Not everyone wants to get married, but if you've decided to head down that path then you'll quickly realise that a wedding takes a fair bit of planning and organising.
Before your both start creating vision boards and pitching over-the-top ideas, there is one crucial element to take into account — the budget.
Even if you're going to keep it simple, having a fairly clear idea of what you're prepared to spend on this event is a fairly important starting point.
Having a clear budget will make your decision-making a bit easier.
Weddings can quickly get expensive, and things will generally cost more than you imagined.
Finding a venue that works for your wedding may be a big factor in the date that you choose for your celebration. It's also likely to be a major chunk of your budget, so locking in the venue for your wedding is one of the top priorities.
Think about what type of experience you want to give your guests - will it be indoors or outdoors, formal or informal, a seating plan or a bit more relaxed?
When you're looking at venue options, think about how much decoration you want to do. Also think about music - will there be a band or a DJ? What sort of kit will that require?
Venues that are used to doing weddings will generally come with everything you need and can be a bit less hassle, but they're inevitably going to be a bit more generic. More unique venues or locations will take a bit more organising.
Having an idea of how many people you want at the wedding will be a factor in shaping your venue choice.
You then need to figure out who you want to have there.
If your family are chipping in with some money to cover the costs, they might expect some input as to who should be invited. You also need to try and get some balance so that the guest-list isn't too one-sided one way of the other.
Try and avoid inviting anyone that you don't know. Try and avoid inviting anyone that you don't like.
You want this to be a day filled with joy and good memories - try and opt for people who are going to help make that happen.
Wherever you are in the world, there's going to be some rules that you need to follow in order to ensure that you're officially married.
There's probably going to be some sort of marriage licence process, and there'll be some rules on who can officiate your wedding ceremony.
Research all of this to know which boxes you need to tick during your planning process.
What are you going to wear? Are you going to be matching or complementary? Will you be wearing something that you already own, or do you need to buy something new or get something made?
Don't underestimate the time it takes to get something made. Start brainstorming your ideas and options early.
You might not want a photographer or a videograher documenting every moment of your wedding day, but you're probably going to at least want a few photos that capture the emotion of the event.
Even if you're getting one of your friends to do it, make sure there is a nominated photographer and that you're clear with each other what photos you want to get.
Do you need to allocate some time to photos, or will they just be candid shots as things happen?
Remember, this is a day that is all about you and your partner - a day that you want to share together and both enjoy.
That means that you've both got to be on board with the wedding planning.
Inevitably, there's going to be some differing points of view and some disagreements.
You're going to have to make some compromises.
If you're struggling to resolve issues, then think about using a counsellor to help your communication as a couple.
Think of it as good practice for the life that you're building together.