Discuss a Budget

Before you can start laying any real plan, you’ll need to determine how much money you’ll have to spend and who’s providing it.  If you and your fiancé are footing the bill, then this is can stay between the two of you, but if parents are chipping in, you’ll want to include them in the conversation.

Get Inspiration & Hire a Pro

If you’re considering bringing a professional wedding planner on board to help with logistics and décor, ask friends for references or take to the internet for some online research.  I talk all about different types of planners and when to hire your wedding pro in this post.  (Spoiler: Sooner is always better than later, regardless of the type of planner you’re hiring.)

Whether you plan to hire a wedding planner or not, take this time to deep dive into Pinterest, wedding magazines and all the other exciting things that only come with wedding planning!

Choose Your Bridal Party

Chances are if you’ve been together for a while, you have a pretty good idea who will make up your bridal party.  But there are still some questions to ask each other: How many bridesmaids or groomsmen will you have?  Are you cool with uneven numbers?  Will you have a Maid of Honor or a Best Man?  If so, are you okay with more than one?  No matter what, make sure to have this conversation before either of you starts popping the question to your besties!

Build a Wedding Website

There are so many wedding website platforms out there now days, but each has its own benefits.  Personally, I’m using The Knot website builder, but almost went with Zola. Each has its own pros and cons, so do your research to decide which is best for you and your wedding.

And that’s a wrap!  I hope this post was helpful and has you feeling confident (and oh so excited!!) as you bask in this newly engaged phase of your relationship.  Wedding planning can seem overwhelming, but I’m always here to lighten the load and answer your questions. 

If you’re interested in bringing Ivory Couture on board for your own wedding, contact me here!