Just Engaged and Proposals

Long Engagement

We got engaged on Thanksgiving of 2009 but we aren't getting married until October 2012 because we are paying for the wedding ourselves and need to save up some money.   I feel like I have no right to start planning or to be excited because it's so far away and to do anything now would be pointless.  We are 90% sure about a venue but I'm not sure if it's too early to be thinking about a photographer and favors.  Does anyone have any advice on how to deal with a somewhat long engagment and how I can start to feel excited about it? 
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Re: Long Engagement

  • AdeleDazeemAdeleDazeem member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 25 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited February 2010
    My fiance and I got engaged in March 2009 and will be married in May 2011.  Such is life - there is a lot going on in both our lives this year.

    Honestly, we picked a venue, guest list, budget and paid a deposit for the venue by August 2009.  Now are just sitting back and enjoying being engaged.  Big details are in place so there's no stress.  We're saving money.  And, we can take our time to gather ideas and decide what we like.  I've enjoyed being able to really look into weddings and decide for myself (over time) what I feel is important on my wedding and what, most definitely, is NOT.

    There's no reason to sit around twiddling your thumbs if you don't want to.  But, I'd advise against putting money down on things (aside from a venue if you are really sure about it) this far out.  Also, pace yourself.  You don't want to get burnt out on weddings a year before your own!
  • I'm also having an engagement on the longer side.. I got engaged Christmas eve of 2009 and I'm not getting married untl maybe end of summer beginning of Fall 2012.  It's hard dealing with the wait! I want to start planning so bad but I know its too early in the game.  Right now i'm just looking aorund and getting ideas for when i'm starting to plan so I don't drive myself insane!
  • I'm always glad to hear that I'm not the only one who had a long engagement.  I got engaged last march and we're getting married in may 2011.  I started looking into venues a few months after we were engaged and with having so much time to plan, I was able to space out the visits to all the venues I was interested in seeing. I do already have some things already finalized but there's still a ton I have to do.  It's kinda nice having such a long engagement although I'm still very anxious to marry this wonderful person.
  • Yup, we're having a 22 month engagement (only a few more months left, thank goodness!).  We took care of the venue within the first six months, and then didn't really do anything until about a year out, when we did the photog and DJ.


    I would really just sit back and enjoy the stress-free time you have right now.  Enjoy being able to squeal that you're engaged, and start collecting pics of stuff you like.  I was digging through my pics a couple months ago and found the exact one of the invites I picked out at Michaels- but I had pulled it from a mag over a year ago, lol.  And forgot about it. 


    The only thing I suggest not doing is making solid decisions now, eg- BM dresses, invites, etc.  Trends change over the course of a year or two, and so will your tastes and ideas about how you want the wedding to be. 

  • I would say you're OK to book your venue and photographer, as long as you KNOW that you won't change your mind.  However, I would hold off on favors or other small things like that because your ideas, trends, etc. might change between now and then.
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  • Our engagement will have been almost four years when we tie the knot, but not intentionally. Life happens, and we had to keep moving the date back. Long engagements can be exhausting if you expect to be crazy excited the whole time.
    My advice:
     1) Slow down and just enjoy being engaged for a while.
     2) Don't start planning yet. Browsing for ideas is fine, but make any commitments. Starting to plan this early leaves so much time to change your mind, and might be a lot of wasted effort. Give it a year, at least.
     3) Be prepared if family and friends don't take you too seriously. Don't take it personally.

    Congrats! :)
  • We also are having a long engagement.  We got engaged January 2008, and are not getting married until June 2011.  No  need to rush, especially if you are paying for the wedding yourselves like we are.  We booked our venue in August of 2008 so we could lock in that pricing since venues seem to up their price every year.  I would say take care of the big things early and do the smaller things here and there.  You will be surprised at how quickly the time goes by.
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  • My FI and I aren't even technically engaged. He gave me a promise ring Thanksgiving of 2007. We were planning on getting married two years after that but life happened. Now that money is a little better, we are again attempting to plan the wedding. We will try to be engaged sometime this year and married by 2012.

    Sorry about my rambling, but I just wanted to let you know that I'm right there with you. But I don't believe that it is too early to start your research. It's one thing to get your numbers and think that in two years from now, inflation won't have occured. It's another to choose a florist, choose your photographer, choose your venue, choose your colors, your flowers, get your guest list together, etc. You can work out the basics of what you want, then when it gets closer to your date, start working in on filling in the details.

    Since you are planning things so far in advance, I would keep a three ring binder with all of your notes, magazine clippings, articles, etc. Have them divided into sections like "Florists", "Photographers", "Venues", etc.

