Guest Post: Samantha at "It's all in the details"

Today I've got the lovely Samantha from It's all in the details, to keep you all company while I'm away. Samantha and I have especially bonded over wedding planning, details, etc. Since she lives close to me, we've also been able to talk vendors and other details, too. She's a super sweet girl, so go get to know her!
P.S. Happy tax day, and happy birthday to Miss P!nky :)
Hi friends! Yes, we're already friends. Didn't you know? Anyways - I'm Samantha and I blog over at It's all in the details. While Jenn's off being lovey dovey with her new hubs, she asked me to stop by and give you some wedding low down. Or rather, I should say wedding planning low down because I have yet to tie the knot.

Ward Photography
Some of you might be thinking - you're so lucky, you still get to enjoy your wedding day! While I know there are others of you out there that are thinking - oh you poor thing, I was so happy when the planning was done. I know that might sound harsh to the ones of you thinking the former, but I have a few friends who were more than ready to just get the party started. However, I'll admit - I'm not one of those people.

Don't get me wrong, I'm SO excited for our wedding day and to marry my fiance, JC. But I have a thing for might stem from my love of details (hence the blog name). And since I've been enjoying wedding planning for a good 8 plus months now, I thought I share with y'all what I've learned thus far.

one. If you have a specific date in mind, make sure your other half is aware of said date, so he knows that there really is a deadline for him to propose. I knew I wanted September 27th, 2014 to be our wedding date. I made sure JC knew this, along with the fact that I really wanted more than 12 months to plan our wedding and to enjoy our engagement, so he was able to time his July 2013 proposal perfectly ;)

two. Find your venue as soon as possible! Regardless of whether you have a date in mind or not, venue is probably the most important thing on the wedding checklist (photographer just behind that). It's what sets the theme for the entire event and in turn, most decisions are based around the venue. Now if you do have a set date in mind, do this within a week of your proposal like JC & I did. You don't want to find a venue that you love, then find out that it's already booked for that date.

Our venue - Mount Ida Farm.
three. Determine your deal breakers and then make sure to ask the right questions around said deal breakers to each vendor - especially venues. You never want to go visit a venue, fall in love, then learn it's way too expensive or they are booked for your date and every other date around it. 

four. BUDGET. This one should probably be first on this list since in reality it actually is the one thing that EVERYTHING depends on. Also, figure out from your parents (or whoever is paying) if they are going to budge at all. Ha.

five. Hire a wedding planner. Now you may be thinking - Samantha, I thought you said you loved planning, why do you need a planner? Well, let me tell you. First, my venue requires, at the very least, a day of coordinator - someone the event director at the venue can go to on our wedding day instead of bugging me. Secondly, the last thing I want to be is stressed out on our wedding day. I want to be pampered, I want to relax, I want to drink mimosas gosh darn it! I ended up hiring someone to help out a bit more than just on the day of, but only because her next package up from day of coordination included free rentals and who says no to free? Not this gal. It has turned out to be the best decision ever. Wedding planners have connections to people you'll never find online. It may have cost us $300 more, but she's saved us far more with other vendors with her connections alone. I HIGHLY recommend.

six. Get your dress early. I have had so many friends have issues with their dress once it's come in for their first fitting or not coming in on time. I got my dress in September, over a year before the big day. I picked it up from the salon in February, was able to try it on and make sure everything was as it should be and now I have plenty of time to get the alterations, customizations and fit juuuuust right!

seven. Don't expect your fiance to help much. Honestly, expect that when they do try and help, their help is not needed and will be more of an annoyance than anything. I'm just kidding, I love when JC chimes in with his opinion - although more often than not his opinion is the opposite of mine and since he doesn't have a wedding opinion often, I always feel obligated to go with his choice. Except that time I said I wanted gold accents and he told me gold was tacky. On September 27th, everyone will see how much I paid attention to that opinion. 

eight. When in doubt, blog it out. I cannot tell you how many times I have had reservations or questions about something regarding the wedding (budget, bachelorette parties) . Nine times out of ten, I've taken those issues to my blog and I've gotten amazing feedback/suggestions! I can honestly say, my wedding posts are typically the posts that have the most comments on them. Wedding Wednesdays are my happy days. 

nine. Beware of Pinterest. Sure, Pinterest is great and there are more ideas than you could ever know what to do with. But because of the plethora of ideas, it's sometimes hard to focus. If you're like me and you had a wedding board before you ever got the ring, you'll likely need to create a new board. Lord knows I had every idea under the sun on my first board. I needed a new board to help narrow down my ideas. And hey, it doesn't hurt to narrow them down even more to specific categories like flowers, stationery, photos. I've found this super helpful, as now I'm able to send the specific board links to the appropriate vendors I've booked, so they have an even better idea of what I'm looking for in the end.

ten. HAVE FUN! Enjoy the planning process. Don't let it stress you out! Include the most amazing people in your bridal party. And most importantly, take the time to make sure that your (and your fiance's) day is exactly what you want it to be. Sure, the focus is truly on the marriage, but I think it's important that you also have the exact day you've always dreamed about. Throw some little things in here and there that speak directly to you and your future hubs. Even if no one knows the meaning behind them, you'll know and later on down the road, you'll be able to look back and remember exactly why those details were included in your special day. 

See? Now do you believe me when I say I think wedding planning is so much fun?!

Congratulations Jenn! I'm sure you and MG are having the time of your lives right now, while we're all back here at our desks being very jealous. You deserve it!

And last, but not least, thanks for letting me stop by and ramble for days ;)

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