Planning A Wedding Checklist – The Ultimate Guide
If you are like most women, you have probably been dreaming about your wedding since you were a little girl. You have found your prince charming and he surprised you with the engagement ring of your dreams. Now it is time to start planning for your big day. Many women get so caught up in the excitement of their engagement and wedding that they forget that there is a lot to do to prepare for that special day. However, don’t worry because this comprehensive planning a wedding checklist is your guide to make sure you don’t forget a thing.
Having a wedding planner checklist is like having your own personal assistant to guide you throughout the planning of your wedding. Many women hire a wedding planner to help take care of the arrangements, phone calls, booking venues, catering, and much more. If you have a wedding planner, it is still a good idea to have a wedding planning checklist so you are always on top of things. A checklist will also help you to focus on issues that are more urgent, important and time consuming.
One Year Before Your Wedding Checklist
Happily announce your engagement to your friends, family and other loved ones. You may also want to send a wedding announcement to your local newspaper.
1. Talk to your fiancé about a date for your wedding day.
2. Plan your engagement party.
3. Talk to your fiancé about the size of your wedding.
4. Choose your location for the wedding ceremony as well as the reception afterwards.
5. Talk to your fiancé about a wedding budget and how it will be paid for.
After the two of you have decided on everything listed above, you can then begin the booking process.
7. Contact the venues you want to have your wedding and reception at to see if they are available on the dates you have chosen. If they are, book them right away!
8. Find someone to perform your wedding ceremony and hire them if they are available.
9. Interview and book:
- Photographer for your wedding ceremony and reception
- Videographer for your wedding ceremony and reception
- Baker for your wedding cake
- Band or DJ for your wedding reception if you will be having music
- Caterer for the reception – talk to your fiancé and decide what type of set-up you want to have (sit-down style dinner or buffet)
About 10 Months Before Your Wedding Checklist
1. Make sure you have some kind of insurance for your engagement ring (check to see if your renter’s or homeowner’s insurance covers your ring).
2. Choose a color scheme for your wedding and reception.
3. Discuss your wedding vows with your fiancé and figure out if you will each write your own or have them written for you.
4. Sit down with your fiancé and choose your wedding party.
5. Start shopping for your wedding dress and veil. If you have found a dress that you love, purchase or order it.
6. Once you find and purchase your dress and veil, you can choose your wedding shoes and purchase those as well.
7. Buy the proper undergarments to suit the needs of your dress. You will want to make sure you have all of these before your dress fitting!
8. Start looking at wedding invitations with your fiancé.
9. Set up a honeymoon budget.
About 6 to 10 Months Before Your Wedding Checklist
1. You will have your first meeting with the minister or officiator of your wedding.
2. Decide if you will want a unity candle ceremony.
3. If you and your fiancé have chosen to write your own vows, you should start writing them now.
4. Choose what type of music you would like for your wedding ceremony and book it.
5. Start looking for bridesmaid’s dresses and tuxes for the groom, groomsmen, ushers, and the fathers.
6. Find a venue for your rehearsal dinner and book it.
7. If you have guests that will be in from out-of-town then you will need to find several hotel rooms for them to stay at and reserve or book them right away.
8. By now, you and your fiancé should know which wedding invitations you both want. Now it is time to purchase them.
9. Decide whether or not you and your fiancé want wedding programs. If you do, now is the time to pick them out and purchase them.
10. Make a list of everyone that you both are inviting. This will be a first draft of sorts. You can always go back and change the list accordingly.
11. Make sure you have the correct directions to the venue of your wedding ceremony, from the ceremony to your reception, and to and from the rehearsal dinner.
12. If you have people attending your wedding from out-of-town, you may want to make of list of entertaining things for them to do while in town.
13. Plan your honeymoon:
- Check to make sure your visas or passports are up to date
- Book your hotel room(s)
- Set up your transportation
- Purchase plane tickets
- Have a list of attractions and things do to on your honeymoon
14. Decide whether or not you will want a bridal registry. If you do, make a list of what you would like on it.
About 4 to 6 Months Before Your Wedding Checklist
1. If you are having a bridal portrait, make an appointment. Also make an appointment to have your hair and nails done for the photo.
2. Decide on the wedding favors and purchase or make them.
3. Decide on centerpieces for the reception and purchase or make them.
4. You should have already picked out the style and sizes of the bridesmaids’ dresses. Now it’s time to purchase or order them.
5. Have your transportation arrangements made. If you would like to take a limousine, hire a driver and book a limo.
6. Pick out and order your wedding bands.
7. Meet with the florist you have booked to go over the details of the arrangements.
8. Purchase or make the flower girl flower basket and the ring bearer pillow.
9. Meet with the baker you have chosen to pick out the flavor and style of your wedding cake.
About 2 to 4 Months Before Your Wedding Checklist
1. Get your bridal portrait taken.
2. Choose the types of food you will have for your reception.
3. Determine the reception layout and seating arrangement.
4. Finalize and memorize vows (if applicable).
5. Buy gifts for the groomsmen, bridesmaids, partner, and parents.
6. Schedule hair and nail appointment for your wedding day.
7. Get a list of all the people invited. Once you have that, address and send out invitations.
8. Get your marriage certificate.
One Month Before Your Wedding Checklist
1. Go back through your checklist and make sure all bookings, venues, orders, music, flowers, etc. is secured.
2. Be sure you are writing down all gifts you get and from whom. This way you can write the appropriate thank you notes.
Two Weeks Before Your Wedding Checklist
1. Have your final meeting with your florist, videographer, photographer, caterer, and the band or DJ to make sure everything is set.
2. Finalize and print programs, directions, itineraries, and list of responsibilities for certain people.
3. Have your final wedding gown fitting.
4. Confirm all hotel reservations for the guests as well as you and your fiancé for your wedding night.
One Week Before Your Wedding Checklist
1. Pack for your honeymoon.
2. Give your final guest list to the caterer or the person in charge at the venue.
3. Make sure the minister or officiator has a copy of your marriage certificate.
4. Make sure you have your bride’s emergency kit all ready.
5. Make sure flowers will arrive on time and centerpieces are ready.
Day Before Your Wedding Checklist
1. Pick up the wedding dress, veil and tuxedo.
2. Take all the necessities (cake knife and server, favors, centerpieces, CD’s, etc.) to the wedding hall.
3. Go to your nail appointment.
4. Now it’s time for your wedding rehearsal and your rehearsal dinner!
Your Wedding Day!
Now that your big day has finally arrived, there are only a few things left that you need to do before the ceremony can begin. You will have your hair appointment a few hours before the ceremony. Make sure you give the wedding bands to the Maid of Honor and the Best Man before the ceremony. Everything is set and you are ready to get into your dress, make a few last minute adjustments to your hair, makeup and dress. You look breathtaking! Now it’s time to enjoy your ceremony, the reception and the rest of your life with your soul mate!
This planning a wedding checklist is evergreen. I suggest you reference it whenever possible. There are a lot of things on this list, and it’s easy to forget one, so make sure you visit this wedding planner checklist early and often.
If you’d like to find out more information on wedding planner checklists, check out some of my articles.
Thanks for reading!