    Hope this helps!
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  • We got engaged right before Thanksgiving of 2009 and aren't getting married until June 2011 (so about a 19 month engagement).  The venue we loved was booked trough Dec 2010, so we decided to wait til next summer.  We booked the venue right away because we were sure we wanted it. We've already booked the band, the church, and we picked out the cake today.  I would say if you are sure you want something, book it, because you may be locked into this year's prices (at least that has been the case for us).    I would suggest to start looking into things..take your time..weigh your options..and if you know you want it..book it.  We figured why wait a few months until we are closer if we know that's what we want anyways.
  • My FI and I got engaged Christmas 2009 and will be getting married June 2011, we're having an 18 month engagement so that I can finish school. Between 18-16 months we had the venue, the photographer, the caterer, the baker and the DJ booked and it made things so much easier. We had our choice of dates and all of our favorite vendors were still free. Also once I had those things locked down the itch to get things done calmed down a bit and now I am just enjoying being engaged. Occaisionally I do some more planning, such as working on the guest list or finding pictures of the cake I want but it is nice to be able to do these things without feeling stressed out. My advice, if there are things you KNOW you want (like the venue) then get it set at soon as possible, other things you can get to as the date approaches or as you decide it's what you really want. Oh and Congrats on your engagement!
  • We got engaged in December 09, but are waiting until Sept 2012 to get married.  My parents are paying for a bulk of the wedding so I wanted to make sure they didn't feel pressured to pay for a big wedding quickly.  I think you should at least book your venue at the moment.  A few places we called already had 2012 weddings booked.  We will be booking our venue this year to make sure we get exactly what we want.  I also already got my dress (not physically but it's paid for), but I'm not a mind changer, so it was an easy decision.  My mom is going to be making the layouts for my invites this spring when she's laid up from surgery because we can get them cheap now and she will have ample time.  Just do what you feel like you can make a decision on without pressure.  I feel like nothing can be overlooked when you have a long engagement, so take the time while you have it!

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  • It's nice to see that others are having long engagements too. I hate having to explained When/Why the date is so long away. We got engaged in January of this year & we're not getting married till September 2012. So basically 2 years.

    I've put a deposit on a reception hall & I've looked at ideas. But I feel the same way, it's hard to commit to things when times change & the things we like now could change so much from now & then. 

    It's really exciting though. I say enjoy being engaged!! Look for ideas, keep a binder of things you like...but don't make any big commitments to the "big stuff" yet! ; ) Good luck!!!
  • Our engagement is going to be a long one as well due to my Fiance being deployed.  We were engaged Dec 5 2009 and chose July 2012 to be married.  I feel hesitant about purchasing or booking anything, besides the venue, so far in advance but it's relaxing to know I have so long to plan and find what I really want.  It also gives us plenty of time to save so we can include everything and maybe don't have to skimp on things like we would have had we set an earlier date.  I started a binder and a blog to keep track of my thoughts, his thoughts, suggestions we came across and our general likes and dislikes of things.  I've found that this has been really helpful at keeping both of us on the same page.  The blog also has been a little place where people we know have added tips, thoughts and suggestions as well... may of which have come in quite useful.
  • I am having a long engagement as well. We got engaged on Jan 2, 2010 and are getting married on July 25, 2011. He graduated last year and I am finishing up my last year in college next year. We both live up in TN now, but are getting married in Fl where im origionally from. We have booked the church and reception hall to be sure to have the date available. We started a guest list already just so that as we think of more people we can add to the list, that way we have plenty of time to make sure we invite everyone we want there. Since I only get to go home about 3 times a year, we are already going to start meeting with different vendors each time we go home. I have been doing a lot of looking at websites online and emailing back and forth about prices that way I know who I need to meet with in the few times I am home. I know its far in advance, but we are going home next week and have a tasting at the reception hall, and a meeting for cake, photography, and a DJ. This way we will both be there together, my Fiance doesn't always get to come home with me when I go, so while he is there I am trying to do some meetings so he can have input too. None of the meetings are to seal a deal as of now, its just so that I have plenty of time to pick the perfect people to help make our wedding special. And it hellps so that I wont be so stressed about all the details when it gets closer! I have plenty of time to plan it all out!
  • We are having a long engagement as well. We became engaged December 7, 2008 and our wedding is August 7, 2010!! Even before we got engaged we had known each other for 6 years so we have been waiting for this for a very long time! We are getting so close now and I cannot wait! Anyway, in my opinion long engagements are the way to go if you are paying for the wedding yourself, as we are. We started planning the wedding as soon as we got engaged and it is a good thing we did. The reception halls book quickly where we live and we took the last spot at our recpetion hall for the month we had chosen, and we booked over a year in advance. It has been very nice to have the extended time to pay for the reception and other various details. Remember, the longer you are engaged,  the longer you have to pay for things. I had my dress paid off by last July and now have moved on to paying for the flowers which are really expensive. I am very glad that we chose to wait and have a long engagement. It gave us time to relax and enjoy the process of planning the wedding! We have really enjoyed it. Also, since we have been waiting so long for the big wedding and to be married, it will be even more enjoyable when the day finally gets here!!!
  • It's just so nice to know that other people are having long engagements like us.  It just gets rough when all of our friends and family are starting to have weddings before us; I just get a little bit of wedding envy.  I just can't wait to be married to him and I know the route we're taking is the best for us but sometimes it's hard to see that.  Now we are in the process of moving in together so I'm not thinking about the wedding as much as usual, which is good.  Thanks to everyone for the positive words and I hope all your wedding plans are going well.
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  • Go at the rate comfortable to you and your FI. Venue and ceremony spaces should be booked and year+ in advance so if you have one in mind go ahead and seal the deal so you get first pick of dates.
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