As a wedding photographer I know how important it is to be prepared, I have checklist for everything, just in case!
Let’s take the stress out of wedding planning with a simple yet comprehensive checklist. This list breaks down everything you need to do by when you need to do it. It works on a 12-month timeline, giving you plenty of time to plan the perfect day. Print it off, hang it on your fridge and enjoy the satisfaction of ticking things off.
12 Months Before
- Set a budget.
- Have a long conversation with your partner about your ideas for the day.
- Split up the workload: who will be responsible for what?
- Arrange a meeting between both sets of parents, siblings and other important family members.
- Create a first draft of the guest list; having a good idea of numbers will be important when choosing your venue.
- Set the date. (Optional extra: send Save the Date cards.)
- Book the church or registrar. A registrar is required for all non-church weddings.
- Choose your ceremony (if not in a church) and reception venue(s); the most popular venues book up quickly so make this a priority.
- Choose your bridesmaids, best man and ushers.
9-11 Months Before
- Research and book your photographer and videographer.
- Start dress shopping (if you haven’t already).
- Book a menu tasting with caterers.
- Research florists and wedding cake makers.
- Book the honeymoon!
6-8 Months Before
- Give notice of marriage at your local register office.
- Finalise the menu.
- Order your wedding cake and flowers.
- Start buying and/or making decorations.
- Design and order invitations.
- Get wedding dress and groom’s suit ordered.
- Buy bridesmaid and usher outfits.
- Book hair stylist and makeup artist. Set a date for a trial-run.
- Book ceremony music and band or DJ for reception.
- Research and reserve accommodation for guests.
- Organise your gift registry.
-Plan Stag and Hen parties (or have the relevant people plan them for you).
3-5 Months Before
- Book wedding day transport.
- Order wedding stationery; order of service, menus, seating chart, thank you cards, etc.
- Buy wedding rings.
- Book wedding night accommodation.
- Decide on readings for the ceremony.
- Send invitations and make a spreadsheet ready for RSVPs.
2 Months Before
- Final suit and dress fittings.
- Buy gifts for bridesmaids, ushers and parents.
- Confirm bookings and final details with venues, caterers, photographer, videographer, chauffeur, florist, baker and band/DJ.
- Start writing speeches.
1 Month Before
- Finalise guest list (based on RSVPs) and chase up any late repliers.
- Confirm honeymoon details.
- Honeymoon shopping!
- Make last minute adjustments and confirm with suppliers.
- Make final payments to your suppliers.
- Have engagement ring cleaned.
1 Week Before
- Give venue and caterers a final head count.
- Make sure bridesmaids and ushers are aware of their duties on the day.
- Pack for wedding day and honeymoon.
- Book in some pampering for bride and groom: haircuts, massages, manicures, etc.
- Get plenty of rest!
The Day Before
- Set-up and decorate venue.
- Meet with arriving family and friends.
- Give wedding bands to the best man.
- Double check cake and flowers are on track to arrive the next day.
- Final read-through of speeches.
- Try and get a good night’s sleep!
If you found this blog useful we would love to hear from you, we are always here to help so if you have any questions about any aspect of your wedding planning please contact us HERE or if you’d like to meet for a chat we are based in Chelmsford, Essex. Happy planning!!