Date of engagement: 1/11/14
Date wedding confirmed: 2/14/14
Date of wedding: 7/27/14
Planning a wedding in less than 6 months! This is how I did it...
I am a planner by nature. I plan out my work week of appointments (I travel frequently for work). I plan out my meals the best I can. I plan. No, I'm not overly anal nor am I obsessively structured. I just like to feel as though I know what to expect.
Room block: We started with 15 rooms in our contract. I anticipated that at least 15 ppl would book within the 30 day timeframe we had. Initially, I stressed over whether we would get all 15 booked in time, who hadn't booked, etc. Big piece of advice to brides: DONT STRESS OVER THIS. NOT everyone will book in time, some people may say they are going to book and still have yet to book, and in some cases you might have quite a few rooms left to fill in your block. DO NOT let this ruin your excitement for a destination wedding and warp you into the dreadful bridezilla. It is not worth the anxiety or stress. It will all come together and work out. I finally got to a point where my mind frame was "My fiancé and I are booked. I know our friends and family love us and if they can make it great, but if they can't that's ok too and we will think of them". For us, it all came together....currently 19 rooms booked through our contract, 2 rooms booked outside of our contract (they are coming from Europe and cheaper through their agent), and a total of 44 people. We still have some friends/family saying they are going to come but haven't booked yet and that is ok. We aren't going to stress about it and you shouldn't either. Remember this is your wedding and it's about you and your FI.
The Dress: I learned rather fast that dresses take quite some time to come in. I was being quoted 3-6 months depending on store and designer. I began shopping for a dress the end of January and had bought my dress by the first week in Feb. I originally found my dress at a store in Dallas but called a store in Austin that I previously visited to see if they had the same dress and could offer me a better price. They carried the same designer/dress, priced it for almost $200 cheaper, and offered me tax free. DRESS BOUGHT! I lucked out that they actually had my dress in stock and it would arrive mid March.
Here is a link to my dress: http://www.allurebridals.com/products/2709
I was then looking for a beaded belt for my dress. I thought they were kinda pricey but it made my look for the dress. There are tons of these on Etsy.com that look beautiful. However, I'm a visual person and want to see it in person before I purchase it. I went to Terry Costa in Dallas and fell in love with a belt there. Lesson learned, if you want to purchase one of these most stores order them and it can take a few months to come in. Belle Saison in Austin told me 3 months for one of theirs I liked. I didn't have that kind of time. Terry Costa sold me the sample belt. It looked brand new except 2 beads were loose. They had someone fix it and had it ready within the hour and also gave us 25% off saving me $70.
Advice: If you're on a time crunch, don't stress about this. So many stores will let you buy the dress off the rack if you're in a time crunch...and for a discounted price. I understand some people may want a brand new dress and not the sample, so call around and see if anyone can get your dress in sooner.
Off Site WC: Until we arrive in Mexico we will be working with an off site wedding coordinator from Miami. First thought "Oh, Miami is in the US, this means communication should be much easier than going through ppl in Mexico" How silly of me. You will read post after post of brides frustrations with communicating with their WC. They aren't lying. I initially had a different WC but have since changed over to Christine who has been much more helpful. I found at times that I stressed that my WC was taking not a day or so to respond, but at times 2 weeks. Seemed a little excessive to me. This bothered me because I was trying to budget, but had so many questions about pricing certain things. Since my initial questions have been answered and I've been able to create my own budget, the time they take to get back to me doesn't bother me as much. Each time we make decisions or changes my WC adds them to our detail sheet and I'm able to confirm that everything we had requested is correct. I have made a few special request and Christine has been very accommodating with them. She is consistently polite and apologetic for the time it takes her to respond. What I like the most about Christine is that I will ask 1,001 questions in an email and she will respond to every question and not leave questions out. Advice: It will take time for your WC to respond to your questions, but it does all come together. If you have a question you need an immediate answer to, call them. They will answer