12-Month Wedding Planning
Newly engaged and not sure where to start? Wondering about all the things you'll need to do and when? Our month-by-month snapshot of all your wedding to-dos will steer you in the right direction to the wedding of your dreams!
10-12 MONTHS BEFORE YOUR WEDDING
· Set a wedding date.
· Set your budget. That number will be one of the main deciding factors in determining your venue.
· Decide on the number of guests you would like to have at your wedding. Consider your budget when compiling this list.
· Compile a rough guest list and organize addresses.
· Search for wedding planners and/or day-of coordination assistance.
· Locate and reserve ceremony and reception site.
· Select your photographer and videographer.
8-10 MONTHS BEFORE YOUR WEDDING
· Shop for a dress, shoes, and accessories (time for alterations and fittings).
· Book hotel rooms or reserve a block of rooms for out of town guests.
· Book an engagement shoot with your photographer.
· Select save the date cards.
· Set-up your registry and wedding website to share information with guest.
· Book a caterer and complete initial tasting.
· Reserve DJ/music for ceremony and reception.
· Have a design meeting with your wedding planner.
6-8 MONTHS BEFORE YOUR WEDDING
· Choose your bridal party and attire.
· Select your ceremony officiant.
· Send save the date cards, priority to out of town guests.
· Book a florist. If you decide to do the flowers yourself, keep costs low by using more greenery and stick to just one or two in-season blooms.
· Book dessert and complete initial tasting.
· Reserve any rentals needed for ceremony and/or reception.
· Hire a hair stylist and makeup artist and reserve trials.
4-6 MONTHS BEFORE YOUR WEDDING
· Order your wedding stationery (invitations, RSVP, thank you, calligraphy, place cards, programs, menus, escort cards).
· Secure your transportation.
· Book a hotel room for day of prep and wedding night.
· Decide on wedding favors.
· Book your honeymoon.
· Book your rehearsal dinner location.
· Shop for wedding rings.
· Reserve décor and lighting vendors (draping, specialty rentals).
· Book specialty entertainment vendors (photo booth, cigar).
2-4 MONTHS BEFORE YOUR WEDDING
· Finalize floral decisions.
· Select and prepare your ceremony service with officiate.
· Schedule the rehearsal date and time.
· Finalize and mail out your invitations.
· Purchase gift for bride/groom, bridal party, parents and in-laws.
· Complete music selection for ceremony and reception.
· Purchase gift bags for hotel guests.
· Confirm bridal party has ordered/purchased attire.
· Schedule hair and makeup for day of wedding.
· Order alcohol and beverage items.
· Arrange a babysitter/activities for kids.
· Determine post wedding activities (brunch, breakfast).
1-2 MONTHS BEFORE YOUR WEDDING
· Buy a guest book.
· Obtain your marriage license.
· Send a change of address information to post office.
· Dress fitting with veil, shoes, and accessories.
· Prepare a seating plan.
· Prepare toasts for rehearsal dinner and wedding reception.
· Finalize speeches and itinerary with wedding planner.
· Finalize rehearsal dinner and post wedding brunch details.
· Schedule and attend final walk through at ceremony and reception site.
· Confirm final guest count with vendors and send final payments.
· Confirm final numbers for rentals, linens, floral and décor items.
· Estimate gratuity for vendors.
1-2 WEEKS BEFORE YOUR WEDDING
· Confirm final count with caterer.
· Finalize transportation arrangements for ceremony and reception.
· Ensure all items for the day of the wedding are packed up for delivery (toasting flutes, guest book, decor items, etc.).
· Ceremony rehearsal and rehearsal dinner take place.
· Deliver guest bags to hotel.
· Send final timeline to each vendor and confirm details.
· Obtain final vendor payments and gratuities.
1 WEEK AFTER YOUR WEDDING
· Send follow up thank you emails to all vendors.
· Start organization of thank you notes for guests.