#mattsmrs18
Super January 2018

How to survive a long engagement

#mattsmrs18, on June 6, 2016 at 12:11 PM

Posted in Etiquette and Advice 38

So with 18 months still left to go the angst of waiting is getting really heavy. FH and I decided that logistically a long engagement made more sense, so a 23 month engagement it was. Now the venue is booked so there is nothing left to do until the start of next year, but seeing all of this planning...

So with 18 months still left to go the angst of waiting is getting really heavy. FH and I decided that logistically a long engagement made more sense, so a 23 month engagement it was. Now the venue is booked so there is nothing left to do until the start of next year, but seeing all of this planning going on makes me want to go dress shopping and invitation buying so badly. Plus I'm kind of annoyed because since the wedding is so far away no one (like family or bridal party) seems to really be interested in any of it. Does anyone have any advice or tips to keep me from exploding into a rain of birdseed and bridal confetti?

38 Comments

  • I
    Just Said Yes January 2016
    Isha ·
    • Flag

    Personally, I do not think it is a good idea to wait until next year. Start booking your vendors. You will be surprised to find out how far out they get booked. Start making a guest list, compiling ideas and visiting expos. No amount of time is good enough.

    • Reply
  • kahlcara
    Master August 2013
    kahlcara ·
    • Flag

    Focus on other things in your life too. The nice thing about having a long engagement is that everything doesn't have to be all planning all the time. You can do things at your own pace and switch the focus to other things as necessary.

    I had a 2.5 year engagement, but only 8-9 months of that was actual planning. In the course of our engagement, we both graduated from college, moved in together, DH started grad school and I started my first "real" job and studied for the LSAT. It didn't feel like it dragged at all because we had so much other "life" stuff going on.

    • Reply
  • OurAdventureBegins
    VIP October 2016
    OurAdventureBegins ·
    • Flag

    I think you got some really good advice on here but I would say WAIT on the dress, WAIT on your BP - those two things seem to end in regret if they are chosen too far out. Pinterest the crap out of your wedding and figure out exactly what you want and discover new ideas that are out there. Your vision will change and it is easier to go with that if you haven't hammered everything out too early.

    • Reply
  • Flufflepuff
    Master June 2017
    Flufflepuff ·
    • Flag

    We have 22 month engagement. It can be so hard to be patient! Get your big vendors booked right away. I bought decor here and there on sale. Get your guest list nailed down and start saving and pinteresting.

    • Reply
  • Nicole
    Super September 2017
    Nicole ·
    • Flag

    I agree with what everyone else has said. We will be engaged 24 months when we are married. One good thing I noticed is that in the beginnig we had all these ideas we which we have since been able to nix or change to something better because we have had plenty of time to think about things instead of just jumping into the first ideas.

    • Reply
  • AlmostMrs.T
    Super November 2017
    AlmostMrs.T ·
    • Flag

    My wedding is in 17 months, but all vendors are booked. Now it's time to save money for the wedding... And to relax!

    • Reply
  • AnnaKay
    Super June 2018
    AnnaKay ·
    • Flag

    So I know how you feel. My FH will have a 32month engagement when we get married. Some vendors will looked at you crazy which I was thinking damn that's rude. Anywho I learned that you can do a lot of research, Pinterest all your ideas and even just take time to enjoy each other company. Maybe since your venue is booked you can look into booking your photographer especially since you can lock in 2016 prices or maybe even get free engagement session or photo booth for your wedding if needed. Even start doing rough draft of your guest lis.

    • Reply
  • Heather
    Beginner June 2016
    Heather ·
    • Flag

    We had a 2 year engagement. It was nice because we got to book our first choice vendors early and I never felt rushed (until this last month!). I remember wanting so badly to go dress shopping right away, but eventually waited until about a year before the wedding. Plus, we really got to savor the engagement period rather than rushing right in to marriage.

    • Reply
  • Staci
    Master September 2014
    Staci ·
    • Flag

    Wait you picked your bridal party already? Yikes. I would have waited at least another six months. I wouldn't even talk about the wedding with anyone until you are much much closer.

    • Reply
  • OG Dianna
    Master March 2017
    OG Dianna ·
    • Flag

    Agree with @staci. Shouldn't have picked your bridal party so early.

    • Reply
  • TheKDenny
    Savvy July 2017
    TheKDenny ·
    • Flag

    Definitely think about what other vendors are important to you - photographer, caterer, etc. My FH and I have a 26 month engagement and I've been dying. I started booking vendors in January (18 months out) and now we're down to just over a year (July 1, 2017)! FH and I are having a DW (at apparently the #2 spot in the United States - Outer Banks, NC) in the middle of summer, so we thought it was important to book vendors early. We booked our venue, photographer, and planner in January, videographer in February or March, and every other vendor in May. We still have our day-of-lunches caterer to book (we've decided and they know, but we're letting things slow down for him), our florist (waiting on our last quote), and our ceremony musician.

