Wedding Planning and Logistics
Andi WillisBride Online Columnist

Just Engaged? Here's What to Do Next

So, he's just popped the question! Chances are, you've just received/ are about to receive a stunner of a ring which you've been able to tear your eyes from long enough to read this sentence. So, congratulations on both counts. But what to do next? How long can you enjoy this blissful moment before you begin organising the engagement party, and eventually the wedding itself?


We've created a step-by-step guide on what to do immediately after the actual engagement, Follow along for the easiest, most comprehensive guide that eliminates all the stress from this (beyond) exciting process

  • Call your family and friends and share your happy news! This is a time to bask in the glory before the planning begins, so take the time to enjoy it.
  • If possible, try to get a photo of you and your fiance as close to the engagement itself as possible. Capturing this incredibly unique moment will enable you to share it more tangibly with your families for the rest of your lives.
  • Arrange a small family gathering to celebrate. If your parents havent met yet, now is most definitely the time!
  • Get yourself a manicure! That ring will be getting a lot of attention, so make sure your hands look their best.
  • In case you havent already, make sure your ring fits. If not, visit the shop from where it was bought, and have them resize it to suit your finger. The time this takes will be depending on the jeweller the company uses, the stone's settings, and the ring's material.
  • Get your ring appraised and insured. After all, you've got to look after this baby for life.
  • Perfect the engagement story. You know you're going to have to repeat it plenty of times, so think of a way to retell it in a succinct way that hits all the important parts and reflects the romance of the event.
  • You can choose to formally announce your engagement. The newspaper is always a popular choice (any general paper such as The Australian and/ or a more localised newspaper, such as The Jewish News). If you have a widespread family, consider creating a newsletter to announce the event. To inform the rest of your friends, feel free to use social media like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, etc- it's considered very acceptable according to the modern wedding etiquette.
  • Plan your engagement party! Traditionally, this is held between the evening of the proposal and up to around three months after the engagement. Although you may want to hold the event before you begin getting organised, you could just as easily use the same organisational tips that you're aplying to your wedding to the party. With some extra planning, you could also keep your visual themes/ formality of your wedding consistent with your engagement party (if that's your kind of style)!. You really can never be too prepared. Alternatively, your engagement party might be super low key, and consist of having friends round for pizza and beer. There are no hard and fast rules for how you celebrate this moment- only that you share it with your most beloved (plus, who in their right minds would turn down pizza?).
  • Set the wedding date! It's a wise idea to set the date ASAP as it'll affect much of the wedding itself. It'll not only create the timeline with which you organise everything, but will affect aspects o your wedding like the fashion, flowers, and food! If you've confirmed the date by the time of your engagement party, feel free to announce it there (provided everyone at the party's invited)!
  • If you havent set a date and don't want to make any quick decisions, make up a catchall response. This can be quite vague- like answering a particular month, season, or even just a year. This'll keep all your friends and family off your back for a while to come.
  • Buy yourself organisational tools: a wedding organiser, separate folders for your budget, dress, reception venue etc, wedding magazines and anything else you might find helpful. Many brides create an 'inspiration' folder or pinboard in which they put in images of the products they'd love to have for their own weddings.
  • Keep track of your engagement gifts and send thank-you notes to everyone. Hint: if you want to be extra clever in terms of organisation, use this list as the basis of your wedding guest list. Add columns in this one document for the guests' name, address, gift received, whether the thankyou note has been sent, wedding RSVP received and dietary requirements, wedding gift received, and again, whether the thankyou note has been sent.
  • Have a powwow with your fiance to discuss the wedding budget. How much are each fo your parents willing to put in, if at all? How much can you and your partner realistically afford before going into debt?Do your priorities lie with holding an all- out affair of your dreams, or saving for an amazing honeymoon or buying a home? Now is the time to be completely honest with your fiance, and mindful of your, and your families' financial boundaries. If you're not sure what an average wedding costs in your area, inquire with a local wedding planner. Once a budget has been established, start saving.
  • Estimate the number of guests you'd like to attend the wedding. Even if this isnt a fixed number yet, this will be a factor in determining the tone and style of the wedding, as well as the budget. Just about all estimates you seek out will vary depending on the number of guests.
  • Start location hunting. Ceremony and reception venues book up quickly, so this is an issue that needs to be addresses ASAP. Create a checklist with your partner for non-negotiable needs, such as, 'a room to seat 150 people', or 'a light- up dance floor'. Consider creating a spreadsheet with your fiance (Google docs is perfect for this) to keep a record of the venues you've visited, their pros and cons, and their prices.
  • Consider hiring a planner. If you're time-poor and dont want to be stressing over minute wedding details, a wedding planner is a great option. They can also, surprisingly enough, end up saving you money as they 1. what tricks can be employed to save you money, they 2. have relationships with numerous vendors, who might feel comortable coming to a financial agreement with them, and 3. have plenty of resources, and know where to find the most bang for your buck.
  • Chill out and enjoy this moment. It's easiy to let the stress of planning your wedding go to your head, but try to remember that this opportunity comes around once in a lifetime (also, it's pretty difficult to shake the 'bridezilla' jokes even after the wedding). Take the time to unwind every so often, whether this means seeing a movie with friends or going for a solitary massage and a pedicure.
  • So now, you should enable you to enjoy the months before hardcore wedding-planning begin. Taking it step-by-step will ensure that youre able to keep on top of the event and actually enjoy the planning process. More importantly, this is the way to ensure you make the wedding youve always envisioned happened!

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