Valentine’s Day isn’t always the most memorable of holidays, but this year everything changed. You became one of the lucky few to find yourself in a brand new engagement. Now it’s time to plan your dream wedding – though you may have no idea where to start. No one is going to tell you it’s easy to plan, but many have walked (or danced) down the aisle before you and had a fabulous time doing it. Make your wedding the party of the year. Your guests will love you for it. Be memorable, be awesome, and be creative.
Here at the Thrasher-Horne Center, weddings are second nature. Our massively accommodating Events Center has played host to hundreds of perfect weddings for couples all over the region. As a result, we’ve encountered numerous bridal checklists – all of which provided varying degrees of personal success for the new bride. After witnessing the best and the worst, we’ve assembled the following as your ultimate go-to list, which we’ll be doling out in monthly installments to keep you on schedule until your big day.
Staying organized will keep you on track while you try to make your wedding memorable, awesome and creative. The items on our checklist are your perfectly portioned must-do’s to make this spectacular event come together in a way that only we know how.
STEP ONE: ABOUT A YEAR BEFORE
Don’t worry, take it a piece at time!
The planning stage begins here, where you and your fiancé are brainstorming ideas that will make this an unforgettable day. These steps are all about laying a foundation. If you think of your wedding as a college term paper, what you do in this first month will revolve primarily around research. Don’t worry about making a lot of concrete decisions… there will be plenty of time for that later in the process. Just envision your perfect wedding day, and start funneling those wishes into realities (on paper, at least).
- Work out your budget. This will be the major factor in many of your decisions. Whether you can spend to your heart’s content or have to be more budget conscious, there are dozens of ideas that will make this the day of your dreams. Identify the parties responsible for funding your big day and have a completely realistic conversation with them about your parameters. It may not be the most comfortable part of the process, but it will definitely set your planning in the right direction – eliminating embarrassing, disappointing, or stressful future scenarios. For interactive budgeting help, make use of the online wedding budget tool at The Knot.
- Choose your date and venue for ceremony and reception. This is the most important detail that affects your other planning decisions. Worried about inclement weather? There’s nothing like a sudden storm to put a damper on an outside event. Consider an inside venue that will accommodate all your wishes and desires. Do you want a wedding with a theme? Check to see what the venue might suggest. Feel free to check out our site to begin in the right direction.
- Who will be in your wedding party? Give them as much time as possible so they can plan for the big day.
- Pick your guest list. Sure, you want everyone you know to share your joy, but can you afford it? This is often one of the most difficult decisions to make. Name everyone who you would like to attend at first, then whittle it down over time.
- Who will officiate the ceremony? Make sure he or she will be available on your special day.
- Begin your research. Check into local photographers, bands or DJ’s, florists, videographers and caterers (Sites like The Knot are a great resource!) Once you’ve chosen your venue, get some great recommendations from them also as they work closely with a lot of different vendors.
- Create a wedding website. Chronicle your ventures and accomplishments. Let your guests join in on the fun. Crowdsourcing ideas and suggestions is always helpful when undertaking a huge project such as a wedding.
- Browse wedding dress and veil styles. Will you go traditional or a little more modern? What length? What colors? What designers? Have fun experimenting.
- Research all the great wedding blogs and websites. There’s a ton of them with fantastic ideas and inspirational stories. But don’t get too lost in these sites. Take in all suggestions at first, then slowly edit down the articles you read as you begin to more tightly focus your own personal wedding experience and what that will require.
- Most of all, be creative and personalize your special day. Come up with ideas to make your wedding an event your guests will rave about for a long time to come. If you stay true to your own personality, your family and friends will appreciate the ceremony even more for the way it represents your own unique style.
The Ideal Setting for your Wedding Day… The Thrasher-Horne Center, one venue which has it all!
Many stunning weddings have already been held at the Thrasher-Horne Conference Center! Nestled on the scenic St. Johns River State College campus in Orange Park, this venue provides the perfect atmosphere for your wedding and/or reception, with ample free guest parking, flexible catering choices with a full staging kitchen, and an accessible location right in the heart of Clay County. Comprised of six suites that can provide space in whatever design you envision, such as the Grand Banquet Room with comfortable space for up to 240 guests including enough room for dancing. Additionally, our other banquet or theatre spaces are the perfect setting for your wedding ceremony, combining both of your venue needs into one!
Call 904-276-6815 or visit http://weddingsjacksonvillefl.com to schedule an appointment with a Thrasher-Horne Center Wedding Specialist today!