Congratulations, the question was asked and the reply was YES. By using this time line and checklist to assist you in planning your wedding celebration we hope that the planning process can be almost be as fun as the wedding day itself.
Nine to Twelve Months Before
- Announce your engagement to family and friends and plan an engagement party.
- Place an engagement announcement in your local newspaper.
- Sign up for a wedding website, such as www.weddingwire.com to keep your guests informed about event details, area information, etc.
- Choose a wedding date.
- Work on a budget.
- Choose a location and reserve your ceremony and reception site, use a location listing like www.weddingsitesandservices.com as a resource.
- Begin a rough guest list and compile a current address list.
- Decide on who you’d like to have as your attendants, including your maid of honor and best man.
- Begin shopping for your wedding gown.
- Decide on the music and entertainment for your wedding and reception, do you want a band, string quartet or a DJ.
- Purchase a wedding planning book or a simple calendar to keep track of important dates and appointments, (fittings, showers, tastings, etc.)
- Begin interviewing the vendors that will help you on your wedding day, caterers, photographers, florists and videographers.
Six to Nine Months Before
- Research and choose one or more bridal gift registries.
- Order your wedding gown and buy undergarments that you will wear with it. (Bring these to all gown fittings.)
- Order other bridal accessories, shoes, gloves, veil, etc.
- Begin shopping for bridesmaids dresses.
- Book your caterer, photographer, florist and videographer.
- Find an officiate to perform your ceremony.
- Start researching local bakeries for wedding cake ideas.
- Book your music and entertainment.
Four to Six Months Before
- Select and order your wedding invitations, envelopes and thank-you cards.
- Hire a calligrapher, if desired.
- Select and purchase wedding favors
- Meet with your caterer to discuss the menu and wine list.
- Book your honeymoon and verify that you have any necessary travel documents including passports and visas.
- Order or renew passports if necessary
- Book a room for your wedding night, if you will be leaving for your honeymoon the next morning.
- Choose your baker and order your wedding cake.
- Book accommodations for out-of-town guests.
- Finalize your guest list and send out save-the-date cards, if using.
- Print out directions to the ceremony reception, rehearsal dinner and hotel for guests.
- Compile a list of area information and things to do for out-of-town guests.
- Reserve transportations for you and your wedding party to and from the wedding, as well as a bus for your guests, (if necessary.)
Two to Four Months Before
- Find out what your state’s requirements are for obtaining a marriage license and get blood tests done, if required.
- Choose a tuxedo style for the groom and groomsmen.
- Have the groom and the groomsmen measured for their tuxedos.
- Meet with your officiate to discuss ceremony details, wording and wedding vows.
- Select wedding readings.
- Buy thank you gifts for your attendants.
- Shop for a gift for your new spouse-to-be.
- Select and purchase wedding bands, have them engraved if desired.
- Choose and book a location for the rehearsal dinner.
- Contact party-rental companies for tables, chairs, tents, etc if necessary.
- Purchase luggage and other travel necessities and attire for your honeymoon.
- Schedule an appointment with your dentist if you’d like to have your teeth whitened or cleaned before the wedding.
Four to Eight Weeks Before
- Mail invitations out eight weeks prior to the wedding date and send accommodation information to your out-of-town guests.
- Compile and complete name change documents.
- Fill out a change of address form at the post office, if necessary.
- Pick up your marriage license.
- Print programs for your ceremony.
- Purchase a guest book and other wedding accessories including toasting glasses, cake knife, ring pillow, etc.
- Keep your wedding website updated with directions and event details.
- Begin a seating chart for the reception, (if you are assigning tables.)
- Choose your hair and make-up stylists and schedule a trial for both.
- Book appointments to have your hair, make-up and nails done on the day of the wedding.
- Review insurance information with your fiancé to see if any updates need to be made prior to the wedding, (car, home, medical, etc.)
- Plan a bridal luncheon or dinner with your bridesmaids.
Two to Four Weeks Before
- Finalize the seating chart for the reception and make place cards (or have your calligrapher work on these, if you have hired one.)
- Contact your caterer with a final guest count.
- Print out a timeline of events for your wedding party and vendors – including contact information and cell phone numbers.
- Meet with your photographer and florist to finalize details.
- Finalize your ceremony and reception music and song list for your wedding band or DJ.
- Confirm lodging reservations for out-of-town guests.
- Place a wedding announcement in your local newspaper.
- Pick up wedding bands and make sure the fit is good.
- Schedule a final dress fitting.
- Pack a makeup bag and emergency kit, needle and thread, blotting pads, tissues, band aids, deodorant, etc.
- Write rehearsal dinner toasts.
In the Week Before
- Write out final checks for your minister, organist, DJ or musicians, (and any other vendors that require payment on the wedding day,) and organize in envelopes for your wedding coordinator or one of your attendants to distribute at the wedding.
- Pick up your wedding gown.
- Pick up the Tuxedos, have EVERY man who is wearing a rented tuxedo try it on to ensure the fit is correct.
- Confirm limo or other transportation reservations.
- Pack for your honeymoon and confirm travel arrangements.
- Have your local post office hold your mail and stop your newspaper delivery while you are away on your honeymoon.
The Day Before
- Welcome out of town guests as they arrive
- Schedule some quiet time for yourself.
- Exchange gifts with your bridesmaids, groomsmen or close family members.
- Attend the rehearsal and enjoy the rehearsal dinner!
The Wedding Day
- Eat a light/healthy breakfast – you’ll need your energy for the big day ahead. And drink plenty of fluids to keep hydrated.
- Enjoy the day, it’s finally here and everything will be wonderful