    It definitely gets tough sometimes, and I completely understand. My family is/was the same way. The wedding was so far out, they didn't care yet. Plus, my sister got engaged and is getting married in a couple months. The other hard thing is looking at wedding stuff and wanting to buy it, even without having a clear vision of the day yet. I'm finally going wedding dress shopping in late June. Good luck on getting through it! Smiley smile

    • Reply
  • Britini
    Devoted September 2018
    Britini ·
    • Flag

    I am also in a two year engagement and an finding a lot of these comments to be very helpful! I was wondering about a lot of these things. I have thought about going dress shopping to see what my style might be like. Are you ladies recommending deciding on a dress about one year before the wedding?

    • Reply
  • Kiwi Kawaii
    Master August 2016
    Kiwi Kawaii ·
    • Flag

    Agree with JSARGE - Look into photography, videography if you're getting it, DJ, and officiant. Those can take time and patience to find exactly what you want. So, it will be a great use of your time!

    After that, relax and pinterest. Maybe start getting ideas for dresses as opposed to shopping yet. Definitely do not invitation shop yet. My engagement started about a year out from the wedding and some of our details that are noted on the invitations changed in the 9-10 months I've been planning.

    ETA: To answer your question about no one really being interested in your wedding at the moment - that's to be expected. Even if you were having a shorter engagement, people may not be interested til it's much closer (if they are interested at all). I don't mean that to sound harsh. It's just that no one will care as much about your wedding as you and your fiance do.

    • Reply
  • HecateHoney
    VIP October 2017
    HecateHoney ·
    • Flag

    It will go fast! We are October 2017 - so 17 months out and I have all the big vendors booked: venue/catering, DJ, photographer, videographer, DOC, florist and Mua. Feels great to have those all off my plate. Now just working on ideas and if I want to DIY anything or not. Congrats and I totally get the long engagement angst but I've found it's always something happy and lovely we can look to besides all the normal life stuff. .. so enjoy it! We're engaged! Congrats!

    • Reply
  • FutureMrsH2018
    Beginner June 2018
    FutureMrsH2018 ·
    • Flag

    I'm looking at a three year engagement, FH wants to save up plenty of money as we will be funding our own big day....the problem is I want to talk colors and decorations and be excited about it, but being so far in the future we are the only ones interested in talking about it.

    • Reply
  • Tiffany
    Just Said Yes September 2021
    Tiffany ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    I am just curious as to why you say this. I thought about who I wanted for awhile before but would love to know why you say not to choose this. I am doing a 23 month engagement and announcing my bridal part at my engagement party which is 2 years from wedding. Is that not smart?
    • Reply
  • Staci
    Master September 2014
    Staci ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    Two reasons:

    Unfortunately you never know what your relationship with someone is going to be like in two years. She could move, you guys could drift apart or have a falling out.

    And two, no one should feel compelled to help you plan a wedding for that long. It's just too much to ask of someone to be involved in your wedding for two years. Bring them in after some of the major decisions are behind you so they can help with the fun stuff.

    • Reply
  • Carly
    Savvy August 2019
    Carly ·
    • Flag

    There are plenty of things you can do now! We had a 2 year engagement and now we're a week and a half away from our date! I am so stressed and wish I had gotten more done of the small detail stuff before now! You can definitely do the following things now, just make sure to do some thorough research to make sure you are confident in your choices and don't have regret later. Simply researching these things will take up a lot of your time if you deliberated every option like I did!:

    Dress shopping (bought mine a year and a half in advance, which was probably a little early but I still love it. Be careful of this one though if you are indecisive)
    DJ (booked 14 months in advance, but you can do that now)
    Photographer (booked 15 months in advance)
    Save the dates
    Invitations (if you want them to match and know your invite list, not a bad idea to get out of the way now)

    Florist - Booked almost a year in advance

    Hair and makeup - Booked waayyy too late at 3 months out and missed out on my top choices

    Decorations (start getting ideas, looking on wedding swap sites/facebook groups) - THIS IS SOMETHING I LEFT TO THE LAST MINUTE AND IT'S KILLING ME NOW!

    Officiant - booked a year out, but can be done now if you want

    Ceremony musicians - booked a year out

    Honeymoon - purchased our flights to Bali 7 months out, but spent MANY months researching and choosing hotels, etc. This can keep you busy for quite a while, especially if you're on the hunt for good deals and it's fun Smiley smile

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