So you're engaged, now what do you do? We know planning a wedding can be overwhelming, especially figuring out where to start. Luckily for you, we happen to know a woman that knows a thing or two about planning a wedding. Kelly McLeskey Dolata started A Savvy Event just over 10 years ago, and has planned countless weddings and events over the course of her career. We sat down with Kelly to discuss her top 5 most important to-do's for newly engaged couples.
1. Hire a planner!
I might be a little biased here, but hear me out. Hiring a planner first can help you avoid mistakes and make sure you get off on the right foot. We can help you find a venue, negotiate contracts, recommend vendors, and so much more! The early stages of wedding planning can be tricky so it is great to have someone to help you navigate through it all.
2. Make your guest list.
Your guest list is something that will dictate a lot of other decisions. The most important element of your guest list is going to be the guest count which can affect budget, venue, catering, and bar package. It is important to have a good idea of your guest count before you start booking anything so that you can be sure you are making the right decisions!
3. Create a budget.
Once you have an idea of your guest count, it will be much easier to move on to building a budget. This is definitely something you should ask your planner to help you with as it can be extremely complex and tricky. The key here is to decide which items are most important to you and put your budget there. Are flowers more important to you than tables? Would you rather have a live band or a DJ? These are the types of questions your planner will ask you to help figure out how to best manage your overall budget and stay within that budget.
4. Find your venue!
Your budget and guest count are the two biggest items that will factor into where you can get married. Then, think about the aesthetics and feel that you want from a venue. Would you rather get married outside or inside? What type of decor are you looking for? Booking your venue is the first step to moving forward and picking a date for your wedding!
5. Lock it all down.
After you book your venue, it is all about checking items off the list. Hotel room blocks should be of high priority- especially places like wine country that can book up in an instant. Locking in all your vendors as soon as possible is a great way to ensure that the rest of the planning process goes easily. Your planner should be able to recommend vendors, help you to negotiate contracts, and ultimately help your vision come to life!
A Savvy Event & Working With Kelly
If you'd like to work with Kelly and soak up even more of her knowledge, tips, and tricks on planning weddings, head to her website here! She and the team at A Savvy Event have invaluable experience planning weddings in wine country and the greater bay area.