I just got engaged and we set the date for August 1, 2015. We need time to save up the money for a nice wedding because we do not want to have to pay for anything for the wedding with credit or have to take out a loan for it. We also are waiting until we will be finished with school.
When should we have an engagement party? Would it be strange to have one now when the wedding is four years away?
When should I start planning? I wasn't going to plan anything until about the two year mark. Right now we will just be saving money and looking at ideas.
I've already been asked when our wedding date is and even what my colors are going to be. And some of our extended family members seem to have some difficulty understanding why the wedding is so far away. Any advice about the best way to handle those types of questions?
If your having an engagement party, it should be now instead of later. You have an engagement party to announce your engagement and celebrate it. People aren't going to be as excited for you a year from now as they would be if you were to do it next weekend.
Don't start any hardcore planning now, just get ideas and a budget together. You could probably start the planning about a year and a half out. I wouldn't book anything sooner than that (unless your must-have venue books up quicker, for example) because what if you change your minds, or your budget changes?
As for people asking and wondering why your having a long engagement, your doing what YOU need to do, so don't worry about their thoughts on it. You can always say "Summer time of 2014" or "were thinking blue". Or simply tell them you haven't decided yet. Just because people are asking doesn't mean you have to have these decisions made ASAP! Also, I want to tell you there is NOTHING wrong with a 3 year engagement (we also had a 3 year engagement because I was finishing school). You have to do what's best for yourself as well, and my reason was I wanted to be done with that chapter of my life before I started a new chapter. Plus, I wasn't about to plan a wedding, work full time, and go to school full time all at once, talk about overload!
One more thing I wanted to add is DO NOT choose your wedding party yet. There are people who come on here all the time saying "My MOH and I grew apart, how do I ask her to step down", and you really can't do that without being totally in the wrong. It's best to wait 1yr-6mos. before you start asking people. If anyone asks before you can simply say we haven't decided yet, or "I haven't really even thought about that much yet".