Before can even think about the many tasks needing to be accomplished on the way to the altar, you and your sweet something need to ask yourselves the following questions:

  1. How big or small will your wedding be? The size of your wedding will mitigate every other aspect of your wedding plans.
  2. How much time can be spent on planning the wedding? We know. It's your WEDDING and you want to plan every detail of it. Keep in mind that there are professional wedding planners who put countless hours into what they are doing.
  3. Who will be helping with planning and funding? Unless you were independently wealthy when you got engaged, you'll need help covering the costs of even the most meager wedding.

When you've discussed these questions, you'll be ready to take advantage of the following checklist to create a manageable action plan:

6-12 Months Prior

  • Start a wedding binder to keep ideas and details.
  • Work out your budget and who is responsible for which expense.
  • Choose your wedding date.
  • Start Building your wedding party and decide how tasks will be delegated.
  • Seek out and hire a wedding planner if you are able.
  • Decide whether or not you want separate locations for the ceremony and reception then book your venue(s) accordingly.
  • Book your officiant (someone authorized to perform marriages) and schedule a meeting with him or her..
  • Research photographers, bands, florists, venues, and caterers, and keep a list of your top three choices.
  • Start looking for a wedding gown. They can take up to 12 weeks to arrive if ordered online, and fittings and adjustments can take as much time.
  • Setup a gift or bridal registry with at least three retailers at different price points. Guests and well-wishers will donate to your registry which will allow you to buy things you need for the wedding and after the honeymoon.
  • Create a wedding website using a free provider. Include important information for guests like how to RSVP to different events.
  • Book your photographer and videographer. It's not important to have all the facets of your wedding decided. Booking early will spare you and them headaches later.
  • Schedule your engagement session with your photographer.
  • If you plan on having live entertainment, be sure to listen to a live performance before booking them. Book the entertainment.
  • Select the bridesmaid's dresses. Be sure to take them with you.
  • Send Save-the-Date Cards.
  • Start making payments for vendors with whom you have extended payment plans.

4-6 Months Prior

  • Choose the tuxes for the Groom and the groomsmen and have them fitted properly.
  • Book any rental items that may be needed (linens, tables, chairs, etc,...).
  • Choose your invitations and start addressing them.
  • Plan and book your honeymoon.
  • Meet with the officiant and discuss what is and is not acceptable for the ceremony. If LDS, schedule temple recommend interviews.
  • Make sure you have all of the official documents for the wedding. Be mindful that these vary by nation, by state, and possibly by county or parish.
  • Book a hotel room for your wedding night.
  • Schedule a run-through for your bridal hair and make-up artist. Take some photos to help remember the look you like.
  • Choose a cake baker and a design for your cake.
  • Book your rehearsal dinner and rehearsal venue.
  • Continue making payments for vendors with whom you have extended payment plans.

2-3 Months Prior

  • Purchase Wedding day shoes.
  • Book your florist and caterer, and finalize your choices with them.
  • If you didn't do it as part of the engagement process, find and purchase the wedding bands for both bride and groom.
  • Order Favors, if desired.
  • Purchase your veil and schedule final fitting.
  • Continue making payments for vendors with whom you have extended payment plans.

5-6 Weeks Prior

  • Provide Videographer with photo montage and music.
  • Submit engagement announcement to the newspaper(s).
  • Finalize your vows if you are writing your own.
  • Enjoy a Bridal Shower.
  • Write Thank You notes for your Bridal Shower gifts.
  • Update your registry as you receive gifts.
  • Order Guest book (get ideas from your photographer).
  • Continue making payments for vendors with whom you have extended payment plans.

3-4 Weeks Prior

  • Get Marriage License
  • Send final payments to wedding vendors.
  • Confirm times for hair, makeup, and other vendors.
  • Confirm wedding night and honeymoon reservations.
  • Determine your wedding day itinerary and send copies to all vendors.
  • Verify final head count.
  • Decide upon the seating order and rearrange as needed.
  • Purchase Bridesmaid's gifts.
  • Make wedding day assignments with family and bridal party.
  • Practice walking in your wedding day shoes (especially if they're new).
  • Get manicure, pedicure, and tan, if desired.
  • Determine who will be giving toasts and invite them to prepare.

1-2 Weeks Prior

  • Get your hair colored and cut to match the theme and style of your wedding or to your liking, whichever is more appropriate.
  • Verify arrival times with vendors.
  • Delegate small wedding-day tasks...someone to manage the gifts, cards, guest's coats, and so on.
  • If the Groom needs a haircut, now's the time to do it.
  • Finalize toasts
  • One last fitting to make sure your gown still fits properly. Remember to bring your shoes so that you can see the complete ensemble.
  • Use envelopes to set tips aside to be given to the vendors on wedding day.
  • Send final guest count to caterer and venue.
  • Contact Officiant and provide the wedding and rehearsal schedule details.
  • Distribute directions and schedule to the bridal party.
  • Pack for your honeymoon, and be sure to pack an overnight bag for your wedding day.
  • Get final waxing and tanning &emdash; but only if you have been doing this in previous months.
Return to Top