Congratulations! This is an exciting time in your life! Don’t let the (sometimes daunting) task of planning your wed-day take away from the excitement of being engaged. This chapter will help you lay out a plan as you begin the process of designing your big day. Take your time as you consider your options and be sure to enlist the help of your fiancé along with your family and friends. Let the wedding planning begin!
Two Families Coming Together for the wedding
Once you are engaged, the most natural desire is to shout out from the mountain top. Take special care and make sure to tell the most important people in your lives first. The last thing you want to do when announcing this momentous occasion is to offend anyone. There are right ways to announce your engagement and there are wrong ways as well.
Time to tell the parents about the wedding engagement
If possible, it is always recommended to announce your engagement to your parents in person. If both sets of parents are far away from you (and each other), try to set up a weekend for them to get to know each other. If arranging a meeting is too difficult to do before the week of your wedding, make plans for a personal get-together before your rehearsal.
Here is a common question.
What should I do if my parents are divorced or remarried? Try your best to inform all parents on the same day. Traditional etiquette calls for telling the parents of the bride first followed by the groom’s parents. Be sure to speak to your parents directly and not through a stepparent.
Telling Your Child or Former Spouse
If applicable, the first person you should tell about your upcoming nuptials is your child (or children). Whether this is your first second, or third wedding, your child has the right to know before anyone else does. The hope is that you have prepared your child for this possibility. The most important thing to communicate to your child is that you are not trying to replace a parent. The second thing you need to communicate is how your lives will change during the planning process and after the wedding In the case where you have a former spouse, it is always best for you to be the first person to inform them. Do not send the word through someone else, especially through your mutual child. If there is no child involved and communication is difficult, an e-mail or handwritten note is sufficient Be prepared for renewed discussions of alimony and child support. Consult your attorney before discussing these issues with your ex.
The issue of a former spouse can be a source of great difficulty for a couple planning their wedding. The best course to take is to be open an honest discussion with your fiancé and both of your families. After discussing the possibilities, you should be able to decide what is best for all involved.
After proper etiquette has been followed in announcing your big news to family, the fun begins! This is the time to celebrate with your family, friends, and coworkers. Enjoy this time of engagement!
Start Spreading the News!
The easiest and most formal way of letting the world know about your upcoming nuptials is, of course, through the newspapers. The parents of the bride (for traditional weddings) usually submit newspaper announcements. Typically, an announcement gives general information about the couple including their schooling careers, how the couple met, and where the wedding will take place. Many couples include an official engagement photo along with the announcement.
The announcement information is usually sent to the newspaper’s lifestyle or society editor. Every newspaper has different guidelines for submission so be sure to check out the website or call the administrative office before you send the information. Some newspapers announce for free and some charge to print the announcement. Check with your local publication for specifications and details.
If your fiancé’s family lives in another city be sure to send them a copy of the engagement announcement (wording and photo) so they can have the opportunity to announce the good news in their local newspaper as well.
Typically, newspaper announcements tend to be short and sweet. However, some announcements can be long and pretentious. Announcing your upcoming nuptials should give your guests (and onlookers) just a taste of who the two of you are and what is to come to whet their appetite for the wedding day!
Timing It Right
If you are planning a very long engagement (one year or more), you may want to wait before publishing a newspaper announcement. Most announcements are usually printed no earlier than a year prior to the actual wedding day. Every newspaper has specific and different) timing guidelines. In large cities, it is best to research this information sooner rather than later as they
will have a larger number of submissions and can only allow a certain number in each printing.
A general rule of thumb is to make your announcement anywhere between three to six months prior to the wedding day. Even the best laid out plans can change due to special circumstances, so the closer to your wedding date your announcement is, the better! It is also perfectly fine to make an announcement after the wedding using a photo from your photographer.
Some couples prefer not to announce their engagement to the masses until they have a date in place for the wedding. When people learn of your engagement, the first thing you are likely to hear is “Congratulations!” followed by “When’s the date?” Learn how to choose a wedding date.