Wedding Planning Timeline

12+ MONTHS BEFORE
▢ Decide on your wedding date and time
▢ Gather inspiration.
▢ Choose a color palette.
▢ Create a budget.
▢ Pick your wedding party.
▢ Create your guest list.
▢ Reserve your ceremony and reception venue(s).
▢ Research vendors. Photographer, videographer, band/DJ, florist, caterer, officiant, etc.
▢ Take engagement photos.
▢ Order and send out your save-the-dates. It’s a good idea to send these out 6 months before your wedding.
12 TO 9 MONTHS BEFORE
▢ Hire your vendors. Photographer, videographer, band/DJ, florist, caterer, officiant, etc.
▢ Launch a wedding website.
▢ Purchase your wedding dress.
▢ Register for gifts.
▢ Think about the menu you’d like to have for your reception.
▢ Decide on the type of entertainment you’d like.
▢ Envision your dream floral decor.
▢ Reserve a hotel block for out-of-town guests.
9 TO 6 MONTHS BEFORE
▢ Purchase your invitations.
▢ Start planning your honeymoon.
▢ Order your bridesmaids’ dresses.
▢ Draft your wedding day timeline.
6 TO 4 MONTHS BEFORE
▢ Attend pre-marriage counseling if needed.
▢ Send the bridal shower guest list to the host of the shower.
▢ Check on the status of your invitations.
▢ Envision your dream wedding cake. Hire a cake designer.
▢ Book your hair and makeup artists.
▢ Hire wedding transportation.
▢ Purchase wedding accessories. Buy your shoes, undergarments, hair pieces, jewelry, etc.
▢ Purchase your wedding rings.
▢ Shop for men’s formalwear.
▢ Choose your processional music and decide on your reception playlist.
3 MONTHS BEFORE
▢ Finalize your wedding menu and flower selection.
▢ Order your wedding cake if you haven’t already.
▢ Finalize your guest list.
▢ Order additional stationery. Menu cards, programs, escort cards, etc.
▢ Attend your wedding or bridal shower(s).
▢ Meet with the officiant. Finalize readings and decide on anything else that will be presented during the ceremony.
▢ Make a list of who will be giving toasts.
▢ Groom: rent your formalwear.
2 MONTHS BEFORE
▢ Check in and confirm details with all of your vendors.
▢ Meet with the photographer. It’s a good idea to meet at the venue if possible so the photographer can start planning shots.
▢ Review your playlist with the bandleader or DJ. Provide a ‘don’t play’ and ‘must play’ list, if any.
▢ Do a hair and makeup trial run. Decide on the style and look you’d like for your big day.
▢ Write your vows.
▢ Take dance lessons. If you’re not comfortable on the dance floor or want to do an elaborate dance with your spouse, it’s a good idea to take dance lessons to be prepared.
▢ Write and send thank you notes for shower gifts and early wedding gifts received.
▢ Purchase gifts for your parents, wedding party, and each other.
▢ Send out your invitations. It’s recommended to send these 8 weeks before your wedding, and have the RSVP cutoff at 3 weeks after the postmark date.
1 MONTH BEFORE
▢ Check in and confirm details with all of your vendors.
▢ Obtain a marriage license.
▢ Mail out your rehearsal dinner invitations.
▢ Finalize your wedding day timeline.
▢ Send the final wedding day timeline to your vendors.
▢ Confirm the bridesmaids are ready and have their dresses.
▢ Email and print directions for transportation drivers.
▢ Plan your reception seating chart.
▢ Purchase/collect your something old, something new, borrowed, and blue.
▢ Purchase your guest book, toasting flutes, cake servers, unity candle, etc.
▢ Purchase alcohol, if needed, and finalize your signature cocktails.
2 WEEKS BEFORE
▢ Check RSVPs. Follow up with any guests you haven’t heard from.
▢ Deliver the finalized playlist to the bandleader or DJ.
▢ Put together a bridal emergency kit.
▢ Enjoy your bachelor and bachelorette parties.
1 WEEK BEFORE
▢ Check in and confirm details with all of your vendors.
▢ Confirm roles and duties with the wedding party. Give them the wedding day timeline so they know what’s expected.
▢ Delegate any small wedding-day tasks you can to friends and family.
▢ Break in your shoes!
▢ Send the final guest list/head count to the caterer and/or venue.
▢ Pack for your honeymoon.
▢ Connect with the venue manager. Provide them with any special requests for vendors, i.e. setup spaces needed, cake table, DJ table, etc.
▢ Give the ceremony and reception venue manager(s) a schedule of vendor delivery and setup times. It’s also a good idea to include a contact name and phone number for each vendor.
▢ Groom: Get your haircut.
2 TO 3 DAYS BEFORE
▢ Check in and confirm details with all of your vendors.
▢ Get the wedding dress pressed or steamed, if needed.
▢ Groom: Have your final fitting and pick up your formalwear.
▢ Have the Best Man check in with all groomsmen. Confirm they have attended their final fittings and have their formalwear.
▢ Determine the wedding party positions for the ceremony and order for the processional and recessional.
▢ Give the place cards, table cards, menus, favors, etc. to the caterer or reception venue manager.
THE DAY BEFORE
▢ Give all vendors an emergency number to call on the day of the wedding. Designate someone you trust to handle all questions and concerns.
▢ Write final checks for vendors. Give them to the Best Man along with tip envelopes to be handed out at/after the wedding.
▢ Assign someone to pack up the gifts/belongings after the reception.
▢ Assign someone to take the Bride’s gown to cleaning and to return the Groom’s rentals.
▢ Rehearse the ceremony.
▢ Drop off ceremony accessories at the venue.
▢ Give the marriage license to the officiant.
▢ Get a manicure and pedicure.
▢ Present the wedding party with gifts at the rehearsal dinner.
▢ Go to bed early!
THE DAY OF
▢ Present parents and each other with gifts.
▢ Give the wedding bands to the Best Man and Maid of Honor.
▢ Give the Best Man the officiant’s fee envelope to be presented after the ceremony.
▢ Introduce the reception venue manager to your designated contact person for questions or concerns.
▢ Assign someone you trust to be the photographer’s contact. This person can help the photographer gather necessary people for photos and point out who is who.
AFTER THE WEDDING
▢ Write and send thank you notes.
▢ Complete your registry. Exchange or return unwanted or duplicate gifts.
▢ Preserve your wedding dress.
▢ Follow up with your photographer and videographer for albums, DVDs, etc.
▢ Get your name changed.

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