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When a couple first gets engaged, it’s pure bliss. Their minds instantly travel to that glorious day as they stand in front of their closest family and friends, pledging their undying love for one another as husband and wife. The only obstacle standing in their way? The wedding. Actually, the wedding day should not be thought of an obstacle, but when a couple decides to start planning their own wedding, it can be a daunting task.

It takes a special kind of bride to plan her own wedding. Not everyone has what it takes. And to be clear, I’m referring to a traditional wedding including the ceremony and reception, guests, food, dessert, music, etc.  I wouldn’t recommend going completely solo, as this post explains, but if you do have what it takes, you can be that savvy bride who saves money for the honeymoon and furniture, and yet still shines on the stage of her own beautiful wedding day sprinkled with her personal style and creative touches.

Here are qualities that every bride needs heading into this endeavor:

  1. Time. You can not be under any delusion. Planning this kind of event requires time. If you do not have someone who can be devoted to this undertaking for several months, it will turn out to be less blissful and more stressful that what you anticipated.
  2. Organization. You need training and quality tools for the task at hand. General planning checklists you find on-line won’t cut it. You can consider this blog one of your tools but you will need a few more which I will cover in detail in future posts.
  3. Decisiveness. One of the biggest blessings of planning in a wedding in this day and age is the overwhelming amount of wedding planning information, ideas, & inspiration available via the web. That’s also one of the biggest curses if you like everything you see! You must be a bride who can thoroughly research options, find what speaks to you, and then stick to it. You must avoid being a Pinterest victim, which I will discuss in future posts. Decisiveness also applies to the ability to decide on a budget and stick to it, no matter what those higher priced temptations are that may be calling your name.
  4. Resourcefulness. This quality includes the ability to know the right places and right sources for the information you need, and the ability to adapt the ideas you find to fit your wedding, your budget, etc.  I hope to share in future posts some of the best resources for planning.
  5. Style. Professional wedding planners will guide the process in developing a style and theme for the wedding that ties all the elements of the day together. As a DIY planner, you must do the same. You will not have the wealth of experience and resources at your fingertips that a professional planner will have, which is why you must rely on tools (#2), the proper internet resources (#4) and the ability to come to a decision (#3) without trying to do too much or mix in every adorable idea you come across. Without a style and theme, you will not be able to hone in on exactly what you need while dismissing those wonderful ideas that simply don’t fit.
  6. Discipline. You will need to set goals over the course of your planning months and achieve those monthly goals so you aren’t stressed out by too much to do at the end. Procrastination will not work. You must discipline yourself to do what needs to be done, while still making sure you have time for that Friday night date with your fiancee. After all, you are getting married!

So, if all these describe you, then you just might have what it takes to begin your own wedding planning journey. Please understand I wouldn’t recommend anyone try to finish the journey going solo if at all possible. It’s really not a luxury to join forces with a good day-of-wedding coordinator – it’s practically essential for most weddings. And coordinators that step in to the rescue during the last month or two are worth their weight in gold, because no one can anticipate all the details which must be accounted and planned for when you’ve never planned a wedding before. Besides, you will have to turn over the controls to someone else anyway to run the show on the day, and who better than a pro who can identify loose ends, tie everything together and execute the plan? That way you can switch back to being the bride and enjoy every moment of your most special day!

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