Getting engaged was a dream come true. Jake did amazing on planning his proposal and the ring, too! It’s such a fun time right now!
We’ve decided on June 2014. Amazingly, some stuff is already booked!! Who are you? You Super Brides with everything planned a year in advance already!? And where can I get the go-go juice? :) A wedding, even a casual one, is crazy planning (& I’m learning stressful!)!!
Growing up, a traditional wedding never interested me so picking any “look” has been tough. My lack of a fairytale vision has fed my Pinterest addiction like nothing else. After a lot of pinning, what I want is an elegant but casual outdoor wedding with close friends and family. We are aiming to keep the guest list to no more than 40 people.
Keeping the list small has been tough, but I feel like if it’s more than 40 people, I’ll start acting like the starfish from Finding Nemo. It’s just too many people looking at me, and too many things that could go wrong. I know I would start getting
With the guest list outlined, I started Googling places and asking people for suggestions. Everyone has been so helpful with ideas!
Tour #1: A Yacht Club – $600 to Rent
The church was gorgeous and sat 100 people. I loved the fresh flowers and lake view.The rental also came with a tent and pavilion! $600 was a great price; however, the catering started at $20. Plus, the club would not have a place for us, even me, to sit indoors before the wedding or if we got over heated. There was also no rain option. Both of these things made me really nervous.
Tour #2 – A Historic Home
I had seen someone’s wedding here years ago and loved the simplicity of the setting. The bride walks down the drive to the porch. The giant trees offered a lot of shade for guests, and this venue was more than happy to accommodate us. They had a place to get ready and cool off. On top of that, they had a pavilion to rent which rarely had issues with rain. The idea of getting married in the pavilion if it rained helped my mind a little bit because it was pretty as well.
The venue was priced for 112 people at roughly $10,000. Since we were only having 30-40 people, they offered to help with the pricing estimate; however, the planner wasn’t there.
Tour #3 : Country Club
Before I could call the planner from the second tour, a friend on Facebook told me about where she got married. As soon as I read the name, I saw dollar signs. She happily shared that it was cheaper than most places! My mom and I stopped while we were running errands. The planner was there and showed us around.The picture above is where the ceremony would be held.
The reception hall is completely inside and within walking distance from the ceremony. The linens, tables, and verandah were included in the price. It was the best value we had looked at, and when she said our date was available, I texted Jake to see if he cared. His reply, “Nope. Your call.” I booked it right then. I love him! :)
BrideDay Friday #1: We have the venue! Next up will be engagement pictures and finding the dress, but I am soaking up this victory right now.
My mom and I will be going to look for a dress after our Vegas trip. Bridals by Lori anyone? It’s only a 4 hour drive. Just Kidding…maybe.
BrideDay Friday – Things I’ve Learned So Far About Wedding Planning
- Don’t freak out if you fall in love with something online. Once upon a late night online, I found a gorgeous farm with an all-inclusive planner. It was perfect, and you just pick and choose everything and you’re done. I had everything from the perfect spot on the property to get married to Jake’s boutonniere planned before I could call to set up a tour or check the date. EVERY date we even considered was taken. Luckily, there are literally hundreds of gorgeous places to get married!
- Remember your budget. Another drawback from the dream venue I found online was the price tag — $15,000 for 50 people! If you have the money and are in Tennessee, it’s worth looking at, but if you don’t have $15,000 for a wedding don’t panic (like I did).You can find somewhere in your budget. You also don’t want to spend your whole budget on your venue. You may want flowers, decorations, favors, food, invitations, and a photographer! Decide what is the most important piece of your wedding to you — besides the man standing across from you at the ceremony of course.
- Get creative. I started asking people on Facebook where they got married and for ideas. Someone offered their country home to me! It was breathtaking, and she offered to help with coordinating it the day of the wedding. I couldn’t believe how sweet she was and how much everyone else was willing to help. Yes, they may want you to pick their spot, but usually your good friends just want you to be happy and find somewhere perfect for you and your fiance’.
- Once you pick a venue, stop looking or thinking about the other options. You chose it for a reason. Stop comparing and enjoy!
- Don’t forget — you’re marrying someone awesome. Sorry for already fretting over getting the perfect venue in budget, Jake. I seriously will marry you in the backyard if you want.