As a newly engaged couple, you may not know the wedding etiquette behind what to do – and what not do – once you propose or say "yes" to your beloved's proposal. Discover the top four mistakes couples often make!
For those pairs who have recently agreed to marry: congratulations! This is an incredibly exciting time for both you and your beloved. Your days should be filled with sweet sentiments to one another, blissful calls to and from relatives, and plenty of celebratory moments between the two of you, as well as with your friends and family.
This time period of your engagement – however long or short it may be (the average engagement is usually one year to one-and-a-half years – is the lovely calm before the chaos that comes with organizing your nuptials. In this love-filled time and space, however, some couples make accidental errors in judgment due to their elation and excitement. Though it’s incredible to celebrate and project your positive emotions with those around you, there are certain mistakes that engaged pairs should take care not to make to avoid any wedding etiquette faux pas!
Photo by Justin DeMutiis Photography; From Real Wedding:Old World Wedding with Jewel-Tone Color Palette in Florida
No matter how loved-up you and your partner feel after the engagement, there is a limit to how much you should denote your feelings online. Not only can this information flood the social media newsfeeds of your friends and family – sometimes to an annoying degree – it can also cause some serious logistical problems down the road. The more details you reveal about your wedding on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and so on, the more the information can fall into the “wrong hands.” There have been many modern cases of uninvited attendees showing up to vow exchanges (wedding crashers can even be people you know), either because they assumed they were invited due to the openness of the couple or simply to “crash” the event. When engaged, documenting your wedding-planning process, such as discussing what venues you’re touring, the caterers you’re considering, and so forth, can also leave you vulnerable to wedding-related scams – or worse – in the world of the internet.
Before clicking the “post” button on that beautifully manicured photo of your engagement ring for your engagement announcement on Instagram, ask yourself: “Have I called everyone in my inner circle?” For some couples, this could simply mean ringing both sets of parents, while for others there may be a long list of family and friends who deserve a quick and celebratory phone conversation before the news is broadcast. Not doing so may hurt some feelings and cause issues during this blissful time, which is a difficult way to begin the planning stage. Social media can make things a little tricky for contemporary brides and grooms, so it is always best to stop and think before sharing any of your personal information – wedding related or not.
Though you're excited to ask your potential bridesmaids and groomsmen, hold off until your plans are more set in stone. Many experts recommend holding off on asking friends and relatives to join the wedding party until around eight months before the big day. While you may be excited and confident in your choices – even if you’ve had your ‘maids picked out since age nine – there’s no harm in waiting. A few months can drastically change a relationship, and there have been many cases wherein a wedding has altered friendships before it has even occurred. We advise saving your “will you be my bridesmaid/groomsman” gifts and proposal boxes until you’ve gotten further into your event coordination.
Many brides and grooms hold certain potential wedding dates near and dear to their hearts – the anniversaries of first kisses, first dates, first vacations, and beyond – however, agreeing on a wedding date between the two of you does not solidify it on the calendar. You do not have an official wedding date until you have booked a wedding venue, which means that the paperwork is signed and processed. If you jump ahead of yourself and start speaking with caterers, DJs, photographers, and other vendors before you have an official wedding day, you can inadvertently cause quite a headache for yourself later. Once engaged, decide upon a wedding budget, create a preliminary wedding guest list, hire a planner if need be, and book a venue before securing other professionals.
For more ideas, read up on other wedding etiquette faux pas couples make when planning their nuptials, discover what to do if a guest breaks social media wedding etiquette, and find out what to avoid doing when planning a bachelorette party.
Opening photo by Amy Anaiz Photography; See Amy Anaiz's featured real weddings, articles, and more!