Hey hey, it’s time for another Wedding Wednesday post and as we’re creeping up on the big day, I thought it would be fun to share a wedding planning checklist to help out those of you who are newly engaged or even halfway through the wedding planning process like myself. I’m by no means a pro, but since I’m almost 3 months out from the big day, I have done most of the big steps in the planning process and feel a little more experienced with the whole thing. Now onto my wedding planning checklist.
Wedding Planning Checklist
9-12 Months Out
Figure out your budget // Figuring out your budget is the MOST important step when you first start working on planning your wedding. If you have a pretty strict budget, you don’t want to fall in love with a venue you can’t afford so you need to know how much you can afford for each step of the way from the get go.
Set your wedding date // This is probably one of the first steps you should take after you figure out your budget when planning your wedding.
Figure out your venue // This should go hand in hand with your wedding date because you can’t have the venue if the wedding date isn’t available and vice versa.
Start working on guest list // Having a rough estimate of how many guests you’re going to have prior to booking your venue is important so your guest list isn’t exceeding the limits that your venue can hold.
Select your bridal party // Your bridal party is a key part of your big day so selecting them from early on is essential.
Book large vendors: photographer/videographer, officiant, caterer, florist, etc // It’s important to book your big vendors far in advance because they typically get booked out pretty far in advance so to get your dream photographer/videographer or caterer, you’re going to have to snag them early.
6-9 Months Out
Shop for your dress // I would suggest doing this closer to the 9 months mark since my dress took 4 months to come in from being made not including alterations and all of that extra stuff.
Figure out bridal party attire // Because you may want this to coordinate with your dress, it’s good to start figuring it out what your bridesmaids and groomsmen are going to wear.
Register for gifts // This part was one of the most fun for me so I started doing it earlier but I’d recommend starting it during the 6-9 months out mark.
Begin planning the honeymoon // Figure out where you want to go for the honeymoon and book it as soon as possible. We booked ours back in May and just recently got our tickets in the mail from Delta so I’d suggest booking them earlier so you don’t have to worry about it.
Send out the save the dates // We sent these out in May and our wedding is in November so I think our timeline was about right for these.
Book hair and makeup appointments // I did this around the 9 months out mark but you can wait a little, these don’t book out as quickly.
4-6 Months Out
Finalize details with vendors // It would be a nightmare to have a vendor not have you marked down in their schedule so you need to make sure to follow up with your vendors (photographer/videographer) and things like that to ensure they have you booked.
Begin hair and makeup trials // I am actually starting my hair/makeup trials closer to 3 months out but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Figure out smaller decor items/wedding favors // I’m actually working on this right now so I think its the perfect time for that.
2-4 Months Out
Alterations and fittings of wedding dress // If necessary, make sure to get your alterations in this time frame.
Meet with wedding coordinator to finalize day of details // Our day of coordinator has us scheduled 2 months out to finalize all of the day of and rehearsal details so that we can know in advance our wedding timeline.
4-8 Weeks Out
Send out formal invites // It’s time to send out formal invites! Make sure to give your guests plenty enough time to be able to RSVP before the wedding day to ensure you’re less stressed.
Make a wedding timeline // If you already haven’t, make a wedding timeline so you know what’s happening when so you can stay on track for your wedding night.
Order bridal party gifts // You can do this sooner if you’re anxious like me, but this should be ample enough time to get their gifts.
2-4 Weeks Out
Follow up with anyone who hasn’t RSVP’d // The dreaded follow up, but it needs to be done. I’d recommend closer to 4 weeks out since my venue wants to have a finalized list 2 weeks prior to the big day.
Make a seating chart // Once you know who all will be in attendance, you can whip up a seating chart.
2 Weeks Out
Send final guest list to vendors // I have to send this to my venue who will update my caterers so that’s eliminating one step from the process.
Send music list to DJ // My DJ requests the music list two weeks out so this is probably pretty standard across the board.
Sending wedding timeline to bridal party // You want your girls (and guys) to be in the know so make sure they are kept informed so they have no excuse to ask you any extra questions.
Confirm time/details with vendors // Follow up with your vendors yet again so you aren’t running around like a chicken with your head cut off on wedding day. Trust me, it will be worth it.
1 Week Out
Get your mani & pedi // You should’ve already experimented with different colors prior to this so this part should be easy and relaxing.
Pack for your honeymoon // It’s time to pack for your honeymoon, a pretty exciting part, I’d say. Pack your favorite stuff and prepare for an awesome honeymoon.
Last minute details // Finalize your last minute details at this point so you can head into the wedding day as stress free as possible.
Try to relax // This is easier said than done, but try to relax as much as possible. Your wedding day should be fun, not a stress fest.
Did I miss any key things about wedding planning? Did you use a wedding planning checklist when planning your wedding? Please feel free to let me know down in the comments.
If you’re a newly engaged bride to be, I have just the thing for you. Feel free to download my wedding planning checklist down below! I hope it’s helpful in your wedding preparation.