Musings on a Longer Engagement

I’ve had a love-hate relationship with our relatively long engagement. On the one hand, the extra time has allowed us to carefully consider what’s most important to us for the wedding, and afforded us the luxury of planning when we want to (rather than feeling pressured to). We’ve also been able to save up our money, shop around for the best deals, and take our pick from the massive pool of available vendors.

On the other hand, a big repercussion of our now 22 month engagement is that it’s given me plenty of time to second guess our wedding-related decisions. I’ve gone through the whole spectrum of wedding “mood swings,” from feeling purely content to long periods of time where I’ve been consumed by boredom, wishing that the big day would just get here already. It’s during these times that I ended up getting lost amongst the pages of countless blogs and inspirational websites, which in turn led to me take a tumble down the wedding wishing well. Tell me, will some of my objects of desire be fulfilled at your wedding?

String lights. I have a sentimental attachment to these. On our first “real” date, Mr. Tartlet and I saw the movie Big Fish, and I fell in love with the twinkle of these lights as a direct result of this scene:



Our venue has strict rules regarding electrical wiring, so there will be no throwbacks to our first date. But, I can count on candles to emulate the luminous glow that this wedding achieved to perfection:



Bagpipes. Some of my happiest memories are from my time living in Scotland, and the drone of bagpipes is a fond reminder. However, I’m fully aware that some folk would rather cut their heart out with a spoon (10 points if you name that movie reference) than listen to one for more than 5 seconds. OK, maybe 2 seconds…


Brantley Gutierrez via Green Wedding Shoes

A sparkler exit. Really, an exit of any kind. Since we’re staying at the Royal Park the night of the wedding, it would make for a rather awkward scene if the guests were to send us off in a blaze of glory only to run into us seconds later in the lobby. Hi…come here often?



Horses. Yes, you read that right. Here is a clear example of where I let all of those adorable ranch weddings work their way into my subconscious, and I unreasonably found myself lusting after a galloping herd to mark the end of our ceremony per this wedding:


Katy Gray via Snippet & Ink

Mr. Tartlet happened to walk by as I was writing this, took one look at the photo and immediately said: “Let me guess. You’re writing about how with a longer engagement you run the risk of your wedding vision flying out of control?” Spot on my dear, spot on.

Furniture. Especially since I’m the kind of person who needs to step away from the crowd every once in a while, I love the idea of creating cozy nooks for people to sneak away to. They also make for fantastic photo ops!



A live band. I’m probably a bit jaded on this one because I have yet to happen upon a bad live band, but have come across some atrocious DJs in my time.


This band brought the house down at BM Laura’s wedding!

With a little over two months to go, I’ve found my way back to my place of zen where I’m 100% pleased as punch about the wedding we’re having. And, if I had to do it all over again, I’d still choose to have a longer engagement. Picking a wedding date is one of the most personal decisions you and your FI can make—whether it’s a short or long engagement, it’s so important to do what’s right for you as a couple!

How long will your engagement be? What are some pros and cons you’ve experienced working with your time frame?


Mrs. Tartlet

Rochester, MI
Wedding Date:
May 2011

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  1. Member
    SerenaSF 681 posts, Busy bee @ 1:42 pm

    I lived in Scotland too and the sounds of bagpipes brings me right back… but not everyone feels quite so fondly about them. Just had to share because I loved my time in Scotland and squealed a little to see that you had lived there as well!

    Also, globe string lights are my only must have decor item. Love love love.

  2. Member
    msgiraffe 4248 posts, Honey bee @ 2:21 pm

    I’m in the same boat, yo! This almost 2.5 year engagement is seriously playing with my head!
    I can’t believe its almost over!

  3. Member
    starfish 1902 posts, Buzzing bee @ 3:18 pm

    24 months for us. It was great to get our top vendors and it was pretty relaxing to have so much time to plan. Enjoy the rest of your time because the end goes by to quick!

  4. Member
    Lexsy 537 posts, Busy bee @ 3:30 pm

    I think a long engagement is better to a shorter one, as it allows you the time to ponder and think and refine and really create “your” wedding. However all this time also leaves room for doubts and second guessing – this is inevitable! The important is that at the end you confirm that what you had previously decided is indeed the best choice, and it seems you’ve done just that :-)

  5. Member
    barrettes 913 posts, Busy bee @ 5:40 pm

    I love this post, Tartlet! As a long engagement bride I’m totally feeling you on this. I lol’ed when I saw the horses- girl you went off the deep end! =)

    So happy you’re in your zen place now!

  6. Member
    magic 640 posts, Busy bee @ 6:16 pm

    You are in my head! Our engagement will be 23 months long. I have changed my mind too many times to count.

  7. Member
    DisneyBride2Bee 112 posts, Blushing bee @ 8:50 pm

    Our engagement is LONG…28 months! I’ve watched my budget creep up in the 8 months we’ve been engaged. Like you, there are some things I want but can’t have…sparklers (venue restrictions) and live band (venue restrictions/cost). Ok I realize that’s not a lot of stuff…I’m sure there’s more, and there are definitely a few things that I’m cringing at the cost of (but need to have due to wedding blog stalking)…chiavari chairs come to mind. Oh well..hopefully things don’t change too much in the next 20 months.

  8. Guest Icon Guest
    the artist, Guest @ 9:27 am

    Did you just make a Robin Hood reference? Love.

  9. Member
    frenchbulldog 1088 posts, Bumble bee @ 2:05 pm

    Hold the phone! YOU LIVED IN SCOTLAND! I love Scotland (if you can’t tell by my freak out), plus I’m part Scottish. What part did you live in? If I hadn’t met Mr Frenchie I would have moved to Scotland & lived in Edinburgh for a least a year. I am one of those people that loved bagpipes. I could listen to them for hours. I begged Mr F to let me get bagpipes to play Amazing Grace at our wedding, but he’s one of those heart out with a spoon people. Hmpt.

  10. Member
    tartlet 3227 posts, Sugar bee @ 2:42 pm

    @SerenaSF: Ahhh! I’m so happy to hear from someone else who lived in Scotland! It’s such an amazing place. :)
    @Mrs. Barrettes: LOL – f’real I went off the deep end. If you could have seen Mr. T’s face when I started melodramatically narrating the impact horses would have at a wedding…
    @DisneyBride2Bee: Oh boy, chiavari chairs are definitely on my list, too. Unrequited love.
    @the artist: Haha – yep! I love me some Men in Tights. ;)
    @Mrs. French Bulldog: I lived in Aberdeen! And OMG – I was SO tempted to move back after I finished undergrad. Edinburgh is phenomenal, oy! I have serious pangs of longing for that country, now! Did you spend time there? I should just send you a PM…

  11. Member
    frenchbulldog 1088 posts, Bumble bee @ 2:49 pm

    @Miss Tartlet: Reading your PM…

  12. Member
    husky 1750 posts, Buzzing bee @ 3:53 pm

    Mr. T’s response is so funny when he saw the horse picture – clearly he knows you well! ;)

  13. Guest Icon Guest
    liz, Guest @ 4:06 pm

    omg we have a 22 month engagement tooo!!! i feel it has pluses and minuses too!!!! ahhh!

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