10 Dos and Don’ts for the Just Engaged Couple
It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for. You and the love of your life have officially agreed to do life together. There’s a question, a sparkly ring, and a resounding YES. Whether you asked or answered, this is one of the most exciting and emotional moments of your life. And it’s just the beginning! But once the happy tears have dried, you might be wondering: now what? Who do you tell first and how? What do you need to remember? And where on earth do you start with wedding planning?
Don’t panic! I’m here to share five of the things that you absolutely must do when you’re just engaged. And, just as importantly, five things NOT to do!
DO share the news with your loved ones. Some couples like to hold on to the news of their engagement for a few hours or days, but whenever you’re ready to declare it, make sure you tell your closest loved ones first. Start with your parents, siblings, immediate family, and best friends, and work your way out from there. There’s nothing wrong with a phone call but if possible, it’s lovely to share this news in person. However you tell them, it’s such a special moment to share.
DON’T put your ‘just engaged’ status on social media first. These days, our first instinct when something happens is to share it on Instagram, Facebook, or Tiktok. It certainly makes spreading the news easier. And who doesn’t love a ring selfie? But it’s important not to put your news on the internet for all to see until you’ve told the most important people in your life (and in your family). Once you’ve put all those VIPs in the know, share away!
DO enjoy the moment. While some couples will want to throw themselves into planning mode, it’s important to take some time to enjoy being engaged. Plan a celebration (big or small, it doesn’t matter). Revel in calling each other ‘my fiance’. Book an activity or a weekend away together. Of course, you can start talking in more general terms about the kind of wedding you want, your priorities, and must-haves. But most importantly, while you do it…
DON’T commit to anything straight away. The biggest mistake couples make in the first two weeks is to commit to decisions they can’t change later, without having a clear sense of the kind of wedding they want (and can afford). For example, don’t book a venue, sign any contracts with suppliers, or buy your wedding day attire. Don’t make promises to family, like how many guests they can invite. Don’t pick the first color scheme you like and start buying décor. There will be plenty of time for planning. You don’t need to do everything straight away!
DO talk budget, then guest numbers, then date and location. It’s not the fun part of wedding planning, but your budget is the framework on which all your other decisions will be based. So it’s vital that the first big move you make is to sit down and discuss who will be contributing and what you can afford. Once this is clear, you can move on to discussing guest numbers. (You don’t have to finalize a list, just agree on the wedding size in more general terms.) Finally, you will be able to choose a location, venue, and wedding date that suits the parameters you have already set.
DON’T invite any guests or ask your wedding party members yet. Until you know the size and location of your wedding, it’s important not to issue any invitations, no matter how casual. If someone asks, keep your answer vague. In the same way, hold off on ‘proposing’ to your bridesmaids and groomsmen until you’re certain who you want to ask, and who is likely to be able to attend (especially in the case of a destination wedding).
DO get your ring insured. This might not seem important, but trust me, it’s one piece of admin you don’t want to put off! As soon as you have a ring on your finger, be sure to insure it. Often, it can be added as an extension to your existing homeowner or renter’s insurance policy and is not super expensive.
DON’T wear a ring that doesn’t fit. As well as getting your ring insured, make it a priority to get it properly sized (unless you’re lucky enough that it fits you perfectly!). If the ring is too big or too small, don’t wear it until your jeweler can fix this for you. Otherwise you may end up losing or damaging the ring or hurting your finger. Sizing only takes a day or two, so you won’t have long to wait.
DO get organized. When you’re ready to start planning, invest in a binder where you can keep all the paperwork that you’ll gather along the way. An app can also be a useful way to track online communications and plans. For inspiration, set up a few Pinterest boards so you don’t have to save everything into a folder on your desktop. And don’t forget to sign up for my MasterClass!
DON’T panic! It’s true that wedding planning (or just the idea of wedding planning) can be terrifying – after all, this is a whole new world for you! But don’t allow yourself to feel overwhelmed. Take time out from wedding talk to connect with each other and hang out with family and friends. And, if you need some help pulling all those details together, be sure to hire a wedding planner!
Before you know it, ‘just engaged’ will become ‘just married’! These weeks and months tend to fly by, so be sure to enjoy them!