Just found your significant other and not sure how to plan your wedding? Here is our complete guide to Indian wedding planning.
Your wedding is the most important event in your life that you will be planning for and it can be overwhelming at first. Hopefully following this guide can make sure that you do not miss out on important planning details.
Ready to plan your wedding? Here is the complete guide.
Just like in college and work you need to brainstorm before you start working on your wedding planning. So get your family, significant other and your future family together and discuss the following and narrow down the details:
- Events you want to celebrate: Unlike western wedding, Indian weddings has a lot of different ceremonies such as sangeet, haldi, mehendi, etc. So, decide which ceremonies you are going to hold.
Pro Tip: Also, while discussing this, it will be a good idea to remember some ceremonies can be done at home with immediate family member to keep things in budget and yet not miss out on fun.
- Budget: This one is most unpleasant topic but the most important one. Having a defined budget will enable you to select perfect wedding venue and other vendors that you really can afford.
Pro tip: A good practice would be to allocate budget to each event instead of a single big budget as it will give you flexibility to think and not overspend on one event. Additionally, do not forget to budget in things like jewelry, wedding attire and your honeymoon.
- Guest list: Based on the number of ceremonies you are planning to hold; you can have more than one guest list. Putting down names on spreadsheet along with their contact details will go along way in planning a perfect wedding. At minimum try to have precise estimate of number guest you would be expecting
Pro tip: Most of your arrangements will revolve around number of guests, hence having an exact figure will help a lot and there will not be increase in cost due to last minute guests.
- Wedding Inspiration: Before you head out, it would help to see wedding inspiration online to learn about new trends in décor, food, and clothing. Having a good amount of reference will help you explain vendors better how you want your wedding.
Select a date or two:
Various factors are involved in selecting a wedding date, mostly religious. However, it is important instead of fixating on a single date, you consider two or three different dates. As this will give you more flexibility while selecting venues and other vendors.
Pro tip: Weekend and holiday dates are more convenient for a wedding. However, they are also more expensive dates.
Select a venue:
Finding a venue is generally a few clicks away on the internet. There are a lot of wedding aggregator online, which will give you a list of Banquets in your vicinity to choose from and within your budget. Additionally, talk to you friends and family they will have a few recommendations.
Although, this is not a detail guide on selecting a venue, following are the most essential points that you need to consider while selecting a venue:
- Venue size: Based on size of your guest list you will need to select the size on the venue. Most banquets will specify the number of guests they can seat at a time based on the types of seating arrangements. However, most of the banquets overestimate the floating crowd calculation and a lot of time the venue ends up becoming overcrowded.< b>Pro tip: A venue can accommodate 20- 30 percent extra crowd than its theatre seating capacity. For example: A banquet with 1000 pax capacity in theatre seating can accommodate a total 1200 to 1300 guests in floating.
- Catering Restrictions: Most of the venues, especially banquets in Mumbai and other big cities have their own catering or they have tied up with other caterers. This restriction could be a deal breaker in certain cases. More on catering latter in this blog post.
- Decor Restrictions: Like restriction on catering, most of the wedding venues have either in-house décor or tied up a decorator. More on decoration ahead.
- Car parking: A good wedding venue needs ample of car parking especially if its in a busy city like Mumbai. A good thumb rule is that your wedding venue would require 1/5th the total number of seated guests.
- For example: A banquet with 1000 pax capacity would require about 200 car parking.
- Connectivity: The Venue needs to be easily accessible as most of your guest would be coming from different parts of the city. If the venue is close the main highways and other public transport such as railways and metros is a good indicator about its accessibility.
Select a Caterer
Depending on the venue you chose, you may or may not have the flexibility of selecting a caterer as most venues have their own catering or have fixed panel of caterers. So before selecting a venue make sure that you go for food tasting and select the venue only after you are satisfied with their food.
Pro Tip: If a venue has a panel of caterers, and you happen to not like the any of them, you can probably get an external caterer of your choice but paying a small royalty per plate to the venue management.
In case, the venue allows outside food then you should have plenty of options to select. Online wedding aggregator such as wedmegood have plenty of options. Another way to find a good caterer is through recommendation of your family and friends.
In all scenarios you should taste food before selecting a caterer and do not forget to go during an active event as it will give you more insight about their service quality.
Select a decorator
Like the caterers, some venues make it mandatory to get the decoration done by their in-house decorators. You can customize the decoration as per your requirements. Mostly, in-house decorators are up to the mark.
Pro tip: In case you do not like the inhouse decorator, you could probably get your own decorator by paying a small fee to the venue.
However, if your venue is allowing outside decorator, then you can get a little creative with the decorations. Lot of online decorators are available who will provide you with the latest decoration themes at competitive prices.
While selecting the decorator, make sure to show them your wedding inspiration board, so that they have a complete idea of what you want for your wedding. This will help you assess the exact cost of your wedding decoration and whether the decorator can arrange it for you. Additionally, do not forget More bespoke your decoration theme is the more it will cost you
Pro tip: In order to reduce décor price, try picking certain elements from different themes that the decorator offers to create a more custom theme. Additionally, using artificial flower will reduce the price significantly.
Select a photographer and videographer
Photographs and Videos are one of the most important part of any weddings these days. You need to capture your special moments to cherish it for a lifetime. So, choose your photographer and videographer carefully. Following are few tips to find one:
- You need to hire a professional photographer and videographer, a good place to find them would on wedding aggregators. Generally, professionals have a team of photographers and videographers, and offer packages based on duration, type of event and services you avail.
- Before hiring a team, checking out their portfolio on social media and talking to their previous customers would be a good idea. Also, ask for the portfolio of each team member that would be working on your event.
- There are few hidden conditions that you should discuss before sealing the deal such as number of edited images they will provide as well as whether they will provide all the raw photo and video files.
Select an outfit
There are lot of options while selecting an outfit. You can get a bespoke piece made for you or get an off-rack dress made to measure your body. In either case, it would be a good idea to coordinate your dress with your significant other’s dress as well as your wedding décor theme.
Select an invitation
Your wedding invitation can be as simple as digital invitation over email or a very upscale invitation with a goodie bag, it all depends on your budget. Average size of Indian wedding is between 500-800 guests so invitations can be an expensive affair.
In any case, you should send out save-the-date digital invites once you have finalized the date and venue. Also sending out reminders a week or few days before the marriage is a must.
A wedding is incomplete without the fun. It’s the time when we celebrate the union of two families. Plan everything out so well that you do not miss out on the fun. After all, it is the key element that completes the wedding and makes the event, a successful one. So, go ahead and have fun.