Experts suggest at least a year to plan your big day. This checklist will help with all of your details for the wedding. Remember the earlier you get started the better. There’s also a printable version of a similar checklist here: http://www.russellandhazel.com/content/wedding-templates/
12 months before:
– set a budget and decide who is paying for what
– set a date
– book a venue for both the reception and the ceremony
– hire a wedding planner if you choose you want one
– make the guest list
– start deciding on invitations and save the dates
– start collecting ideas on what you want for the big day
10 months before:
– Decide on an officiant
– Look for vendors: dj/band, cake, flowers, catering, photographer/ videographer, etc.
– Decide on the bridesmaids and groomsmen
– Start looking for your wedding dress. The earlier you order the better. It can take up to 8 months to get a dress in and you always want a month for alterations.
– Pick colors, theme, decorations, etc.
– Take engagement photos
8 months before:
– Book the vendors that you love: dj/band, caterer, florist, photographer, and any rentals.
– Start a wedding registry
– Decide on duties of maid of honor, bridesmaids, best man, groomsmen, and parents. Also decide ushers and their duties. Make a list.
– Start helping guests book hotel rooms and other travel accommodations
6 months before:
– Shop for the wedding rings
– Send your save the dates
– Order invitations
– Pick and order bridesmaids dresses
– Meet with your vendors to sign contracts and go over all the details
– Decide (and book if necessary) your “getaway” mode of transportation
– Book your honeymoon!
4 months before:
– Plan your rehearsal dinner and notify attendants
– Get grooms and groomsmen attire
– Write thank you cards for your bridal shower or engagement party (if you had one)
– Order the cake
2 months before:
– Finalize the ceremony with your officiant
– Write your vows if you are personalizing them
– Mail the invitations
– Book your stylist for hair and makeup. Have a trial run.
– Get any accessories for the big day
– Get gifts for the bridal party, finace, and parents
– Apply for a marriage license
– Get/ make programs, menus and any other stationary that you may have
– Set up an alterations appointment for you and bridesmaids
– Confirm honeymoon details
– Decide on a seating chart (check out this awesome tip on making a seating chart http://www.favecrafts.com/Wedding-Crafts/Easy-Seating-Chart# )
2 weeks before:
– Have your final dress fitting
– Give a shot list to your photographer
– Look over RSVPs and confirm those who have not responded
– Give a playlist to your dj/band
– Give final count to venue/ caterer.
– Write rehearsal dinner and wedding toasts
– Get a tan, wax, facial, manicure, etc. Give yourself a few days before the wedding in case it doesn’t turn out how you expected
– Pick up your dress if you haven’t already
– Confirm times
– Begin packing for honeymoon
– Host a bridesmaid luncheon
– Rehearse the ceremony and have rehearsal dinner
– Give your party and parents their gifts
– Try to relax and go to bed early
– Give groom present
– Give rings to maid of honor and best man
– Eat small, healthy meals
– Get married!!!
* Some ideas provided by Bride Magazine, russellandhanzel.com, and premier bride idaho.