Engaged? These Are The 3 Best Decisions To Kick Start Your Alternative Wedding Planning

Forget what the glossy bridal mags tell you. You know, the ones that insist you need to spend £25,000 on your wedding day and assume that you’ll have a professional wedding planner at your disposal. I embrace the #antibride ethos and I’m planning a alternative DIY wedding on a budget, so I’m sharing my experience with you between those early heady days following engagement, through to making those first tentative steps towards making firm plans for the wedding.


Short on time?

Cut to the chase and jump straight to the 3 Best Decisions To Kick Start Your Alternative Wedding Planning.

I’ll start by bigging myself up a bit. I’m really good at planning stuff and not only that, this will actually be my second marriage. Whenever it comes to family events, parties or big group holidays, I’m the one that gets shizzle done and makes things happen.

I got married many years ago over in the USA, barefoot on a beach and I planned it all to ensure it was a happy and chilled day. In fact, I was so relaxed about it all on the morning of my wedding, I was still messing around in the pool when I realised I was running late for my mani and pedi booked for just 3 hours before the ceremony.

To put things further into perspective, I’m the queen of multi-tasking and of thrift. The thought of planning a wedding does not phase me one bit, but even so, I found getting started was way trickier than I’d anticipated.

If budget isn’t much of an issue it makes the decision-making process much quicker and easier. You see a cake you want, you order it. You check out a venue you like, you book it. But when you’re on a super tight budget, you find the venue you like then spend the next month scouring the entire country for something similar, but cheaper.

This DIY, budget wedding lark takes way more time and effort to pull off than a traditional wedding with a higher budget, so if you’re struggling to get the planning process started, read on to find out what worked for me.

Not Sure Where To Start? These Are the 3 First Wedding Decisions You Need To Make

After spending the last 4 weeks following my own engagement trying to get my head together and figure out what the hell to do first (which has included approximately 3 full days staring at Pinterest), here’s what I found were the best early things to decide on.

1. Wedding Vibe

Being authentic is important for us, so deciding on the vibe was easy. We want our wedding day to be a true reflection of us and our personalities, so we started with some words that describe us which we felt easily translated into the vibe we want to create on our wedding day.

For us, these words are eclectic, bohemian, batty, weird, relaxed, fun, playful, curious, bright, funky & individual.

2. Wedding Colour Palette

Again, our starting point here was us. Choosing a colour scheme because it’s considered classy or on-trend, just isn’t us. Likewise, we aren’t beige people and both adore bold prints, bright colours and mixing our styles to create something unique. The colours we are both most often seen wearing, or that we are frequently drawn to gave us an obvious colour palette for the wedding.

Colours that represent us are bright pink, purple, teal, lime green and orange.

3. Wedding theme

We are spiritual but non-religious so getting married in a church would be a bizarre choice, however the bland bureaucratic atmosphere of a registry office is equally at odds with us. We don’t want the event to be stuffy or formal in any way because that’s just not us, we want our friends and family to feel like they are at a party more than at a formal wedding.

As far as wedding theme ideas go, we’ve drawn inspiration from village fetes, tea parties, festivals, garden parties, glamping holidays and old skool raves.

Don’t forget to enjoy the process!

Yes there is a lot to think about and It can initially feel super overwhelming, especially when you don’t have vast funds to draw on, meaning you need to be more savvy with every decision you make on how to spend your hard-saved cash. That said, getting married shouldn’t be stressful or anxiety inducing. If it is stressing you out, take a step back and centre yourself and figure out exactly what’s making you feel stressed.

The benefits of starting early and choosing a vibe, colours and theme for the day that represents you both means that all other decisions will flow as they will be shaped by those initial decisions, helping to narrow down your options, making choosing and booking things that bit easier.

Once we’d decided on the wedding vibe and colours, it got so much easier to make decisions as we finally had a starting point. Since deciding on vibe, colours and theme I’ve already started the process of handmaking our wedding table centre pieces and venue decorations and after spending an entire afternoon looking at wedding cakes (all I can think about 24 hours later is cake), I now know exactly what I want cake wise, because it fits our vibe and visual theme. I’ve even contacted suppliers for quotes, requested brochures and have some venue viewings booked. So instead of feeling a bit overwhelemed, I’m now feeling a lot more relaxed and in ctonrol.

So If you’ve just got engaged and are struggling to know where to start with your own wedding plans, I hope the 3 starting points that I’ve used will prove equally helpful for you.

Alternatively, I’d love to hear what you used as your starting point for your own wedding plans in the comments below!